Mercury and Neptune will share the same right ascension, with Mercury passing 1°23' to the south of Neptune.
Mercury will be at mag -0.4, and Neptune at mag 8.0, both in the constellation Aquarius.
The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will be visible through a pair of binoculars.
A graph of the angular separation between Mercury and Neptune around the time of closest approach is available here.
The positions of the two objects at the moment of conjunction will be as follows:
|Object||Right Ascension||Declination||Constellation||Magnitude||Angular Size|
The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 18° from the Sun, which is in Pisces at this time of year.
|The sky on 29 March 2021|
16 days old
All times shown in EDT.
Never attempt to point a pair of binoculars or a telescope at an object close to the Sun. Doing so may result in immediate and permanent blindness.
The circumstances of this event were computed using the DE430 planetary ephemeris published by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL).
This event was automatically generated by searching the ephemeris for planetary alignments which are of interest to amateur astronomers, and the text above was generated based on an estimate of your location.
|11 Sep 2020||– Neptune at opposition|
|14 Sep 2021||– Neptune at opposition|
|16 Sep 2022||– Neptune at opposition|
|19 Sep 2023||– Neptune at opposition|
The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.