The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.

Close approach of the Moon and Jupiter

Dominic Ford, Editor
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The sky at

The Moon and Jupiter will make a close approach, passing within 3°56' of each other. The Moon will be 9 days old.

From Ashburn, the pair will be visible in the evening sky, becoming accessible around 18:46 (EDT) as the dusk sky fades, 25° above your south-eastern horizon. They will then reach its highest point in the sky at 21:09, 35° above your southern horizon. They will continue to be observable until around 01:37, when they sink below 8° above your south-western horizon.

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The Moon will be at mag -12.4, and Jupiter at mag -2.6, both in the constellation Capricornus.

The pair will be too widely separated to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.

At around the same time, the two objects will also share the same right ascension – called a conjunction.

A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and Jupiter around the time of closest approach is available here.

The positions of the two objects at the moment of closest approach will be as follows:

Object Right Ascension Declination Constellation Magnitude Angular Size
The Moon 21h44m10s -18°59' Capricornus -12.4 31'13"1
Jupiter 21h39m10s -15°15' Capricornus -2.6 43"4

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 119° from the Sun, which is in Virgo at this time of year.

The sky on 15 October 2021
Sunrise
07:18
Sunset
18:30
Twilight ends
19:59
Twilight begins
05:49

9-day old moon
Waxing Gibbous

74%

9 days old

Planets
Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 06:22 12:11 18:01
Venus 11:22 15:57 20:33
Moon 16:37 21:43 01:43
Mars 07:06 12:46 18:25
Jupiter 15:57 21:09 02:25
Saturn 15:11 20:07 01:08
All times shown in EDT.

Source

The circumstances of this event were computed using the DE405 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.

Related news

19 Aug 2021  –  Jupiter at opposition
26 Sep 2022  –  Jupiter at opposition
03 Nov 2023  –  Jupiter at opposition
07 Dec 2024  –  Jupiter at opposition

Image credit

The Moon in conjunction with Venus and Jupiter, with the Very Large Telescope in the foreground. Image © Y. Beletsky, ESO, 2009.

Ashburn

Latitude:
Longitude:
Timezone:

39.04°N
77.49°W
EDT

Color scheme