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 Mars

Dominic Ford, Editor
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The sky at

The Moon and Mars will make a close approach, passing within 3°55' of each other. The Moon will be 26 days old.

From San Diego , the pair will be visible in the dawn sky, rising at 04:26 (PDT) – 2 hours and 15 minutes before the Sun – and reaching an altitude of 17° above the south-eastern horizon before fading from view as dawn breaks at around 06:05.

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The Moon will be at mag -10.9; and Mars will be at mag 1.1. Both objects will lie in the constellation Capricornus.

They 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 pair will also share the same right ascension – called a conjunction.

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

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

Object Right Ascension Declination Constellation Magnitude Angular Size
The Moon 21h20m40s 20°51'S Capricornus -10.9 31'55"6
Mars 21h15m50s 17°06'S Capricornus 1.1 5"1

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 51° from the Sun, which is in Pisces at this time of year.

The sky on 27 Mar 2022

The sky on 27 March 2022
Sunrise
06:41
Sunset
19:04
Twilight ends
20:28
Twilight begins
05:18

25-day old moon
Waning Crescent

14%

25 days old

Planets
Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 06:33 12:32 18:31
Venus 04:30 09:57 15:25
Moon 04:11 09:18 14:29
Mars 04:25 09:42 14:59
Jupiter 06:02 11:52 17:42
Saturn 04:41 10:04 15:26
All times shown in PDT.

Source

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.

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30 Nov 2022  –  Mars at perigee
07 Dec 2022  –  Mars 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.

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San Diego

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Longitude:
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32.72°N
117.16°W
PDT

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