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

Conjunction of the Moon and Mars

Dominic Ford, Editor
From the Conjunctions feed

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The sky at

The Moon and Mars will share the same right ascension, with the Moon passing 6'19" to the south of Mars. The Moon will be 10 days old.

At around the same time, the two objects will also make a close approach, technically called an appulse.

From Washington , the pair will be visible in the evening sky, becoming accessible around 18:20 (MDT), 60° above your eastern horizon, as dusk fades to darkness. They will then reach their highest point in the sky at 20:24, 77° above your southern horizon. They will continue to be observable until around 02:52, when they sink below 9° above your north-western horizon.

Begin typing the name of a town near to you, and then select the town from the list of options which appear below.

The Moon will be at mag -12.3, and Mars at mag -0.3, both in the constellation Taurus.

The pair will be close enough to fit within the field of view of a telescope, but will also be visible to the naked eye or through a pair of binoculars.

A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and Mars 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 Moon 04h30m40s 24°29'N Taurus -12.3 29'54"1
Mars 04h30m40s 24°36'N Taurus -0.3 10"7

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

The sky on 30 Jan 2023

The sky on 30 January 2023
Sunrise
07:36
Sunset
17:55
Twilight ends
19:25
Twilight begins
06:06

9-day old moon
Waxing Gibbous

78%

9 days old

Planets
Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 06:08 11:01 15:54
Venus 08:53 14:21 19:49
Moon 12:49 20:21 04:01
Mars 12:59 20:24 03:48
Jupiter 10:10 16:16 22:22
Saturn 08:28 13:47 19:05
All times shown in MST.

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.

Related news

12 Jan 2023  –  Mars ends retrograde motion
06 Dec 2024  –  Mars enters retrograde motion
12 Jan 2025  –  Mars at perigee
15 Jan 2025  –  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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Washington

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Longitude:
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37.13°N
113.51°W
MDT

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