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

Lunar occultation of Venus

Dominic Ford, Editor
From the Lunar Occultations feed

Objects: Venus

The Moon will pass in front of Venus, creating a lunar occultation visible from Asia and Africa. Although the occultation will only be visible across part of the world – because the Moon is so close to the Earth that its position in the sky varies by as much as two degrees across the world – a close conjunction between the pair will be more widely visible.

Unfortunately the occultation will not be visible from San Diego.

The map below shows the visibility of the occultation across the world. Separate contours show where the disappearance of Venus is visible (shown in red), and where its reappearance is visible (shown in blue). Solid contours show where each event is likely to be visible through binoculars at a reasonable altitude in the sky. Dotted contours indicate where each event occurs above the horizon, but may not be visible due to the sky being too bright or the Moon being very close to the horizon.

Map showing where the occultation is visible

Outside the contours, the Moon will not pass in front of Venus at any time, or is below the horizon at the time of the occultation. However, a close conjunction between the pair will be visible across much of the world.

The map can be downloaded in PNG , PDF or SVG format. A KMZ file , is also available, which can be opened in Google Earth to provide a higher resolution map.

The animation below shows the path of the occultation across the Earth's globe. The red circle shows where the Moon appears in front of Venus.

You can download this video in MP4 or OGG format.

A complete list of the countries and territories where the occultation will be visible is as follows:

Country Time span
China 11:13–12:55
India 10:24–12:46
South Africa 08:12–09:32
Democratic Republic of the Congo 08:24–09:46
Angola 08:17–09:31
Pakistan 10:33–12:12
Tanzania 08:29–10:09
Namibia 08:11–09:31
Ethiopia 09:06–10:49
Mozambique 08:19–10:02
Zambia 08:17–09:50
Myanmar 11:21–12:51
Somalia 08:52–11:05
Madagascar 08:37–10:09
Botswana 08:12–09:31
Kenya 08:44–10:25
Thailand 11:30–12:52
Saudi Arabia 09:52–11:25
Yemen 09:39–11:16
Zimbabwe 08:17–09:41
Vietnam 11:37–12:54
Oman 09:55–11:40
Iran 10:32–11:47
Afghanistan 10:53–11:55
Uganda 08:53–10:00
Laos 11:34–12:53
Cambodia 11:41–12:50
Nepal 11:08–12:39
Bangladesh 11:16–12:45
Philippines 11:52–12:47
Malawi 08:24–09:52
Sudan 09:12–10:02
United Arab Emirates 10:20–11:24
Sri Lanka 10:51–12:07
Malaysia 11:58–12:44
Taiwan 11:52–12:53
Bhutan 11:20–12:42
Burundi 08:43–09:47
Rwanda 08:49–09:47
Djibouti 09:34–10:33
Swaziland 08:20–09:26
Eritrea 09:41–10:31
Maldives 10:24–11:45
Brunei 12:06–12:35
Hong Kong 11:48–12:54
Seychelles 08:45–10:39
Comoros 08:38–10:04
Mayotte 08:40–10:03
Japan 11:54–12:41
Paracel Islands 11:47–12:54
Macao 11:48–12:54
Spratly Islands 11:53–12:50
Lesotho 08:19–09:19

Lunar occultations are only ever visible from a small fraction of the Earth's surface. Since the Moon is much closer to the Earth than other celestial objects, its exact position in the sky differs depending on your exact location on Earth due to its large parallax. The position of the Moon as seen from two points on opposite sides of the Earth varies by up to two degrees, or four times the diameter of the full moon.

This means that if the Moon is aligned to pass in front of a particular object for an observer on one side of the Earth, it will appear up to two degrees away from that object on the other side of the Earth.

The position of Venus at the moment of the occultation will be as follows:

Object Right Ascension Declination Constellation Magnitude Angular Size
Venus 02h24m30s 14°53'N Aries -4.0 0'13"

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0.

Next/previous occultations

« Previous Next »
Visible from the Contiguous United States Worldwide Worldwide Visible from the Contiguous United States
12 Dec 2020 27 May 2022 Occultations of Venus 09 Nov 2023 07 Apr 2024
31 Jan 2023 13 Mar 2023 Occultations 09 Apr 2023 17 May 2023

The sky on 24 Mar 2023

The sky on 24 March 2023
Twilight ends
Twilight begins

3-day old moon
Waxing Crescent


3 days old

Rise Culm. Set
Mercury 07:08 13:21 19:34
Venus 08:23 15:06 21:48
Moon 08:33 15:30 22:35
Mars 11:21 18:36 01:51
Jupiter 07:27 13:44 20:02
Saturn 05:26 10:57 16:28
All times shown in PDT.


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

20 Mar 2022  –  Venus at greatest elongation west
12 May 2023  –  Venus at highest altitude in evening sky
04 Jun 2023  –  Venus at greatest elongation east
21 Oct 2023  –  Venus at highest altitude in morning sky

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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