Close approach of the Moon and M44

Wednesday 28th Aug 201911:13

The Moon and M44 will make a close approach, passing within 0°33' of each other. The Moon will be 27 days old.

From London, the pair will be difficult to observe as they will appear no higher than 18° above the horizon. They will be visible in the dawn sky, rising at 03:24 (BST) – 2 hours and 42 minutes before the Sun – and reach an altitude of 18° above the eastern horizon before fading from view as dawn breaks at around 05:43.

The Moon will be at mag -9.6, and M44 at mag 3.1, both in the constellation Cancer.

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

A graph of the angular separation between the Moon and M44 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 08h40m40s +20°13' Cancer -9.6 33'01"9
M44 08h40m20s +19°40' Cancer 3.1 95'00"0

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 27° from the Sun, which is in Leo at this time of year.

This entry in the observing calendar was provided by