Conjunction between the Moon and M44

2018 Sep 7

Dominic Ford – originally published on

The Moon and M44 will make a close approach, passing within 1°22' of each other.

From London (click to change), the pair will be visible in the dawn sky. They will rise at 02:41 (BST), 3 hours and 39 minutes before the Sun, and attain an altitude of 27° above the eastern horizon before fading from view as dawn breaks at around 05:58.

At the moment of closest approach, the Moon will be at mag -10.3, and M44 at mag 3.1, both in the constellation Cancer.

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.

The precise positions of the Moon and M44 at the moment of closest approach will be as follows:

Object Right Ascension Declination Constellation Magnitude Angular Size
The Moon 08h39m00s +18°37' Cancer -10.3 32'59"2
M44 08h40m00s +19°58' Cancer 3.1 1'35"0

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 36° from the Sun, which is in Leo at this time of year.

The details of this observing event were provided courtesy of