Conjunction between the Moon and Venus

2016 Jan 7

Dominic Ford – originally published on

The Moon and Venus will make a close approach, passing within 3°04' of each other.

From London (click to change), the pair will be difficult to observe as they will appear no higher than 14° above the horizon. They will be visible in the dawn sky. They will rise at 05:10 (GMT), 2 hours and 54 minutes before the Sun, and attain an altitude of 14° above the south-eastern horizon before fading from view as dawn breaks at around 07:37.

At the moment of closest approach, the Moon will be at mag -10.2, and Venus at mag -4.4, both in the constellation Ophiuchus.

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 Venus at the moment of closest approach will be as follows:

Object Right Ascension Declination Constellation Magnitude Angular Size
The Moon 16h32m40s -16°59' Ophiuchus -10.2 30'25"2
Venus 16h31m00s -20°02' Ophiuchus -4.4 13"8

The coordinates above are given in J2000.0. The pair will be at an angular separation of 37° from the Sun, which is in Sagittarius at this time of year.

The details of this observing event were provided courtesy of