Main astronomical events of February 2023

During the first half of February, interesting events related to comet ZTF will take place in the sky. On the first day of the month, it will approach the Earth at the minimum possible distance, and then, from the point of view of ground observers, it will pass close to Capella, Mars and Aldebaran. The maximum visible approach of Venus to Neptune on February 15 is expected at about two o’clock in the afternoon, GMT+2. When evening twilight falls over Ukraine, the angular distance between these celestial bodies will already increase to 10 minutes and will continue to grow in the future.

Comet ZTF on January 20, 2023. Source: Johnny Horne, Fayetteville Observer

February 1

  • Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF, 5,0ᵐ) at 0.284 AU (42.5 million km) from Earth

February 3

  • The Moon is 2° south of Pollux (β Gemini, 1,2ᵐ)

February 4

  • The Moon is at apogee, 406475 km from the center of the Earth

February 5

  • Full moon

February 6

  • Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF, 5,7ᵐ) is 1.5° west of Capella (α Auriga, 0.1ᵐ)

February 7

  • The Moon is 4° north of Regulus (α Leo, 1,3ᵐ)

February 11

  • The Moon is 3° north of Spica (α Virgo, 1.0ᵐ)
  • Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF, 6.5ᵐ) is 1° east of Mars (0.0ᵐ)

February 13

  • The Moon is in the last quarter phase

February 15

  • Comet C/2022 E3 (ZTF, 7.0ᵐ) is 1.5° east of Aldebaran (α Tauri, 0.8ᵐ)
  • The Moon is 4° west of Antares (α Scorpio, 1.0ᵐ)
  • Venus (-4,0ᵐ) is 0.01° to the south of Neptune (-8,0)
  • Saturn in conjunction with the Sun

February 19

  • The Moon is at perigee, 358267 km from the center of the Earth

February 20

  • New Moon

February 21

  • The Moon is 4° south of Neptune

February 22

  • The Moon is 2° south of Venus (-4.0ᵐ)
  • The Moon is 4° south of Jupiter (-2.1ᵐ)

February 25

  • The Moon is 1° north of Uranus (5,8ᵐ)

February 27

  • The Moon is in the phase of the first quarter

February 28

  • The Moon is 2° west of Mars (0.4ᵐ)

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