Solar System Phenomena — Uranus in 2022

The path of Uranus against the background stars in 2022

The chart shows the path of Uranus across the background stars over the course of the year. Stars to magnitude +9.5 are shown. The white circles represent the planet on the first day of the month and are scaled according to apparent magnitude. The faint paths before the first circle and after the last circle represent the planet's positions in December of last year and January of next. In general, the planet moves from right to left except when it's in retrograde and proceding in the opposite direction.

The lower chart shows how the appearance of Uranus changes over the year. Below each image is listed the date, the apparent magnitude, the apparent diameter of the disk (in arc-seconds) and the geocentric distance (in au). Because the relative distance of Uranus does not greatly vary throughout the year, neither does its appearance through a telescope.

Uranus hovers around sixth magnitude so it is best viewed with some kind of optical aid. It enters the year in retrograde motion in the evening sky and its position in the constellation of Aries means that northern hemisphere observers have the best views of this faint planet. Conjunction takes place in early May after which Uranus moves into the morning sky. Last year, the Moon made increasingly close passes by the green ice giant; this year these encounters become lunar occultations. Opposition occurs in November, with Uranus on view all night.

11 January1.3° north of the Moon
17 Januarymaximum declination south
18 Januarystationary in right ascension: retrograde → direct
30 Januaryeast quadrature
07 Februarylunar occultation: 1.1° north of the Moon
07 Marchlunar occultation: 0.8° north of the Moon
03 Aprillunar occultation: 0.6° north of the Moon
14 April0.2° north of sixth-magnitude star ο Arietis
18 Aprilplanetary conjunction: 1.9° south of Mercury
01 Maylunar occultation: 0.4° north of the Moon
05 Mayconjunction
28 Maylunar occultation: 0.3° north of the Moon
11 Juneplanetary conjunction: 1.5° south of Venus
24 Junelunar occultation: 0.1° north of the Moon
22 Julylunar occultation: 0.2° south of the Moon
02 Augustplanetary conjunction: 1.3° north of Mars
11 Augustwest quadrature
18 Augustlunar occultation: 0.6° south of the Moon
23 Augustmaximum declination north
24 Auguststationary in right ascension: direct → retrograde
14 Septemberlunar occultation: 0.7° south of the Moon
12 Octoberlunar occultation: 0.8° south of the Moon
08 Novemberlunar occultation: 0.8° south of the Moon
09 Novemberopposition: magnitude +5.6, apparent diameter 3.7 arc-seconds
05 Decemberlunar occultation: 0.6° south of the Moon


The dates, times and circumstances of all planetary and lunar phenomena were calculated from the JPL DE406 solar system ephemeris using the same rigorous methods that are employed in the compilation of publications such as The Astronomical Almanac.