Mars Closest to Earth in 15 Years Today

Aug 01, 2018, 14:11
Mars Closest to Earth in 15 Years Today

The Red Planet last made an approach this close in 2003 when it came within 34.6 million miles of Earth.

Here is when and how users can get the best view of Mars, and why this opposition is different from its previous versions.

The Red Planet is now brighter than usual and will glow even more - and look larger - tonight. And if you miss it this time around, you'll have to wait another 269 years before it comes around again.

In 2003, Mars and Earth were at their closest in almost 60,000 years, coming within 34.6 million miles of each other.

There is presently a planet-wide dust storm on Mars, a phenomenon that is said to occur when the planet is closest to the sun in its orbit.

The evening of 31 July will see Mars will appear quite brightly, omitting an orange-red colour.

Don't forget to look up and catch a glimple of a brigher Mars tonight as the Red Planet makes its closest approach to Earth in 15 years on Tuesday when the two planets will be 57.6 million kilometres apart.

Glen Nagle, of CSIRO Astronomy and Space Science, told nine.com.au that Earth is now in "opposition", meaning Mars and the sun will be on precise opposite sides of our planet.

MARS is set to be visible in the skies above Ireland on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, with the Red Planet set to pass closer to Earth than it has been at any time in the last 15 years. In the video, you can see telescopic imagery of the Red Planet, conversations between scientists as they observe the night sky, and guest appearances by a number of people, including "Star Trek: Voyager" actor Tim Russ, and former NASA astronaut Buzz Aldrin. It will be brighter than the gas giant Jupiter and as bright as Saturn in the night sky.

This process of colonising other planets is known as terraforming when it refers to shaping their environments so they are more like Earth.

But just in case you miss Mars Close Approach this year, the next one is scheduled to take place on October 6, 2020.

Mars will be closer to Earth this month.

Observatories across the United States are hosting Mars-viewing events right now.

"It is significant.... If you look at Mars through a telescope, it appears about twice as big now as it would have appeared, say, seven years ago".

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