Wednesday, 19 December, 2018

Mars making closest approach to Earth in 15 years

Astronomers predict that the Mars will come close to the Earth in 5 years Scientists find the source of all that crazy Mars dust
Frank Williams | 27 July, 2018, 02:24

That's because it is - well, sort of. First, a solar wind proton approaches Mars at high speed and encounters a cloud of hydrogen surrounding the planet.

Although Mars will be closer than normal, it will still only appear as a bright, red point of light in the sky and not as large as the moon, noted Accuweather.com, a reference to a hoax that made the rounds in 2003.

Mars will reach opposition on July 27.

Mars and Earth line up just 57.6 million km apart at the end of July, equaling the proximity records set in 2003 and some 60,000 years before.

Astronomers have revealed that Mars will be within a close range of our planet Earth on July 25 - fifteen years after its closest brush with Earth. Instead, they have elliptical, or egg-shaped, paths with orbits that change as a result of gravitational tugging.

It will pass within 35.8 million miles from Earth.

Mars will be at its brightest appearance since 2003 when Mars made its closest approach to Earth in nearly 60,000 years. "This is one of the largest weather events that we've seen on Mars", since spacecraft observations began in the 1960s, said Michael Smith, a scientist at NASA's Goddard Spaceflight Center.

So what's the big deal about the close approach? "If Earth and Mars followed perfectly circular orbits, opposition would be as close as the two planets could get". Stargazers can see the red planet by looking south after sunset.

Unhappiness not grounds for divorce, woman is told
A year ago three appeal judges ruled against her after a Court of Appeal hearing in London. A wealthy couple, they had been married since 1978 and have two adult children.

This year, Mars opposition will occur on July 27, according to NASA.

The events are free and open to the public. Seminole State College officials will notify people hoping to attend via Facebook if the event has to be canceled due to weather.

"It's an extremely bright, reddish star", Demeter said. Just look out for the big red dot.

Of course, you can always step outside and check out the red planet with your naked eye. It also coincides with the longest total lunar eclipse of the 21st century, which will last 1 hour, 43 minutes.

If you miss the close approach altogether, don't worry.

By mid-August, the planet will become fainter as Mars and Earth travel farther away from each other in their orbits around the sun.

Also on Friday, NASA plans to release what scientists say will be stunning new images of Mars taken by the Hubble Space Telescope.

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