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Mars is approaching Earth since 2003 early Tuesday! Here you can see



  Mars is approaching Earth since 2003 on early Tuesday! Here is, as can be seen

Mars, as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope in August 2003. This month, the Red Planet came closer to Earth than in the previous 60,000 years.

Credit: J. Bell (Cornell U.) And M. Wolff (SSI) / NASA

Mars is approaching Earth in 1

5 years early in the morning (July 31), and you can live the historic encounter track online.

The Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles will be broadcasting a celestial event with expert commentary from 1:00 am EDT to 5:00 am EDT (5:00 am to 9:00 am GMT; 10:00 am to 2:00 pm local time). You can watch the show here at Space.com by courtesy of Griffith or directly through the Observatory.

You can see Mars with your own eyes before sunrise on Tuesday (when the weather is fine) with a view of the southwestern sky. Around 4:00 am local time, Mars is visible on the southwestern horizon, with the moon shining in the upper left corner (see map below). [Mars at Opposition 2018: How to See It and What to Expect]

<img class = "pure-img lazy" big-src = "https://img.purch.com/h/1400/aHR0cDovL3d3dy5zcGFjZS5jb20vaW1hZ2VzL2kvMDAwLzA3OC8xMzAvb3JpZ2luYWwvbWFycy1jbG9zZS1hcHByb2FjaC0zMWp1bHkyMDE4LXN0YXJyeS1uaWdodC5KUEc/MTUzMjk4NDM3MQ==" src = "https://img.purch.com / w / 640 / aHR0cDovL3d3dy5zcGFjZS5jb20vaW1hZ2VzL2kvMDAwLzA3OC8xMzAvaTAyL21hcnMtY2xvc2UtYXBwcm9hY2gtMzFqdWx5MjAxOC1zdGFycnktbmlnaHQuSlBHPzE1MzI5ODQzNzE = "alt =" Mars will shine before sunrise in the sky of the Southwest on 31 July 2018 when in 2003 closest to the earth. This Starry night card shows where, after 4 am local time Mars can be seen. [19659008] Mars will shine in the sky of the Southwest before dawn on July 31, 2018, when it has been closest to Earth since 2003. This starry night chart shows where to look for Mars at 4 o'clock local time [19659009] Credit: Starry Night Software

The Griffith Observatory is well positioned to host the Mars show.

"By a celestial By coincidence, Mars will simultaneously be in its best position to pass through a Los Angeles telescope as it crosses the meridian and appears highest in the southern sky, "observatory officials wrote in a statement.

If you live in the Los Angeles area, you can also attend the Griffith event for free. The observatory will be open to the public, and small telescopes will be available for Mars observation. (These areas will be on the lawn, the observatory itself will be closed.)

The closest approach occurs at 3:45 am EDT (0745 GMT) when Mars and Earth are only 35.8 million miles apart be removed (57.6 million kilometers). The two planets have not rammed so hard since August 2003 when they spun within 34.6 million miles (55.7 million km) of each other.

This 2003 encounter was really special – the next between the neighboring planets in about 60,000 years. In fact, within a cosmic hair, it came to the minimum Mars-Earth distance, which is 54.6 million kilometers (33.9 million miles). (The maximum separation of the two planets is about 249 million miles, or 401 million kilometers, and the average distance between them is 140 million miles or 225 million kilometers.)

Tomorrow approaching on the heels of Mars approaches "opposition." This milestone – when Mars, the Earth, and the Sun aligned with our planet in the middle – occurred on Friday (July 27).

Mars was noticeably brighter in our sky for a while than usual as it got closer to Earth. But the red planet is not nearly as big or as bright as the moon. So do not fall for this dizziness that keeps cropping up in spite of persistent debunking efforts.

Follow Mike Wall on Twitter @michaeldwall and Google+. Follow us @Spacedotcom Facebook or Google+. Originally published on Space.com.


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