- Sent: Monday, July 28, 2003 1:06 PM
Subject: FW: Close encounter with Mars
Watch those skies!
CLOSE ENCOUNTER WITH MARS
Never again in your lifetime will the Red Planet be so spectacular.
This month and next, Earth is catching up with Mars... an encounter that
will culminate in the closest approach between the two planets in
recorded history. The next time Mars may come this close is in 2287.
Due to the way Jupiter's gravity tugs on Mars and perturbs its orbit,
astronomers can only be certain that Mars has not come this close to
Earth in the last 5,000 years but it may be as long as 60,000 years. The
encounter will culminate on August 27th when Mars comes to within
34,649,589 miles and will be (next to the moon) the brightest object in
the night sky. It will attain a magnitude of -2.9 and will appear 25.11
arc seconds wide. At a modest 75-power magnification Mars will look as
large as the full moon to the naked eye.
Mars will be easy to spot. At the beginning of August Mars will rise in
the east at 10 p.m. and reach its zenith at about 3 a.m. But by the end
of August when the two planets are closest, Mars will rise at nightfall
and reach its highest point in the sky at 12:30 a.m. That's pretty
convenient when it comes to seeing something that no human has seen in
recorded history. So mark your calendar at the beginning of August to
see Mars grow progressively brighter and brighter throughout the month.
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
- is this the bright 'star' I've been tracking for the past couple of
weeks? I'm in Oklahoma, and it has been roughly east by south
east. Unfortunatly I am around a lot of bright lights, and the only
time I have seen it while out at the lake, I didn't have a darn
thing to look at it with magnification. but it has been bugging me
about what it is. I did notice this same thing back in autumn
of '99 too, so I've been curious.
- --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "athariannorthkeep"
> weeks? I'm in Oklahoma,<snip>
> AtharianHowdy, neighbor!
Wiesenfeuer, Ansteorra (Oklahoma City area)