Catching up with Mars in 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 before it happens again.
The encounter will culminate on August 27th when Mars comes to within 34,649,589 miles of Earth 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
By August 27, Mars will look as large as the full moon to the naked eye. Mars will be easy to spot. At the beginning of August it will rise in the east at 10p. m. and reach its azimuth at about 3 a. m.
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 12:30a. m. That's pretty convenient to see something that no human being 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.
Share this with your children and grandchildren. NO ONE ALIVE TODAY WILL EVER SEE THIS AGAIN
Thanks girls I was just trying to share an interesting tid-bit with the forum. It's not every day that we have the opportunity to experience a natural phenomenon that no one else alive today will ever see again.
Well ecam... thanks for sharing this incredible information with us! Wish I had a telescope for the big day!
(maybe I shouldn't admit this, but when I saw the title of the thread... I thought it was a posting about "catching up with men" .... you know the Mars/Venus thing.... ) LOL (wonder how many others will think the same thing....)
*sigh* - never mind... I am very tired today.....