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Put August 27th on your calendar (My Birthday)...
To celebrate My Birthday, Mars...

The Red Planet is about to be spectacular!

This month and next, Earth is 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


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

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
jo_mako
Jun. 12th, 2009 07:47 pm (UTC)
August is a kick arse month for star gazing generally, this takes the cake though!
happytemplar
Jun. 12th, 2009 08:04 pm (UTC)
sad face
fablespinner
Jun. 12th, 2009 08:14 pm (UTC)
Re: sad face
Ah well crap on a stick! I never thought to check snopes for something like this. BOOGER! I was all excited too.
happytemplar
Jun. 12th, 2009 08:21 pm (UTC)
Re: sad face
I blame it on all the cosmic binging I've been doing lately. Even at ~35mil light years, there's no way Mars would look as big as the moon to the naked eye. Snopes points out the misleading line break and the missing period that makes it seem like that's what the article is claiming.

As cool as it would be for us normal folk to see Mars in such amazing detail, if it was close enough to see like that, the aesthetics would be the least of our concerns. XDD
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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