Mars closest to earth in 15 years today

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Mars closest to earth in 15 years today

Mars is already brighter than usual and will shine even more- and appear bigger - as Tuesday nears.

According to NASA, Mars is now quite close to us, as it reaches the part of its orbit called "opposition", where it's exactly opposite the Sun in the Earth's sky.

Mars is particularly close to the Earth now because the two planets' orbits are roughly in the same point in their orbit around the sun.

The last such event was in 2003 when Mars and Earth came the closest they had in almost 60,000 years - touching within 34.6 million miles (55.7 million kilometres) of each other.

Mars and Earth were the closest last in 2003 in almost 60,000 years.

July is the "Summer of Mars", so it's only fitting that the red planet will be wrapping up the month with its most spectacular show yet - a close encounter.

For about two months between July 7 and September 7, Mars will glow even brighter, outshining Jupiter and earning the title of the fourth-brightest object in Earth's sky after Venus, the moon, and the sun.

Mars will be the closest to the Earth in 15 years on the night of 31st July, 2018. If you can, try and check our our nighttime neighbor with a telescope.

If you missed the live stream or the Mars approach, the good news is the Red Planet will remain really bright in the skies for the next few weeks. Mars will be at a distance of 57.6 million kilometers.

This won't happen again until 2287, Nasa has predicted. So, all the space enthusiasts, who are keen to watch this phenomenon, you need not worry. In fact, the planet's best visibility is estimated to be from July 27 to July 30, meaning you still have tonight to experience a sight you wont get for at least another 15 years.

One popular public viewing spot was the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, where Mars was visible with the naked eye as a bright orange spot in the sky, according to a live broadcast held to mark the celestial event.

As for determining whether life exists on Mars, Cami said it won't happen overnight.

By mid-August, NASA says Mars will become fainter as the planet and Earth travel away from each other.

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