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Mars And The Moon Share The Sky In Rare Pictures

Rebecca Shepherd

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Mars And The Moon Share The Sky In Rare Pictures

Featured Image Credit: Gary Hershorn/Getty

Pictures have emerged showing the rare spectacle which is the moon and Mars gliding closely beside one another in the night sky.

Taking place last night (2 October), the Red Planet is making its closest approach to Earth in years and the pair hung close by in the night sky.

Credit: Twitter/@cosmos4u
Credit: Twitter/@cosmos4u

It's not too late to see Mars either because it's due to come closest to Earth on 6 October.

Earth will be passing between Mars and the Sun, an event which happens roughly every 26 months and brings Mars the closest it gets to Earth.

According to the MailOnline, the brightness given off by Mars will not be seen for another 15 years. That takes us to 2035.

Credit: Twitter/@cosmos4u
Credit: Twitter/@cosmos4u

At its closest, Mars is about 38.57 million miles (62.07 million km) away on 6 October.

For the West Coast of the US and Canada, Mars' closest approach happens before sunrise October 6, 2020, at 7am PDT, 6am Alaskan Time and at 4am Hawaiian Time. This makes it 3pm BST (UK).

In 2003, Mars was closer to Earth than it had been in 60,000 years and now it's only slightly further away than that.

According to EarthSky, on 27 August 2003, Mars was 34.65 million miles (55.76 million km) distant.

Mars won't beat its 2003 performance until 28 August 2287, when the red planet will be 34.60 miles (55.69 million km) away.

So put it in the calendar now for your children's, children's, children's, children... or something like that.

If all of this doesn't satisfy the astronomer within you, then 8 and 9 October might be up your street because these will be the days for optimal viewing of the Draconids meteor shower, according to timeanddate.com. It'll be one of the few meteor showers you'll be able to see at a reasonable hour, rather than in the middle of night.

EarthSky said the best way to see it is to find a 'dark, open, country sky', adding: "As a wise person once said, meteor showers are like fishing. You go, and sometimes you catch something."

Topics: Interesting, mars, Community, space

Rebecca Shepherd
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