How to see Mars opposition and blood moon eclipse with no telescope

28 July, 2018, 08:02 | Author: Dwayne Harmon
  • Astronomers predict that the Mars will come close to the Earth in 5 years

The next Mars close approach is on 6 October 2020 when the planet will be 38.6 million miles away.

The Red Planet will be just 35.8 million miles away from humanity's homeworld next Tuesday. But Mars won't be as close as it was in 2003 until 2287.

As Mars draws near, it will grow brighter and appear larger.

Due to the elliptical orbits taken by Earth and Mars around the sun they will to reach their closest point to each other until 3:50 a.m. EDT on July 31, according to

It will be visible much of the night, so just look for a bright star with a reddish hue. According to, it will be appear almost as bright as it did in 2003, when it was closer to Earth than it had been in 60,000 years.

"An opposition can occur anywhere along Mars" orbit. The best viewing of the planet will coincide with the lunar eclipse on Friday, July 27.

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A massive dust storm presently engulfing Mars, however, is obscuring surface details normally visible through telescopes.

The research team looked at the chemical composition of Mars dust using data collected by rovers and landers from different points across the Red Planet.

When those high-speed incoming atoms hit the Martian atmosphere, some of their energy was emitted as ultraviolet light, which is invisible to the human eye but detectable to instruments like IUVS. Only Venus will appear brighter. Stargazers can see the red planet by looking south after sunset. Astronomers say we should be able to see it throughout early August.

A massive dust storm that has engulfed the planet will make viewing surface details more hard than it typically would be for those using a telescope, but the dust also reflects the sun's light better, making the planet appear all that much brighter.

To start with, on 27 July, something called a Mars opposition will happen, when Mars, the Earth and the Sun all directly line up. North America is the only continent on Earth from which the eclipse will not be visible.

Nasa has said that there is now a dust storm which is affecting the whole planet, so this may make seeing details on Mars a little more hard for astronomers. Friday's will be long, lasting 1 hour and 43 minutes.



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