Mars Is Closer To Earth This July – What Does It Mean?

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It may not be as close as to be able to spot the Mars rover, but you can see it better with naked eye this month, should you fancy giving it a glimpse. Mars aligns with Earth every two years when it completes its orbit around the sun and it positions itself on the opposite side from the sun.

While the event occurs every two years, more exactly every 6 months, the distance can vary greatly due to the different elliptical orbital planets. This means that every 15 or 17 years Mars is closer to the Sun, making it more visible from Earth.

This year, the date of alignment is July 27.  The event is a treat for prospective stargazers as a similar event won’t occur until 2035.

Paul Delaney, a New York University astronomy professor and director of the Allan I. Carswell Observatory. The university will hold a themed event free-for-all from July 25 to August 1.

It is recommended to visit a scientific telescope available for example in York, but amateur scientists may try their luck in order to spot the fabled Red Planet. Estimations put Mars at around 57 million km away from Earth by the end of the month. The closest it was in recent was 2003 when it was at 56 million km away.

Keep in mind, however, to not be fooled by the famous Mars Hoax. Many people are led to believe that  Mars will come as close as the Moon towards Earth and you will be able to spot its craters.  Not only this is far from the truth, should Mars come so close to Earth, it would completely destabilize the orbit and lead to tsunami waves and potentially more dangerous events may happen.

While you may end up disappointed that you merely see a beautifully colored start, it is worth a try. Enjoy!

Stacy Richardson

Stacy Richardson is a seasoned journalist with 15 years experience.. She has conducted numerous research studies on media effects including the effects of bullying on adolescents, and “sexy media” effects on sexual behavior.  As a contributor to Great Lakes Ledger, Stacy covers stories affecting local politics and economy. Contact Stacy here.