Mars Closest to Earth in 15 Years Today

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Called "Mars Madness", the presentation will cover the history of Martian exploration, explain why Mars is now so near to the Earth and touch on other visible planets. On July 31st, Mars will be 35.8 million miles from Earth, which is the closest it has been to Earth in 15 years. Meanwhile the very bright planet Venus pops up in the very low western sky in the evening twilight, but sets shortly thereafter.

"The Red Planet and Earth haven't been this close since 2003, and won't be again until 2035", NASA said.

But, when and where can I see it?

Planning to try and get some photos of the Mars Close Approach?

The teams still have plenty of time to ideal their designs: it could be decades before a manned mission to Mars takes place.

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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. This year, Mars' opposition took place at the same time the blood moon was visible on July 27.

However, according to scientists from University of Colorado, Boulder in the US, Mars does not retain enough carbon dioxide that could practically be put back into the atmosphere to warm the planet.

The minimum distance from the Earth to Mars is about 33.9 million miles (54.6 million kilometers), and is rarely achieved.

Astronomers say we should be able to see it throughout early August.

It was also recently discovered that water was found on the surface of Mars.

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Another close encounter like 2003´s will not happen until the year 2287.

Today, nearly 15 years since that last very close approach, Mars is making its another similarly close approach.

The red planet is coming - closer, that is.

Because of both planets' elliptical orbits and the length of time it takes each planet to make it around the sun, Earth's best views of Mars only arrive every 15 to 17 years.

However, for all the space enthusiasts out there, you can still witness the phenomenon in all its glory as NASA's Griffith Observatory is hosting a live stream on YouTube.

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The next Mars Close Approach will occur on October 6, 2020. It has a very helpful atmosphere, which, being primarily Carbon dioxide with some nitrogen and argon and a few other trace elements, means that we can grow plants on Mars just by compressing the atmosphere.