Stargazers may have a good view of the Red Planet next month, as Mars is ready to reach the closest point to Earth since 2003 when it reaches opposition to the Sun at the end of July.
Representation image. Reuters
This year, Mars opposition will occur on July 27, according to NASA. During the opposition, Mars is especially photogenic because it can be completely illuminated by the Sun as seen from Earth.
"Since Mars and the Sun appear on opposite sides of the sky, we say that Mars is in 'opposition'." NASA explained. Every 15 or 17 years, the opposition occurs within a few weeks of the perihelion of Mars, the point in its orbit when it is closest to the Sun.
"An opposition can occur anywhere along the orbit of Mars. When it happens while Red The planet is closest to the Sun (called "perihelic opposition"), Mars is particularly close to Earth, "NASA said.
On July 27, Mars will be in opposition perihelica, Express.co.uk reported on Sunday. But some perihelic oppositions approach Earth and Mars more than others, the US space agency said.
The 2003 opposition was the closest approach in almost 60,000 years, he added.