As Earth is now orbiting between the Sun and Mars' orbit, the planet is said to be in opposition to our home.
That means, sometimes, Mars is closer to Earth than at other times - and, closer to the Sun. That's why this approach is so special, said Gary Boyle, who teaches people about astronomy as the backyard astronomer.
"While the discovery is a major one for researchers hoping to find life on Mars, no one's getting their hopes up-but they are tentatively preparing themselves for a real alien discovery in Mars" subsurface. Visitors to the Calvin College Observatory will have the chance to see the planet under high magnification, turning that bright red "star" into a resolved planet - hopefully with the chance to see dark surface features and a polar ice cap.
Still, he said, it's an event not to be missed. Mars will reign supreme when it comes to looking illuminated this summer. The animation also shows the two tiny moons of Mars, Phobos and Deimos, orbiting the red planet.
Considering the fact that Mars manages to kick off 3 trillion kilograms of dust yearly, even when there aren't such large storms looming, Ojha's new research which identifies the most likely source of dust on Mars is a very welcome study.
The Hubble telescope took a picture of Saturn and Mars during the opposition of planets.
Generally, if Mars is closer, missions are more efficient: Probes spend less time in transit, they need less fuel and they cost less overall. At that time, the Sun, Earth and Mars fall in a straight line, with Mars and the Sun on "opposing" sides of Earth. Schiaparelli claimed to have seen canals on the planet in 1877, suggesting they could be artificial structures of a possible civilization.
"Since the NASA/European Space Agancy Hubble Space Telescope was launched, its goal has always been to study not only distant astronomical objects, but also the planets within our solar system", the space agencies wrote in a statement. If so, then we are talking about a real revolution in the study of the planet.
In 2003, Space.com reports, Mars was was 34.6 million miles from Earth, compared to the average distance of about 140 million miles.
When the full moon moves into the Earth's shade it will darken, but it won't disappear, as the sunlight passes through the Earth's atmosphere it will illuminate the moon and turn it red in the process.
A massive dust storm recently engulfed Mars, obscuring surface details normally visible through telescopes.