Mars Reaches Aphelion

Saturday October 7th the outer planet planet Mars will be at aphelion, its greatest distance from the Sun this time around. For this aphelion Mars will be 1.408 AU (210,633,802 km – 130,881,776 miles) from the Sun. The orbit of Mars is more elliptical than the Earth’s nearly circular shaped orbit and so it has a much wider range of aphelion and perihelion distances. Mars has an orbital eccentricity of 0.0935 compared with Earth’s 0.0167, and the length of a year on Mars is equal to 687 Earth days (1.88 Earth years).

Take a brief fly-over of Mars. Music by Dark Matter.

Caution: Objects viewed with an optical aid are further than they appear.    Click here to go to the Qué tal in the Current Skies web site for more observing information for this month.

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