Dancing under the red planet

Our 2005 theme explores psychology: self-expression, self-reflection and the unconscious power of dreams. Discuss.

Dancing under the red planet

Postby amandab_nyc » Tue Jun 07, 2005 8:57 am

My sister just sent this email to me from a friend of hers who works at NASA. Can anyone validate this?

Imagine dancing in the desert under a huge red planet for the first time in 5,000 years at 75-power magnification.

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Hello from the "Land of Enchantment" and NASA's White Sands Test Facility. I got the info below from work back in Houston and thought you might enjoy. For those of you in other countries, the dates are correct, you will need to check on the times. Enjoy!

[name deleted]

The Red Planet is about to be spectacular! This month and next, Earth is catching up with Mars in an encounter that will culminate in the closest approach between the two planets in recorded history. The next time Mars may come this close is in 2287. Due to the way Jupiter's gravity tugs on Mars and perturbs its orbit, astronomers can only be certain that Mars has not come this close to Earth in the Last 5,000 years, but it may be as long as 60,000 years before it happens again.

The encounter will culminate on August 27th when Mars comes to within 34,649,589 miles of Earth and will be (next to the moon) the brightest object in the night sky. It will attain a magnitude of -2.9 and will appear 25.11 arc seconds wide. At a modest 75-power magnification

Mars will look as large as the full moon to the naked eye. Mars will be easy to spot. At the beginning of August it will rise in the east at 10p.m. and reach its azimuth at about 3 a.m.

By the end of August when the two planets are closest, Mars will rise at nightfall and reach its highest point in the sky at 12:30a.m. That's pretty convenient to see something that no human being has seen in recorded history. So, mark your calendar at the beginning of August to see Mars grow progressively brighter and brighter throughout the month.

Last edited by amandab_nyc on Tue Jun 07, 2005 8:49 am; edited 1 time in total. (0 percent)
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Postby headquarters » Tue Jun 07, 2005 9:47 am

i thought this happened 2 years ago. I remember everyone getting all crazy about mars out on the playa in 2003.
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Postby amandab_nyc » Tue Jun 07, 2005 9:51 am

well ... I googled it and many websites are validating it -- including NASA. But the 2003 experience has me skeptical. Wouldn't it be fab though??!!!
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Postby unjonharley » Tue Jun 07, 2005 9:56 am

Two years ago, the planets were in a line. Great but this sounds better.
/Running to catch the last basket of the day
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And slowly...But surely....They drew their plans against us.

Postby robotland » Tue Jun 07, 2005 10:20 am

Here's some good info....
http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2005 ... ngmars.htm

I don't know about the "Mars appearing as large as the full Moon" thing....Mars is half the size of Earth, and The Moon is a quarter. At its closest, Mars gets to about 35,000,000 miles away while Luna is a mere 240,000. This is the kind of story problem that always gave me fits in school! I'll join you for a Martian Hop if it comes to pass, so to to speak.

I'm disappointed that the new War of The Worlds movie isn't working this angle- Maybe it shows up in the film. This Hallowe'en (the night of closest proximity, by a happy coincidence, according to the above link) should be a good time to drag out the radio drama!
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Postby robotland » Tue Jun 07, 2005 10:22 am

Actually, only 43,000,000 miles at closest, sayeth above link.
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Postby MrAdministrator » Tue Jun 07, 2005 11:52 am

I remember when that happened. I paid attention for astrological purposes though. It was a little while after the Americans invaded Iraq. Mars stayed in Pisces for a record period of time. It was the planet of war trapped in the sign of illusion, delusion, and the washing away of reality. Sorry Pisces, but you know what I'm talking about. It's too bad all of our dreams washed away that summer.
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Postby robotland » Tue Jun 07, 2005 12:35 pm

well, then, we need to get Venus in here close AND QUICKLY!
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Postby Larissa » Fri Jun 17, 2005 3:04 pm

Cool. Someone had emailed me about this and I automatically assumed it was a regurgitated email from 2003. I'm glad it's happening again.

Not only that but the playa will be nice and dark this year without that pesky moon. Can't wait to gaze at all those bright stars and planets.

:)
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Postby Driveway » Wed Aug 03, 2005 11:44 am

Now...if we could only get all those pesky glowing people to turn off for a while...
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Postby unjonharley » Wed Aug 03, 2005 3:56 pm

Driveway wrote:Now...if we could only get all those pesky glowing people to turn off for a while...


~
You must mean me. Just had ten xrays over different parts of my body. Who need glow sticks
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