The Griffith Observatory is planning a public viewing event for an upcoming close encounter with Mars.
On the night of July 30, Earth and Mars will be 35.8 million miles from each other, the closest they have been since a 34.6-million-mile close approach in August 2003, according to the observatory. The moment of closest approach will be 12:45 a.m. July 31.
According to observatory officials, at the moment of closest approach, Mars will be at its very best position for viewing through a telescope from Los Angeles as it crosses the meridian and appears highest in the southern sky. The next closest approach won’t happen until Sept. 11, 2035, when Mars will be 35.4 million miles away.
The observatory’s free viewing event will begin at 10 p.m. July 30 and last until 2 a.m. the next day.
Weather permitting, telescopes staffed by employees and local volunteers will provide visitors viewing opportunities of the Red Planet.
The observatory building will be closed during the event, but exterior restrooms will be available.
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