Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

'Two Moons' on Friday Night? It's a Bogus Claim about Mars

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

'Two Moons' on Friday Night? It's a Bogus Claim about Mars

Article excerpt

The claim is that Mars will appear so large in the sky on Friday that it will look as if Earth has two moons. But the planet will appear as a mere pinprick of light, not a moonlike orb.

It's b-a-a-a-ck - the claim that Mars will appear to be so large in the sky that it will look as if Earth has two moons.

It is fair to say that Mars itself has two moons - Phobos and Deimos. But Earth? A second, temporary lunar look-alike won't happen. Ever.

On Aug. 27, when this bogus spectacular is supposed to take place, the planet will be a mere pinprick of light in the western sky at dusk, sitting close to Venus. It will be some 195 million miles from Earth.

In relative terms, the moon Friday night will be roughly 400 times larger than Mars will appear.

In astro-speak, Mars will have an apparent diameter of about 4.4 arcseconds. …

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