On 27th August 2003 Mars was closer to the Earth than it had ever been in the last 60,000 years at a distance of only 55,520,300 Km (or 0.37113 AU) Unfortunately that night was cloudy here and the nearest pictures I got were two days before and two days after closest approach. Mind you it was only about 55,000 Km further away on those dates.
The simulations are from Mr. T. Ikemura and show Mars as it was expected to be seen at the date and time indicated. I am indebted to Mr. Ikemura for permission to use these images.
|Mars as seen through my LX200 around midnight on 24th August 2003|
| Mars as seen through my ETX125 around midnight on 29th August 2003.|
The smaller apparent size, compared the earlier image, is caused by the shorter focal length of the ETX (1900 mm) compared with the LX200 (2500 mm),
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