Friday, July 27, 2007

August MARS Hoax Is Back

The rest of July will have some not too visible meteor showers, what's really more interesting is what most refer to as the "August Mars Hoax".  It started up again in 2003, where emails are sent out telling people that in August (the month of Mars) it will appear as full and bright as the moon, which of course is utter nonsense, and very unfair to people wanting accurate information.  I get "Sky and Telescope" along with my star charts and almanacs, plus a host of other sources to insure my information is always accurate.  So things like this make me wonder how they could still happen.

In 2003, Mars had an exceptionally favorable opposition (to Earth) coming close enough to this planet to appear only 25 arcseconds wide.  By comparison, Mars is 7" wide right now.  It will grow to almost 16" wide during its December opposition.

Someone noted  (now get this) that by magnifying your scope 75x it would make Mars look as big in the eyepiece as the Moon does, UNmagnified.  As true as that is, is doesn't MEAN anything!  And after a few emails, people started leaving out the "75x" part so ... there you have the August Mars Hoax.  This only happens in August because of the opposition.

Just clearing up a cruel hoax - more skywatcher posts to follow! 

   

8 comments:

pharmolo said...

I get the Skywatcher alerts (too), Cathy, and can forget about the meteorite swarm tonight. (A) It's cloudy (B) we have a very long dawn and dusk period. How about, it doesn't get fully dark at night? That hoax is a lot of, well, you know.

xxroxymamaxx said...

LOL...that's funny.  sort of.  Isn't there a meteor shower in the morning?  Thanks so much for visiting me and leaving your condolences. Your friendship means so much to me.  J-Land is full of amazing people like you.  Love, Shelly

ma24179 said...

Thanks for the warning. - Missy

acoward15 said...

I have enough trouble getting my head around what's going on down here sometimes to worry about what's happening up there!
http://journals.aol.co.uk/acoward15/andy-the-bastard

swmpgrly said...

thx for the imfo

princesssaurora said...

I know... I laugh everytime this starts!  LOL

be well,
Dawn
http://journals.aol.com/princesssaurora/CarpeDiem/

mutualaide said...

I have had that e-mail more times than I care to think about.  Now when it arrives, I go to Snopes ... look it up ... and e-mail that to the sender!  LOL!  

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