The Unparalleled Beauty of the Night Sky ... Up Close
Mars 2018 Opposition
Depiction of Relative Apparent Size, Orientation and Viewing Elevation
Mars' 2018 opposition is perihelic. Mars hasn't been this close since 2003, and won't be this close again until 2035. Although it will reach 24.33" in diameter 4 days after opposition, Mars' low elevation in the sky will add challenge to imaging. (In Oct 2020 Mars will be 2" smaller, but will be twice as high in the sky at opposition.) This opposition presents a view of the southern hemisphere as the south polar cap shrinks during spring and summer. Global dust storms may occur in the month before, or few months following, perihelion (Sep 2018).
Jan 15, 2018
5.1"
1.3 mV
92.2%
12.2 tilt
169.469 M mi

38 Transit

Rise: 2:20 AM
Tran: 8:30 AM
Set:
Feb 15, 2018
6.1"
1.0 mV
90.0%
4.4 tilt
142.293 M mi

35 Transit

Rise: 1:45 AM
Tran: 8:00 AM
Set:
Mar 15, 2018
7.4"
0.6 mV
88.5%
-2.6 tilt
117.292 M mi

33 Transit

Rise: 2:15 AM
Tran: 7:00 AM
Set:
Apr 15, 2018
9.6"
0.0 mV
87.9%
-9.3 tilt
90.786 M mi

33 Transit

Rise: 1:30 AM
Tran: 6:30 AM
Set:
May 15, 2018
12.8"
-0.7 mV
89.2%
-13.7 tilt
67.813 M mi

34 Transit

Rise: 00:30 AM
Tran: 5:30 AM
Set:
Jun 15, 2018
17.9"
-1.7 mV
93.5%
-15.0 tilt
48.646 M mi

34 Transit

Rise: 11:00 PM
Tran: 4:00 AM
Set:
Jul 15, 2018
23.2"
-2.6 mV
99.1%
-12.6 tilt
37.438 M mi

32 Transit

Rise: 9:00 PM
Tran: 2:00 AM
Set:
Aug 15, 2018
23.4"
-2.5 mV
97.8%
-9.5 tilt
37.226 M mi

30 Transit

Rise: 6:45 PM
Tran: 11:30 PM
Set: 4:00 AM
Sep 15, 2018
18.2"
-1.7 mV
90.9%
-11.6 tilt
47.862 M mi

32 Transit

Rise:
Tran: 9:30 PM
Set: 2:15 AM
Oct 15, 2018
13.7"
-1.0 mV
86.9%
-17.1 tilt
63.543 M mi

36 Transit

Rise:
Tran: 8:15 PM
Set: 1:30 AM
Nov 15, 2018
10.4"
-0.3 mV
85.8%
-22.8 tilt
83.308 M mi

43 Transit

Rise:
Tran: 6:15 PM
Set: 11:45 PM
Dec 15, 2018
8.3"
0.2 mV
86.5%
-26.0 tilt
104.975 M mi

51 Transit

Rise:
Tran: 5:30 PM
Set: 11:30 PM
Mars Apparent Diameter:
5" from 10 Jan 2018 - 13 Mar 2019
10" from 20 Apr 2018 - 21 Nov 2019
15" from 30 May 2018 - 6 Oct 2019
20" from 26 Jun 2018 - 5 Sep 2019
Mars Key Dates:
12 Apr 2018 - Max Phase Angle (87.84% illum)
May 2018 - SPC maximum, emerges into sunlight and begins to shrink
23 May 2018 - Southern Spring Equinox
27 Jul 2018 - Opposition
31 Jul 2018 - Closest, 0.384944 AU or 35.783 M mi
Aug 2018 - SPC begins rapid shrinking, continues through Dec 2018
16 Aug 2018 - Lowest Elevation, -26.5 Decl, or 30 elevation
16 Sep 2018 - Perihelion
16 Oct 2018 - Southern Summer Solstice
14 Nov 2018 - Max Phase Angle (85.78% illum)
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