Home Headlines In July, the Yucatan will witness the Sun in Zenith and proximity of Mars

In July, the Yucatan will witness the Sun in Zenith and proximity of Mars

by Yucatan Times
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From July 18 to 20 , two astronomic phenomena will be seen in Yucatan, the sun at the zenith, which at midday will Maya make pyramids in the archaeological sites of the Peninsula “lose” their shadow at that specific point in time.

And in the other hand, the position of the planet Mars will reach its maximum visibility on the last day of July, as it will be closer to Earth on July 31st.

The first will be noticeable between 12:00 and 13:00 hours during those four days, while the second is already noticeable, but its closest approach will occur on the 31st.

The researcher and Yucatecan astronomer Eddie Salazar explained that the opposition of Mars, that is, the distance of approach to Earth, will be 56 million kilometers, which only happens every 17 years.

“The opposition of Mars occurs when the sun shines 100% on the planet, which means that Mars will shine more than ever as if its entire disk was full, its closest approach will be on Tuesday, July 31,” Salazar said.

The last major approach of this magnitude occurred in August 2003 when Mars was 55 million kilometers away from Earth. Although it also happened in the years of 1971, 1988 and it will be visible again in 2035 and 2050.

This phenomenon occurs as a result of both the Earth and Mars revolving around the Sun, with Earth doing it faster, while Mars has a more elliptical orbit, so it takes twice as long to take a full revolution  around the Sun.

Every two years these planets come closer, but never as much as on this occasion. Keep in mind that the possibilities of natural observation are limited so that the planet will look like a very bright reddish orange object in the sky.

The Zenith occurs when the position of the Sun is completely vertical, occupying the highest place in the sky, which occurs two days a year, during which no lateral shadow is projected at noon.

“The phenomenon will be more visible in archaeological zones; the 18th will be visible in Mérida, Dzibilchaltún and Acanceh; the 19th in Chichen Itza and Ek Balam, and the 20th in Uxmal and Oxkintok, This means that the main buildings located at these archaeological sites will not have a shadow at 12 noon”.

Regarding the “Blood Moon”, the eclipse that is expected to occur on July 27th, will not be visible in the Yucatan Peninsula due to the Universal Time (UT) in which it will occur at 20:23, since in Yucatan, it will be the 2:31 to 4:15 p.m. However a “Blood Moon” is expected to be seen in January 2019.

Source: SIPSE

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