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Moon still close to Mars as darkness falls on November 26


Tonight is Nov 26, 2014

Moon Phase Courtesy U.S. Naval Observatory
View larger Nicknamed

View larger Nicknamed “Black Beauty,” the Martian meteorite weighs approximately 11 ounces (320 grams). Image credit: NASA

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Tonight … November 26, 2014 … the waxing crescent moon and planet Mars still appear close together in the evening sky. On this date, the twosome will be found in the southwest sky as darkness begins to fall.

Did you know that some fragments from the moon and Mars have actually landed on Earth as meteorites? To review our terminology, a space rock that vaporizes in the Earth’s upper atmosphere is called a meteor. If the meteor survives its fiery plunge and lands on the Earth’s surface intact, it is called a meteorite.

Most meteorites originate from the asteroid belt lying in between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. Colliding asteroids forcefully eject fragments that occasionally land on Earth. Also, a powerful meteorite impact on Mars or the moon can send bits and pieces of these worlds flying off into space, and – in rare instances – onward to Earth. We provide a list of known Martian meteorites and lunar meteorites.

When looking at the moon and Mars this evening, imagine that rocks ejected from these worlds could actually make it to Earth without hitching a ride in a rocket ship.

Bottom line: On the night of November 26, 2014, the waxing crescent moon and the planet Mars still appear close together in the evening sky. The twosome will be found near the sunset point as darkness falls.

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