When was the last time Mars was this close to Earth?

The Red Planet is going to be very close to Earth this week. (Relatively speaking, that is.) On May 30, Mars will be 75 million kilometers away from Earth, the shortest distance between the two planets. Astronomers refer to this as “Mars close approach” and it happens, on average, every other year.

Over the weekend, the Mars was at its brightest, rising just as the sun was setting. But if you missed it, no sweat—it will be stunning for the next week and beyond. So keep your eyes on the night sky. 

NASA’s Hubble Telescope recently released a new portrait of Mars showing the planet in all of it’s beauty.

Image: NASA