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Astronomy

NASA/JPL-Caltech

Stargazers can see Mars at its best this weekend. The sun, Earth and Mars directly align in what scientists call “Mars opposition” beginning Friday, with the red planet being the closest it’s been in 15 years on Tuesday.

Updated at 7:37 a.m. ET Friday

Every two years or so, the sun, Earth and Mars line up — and that's what is happening now. It's a celestial orientation known as Mars opposition. Leaving aside any significance this might have for astrologers, from an astronomical point of view there's one thing you can say for sure about this Mars opposition: Mars will be brighter in the night sky than it's been for 15 years.

Wednesday was the day astronomers said goodbye to the old Milky Way they had known and loved and hello to a new view of our home galaxy.

A European Space Agency mission called Gaia just released a long-awaited treasure trove of data: precise measurements of 1.7 billion stars.

Taste of Science

So a scientist walks into a bar...and shares their knowledge over a beer.

Starting Monday, April 23, Tampa-area scientists will be at local breweries, sharing beer and conversation as part of the Taste of Science conference series.

Julian Torres

The folks at Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales say they're expecting clear skies for their second annual "HARMONY Dark Sky Festival & Star Party" Saturday, January 13 from 4 to 9:30 p.m.