The planet Mars disappears on Saturday at 15:10 pm KSA behind the moon in an astronomical phenomenon called “occultation”, which is somewhat similar to the disappearance of the sun behind the moon in an eclipse, and this lasts for 60 minutes.
After sunset in the sky of Saudi Arabia, the conjunction of Mars and the Moon will be clearly seen with the naked eye after they reach the lowest angle distance between them throughout the year by 0.1 degrees, which is one of the seven conjunctions that will be witnessed in 2021 between these two celestial bodies.
For his part, the head of the astronomy and space sciences department at King Abdul Aziz University, Dr. Hassan Asiri, said, “The phenomenon of occultation can be seen in limited parts of the Asian continent, where the night begins for them, while in other regions of the world it cannot be seen because it will occur in daylight hours.” .
He added, in a statement to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), that “this phenomenon occurs when a celestial body disappears behind the moon or behind another celestial body,” explaining that it “recurs between the moon and the stars from one period to another while it occurs less frequently between the moon and the planets.” “It will be repeated again to Mars next December.”
Dr. Asiri pointed out that “in very rare cases, a planet crosses in front of another planet,” noting that “Venus will pass in front of Jupiter 44 years from now.”
He continued, “The conjunction of the moon and Mars occurs when two celestial bodies are located close to each other on the same celestial longitude, and upon conjunction, the two stars appear to the viewer as they are adjacent to each other, while in reality a vast distance separates them.”
Dr. Asiri confirmed that “the conjunction of Mars and the Moon can be seen tomorrow, Saturday, in Saudi Arabia, with the naked eye above the western horizon, half an hour after sunset.”