Dusty Mars Triptych by Martin Bernier
Dusty Mars Triptych (Martin Bernier)
Dusty Mars Triptych by Martin Bernier

This dusty Mars triptych salvages a poor viewing experience of the red planet and wins Photo of the Week.

Photo of the Week for August 31, 2018

Mars had its closest approach to Earth a month ago, but so far the red planet has been something of a bust for observers and imagers alike, thanks to a massive global dust storm that kicked up in June. However, there are reasons to remain hopeful. Mars is still relatively large and the dust storm is abating at last. Also, Mars is gaining elevation as it slowly drifts northward, so it may turn out that the best of the 2018 apparition is yet to come.

Dusty Mars Triptych by Martin Bernier
Dusty Mars Triptych (Martin Bernier)

Martin Bernier, of Saint-Liboire, Québec, recorded Mars on (from left to right) August 12, 17, and 19. Despite the dust storm, his images show the south polar cap, Hellas Basin, Sinus Meridiani and Syrtis Major. (For a Mars map, turn to page 21 of the July/August issue of SkyNews.) Martin captured this trio of images with a Celestron C11 Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope, 2× Barlow lens, a filter set and ZWO ASI210MM imaging camera.

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