What is the planet relative to earth that shows the greatest change in apparent brightness?
I think the answer is Mars, and a quick google search reveals it is Mars.
I have my reasoning here, but I am not sure if I am correct.
One way to do this problem is to get all the planets and collect their perihelion and aphelion distances from the sun, and see the different.
However I want to be able to explain this without the extensive use of numbers.
Here is my explanation:
The closest planet to us is Mars, both in terms of its aphelion and its perihelion distances
The Earth-Mars distance varies between 2.66 AU and .38 AU
Mercury is almost always blinded by the sun, so we rarely see it in the sky
Venus is frequently viewed as a crescent, and thus its apparent brightness also dimishes
Jupiter and rest of the superior planets are simply too far away for us to notice a big differene
Are all my points correct here?