Characteristics of the Planet Mars – Is Sinaumed’s interested in celestial bodies or outer space? That’s right, our universe is indeed very broad and very interesting to study, including about the planet Mars which is considered the most similar to earth. By now, we must be familiar with the planet Mars, because there has been a lot of news circulating about discoveries on the planet Mars. Based on research, the planet Mars is also often visible from Earth.
In fact, there has been a lot of news that the planet Mars will be used as a replacement planet for Earth, if in the course of time it is no longer habitable. The issue may not be completely true and also not completely wrong. In order to better understand it, Sinaumed’s needs to get to know the planet Mars, from the characteristics and facts of discoveries on that planet.
Get to know the Planet Mars
Mars is the fourth closest planet to the Sun. Seen from Earth, this planet looks like a red star. This planet is called the Red Planet because the surface of Mars contains iron oxide. The planet’s name comes from the Roman god of war.
The diameter of this planet is 6,780 kilometers, which is about half the diameter of Earth. The average distance from the Sun to Mars is 228 million kilometers or 1.5 AU. At the speed of light 300,000 km/s, it takes about 13 minutes for the sun to reach Mars.
Due to Mars’ elliptical orbit, this planet may be both the closest and the farthest from the Sun. The closest distance from Mars to the Sun is 206.6 million kilometers. The farthest distance from Mars to the Sun is 248.2 million kilometers.
Mars takes 687 days in one orbit around the Sun (Mars Revolution). Mars not only revolves around the Sun, but also around or around its own axis. This planet takes 24.6 hours to rotate. Not much different from Earth, which takes 23.9 hours to rotate. Mars’ axis of rotation is also tilted 25° to its orbital plane. Consequently, Mars has many seasons. Seasons on Mars that last longer than Earth are due to its orbit being larger than Earth’s.
Mars is a terrestrial planet, like Mercury, Venus and Earth. The diameter of Mars is half that of Earth, but its surface is almost as large as the land on Earth. Because 2/3 of the earth’s surface is sea. Mars is home to Mount Olympus, the highest mountain in the solar system. The height of this mountain is about 21 km, which is about three times that of Everest, which is the highest mountain on the planet.
Mars has a thin atmosphere consisting of carbon dioxide, nitrogen and argon gases. The maximum temperature on the surface of Mars is only 20 degrees Celsius, and the minimum temperature can reach 153 degrees Celsius.
Mars has two moons, Phobos and Deimos. Phobos and Deimos are considered asteroids because of their irregular shapes. Phobos and Deimos are 9,377 km and 23,460 km from Mars, respectively. In 50 million years, Phobos is expected to collide around Mars to form a ring.
Dozens of space probes have been sent to Mars from the Soviet Union, the United States, several European countries and Japan to study the planet’s surface, climate and geology. About two-thirds of spacecraft aimed at Mars fail in their mission.
Mission failures are usually caused by technical problems such as, failure or loss of communications or spacecraft design flaws. Mars has two permanent polar caps.
Water ice found at the poles of Mars is buried in layers of frozen dust and carbon dioxide. Scientists did not expect to find creatures currently thriving on Mars. Instead, they are looking for signs of life since Mars was still warm and covered in water.
Characteristics of the Planet Mars
After getting to know briefly about the planet Mars, we can recognize it more broadly from the characteristics of the planet Mars that have been proven to be discovered. The following are the characteristics of the planet Mars that distinguish it from other planets in space:
1. The name Mars has existed since Roman times
Mars seems to have been known for a long time. This planet was named by the Romans. Mars, according to ancient Roman beliefs, is the name of the god of war. The name cannot be separated from the reddish color of Mars. It reminded the ancient Romans of “blood” (war). Besides the ancient Romans, the ancient Egyptians also named this planet “Deshernya” which means “red”.
2. Called the Red Planet
As previously mentioned, Mars was originally named for its reddish color. The red color seen on the parent planets Phobos and Deimos is caused by the oxidation (rusting) of iron minerals within and on the surface, creating a red appearance when viewed from a distance. As quoted from space.com, the reddish color process on Mars has existed for 4.5 billion years, consistent with the formation of our solar system.
At this time (the solar system was created), the planets then also formed. It brought iron ore mainly from the formation of the solar system. Due to the meteorite impact and gravity, the iron mineral sank to the center of the planets, including Earth. But uniquely, the Martian iron remains on the surface until it oxidizes and rusts.
3. Being the Second Smallest Planet in the Solar System
Mars is only bigger than Mercury, according to Spiff.rit.edu mars is the second smallest planet after Mercury. The diameter of the planet next to us is about 6779 kilometers. Mars is 50 percent smaller than Earth. However, this planet also has a size difference between the poles and the equator. This is inseparable from the rotation process. The polar diameter of Mars is about 6,752 kilometers. At the equator, the “red” diameter is about 6,794 kilometers.
4. It has the highest mountain in the solar system
The planet Mars has the highest mountains in the solar system. Most of us need to know that the highest mountain on earth is on the border between Nepal and China and is Everest at 8,849 meters above sea level.
However, Everest is not that high compared to the highest mountain on Mars. This red planet has the highest mountain in the solar system, named Olympus. Quoting from boombastis.com, Olympus is three times higher than Everest. Also, the height of Mount Olympus exceeds the depth of the Mariana Trench, the deepest trench on the planet.
5. The Period of Rotation and Tilt of the Axis Like the Earth
Mars’ rotation period is not much different from Earth’s rotation period. If a day on Earth lasts 24 hours, then a day on the Red Planet lasts 24.6 hours. Even if we moved to this planet, we wouldn’t be too surprised by the time we spend there each day. Mars has a tilt angle or tilt angle that is almost the same as Earth, as well as the duration of its rotation. Mars’ tilt angle is 25 degrees compared to Earth, which has a tilt of 23.4 degrees.
6. Mars Has a Longer Orbit Period than Earth
The orbit of the planet mars is one year longer than that of Earth, that is, one year on Mars is 687 days or 1.88 years. The duration of revolution on the Red Planet is inseparable from the distance from the Sun and the distance around the Sun which is longer than Earth. Earth’s distance from the Sun is about 105 million kilometers, while Mars is about 228 million kilometers from the Sun.
Despite its long orbital period, this planet near the asteroid belt has the same number of seasons as Earth (subtropical), but with very long seasons. Quoting from mars.nasa.gov, winter on Earth lasts about 89 days, while winter on Mars can last for 154 days or about 5 months.
7. Distance Close to Earth
As already mentioned, the planet Mars is a neighbor of Earth. When Sinaumed’s heard the word “neighbor”, he had to keep his distance. At about 56 million kilometers, this planet is the closest planet to Earth. Looks close, but the distance to land on Mars is very far. Quoting from image.gsfc.nasa.gov, the travel time from Earth to Mars is about 260 days. It also depends on the speed at which the rocket reaches the “red planet”.
8. Thin Atmosphere
The next characteristics of the planet !Ars are the elements of the atmosphere. One of the obstacles to human movement to Mars is the planet’s very thin atmosphere. Atmosphere is one of the supporting elements of life. The thickness of the atmosphere in “The Reds” is currently less than 1 percent of Earth’s atmosphere. As quoted from scienceefocus.com, solar storms have been the cause of the loss of Mars’ magnetic field for hundreds of millions of years. When the magnetic field is lost, the red planet loses its ability to hold on to its atmosphere. As a result, Mars has a cold, dry climate and no oxygen.
9. Surface of Mars
The most visible characteristics of the planet Mars are from the shape of the planet’s surface. Mars is known as a rocky “terrestrial” planet and is very similar to Earth. Mars is characterized by a dry, dusty and rocky surface.
The southern half of Mars is much rougher and also has more craters and extreme plateaus. In the northern reaches of Mars, there are smooth depressions that look like dry lakes or meandering river beds.
This difference in surface properties is known as the Mars dichotomy. Impact craters are part of a dichotomy, and planetary scientists suspect that long-lost seas and lakes explain the intricacies of some regions.
The movement of the old melting glaciers may have created interesting terrain elsewhere. At both poles, there is ice that grows and shrinks with the changing seasons.
10. Temperature and Atmosphere
Apart from the shape of the surface, the characteristics of the planet Mars can also be identified from its temperature and atmosphere. The atmosphere on Mars is very thin and consists mostly of carbon dioxide (95%) and nitrogen, argon, oxygen and other gases.
The atmospheric pressure is about one hundredth of that of the earth. Mars has an extreme range of day and night temperatures due to its thin atmosphere. The temperature of Mars never exceeds 20 ° C.
Mars cannot retain heat energy. The average temperature on Mars is minus 60 degrees Celsius. In winter, temperatures near the poles can drop to minus 125 degrees Celsius. Summer on Mars can be as low as 20 degrees Celsius near the equator, but at night it can drop to minus 73 degrees Celsius.
11. Seasons of Mars Like Earth
Mars has four seasons. This is because the planet is tilted on its axis. The length of the seasons depends on the sun’s orbit on Mars. In the Northern Hemisphere, spring is the longest season at seven months. Summer and autumn are about 6 months.
Winter lasts only four months. During a Martian summer, the polar cap, which is mostly composed of carbon dioxide ice, can shrink and disappear completely. In winter, the ice sheet will return to its original form.
The characteristics of the planet Mars can be seen from the satellite. Mars is orbited by two moons, Phobos and Deimos. Both Phobos and Deimos appear to be covered in dust and loose rock, with the carbon-rich rock mixed with ice. Both of these satellites are smaller than the Moon and have an irregular shape.
It is unclear how Phobos and Deimos were born. According to NASA, most scientists believe that the gravity of the red planet has pushed them into orbit past the moon, because they have a similar composition to asteroids found elsewhere in the solar system.
So, that’s an explanation of the characteristics of the planet Mars that Sinaumed’s can recognize to differentiate it from other planets. Space studies always depend on the times, that is, it always develops with new discoveries.
That’s what makes studying the universe interesting. If sinaumedia is interested in learning about celestial bodies and other space studies, you can visit sinaumedia’s book collection at www.sinaumedia.com , such as the following book recommendations:
The book above can be used as a complete reference for teachers, lecturers, or students and students, for example conducting research or getting to know outer space in a basic way. This includes reviewing the characteristics of the planet Mars and other planets based on official discoveries by the parties concerned. Readers are prepared to be amazed by the space knowledge in this book.
If we usually read the atlas of the earth, then Sinaumed’s can read this book to get to know the solar system in detail. This book contains explanations from the solar system to planets, everything about supernovas, and stars. This Space Atlas will invite readers to explore the amazing universe.
Readers will be invited to travel around the solar system and explore the stars in this book. This book discusses more than seventy stunning illustrations of space objects, including planets. This book provides an interesting read with clear explanations of the latest and greatest discoveries in the study of astronomy, including dark matter and the shape of the surface of the planet Mars.
This book also contains a sequence of historical events from the discovery of astronomy, including the history of the universe and where we live now, namely planet earth. Readers will also find tips on how to observe the stars, including showing how and where to observe the amazing sights of space. For those who are fans of the study of astronomy, this book is a treasure.
In addition to the theoretical study of astronomy and space, Sinaumed’s can also find books on space for children. Usually children like to learn things that are proposed, including about the universe.
Those are recommendations for books that Sinaumed’s can read to increase his knowledge about astronomy and space. If Sinaumed’s wants to find other interesting books, Sinaumed’s can visit www.sinaumedia.com to get the best readings.