Astronomy Closer Look: Mars

Discussion in 'Astronomy' started by JcMinJapan, Sep 5, 2004.

  1. JcMinJapan

    JcMinJapan Premium Member

    Mars is commonly referred to as the Red Planet.

    The atmosphere of Mars is made up of Carbon Dioxide (CO2): 95.32%, Nitrogen (N2): 2.7%, Argon (Ar): 1.6%, Oxygen (O2): 0.13%, Water (H2O): 0.03%, Neon (Ne): 0.00025 %.
    The average temperature is -63° C (-81° F) with a maximum temperature of 20° C (68° F) and a minimum of -140° C (-220° F).
    Mars is the 4th planet from the sun at 228,000,000 km or 1.524 AU from the sun
    The diameter is 6,792 km probably right in the middle between the Earth and Moon in Comparison.
    A Mars day runs about 1 Earth day at 24 hours and 37 minutes. While its years is 687 Earth days.
    Mars has 2 satellites (moons) Phobos & DemiosDeimosh are named after the horses 'Fear' and 'Dread' that drew the chariot of the Roman God of War.

    Phobos is only about 22 km across and it is slowly falling towards Mars and is expected to hit it in about 100 million years time. If it does noe brnot up first and it does hit mars, it is expected to create a crater some 300 km in diameter.

    Deimos is only 14km across. Both Phobos and Deimos do not rotate.

    Cool Facts:

    Mars was named by the Romans in honor of their god of war by the same name.
    The Egyptians named the planet Her Descher which means "the red one".

    Small clouds are high in the sky near the slopes of huge volcanoes and patches of early morning fog can form in valleys.

    The planet's axis of rotation is tilted at 25.2 °, a little more than Earth's so Mars experiences seasons comparable with ours but almost twice as long.

    Mars is red due to the Iron Oxides that reside in the soil and they give off this color.

    For very detailed information and great photos of Mars visit NASA

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  2. Cinderloft

    Cinderloft Premium Member

    Is there any terraforming information or research of Mars going on? I am quite interested in that, as I believe that Mars has the potential to be a human colony in the future. The moon will be first, but due to its atmosphere, it would be enclosed. Mars may present the possibility to adjust its atmosphere to allow for open-range living.
     
  3. JcMinJapan

    JcMinJapan Premium Member

    Actually, there is a NASA site in Terra-forming ideas about Mars. But, it is about 5 years old and has not been updated. I wrote the curator about this some months ago as I am also very interested in the ideas and actually prospects of it. But, he wrote back and said that NASA is not currently looking into this option anymore. He has left the site up as it has links to other places that may or are still working on it.

    http://nssdc.gsfc.nasa.gov/planetary/mars/mars_colonize_terraform.html
     
  4. bodebliss

    bodebliss The Zoc-La of Kromm-B Premium Member

    You can't do wholesale terraforming on a planet that will be used as the alternate vestibule of human sanctum near term. Instead of hurling giant iron asteroids, and comets at it to beef up mass, increasing gravity, and atmosphere, as well relighting the internal furnace(to restart plate techtonics). The aim appears to be to immediately inhabit Mars so if some tragedy befall Earth, Humans will endure.

    This being the aim the new inhabitants will be living underground.
     
  5. JcMinJapan

    JcMinJapan Premium Member

    Right, terraforming is a great idea, but just is not feasible with our current tecnology. Underground and near a water source is very important. The question is, what is in the water... ;)

    But something underground may the cheapest way to go. But, probably a little difficult in sealing to make a good environment to breath.
     
  6. bodebliss

    bodebliss The Zoc-La of Kromm-B Premium Member

    It's also not feasible w/ our timeframe.
    It would take thousands or tens of thousands of years to line up the giant asteroids(from the asteroid belt) and the giant comets(from the Kuiper Belt).

    Then crash them one by one into Mars w/o anything hitting Earth or any space facilities.

    All that time, we'd have to keep settlers off Mars.

    After the bombardment, there would have to be at least a 10,000 yr wait to see it coalesce into a definable mix(to examine if more terraforming was required) and then settlers and climate modelers could move in.