It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

SCI/TECH: Mars! Coming close in less than a week

page: 1
5

log in

join
share:

posted on Oct, 22 2005 @ 01:21 PM
link   
The Red Planet, the Fire Star, the Star of Death... Mankind has known this brilliant plane by many names over the millennia. In modern times though, we know it by the Roman name of Mars, coming from the name for their God of War.
 


Nearly everybody in this day and age can tell you that Mars is red, but can they answer why? The answer is surprisingly simple. Mars has rusted. It's surface primarily contained of iron oxide. Also, Mars is significantly smaller than the Earth (only about one-quarter the size) but since the Red Planet lacks oceans its surface area is about the same as the Earth's. Another interesting similarity is that one Martian day, or Sol, is approximately equal to one Earthly Day: 24 hours, 39 minutes, 35 seconds.

Despite a few similarities, Mars is incredibly different from the Earth. It's atmosphere consists mainly of carbon dioxide, with some nitrogen and argon, and only trace amounts of oxygen, water, and other chemicals. The atmospheric pressure is also significantly low, about .75 percent that of the Earth's, which keeps it from retaining heat. The average surface temperature is about -82 F (-63 C).

Mars also undergoes seasons, much like the Earth. In the Martian winter as much as a quarter of the CO2 in the atmosphere condenses into very thick slabs around the poles, increasing the size of the polar ice caps dramatically. Then, as the planet starts to warm up the ice sublimates (goes from a solid state to a gaseous state without becoming a liquid) and creates winds that move from the poles, sometimes as fast as 250 mph! These seasons moves lots of dust around the planet, and even leads to the production of Martian frost and clouds.

The surface of Mars seen from Earth is divided into two separate areas: the darker 'seas' and the brighter 'continents.' The seas, or what were thought to be seas by past astronomers, are the rocky, Martian highlands. On the other hand are the continents, which are more similar to dusty plains. Mars also takes claim to the largest mountain in the Solar System: Olympus Mons, which is also an extinct volcano. This mountain, the size of the state of Texas at its base, reaches through the edges of the planet's atmosphere and into space with a height of about 16.5 miles (27 kilometers). Mars, amazingly enough also lays claim to the Solar System's deepest canyon: Valles Marineris, which is about 2500 miles (4000 kilometers) long and over 4 miles (7 kilometers) deep. Mars, like all the terrestrial planets (including the Earth) has been struck by many large asteroids. One of the impacts from an asteroid created the Hellas impact basis, which is about 1300 miles (2100 kilometers) in diameter and about 5.5 miles (9 kilometers) deep. The span from the summit of Olympus Mons to the depths of the Hellas Impact Basin is over 19 miles (31 kilometers.)


In this image, courtesy of NASA, the planet can be seen to have a high, mountainous northen hemisphere and a low, plain-like southern hemisphere. To the left center of the image the extinct volcano Olympus Mons can be seen, and in the lower right the immense, deep Hellas Impact Basin can be seen.

Astronomers of long ago also thought that Mars was covered in canals. This was basically due to an accident in translation. The Italian astronomer Giovanni Schiaparelli, in his observations, labeled some features canali, meaning channels. This was later mistranslated into canals, and the myth began. Then, due to the seasonal changes of the planet and its changing brightness people began to think there was vegetation on Mars, and thus came the rise of Martians.

Mars, like the majority of planets, has Moons. Two, to be exact. They are Phobos (fear or panic) and Diemos (terror or dread), named from Greek mythology for the two sons of Ares who they accompanied into battle. Ares is the Greek equivalent of the Roman God Mars. These two moons, which are nothing more than asteroids captured by the planet, are tidally locked with the planet (much like Earth's Moon.) Because of this, the moons always face the same direction to the planet. Both moons were discovered in 1877.

The planet has also been extensively explored by probes. Most notably in recent years by NASA's Mars Exploration Rovers Spirit and Opportunity and the ESA's Mars Express Orbiter. The USSR was the first power to land something on Mars in 1971 with the Mars 3 probe, though contact was lost after 20 seconds. Following this was NASA's success with a pair of landers in 1976: Viking 1 and Viking 2. These probes have sent back years upon years worth of data and spectacular images. In years to come expect sample return as well as manned missions to Mars.

Aside from all the scientific spiel, Mars has also captivated the entertainment industry for hundreds of years. First, in the earliest science fiction novels, and in dozens of science fiction movies. Some more modern examples include Total Recall, Mars Attacks!, Mission to Mars, and Red Planet. And soon, within the week, Mars will be providing us with its own form of entertainment.

By the end of the month, Mars will be within half an AU (one AU is equal to the mean distance of the Sun from Earth, or 93 million miles) from the Earth. This is the Red Planet's closest approach since July 2003, and it won't be closer than this again to June 2018. You can find Mars rising in the East shortly after sunset. Without a telescope it can be identified as the seemingly large, bright, red object hanging beautifully in the sky. In even a modest telescope you should be able to see a disk, with some minor details such as the ice caps and color differences standing out. Through something a bit larger, you should be able to see even more details on an even larger disk. Just don't expect to see the vivid colors and details the Mars probes have all sent us in thier images!


External Links
NASA's Mars Exploration Program
NASA's Viking Project Information
NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Mission
ESA's Mars Express
Mars Exploration Chronology

Sources
Mars - Wikipedia
Exploration of Mars
Heavens-Above Planetary Data

Related ATS Topics
Mars! An Observer's Guide for Fall, 2005
EXCLUSIVE: NASA Is Not Altering Mars Colors

[edit on 22-10-2005 by Nerdling]

[edit on 10/22/2005 by cmdrkeenkid]




posted on Oct, 22 2005 @ 01:52 PM
link   
Great post , well written and imformative!
Who are you so I can give you a WATS



posted on Oct, 22 2005 @ 02:05 PM
link   
I gave this a "YES" vote

Very good reading



posted on Oct, 22 2005 @ 03:30 PM
link   
go keen!


excellent article, the best i've read in quite a while! "YES" and a WATS vote for you!

and if your good, you might just get a gold sticker too


thanks for the article, keen!



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 01:27 PM
link   
Excellent article here Cmr Keen!

Mars by far is my favorite heavenly body in our solar system next to our blue planet, my third most favorite is Jupiter and her moons, my astrological planet too!

Still, an ancient civilization has not be disproven yet


There are still quite a bit of interesting structures on mars, natural or not.



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 02:19 PM
link   
Why is this on ATSNN? There is news here, but there is no news source. Did the submitter determine the path of Mars on his own? Perhaps his knowledge of the event came from some source, such as the one's found here:

Google Search

Why were these source not cited? I see no reason for the author to deviate so radically from the news template. This format is more suitable to some other forum. Perhaps it should be an OP/ED piece.


[edit on 2005/10/23 by GradyPhilpott]



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 02:31 PM
link   
Is this real or is this a cover up of the increase in solar activity?

Do you really believe Mars is brighter because it is closer to Earth?
Mars, Venus and the Moon all looked brighter these last few weeks.
Don't you think it has to do with the Sun sending more photons or whatever instead, making space reflection more brighter?



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 02:36 PM
link   

Originally posted by Desmond

Don't you think it has to do with the Sun sending more photons or whatever instead, making space reflection more brighter?


Interesting theory. I would lean heavily toward the "whatever" argument, myself.



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 02:40 PM
link   

Originally posted by GradyPhilpott
Why were these source not cited? I see no reason for the author to deviate so radically from the news template. This format is more suitable to some other forum. Perhaps it should be an OP/ED piece.


Perhaps you could read the entire article? As you can see, I did site my sources on the first go around. Try again.



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 02:42 PM
link   

Originally posted by Desmond
Is this real or is this a cover up of the increase in solar activity?


Yes, it's real. You can find information on it all over the internet.



Do you really believe Mars is brighter because it is closer to Earth?
Mars, Venus and the Moon all looked brighter these last few weeks.
Don't you think it has to do with the Sun sending more photons or whatever instead, making space reflection more brighter?


Yes, Mars is closer. Venus is in a crescent phase, which makes it appear brighter. The moon has just gone through being full. As Luna gets into the full phase it gets brighter.

What's this about the sun "sending more photons?"

EDIT: Fixing my quotes.

[edit on 10/23/2005 by cmdrkeenkid]



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 02:53 PM
link   

Originally posted by cmdrkeenkid

Perhaps you could read the entire article? As you can see, I did site my sources on the first go around. Try again.


I did read the entire article, but as I stated, the deviation from format is confusing. Also, there would be no reason for such an article if Mars was not going to be very close to the Earth at the end of this month. Therefore, some new source should be cited for this phenomenon, not just a link to an ATS forum.

I have no problem with the quality of the material. It is the format and the appearance on ATSNN without news sources that seems inappropriate, unless it appears as an editorial piece.

[edit on 2005/10/23 by GradyPhilpott]



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 02:55 PM
link   
The point is moot Grady, it was voted up, let the topic continue please.



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 03:16 PM
link   
Excellent and very informative piece, Cmdr.



This mountain, the size of the state of Texas at its base, reaches through the edges of the planet's atmosphere and into space with a height of about 16.5 miles (27 kilometers).


Amazing that Mars has the largest volcanos in the solar system, but also amongst the fewest. Seems this adolescent only got a few pimples, but boy were they big ones.



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 03:22 PM
link   

Originally posted by wecomeinpeace
Amazing that Mars has the largest volcanos in the solar system, but also amongst the fewest. Seems this adolescent only got a few pimples, but boy were they big ones.


All the volcanoes are extinct, and have been for thousands of years... But Mars does have quite a few. For a list of them, check this out:

Wikipedia List of Mountains on Mars



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 03:59 PM
link   
How many of those mountains are extinct volcanoes? I'm no expert, but a quick search seems to show that Mars has relatively few volcanoes (compared to say the Earth) but they are huge. One site mentions 20 named volcanoes on Mars. The explanation given for this seems to be that Mars does not have tectonic plate activity like the Earth.


volcano.und.edu...
Mars has the largest shield volcanoes in the solar system. It also has a wide range of other volcanic features. These include large volcanic cones, unusual patera structures, mare-like volcanic plains, and a number of other smaller features. However, volcanic features are not common. There are less than 20 named volcanoes on Mars, and only 5 of these are giant shields. Also, volcanism occurs mostly within three regions. Even the mare-like plains cluster near these regions. The main cluster of volcanoes and lavas is in Tharsis. A much smaller cluster of three volcanoes lies in Elysium. Lastly, a few paterae are near the Hellas impact basin.



Image: csep10.phys.utk.edu



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 04:04 PM
link   

Originally posted by wecomeinpeace
How many of those mountains are extinct volcanoes?


All of them. Mars is no longer geologically active. Great link and animation!



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 04:25 PM
link   

Originally posted by cmdrkeenkid

Originally posted by wecomeinpeace
How many of those mountains are extinct volcanoes?


All of them. Mars is no longer geologically active. Great link and animation!


Mars may not be geologically 'dead', check out this story.

The Australian: Map shows Mars 'earthquakes'

THE first high-resolution map of Mars' magnetic field provides new evidence that Earth-like plate tectonics – great crustal plates pulling apart and crashing together – underpin the Red Planet's surface geology, US space agency NASA said today.


Also the reason why Mars volcanoes are so much bigger than Earth has alot to do with the low gravity of Mars.


www.courses.psu.edu...

Q:Why do you suppose Martian volcanoes are so large (compared to Earth's volcanoes)?


A: Two reasons: (1) The lower gravity on Mars means that a volcanoes 'weighs less' on Mars than on Earth, so that the crust ought be able to support larger (higher) volcanoes. (2) Some volcanos on Earth result from 'hot spots' in the underlying mantle. The Hawaiian Island volcanoes are hot spot volcanoes. As the crust is carried over the hot spot by plate motion, lava wells up through the crust and creates volcanos. But as the crust is moving, no part of the crust resides over a hot spot for very long, thus the volcanos never get too big. It is believed there is not plate motion on Mars. Thus any piece of crust over a hot spot resides there indefinitely, so that a volcano formed over the spot can become enormous.


Nice post BTW



posted on Oct, 23 2005 @ 04:47 PM
link   

Originally posted by cmdrkeenkid
All of them. Mars is no longer geologically active.


I meant how many of the mountains never were volcanoes in the first place, just ordinary mountains. But actually using my brain this time, assuming that mountains are formed by tectonic activity, I guess I just answered my own question, lol.



new topics

top topics



 
5

log in

join