NASA photo released on February 24, 2021, shows images from Perseverance rover of its new home in Jezero Crater.(via AFP)
NASA photo released on February 24, 2021, shows images from Perseverance rover of its new home in Jezero Crater.(via AFP)

Mars facts: What do we know about the Red planet so far? How does it compare with Earth?

  • Earlier this month, Nasa safely landed its Perseverance rover in the Jezero Crater, determined as an ancient lakebed that formed billions of years ago.
By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Kunal Gaurav
PUBLISHED ON FEB 27, 2021 10:40 PM IST

Several countries, including India and the United States, are continuously working on their Mars mission to explore habitability and seek signs of life on the Red planet. Earlier this month, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration safely landed its Perseverance rover in the Jezero Crater, determined as an ancient lakebed that formed billions of years ago.

According to Nasa’s Mars exploration program, the crater was filled with water to form a deep lake, which dried up as the climate of the planet changed. Perseverance rover will be used to explore the rocks of the ancient lake bed and return samples through future missions. While it’s too cold and dry for life to exist today on the Martian surface, humans want to learn whether life ever existed on the Red planet.

This wind-carved rock seen in first 360-degree panorama taken by the Mastcam-Z instrument shows just how much detail is captured by the camera systems.(NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS/ASU / AFP)
This wind-carved rock seen in first 360-degree panorama taken by the Mastcam-Z instrument shows just how much detail is captured by the camera systems.(NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS/ASU / AFP)


How does Mars compare with Earth?

The atmosphere of Earth primarily consists of nitrogen and oxygen while the Martian atmosphere has mostly carbon dioxide. Earth has only one moon, the natural satellite revolving around the planet, while Mars has two moons - Phobos and Deimos - which are extremely small in size as compared to that of Earth’s.

It would take more than six identical Mars to fill the volume of Earth, which also impacts the gravitational force observed in the Martian atmosphere. If a person weighs 100 kilograms on Earth, the individual would weigh around 38 kilograms on Mars, given the gravitational force on the Red planet is 0.375 times of Earth.

While the scientists are still exploring the exact structure of Mars, the core of the Red planet may be similar to Earth’s, according to Nasa. Martian atmosphere is 99 per cent less dense than Earth's and the average temperature is -81 degrees Fahrenheit, extremely low when compared to Earth's.

Read | High-definition, zoomable view of Mars captured by Nasa's Perseverance rover

Here are some of the other parameters:

Average speed in orbiting Sun

Earth - 93 million miles

Mars - 142 million miles

Diameter

Earth - 7,926 miles

Mars - 4,220 miles

Length of Year

Earth - 365.25 days

Mars - 687 Earth days

Length of Day

Earth - 23 hours 56 minutes

Mars - 24 hours 37 minutes

Tilt of Axis

Earth - 23.5 degrees

Mars - 25 degrees

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