10 curiosities about the red planet

Mars, the fourth planet of our solar system, is always the most observed, studied and romanticizied. The planet mostly owes its reputation to the red color, that crowned it, more than one time, God of war, of the fire and/or of the destruction. The belief that it was suitable for life and that it was populated by intelligentes creatures, gaves to it the first place in the sci-fi literature. The curiosities that, during the years, have inspired the imagination of many dreamers are numerous. Between all the curiosities there are ten of them really interesting.

Mars’ names

The fourth planet of the solar system owes its name to the roman God of war, Mars. But this isn’t the only name given to it during the whole history. For the babylonians it was Nergal, God of fire, war and destruction. For the greeks, therefor, it was the Ares‘ star, God of war. For the indù it was Mangala, for the egyptians it was Horus. The jewish, however, called it Ma’adim (the one who blushes).

The highest mountain of the solar systemMarte

The red planet is one of the smallest of the solar system, but it has more the one record. The Mount Olympus is the highest mountain of our solar system, its hight is 25 km. Even its surface is impressive, it counts 600 km of diameter. Its dimensions are as massive that, looking from the summit, its slopes would cover the whole horizon. Even if we could look it from the Mars’ surface we couldn’t appreciate its greatness, because would be impossible to see its profile.

The deepest valley of the solar system

The valles Marines, located next to the Mars’ equator, has another important record. This is, infact, the deepest valley of the solar system, with its 11 km of depth. The Valles Marines are so massive to be 10 times longer, 7 times larger and 7 times deeper than the Gran Canyon.

The martian weatherMarte

The martian weather is, between all the solar system’s planets, the most similar to the Earth. It has four seasons, which a longer than the grounders’ ones, with temperatures between -140° and 20°.

The sol

The days on Mars are a little bit longer than the grounders’ ones (24h 39m 35.2s). For this reasons it has to be adopted a new unity of measures for the time, used for the missions that has as a protagonist the red planet, the Sol (mean solar day).

Slimming centre on Mars

Mars is smaller than the Earth and it has a lower mass. For this reason even its gravity is lower. That’s mean that, if a 100 km man goes on the red planet, he will be 37.5 km.

The sunset

Marte

While on Earth, the blue planet, the sunset is red, on Mars, the red planet the sunset is blue.

Rolling Stones

Maybe not everybody knows the “Rolling Stones” phenomenon, where the stones follows a way, drawning a wake behind them. After years of fantasies and legends, it is been discovered that the phenomenon that happens in the Death Valley, in California, is caused by the slipping of the stones on the ice, by the flow wind. Incredibly, it is been observed the same phenomenon on Mars, in the Nili Fossae region.

Proofs of extraterrestrial life

Giovanni Schiaparelli said that, during its observations, he saw some channels on Mars’ surface. During the translation it’s been written “canals“, word used for artificial constructions, instead of “channels“, used for natural’s onesThis made the wrong idea that the planet was populated by intelligente civilizations.

100.000 martians

Marte

The rush to the Mars’ colonisation is now ongoing, but who will be the firsts martian’s citiziens in the humanity’s history? 200 milions of km seems to be not scary, because there are more than 100 000 candidates aspiring to be Mars’ citiziens.

This post is also available in: itItaliano

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