Red Planet Day 2022: Mind-blowing facts about Mars

    Named after the Roman God of War, Mars, which even though it has a thin atmosphere composed primarily of carbon dioxide, still holds humanity's fascination centuries after its discovery.
    By: ANI
    | Updated on: Nov 28 2022, 17:55 IST
    Terror in the sky! Black Hole found CLOSE to Earth; it is 10 times BIGGER than Sun
    Black hole
    1/5 The black hole that is closest to planet Earth has been found by astronomers utilising the International Gemini Observatory, run by the NOIRLab of the NSF. And it is terrifying! It is not only massive, but it is also close to Earth! "It has been confirmed that a dormant stellar-mass black hole exists in the Milky Way for the first time. With only 1600 light-years between it and Earth, it is a fascinating subject for research to improve our knowledge of the development of binary systems," a report by ANI said. (AFP)
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    2/5 The closest black hole to Earth has been named Gaia BH1 by astronomers. It is three times closer to Earth than the previous record-holder, an X-ray pair in the constellation of the Monoceros. This dormant black hole is around 10 times as big as the Sun and is situated about 1600 light-years away in the constellation Ophiuchus. (Event Horizon Telescope Collaboration)
    Black hole
    3/5 The most extreme things in the universe are black holes. All huge galaxies presumably have supermassive versions of these unfathomably dense objects at their centres. There are an estimated 100 million stellar-mass black holes in the Milky Way alone, which are significantly more prevalent and weigh five to one hundred times as much as the Sun. (NASA)
    black hole
    4/5 What is a Black Hole? According to NASA, a black hole is an astronomical object with a gravitational pull so strong that nothing, not even light, can escape it. A black hole’s “surface,” called its event horizon, defines the boundary where the velocity needed to escape exceeds the speed of light, which is the speed limit of the cosmos. Matter and radiation fall in, but they can’t get out. (NASA)
    Black Hole
    5/5 Formation of Black Hole: A stellar-mass black hole formation happens when a star with more than 20 solar masses (1 solar mass is the mass of our sun) exhausts the nuclear fuel in its core and collapses under its own weight. The collapse triggers a supernova explosion that blows off the star’s outer layers. But if the crushed core contains more than about three times the Sun’s mass, no known force can stop its collapse into itself and the birth of a black hole. The origin of supermassive black holes is poorly understood, but we know they exist from the very earliest days of a galaxy’s lifetime. Once born, black holes can grow by accreting matter that falls into them, including gas stripped from neighboring stars and even other black holes. (NASA)
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    Know interesting fact about Mars here. (Pixabay)

    Mars, also known as the Red Planet due to its soil's colour, is the fourth planet from the Sun and Earth's neighbour which holds the potential to possibly host the humankind some day.

    The humans have long tried to explore the mysteries of Mars, and Red Planet Day is annually celebrated to remember the launch of Mariner 4, the first spacecraft to arrive on Mars, on November 28, 1964.

    The Mariner 4 spacecraft was constructed to gather data during fly-bys and transmit that information back to Earth. The spacecraft completed a fly-by of the red planet after almost eight months of journey, on July 14, 1965.

    Named after the Roman God of War, Mars, which even though has a thin atmosphere composed primarily of carbon dioxide, still holds humanity's fascination centuries after its discovery. So, on this special day, let's look at some interesting facts about the Red Planet.

    Tallest known mountain in the Solar System

    Olympus Mons, the largest volcano on Mars is also the solar system's tallest mountain. This enormous mountain is roughly 16 miles (25 km) tall and 373 miles (600 km) in diameter. Though it might have formed billions of years ago, evidence from its volcanic lava is so recent that many scientists believe it might still be active.

    Could potentially have an orbiting ring in the future

    Scientists speculate that Phobos, Mars' largest and most enigmatic moon, will eventually be torn apart by gravitational forces. This will lead to the formation of a debris field that will eventually settle into a stable orbit and form a rocky ring around Mars similar to that of Saturn and Uranus.

    Similar landmass to Earth

    Interestingly, while Mars is about half the diameter of Earth, its surface has nearly the same area as Earth's dry land. Also, Martian surface gravity is only 37 per cent of the Earth's, meaning you could leap nearly three times higher on Mars.

    Parts of Mars have reached Earth

    Bits of planets are blasted off over time as celestial objects like large asteroids hit them. These impacts release a massive amount of ejecta that actually throw stuff off into space if the impact is significant enough. Hence, pieces of Mars have actually landed on Earth in the past. Called 'Martian Meteorites', these little pieces of rock have miraculously managed to make it to Earth.

    Mars' frozen ice could once have been liquid

    One of the essential prerequisites for life is thought to be the presence of water on a planet. The findings published in the journal Nature Astronomy provide the first independent line of evidence, using data other than radar, that there is liquid water beneath Mars' south pole.

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    First Published Date: 28 Nov, 17:55 IST
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