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Mars :: Planet Overview

NASA scientists celebrated the successful landing of the Phoenix Mars Lander on May 31, 2008! Get the 411 on our mysterious neighbor!

What's in a Name?

Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun and was named after the Roman God of War. It is often referred to as the Red Planet because of the color it appears when viewed from earth. Many early civilizations associated Mars with its red color. Egyptians called it Her Descher which means The Red One.

All About Mars

People once thought that Mars was just like Earth but when astronomy became more advanced, we realized that isn't true. Mars is much smaller than Earth and is just the seventh largest planet. Mars has no water and is a very dry place. There are mountains and volcanoes but that's about it. Mars has two moons, Phobos and Deimos, named after the mythical horses that drew the War God's chariot. Deimos rises and sets twice a day. The two moons might actually be asteroids pulled in by Mars' gravity.

Mars has a volcano that's taller than any volcano on Earth. Olympus Mons is the tallest volcano in our solar system and is three times taller than Mt. Everest. Another interesting feature on Mars is the gigantic canyon, Vallis Marineris. This canyon is as long as the distance from New York to San Francisco.

Is There Life On the Red Planet?

Despite the fact that the word "Martian" comes from Mars, there is no life on Mars as far as we know. Scientists think that Mars once had water on it because of its physical geography (which has things that resemble riverbeds and canals). The Phoenix Mars Lander will hopefully end this mystery when it drills into the Red Planet to look for frozen water that may be below the surface.

Mars is a firey red colorMars is a firey red color

Fun Facts

  • Author Jonathan Swift gave reasonably accurate descriptions of Mar's two moons orbits in his book Gulliver's Travels. He did this about 150 years before either moon was discovered.
  • The average temperature on Mars is -63 C (-81 F). It can get as cold as -143 C (-220 F) and as hot as 20 C (68 F).
  • A day on Mars is 24 hours and 39 minutes which is very close to on Earth day.
  • A year on Mars is 685 Earth days.
  • The atmosphere of Mars is made of of mostly carbon dioxide.
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What is Your Favorite Space Movie?

  • Men In Black
  • Star Wars
  • War of the Worlds
  • Star Trek

General In The Forums

Skipper_
Skipper_ posted in New Users:
henlo! welcome to KW!  the people on here is nice so i hope you like it! nice to meet you.
reply about 1 hour
Skipper_
Skipper_ posted in New Users:
Hello and welcome to KW! I hope you like the people here, because they're friendly tbh but anyways, nice to meet you~
reply about 1 hour
Skipper_
Skipper_ posted in Debating:
There's a lot of evidence, my friend. First evidence is that Trump is not allowing trans to join the army. The Muslim ban? He's such a racist and such a discriminator...do you want me to give you more evidence?
reply about 1 hour
Tennis123
Tennis123 posted in Debating:
And btw, it’s acceptable for a person to defend himself from the polar bear or whatever animal
reply about 2 hours
Tennis123
Tennis123 posted in Debating:
"Kirsteeeeen" wrote: "Tennis123" wrote: i have changed my views on things like this, i think 99% of people that hunt and the people that complain about the hunting are complete hypocrites though.  if you think that its justified to kill an animal in a given context, you must have a difference between a human and the animal that if true of the human would justify killing the animal, otherwise you say X justifies killing something but doesnt justify killing something ate the same time, which of course is a contradiction. hopefully people can understand that.  What gives, polar bears for example, the right to kill humans for food but doesn't give humans the right to kill an animal for food? Polar bears have no moral agency and they must kill for food. If we went over to a place in the North Pole and a mentally disabled person with the inability to understand right and wrong and they had to kill for food, I wouldnt add any moral weight to the act they commit bc how can you morally judge an act one commits without them having any conception of morals? Some mentally disabled people have no moral agency and can’t really understand anything. Would you judge them morally? 
reply about 2 hours