It’s late winter in Mars’ northern hemisphere, where the rover is perseverance and chopper cleverness They explore an ancient river delta that once fed the crater lake Billions of years ago.
Dust determines the weather on the planet. It usually heralds the coming of winter, accompanied by snow, sleet and ice. At the poles of the planet, the temperature can drop to -123 degrees Celsius.
over there Two types of snow on Mars. One is the kind that is on land and consists of frozen water. Mars’ thin air and sub-zero temperatures mean that conventional snow vaporizes, or turns from a solid directly into a gas, before hitting the ground.
The other type of Martian snow depends on Carbon Dioxide. It said dry ice It can “land” on the surface. A few meters of snow tends to fall in the flat areas near the poles.
said mr Sylvain Piceau Scientist at NASA’s Gas Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. “If you’re looking to ski, you’ll have to go to a crater or a slope, where snow can build up on an inclined surface.”
So far, no spacecraft or spacecraft have been able to see snow falling on the Red Planet because the weather phenomenon only occurs at night at the poles, under the cloud cover. Spacecraft cameras can’t see through clouds, and no robotic exploration vehicles have been developed that can withstand the freezing temperatures at the poles.
However, the device The safest Martian climate The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter can detect light that is invisible to the human eye and detect dry ice. The Phoenix lander, which arrived at Mars in 2008, used one of its laser instruments to detect snow in a spot about 1,609 kilometers from its north pole.
Snowflakes on Earth are unique and have six faces. But, under a microscope, Martian snowflakes probably look a little different. “Because carbon dioxide ice has four times the symmetry, we know that The dry snowflakes will be cube shapedBeckio said. “Thanks to the Mars climate sounder, we can figure out what those snowflakes will be like Smaller than the width of a human hair».
Carbon dioxide-based ice and frost can also occur far from the poles. the Epic He watched frost form and turn into a gas in the sunlight.
At the end of winter, the accumulated ice can melt and turn into a gas, causing it to form unique shapes Which reminded NASA scientists of Swiss cheese, Dalmatian spots, fried eggs, spiders and other unusual formations.
Seasons on Mars tend to be longer because the planet’s elliptical orbit around the sun means that a Martian year lasts 687 days or roughly two Earth years. NASA scientists celebrated the New Year on Mars December 26thwhich coincided with the arrival of the vernal equinox in the northern hemisphere.
With information from CNN
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