Mars:The Red Planet

Mars is a planet in our solar system and is often referred to as the "Red Planet". This is because of the iron oxide (rust) on its surface.

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Essential Data
Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun. Because of its location, it is an inner planet, which makes it small and rocky. It is located from the Sun at a mean distance of 227,940,000 kilometers.

Mars' revolution and rotation periods are much like Earth's. For example, Mars spins on its axis at a speed that makes one day 24 hours, 39 minutes, 35 seconds long. Like much of the other planets except Venus, its rotation is counter clockwise. Mars' revolution is also much similar to Earth's. It takes 1.88 Earth years to revolve around the Sun on Mars.

Mars has two moons. These moons are Phobos and Deimos.
Phobos is the intermost moon of the two moons of Mars, located 9,380km outside of the atmosphere. Phobos is the record holder for Moon closest to its Planet. Because Phobos is so close to Mars it's said that the gravitational force of Mars is greater than the centripetal force of Phobos, which will cause Phobos to come crashing into Mars in about 40 million years. Phobos rotation time is only about 0.319 Earth days. Phobos is also covered in about 1 meter of dust.phobos.gif
Deimos is 23,460km away from the surface of Mars. Deimos completes its rotation in about 1.26 Earth days. Deimos is the outermost moon for Mars. There are two large craters on the suface of Deimos. The craters are Swift and Voltaire, and both measure about 3km each in length. There are no measures in geological activity and this moon in particular is not covered in dust, but in regolith.
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Mars' atmosphere is made up of three main gases. These are carbon dioxide, nitrogen, and argon.

History
Since Mars is so commonly and brightly seen in the night sky, no one really knows who discovered the planet. It was probably one of the Greek astronomers, though. The Romans named this planet after one of their gods, Ares, the god of war. They chose this name because the reddish hue reminded them of blood, which fits in with the god of war.
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Mars' symbol

Physical Properties
Mars is very small compared to Earth. Its mass is only about eleven percent to that of Earth's. This is because the planet is so small: the diameter of Mars is about half of Earth's! Mars' temperatures range from negative one-hundred and forty to twenty degrees Celsius. The density of Mars is 3.94 grams per cubic centimeter. It wouldn't float, unlike Saturn.
The escape velocity of Mars is 5.02 kilometers per second. This makes it harder to get in orbit and easier to get out.
Mars has layers just like Earth's. For example, Mars is covered in a thin crust, a mantle, and a core.

Mars' atmosphere contains 95.32% carbon dioxide, 2.7% nitrogen, and 1.6% argon. There are also other gases that make up small percents in the atmosphere. These include oxygen and neon. Because the amount of oxygen is so low, it would be hard to support life on Mars.

Planet Exploration
Mars is one of the planets that is easy to study. This is because there aren't extreme temperatures, thick clouds, or intense storms. In result, there have been many space probes that explored Mars. One is Mariner 9. This made one of the most exciting discoveries ever by discovering Olympus Mons, the largest volcano in the solar system. It also made another fantastic discovery by capturing images and footage of channels and canyons, indicating there was once water on Mars.
Two other space probes were Vikings I and II. They studied the surface; things like rocks and soil, and the atmosphere and weather patterns.

Interesting Facts
Mars is a very interesting planet. It is the only realistic place for life in our solar system besides Earth.
If you weighed 110 pounds on Earth, you would weigh 41.4 pounds on Mars. If you weighed 170 pounds on Earth, you would weigh 64 pounds on Mars. Talk about weight loss!
Your birthdays on Mars would be one year and seventeen days apart!
In a scale model, if the Sun was 615 millimeters in diameter, Mars would be about 100.669 millimeters away from the Sun.

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http://www.gliffy.com/gliffy/#d=1972934&t=Mars_Diagram
Works Cited

All About Mars TechMediaNetwork, 29 Jan. 2010. Web. 29 Jan. 2010. <http://www.space.com/Mars/>.

Squyres, Steven W. "Mars." World Book Online Reference Center. 2004. World Book, inc. (http://www.worldbookonline.com/wb/Article?ID=ar346000

Mars, atmoshpere N.p., 29 Jan. 2010. Web. 29 Jan. 2010. http://www.daviddarling.info/encyclopedia/M/Marsatmos.html.

Hamilton, Calvin J. Views of the Solar System N.p., 2009. Web. 29 Jan. 2010. http://www.solarviews.com/eng/mars.htm.

Windows Team. Windows to the Universe The Regents of Michigan University, Sept. 2000. Web. 29 Jan. 2010.