Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun and the second-smallest planet in the Solar System, after Mercury.
In English, Mars carries a name of the Roman god of war, and is often referred to as the “Red Planet” because of its reddish appearance. The redness caused by iron oxide present on Mars’ surface. As seen by naked eye, Mars is occasionally bright enough to be mistaken for a star.
Here are ten fun facts about Mars:
1. One day on Mars lasts 24 hours and 40 minutes.
2. A year on Mars takes 687 Earth days.
3. The diameter of Mars is 4,217 miles (6,779 kilometers). This is about half the size of Earth.
4. Mars has two moons: Phobos and Deimos. They are small and irregularly shaped.
5. The average temperature on Mars is -81 degrees Fahrenheit (-63 degrees Celsius).
6. Mars has seasons like Earth does, but they last twice as long because a Martian year is almost twice as long as an Earth year.
7. Springtime on Mars can be very dusty due to huge dust storms that can cover the entire planet for weeks at a time.
8. Mars has mountains, valleys, plains and craters just like Earth does – but it also has some unique features including volcanoes & canyons.
9. Olympus Mons on Mars is the tallest mountain in our solar system. It’s about 16 miles (25 kilometers) high – that’s 3 times higher than Mount Everest.
10. The Valles Marineris canyon system on Mars is HUGE – it’s over 2,500 miles (4,000 kilometers) long & up to 6 miles (10 kilometers) deep in places.