Questions regarding Mars, the fourth planet from the sun.

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What is the cause of the variation from high and low mean obliquity periods of Mars?

It is reasonably well known that Mars has a greater obliquity range than Earth, due to Mars lacking a stabilising influence of a large moon. However, the Martian obliquity seems to have gone through ...
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How did the Mars satellites “take cover” from the recent comet flyby?

After comet Sliding Spring's Oct. 19, 2014 close flyby of Mars, NASA reports that All three NASA orbiters around Mars confirmed their healthy status Sunday after each took shelter behind Mars ...
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Is Mars expected to go through the tail of Comet Siding?

This question will likely be answered "in retrospect" in about 8 days. So it's a great opportunity to "lay it out there" and then let reality prove you right/wrong. On the 19th of October, Comet ...
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Why can't we detect water on Mars in the same way as in exoplanets?

Often I see news articles claiming astronomers found exoplanets with water. If we are capable of detecting water on such distant objects, why don't we employ similar methods to find water on Mars or ...
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Selecting a Telescope for Viewing Planets

I hope to observe planets like Jupiter and Saturn, and moons. I am a novice when it comes to telescopes and I know images in magazines are not taken with at least 12-inch telescope in a middle of ...
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Can the martian dichotomy (SIH) and the moon's formation (GIH) be related?

If we assume that the Single Impact Hypothesis regarding the martian dichotomy (wikipedia) and the Giant Impact Hypothesis regarding the Moon's formation (wikipedia) are true, then is it possible that ...
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Can we hear something on Venus, Mars and Titan?

Mars, Venus and Titan have an atmosphere and we can theoretically step on them (and die quickly). So, as an example, let's say we can survive on these objects without a space suit. I say: “Hi” on any ...
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How were the designations of “North” and “South” applied to the hemispheres of Mars?

How was it decided which hemisphere was North and which hemisphere was South on Mars? Clearly, the designations "North" and "South" apply only to the hemispheres which contain the axis of rotation at ...
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Would a low albedo substance warm up Mars?

If Mars were coated in a dark substance that absorbs sunlight (including infrared light), would this heat up Mars? I am envisioning a fine dust that is dispersed into the atmosphere, but possibly ...
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Are there large underground caverns on Mars?

Scientists talk about the possibility of life underground on Mars, and I assume they are talking about microscopic life that can live in small gaps in the soil or rock. But is there any evidence that ...
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Why does Mars' experience an 'ice age' at high axis obliquity, when Earth experiences an ice age at low axis obliquity

This paper here goes into some detail about how Mars' experiences its own form of 'ice ages' on a quasi periodic basis driven by the wobbling of its axis. The main mechanism outlined is that the ...
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Is Mars' mantle homogeneous or heterogeneous and what might this say about mantle convection?

A supervisor of mine made an off-hand comment about the fact that Mars used to have plate tectonics, and there is evidence that Mars used to have plate tectonics, however now it does not. The theory ...
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Is Mars visible from naked-eye from Michigan (47N, 88W) these days?

Is Mars visible at night sky of Michigan these days? I was trying to search for Mars from Michigan (at elevation of 30 deg and azimuth of 220 deg) around 11:45 PM with binoculars of 20x60 but didn't ...
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If Mars orbited the Earth how distant would it have to be to cause the same tides?

If it were possible to replace the Moon with Mars, how distant would it have to be to essentially create the same oceanic tides as the Moon currently does? Mars seems to be roughly 3 times the mass of ...
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How do scientists know that a rock found on Earth came from Mars?

There are many documented cases of meteorites being reported as from Mars. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allan_Hills_84001 While I can understand that it's possible to know if a rock originated as a ...
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Would a Phobos full impact make Mars temporary habitable?

Due to tidal deceleration, Phobos is predicted to be destroyed by Mars in the next 30-50 million years either by collision or by breaking up in a planetary ring. If Phobos falls on Mars in one piece ...
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Why is Mars' atmosphere so thin?

Is it because there isn't life to exhale enough oxygen and carbon dioxide? The size of Mars is about the same as Earth, so isn't there enough gravity to hold enough air?
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Could there be life beneath the surface of Mars or moons?

I realize radiation and extreme temperatures would probably destroy life on the surface of most planets and moons, but could life exist beneath the surface (e.g. like earth worms on earth)?
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How are the speed, distance and time of India's MOM and USA's Maven Mars missions calculated?

How do the scientists calculate the correct time to launch the Mars mission so that the satellite travel time is less? How they are synchronizing the speed of satellite with respect to earth and mars ...
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Why is Mars considered the outer edge of the “goldilocks zone”?

In both books and documentaries I often see the Goldilocks Zone as described between Venus and Mars with the Earth "just right." This seems sort of ill thought out to me, because it assumes that ...
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If Venus and Mars changed places, would we then have 3 habitable planets?

This is the supposition: Venus is too hot, Mars is too cold. If they switched places then Solar energy would change to make both more Earth like. We might as well have had three instead of just one ...
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Asteroids between Mars and Jupiter

Is the cluster of asteroids between Mars and Jupiter two dimensional as seen in every model of solar system shown in books or television? Or is it three dimensional as i think it should be?
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Martian Brother [closed]

According to some documentaries History and Discovery, fossils have been found in a meteorite that fell to earth. This meteorite came from Mars. It is possible that the Martians always try to be ...
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Where did Mars water go?

Many sources indicate that there is ice water on Mars today, but it is mainly traces, here and there, but not that much. However, solid hypothesis state that there were oceans on Mars, see ...
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Could any known, living organisms on Earth survive on Mars?

No life has been discovered outside of Earth (yet?), but do we know if anything that would be considered "living" on Earth could conquer Mars? (or maybe Venus?) With the Mars One project on the way, ...
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Loss of atmosphere on Mars

If the atmosphere on Mars was once much thicker, how was it likely lost? Was it due to interaction with the solar wind, the small size of the planet, both, or something else, and approximately how ...
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Why Did Mars lose its Magnetic Field?

I had heard that Mars once had a planetary magnetic field, but that it is now gone? What happened to it?
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Does the Moon Have Enough Water for Robert Zubrin's Mars settlement Plan To Work?

In Robert Zubrin's "The Case for Mars" he outlines a plan to settle Mars by(among other things) finding water and using electrolysis to break up water into Hydrogen and Oxygen. This provides fuel for ...
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Why does mars appear to retreat across the sky?

If you plot the movement of mars across the Earth's sky it appears to move back on itself during its orbit. Why does it appear to have a loop shape from Earth?