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Inner Planets

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Christina Arnold

on 23 March 2013

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Transcript of Inner Planets

SUN
http://science.discovery.com/videos/space-school-the-sun.html
The Sun is the star at the center of the Solar System.
The Sun's color is white, although from the surface of the Earth it may appear yellow because of atmospheric scattering.
About three-quarters of the Sun's mass consists of hydrogen, while most of the rest is helium
We will Study the Sun a lot more later on!
Mercury
smallest planet
Mercury travels about 30 miles (48 kilometers) per second, and goes around the sun once every 88 Earth days.
smallest axial tilt
Mercury moves around the sun faster than any other planet.
Mercury's surface appears to be much like that of the moon.
Mercury is dry, extremely hot, and almost airless. The sun's rays are approximately seven times as strong on Mercury as they are on the Earth.
Venus
Venus is known as the Earth's "twin" because the two planets are so similar in size.
Venus is brighter than any other planet or even any star.
They named Venus in honor of the Roman goddess of love and beauty.
Venus takes about 225 Earth days, or about 71/2 months, to go around the sun once.
Venus rotates in the retrograde (opposite) direction and spins around once every 243 Earth days.
Surrounded by thick clouds of sulfuric acid.
Venus has a variety of surface features, including level ground, mountains, canyons, valleys and volcanoes.
Earth
You tell me about Earth.
Mars
4th planet
named for the ancient Roman god of war
composed of iron and oxygen (rust color)
no human being has ever set foot on Mars
Scientists have found strong evidence that water once flowed on the surface of Mars. The evidence includes channels, valleys, and gullies on the planet's surface. If this interpretation of the evidence is correct, water may still lie in cracks and pores in subsurface rock. A space probe has also discovered vast amounts of ice beneath the surface, most of it near the south pole.
The Martian solar day is 24 hours 39 minutes 35 seconds long. This is the length of time that Mars takes to turn around once with respect to the sun.
Mars travels around the sun once every 687 Earth days;
In March 2004, U.S. scientists announced that they had concluded that Meridiani Planum ( plain on the surface of Mars) once held large amounts of liquid water. Their evidence came from an outcropping of Martian bedrock found in the small crater in which Opportunity landed. The rover's analysis showed that the rock contained large amounts of sulfate salts, which contain sulfur and oxygen. On Earth, such high concentrations of sulfate salts occur only in rocks that formed in water or were exposed to water for long periods. The outcropping's surface also bore tiny pits similar to those found on Earth where salt crystals formed in wet rock and later dissolved or eroded away.

The rover Spirit rests on Mars in a composite image made up of photographs taken by a camera mounted above the rover's body. Spirit landed on Mars in early January 2004. The pole at the lower left is one of the antennas Spirit uses to communicate with NASA controllers. Image credit: NASA

The rover mission was scheduled to last only 90 days, but it was extended because Spirit and Opportunity continued to function well. In June 2004, Opportunity descended into a large crater that mission managers called Endurance and analyzed the layers of bedrock there. Also in June, Spirit arrived at a group of hills, called Columbia Hills, after a drive of over 2 miles (3 kilometers). The rovers continued to explore these sites for several months.
More on Mars
http://marsrover.nasa.gov/gallery/artwork/rover1browse.html
http://science.discovery.com/videos/space-school-mercury.html
http://science.discovery.com/videos/space-school-venus.html
Full transcript