Mars and Earth are neighbors. Mars is the fourth planet from the sun. The closest distance between the two planets is 33.9 million miles. However, in recorded history, the planets have only gotten as close as 34.8 million miles apart and this was in 2003. This might sound like a great distance, but when you consider the vastness of space, this distance essentially has them on top of each other. However, at their furthest, the distance is about 250 million miles with the average distance being about 140 million miles, which is still quite close in space.
Exploring the Mars Orbit
The Earth’s orbit around the sun is considerably smaller than the Mars’ orbit and this plays a major role in how far apart the two planets are at any given time. Because of this, it takes Mars almost twice as long to orbit the sun, with the average being 687 Earth days. About every 26 months, Earth will lap Mars in their orbit around the sun. The orbit of this planet deviates from a perfect circle more often than any of the other planets, making its orbit quite eccentric.
Facts About Mars
This planet is referred to as the red planet because in the sky, it takes on a reddish orange hue. The temperature fluctuates quite a bit, with the lowest getting to about negative 243.4 degrees Fahrenheit and the highest getting to about 68 degrees Fahrenheit. These represent the surface temperature on the planet. It has two moons.
With Mars being so close to Earth throughout most times of the year, this has allowed for intense exploration into this planet. Scientists have looked into the possibility of it being habitable and have extensive information concerning the atmosphere and conditions on this planet.
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