Eclipse of the Sun, Martian Style

The Mars Curiosity rover caught the moon Phobos passing in front of the sun as seen from the surface of Mars. Some background here.

Compared to the Earth, the sun appears smaller in the sky as seen from Mars. The Martian moons are much smaller than our moon, about the size of a very large city. But they also orbit much closer to their planet, lower than communications satellites orbiting the Earth.

The other factor in a Martian solar eclipse: don’t get distracted by dust storms or little green aliens. The entire eclipse last less than half a minute, due to the closer orbit of the satellite.

Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Malin Space Science Systems/Texas A&M University

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About catholicsensibility

Todd and his family live in Ames, Iowa. He serves a Catholic parish of both Iowa State students and town residents.
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One Response to Eclipse of the Sun, Martian Style

  1. Liam says:

    It is interesting how our moon, for now, just happens to be of a size, orbit and distance where it can perfectly eclipse the sun.

    I also find it interesting that the earth’s axial tilt is such that the lunar path at full moon phase is an almost perfect mirror of the solar path: that is, the azimuth and zenith of the full moon nearest the winter solstice mirrors that of the sun at the summer solstice, and vice versa, so that our longest nights are balanced in the full moon phase by long, high and brilliant moonshine.

    The kind of things that do make me think of providential design.

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