NASA’s Mars Curiosity to rely on jet-powered ‘sky crane’ to land on the Red Planet

Originally posted on National Post | News:

6 things you may not know about Mars

It’s called the red planet because the landscape is stained rusty-red by the iron-rich dust

Its gravity is only 38 per cent that of Earth. So if you weigh 68 kilograms (150 pounds) on Earth, you would weigh 26 kilograms (57 pounds) on Mars

Mars’ temperatures can range from 27 degrees Celsius at its equator to -199 -128 Celsius at its poles

Mars’ atmosphere is mostly carbon dioxide with traces of nitrogen and argon. Earth’s atmosphere is a mixture of nitrogen, oxygen and other gases

A day on Mars lasts 40 minutes longer than a day on Earth

Mars’climate 3.5 billion years ago is believed to have been warm and wet, like early Earth

PASADENA, Calif., — By the time the robotic Mars laboratory dubbed Curiosity streaks into the thin Martian atmosphere at hypersonic speed on Sunday night, the spacecraft will be…

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