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Earth and Mars compared; terrestrial planet; telluric planet; rocky planet - Space Art Illustration

Earth and Mars compared

  • Mars' diameter is half that of the Earth's
  • It has ten percent the mass
  • If you weigh 180 pounds on Earth, you would weigh only 68 pounds on Mars
  • Mars is half again further from the Sun than the Earth

The vast deserts of North Africa are no match for the planet-wide desert that is Mars. While the Earth is host to oceans of liquid water and has a relatively dense water-rich atmosphere, Mars is exceedingly dry, cold, and so far as we know, sterile. It is believed that Mars lost most of its water to space a long time ago, and any water that remains is frozen at the poles and locked deep in the ground as permafrost.

It is an interesting coincidence that the total surface area of Mars is about the same as the surface area of dry land on the Earth.


Mars surface map provided by USGS

Copyright Walter B. Myers. All rights reserved.

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