Why is Mars smaller than Earth

Mars - the red planet

Visible to the naked eye in the night sky, Mars has always sparked human imagination. In the past few decades, scientists have already coaxed many of its secrets from the earth-like celestial body.

Mars is one of the earth-like rock planets because, like the earth, it has a solid surface that, together with the mantle below, envelops an iron core. However, with a diameter of almost 6,800 kilometers, Mars is significantly smaller than Earth. Both Mars and Earth were formed together with the other planets in our solar system about four and a half billion years ago.

Surrounded by two small moons, Mars orbits the sun once every two years - the distance is about one and a half times the distance between the earth and the sun. At the same time, Mars rotates on its own axis: a Martian day lasts almost 24 hours and 40 minutes. Because its axis of rotation is inclined in relation to its orbit, different seasons also prevail on the red planet.

A variety of geological structures - such as huge elevations and deep trenches - as well as numerous impact craters can be observed on the surface of Mars. In addition, there are forms of erosion on the surface that are reminiscent of dried-up river beds. Such finds suggest that Mars may have looked completely different in the past. The possibility that long rivers and vast oceans once covered the planet makes it a sought-after research object in the search for extraterrestrial life.