Red planet

Facts about landing mars

  • In 1960s, and 170s, the US Vikings 1 and 2 and the Soviet Mars 3 and 5 probes, all reached the surface of mars.
  • Mars 3 was the first probe to make a soft landing on mars, on 2nd December 1971, and send back data for 20 seconds before being destroyed by a huge dust storm.
  • Viking 1 sent back the first color pictures from mars, on 26th July 1976.
  • The aim of the Viking missions was to find sings of life on mars, but there were none. Even so, the Viking Landers back plenty of information about the geology and atmosphere of mars.
  • On 4 July, 1997, the US mars pathfinder probe arrived on mars and at once began becoming `live’ TV pictures from the planet’s surface.
  • Mars pathfinder used air bags to cushion its landing on the plant’s surface. Two days after it landed, it sent out a wheeled robot vehicle called the Sojourner to survey the surrounding area.
  • The sojourner showed a rock- stream plain, which looks as if it were once swept by floods.
  • Pathfinders and sojourner operated for 83 days and took more than 16,000 photos.
  • Missions to mars early in the 21st century will include the first return flight in 2006.


Fact file

Part – a

*Mars is also called the red planet because it surface has red dust.

*NASA’s terrestrial planet finder (TPF) will be set off visit distant planets in 2009!


Part – b

*Where London and New York are today, the ice was 1.5 km thick 18,000 years ago.

*In 1887, one million people were killed when the Hawang Ho River in China flooded. Since then it is called `China’s sorrow’.

*The Indian Ocean is getting 20 cm wider every year.

*New York moving about 22.5 cm farther way from London every year.

*The rainiest place is Mt Wai- ale –ale in Hawaii, where it rains 350 days a year!




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