Martian moons could appear due to a blow.

Martian moons could appear due to a blow.

A composite image compares the size of the Martian satellites with the Earth's Moon. The moons of Mars seem to be bigger next to their planet because they are close. However, the Earth's moon surpasses Phobos by 100 times. Snapshot captured August 1, 2013 with Curiosity Mars rover

The new study suggests that the Martian satellites Phobos and Deimos could have been formed on the principle of creating the Earth's Moon, but on a smaller scale. About the origin of these two objects argue more than one decade. The question is whether these were asteroids attracted by the planet, or whether they came from equatorial debris. The second option seemed more likely, but early models were limited to low resolution and could not provide evidence.

However, technology has evolved and in the new study decided to check this version. It was important to focus on the size of the drummer. He should have been reminded of the size of Vesta or Ceres. The model also shows that the two satellites are made primarily of Martian material, so bulk compositions should resemble the mass of the Red Planet in most elements. But the heating of ejectite and the low speed of departure from Mars suggest that the water vapor has been lost, which means that the moons must be dry.

Animation of the collision of Mars with a drummer

The new model points to a small drummer. Here it is important to remember the history of our planet. 4.5 billion years ago an object about the size of Mars crashed into the Earth, thanks to which a modern Earth-Moon system appeared. The diameter of our planet reaches 8000 miles, Mars - 4200 miles, and the moon - 2100 miles.

Martian satellites are much smaller: Deimos is 7.5 miles, and Phobos is 14 miles. Then the intended drummer should span from 326 miles (Vesta) to 587 miles (Ceres).

Martian moons could appear due to a blow.

Simulation of the impact on Mars, because of which two satellites could appear (Phobos and Deimos)

This data is important for the mission of the Japanese agency MMX, which is scheduled to launch in 2024. The ship must visit two Martian moons, land on the surface of Phobos and take a sample, which will be delivered to Earth in 2029.

The main goal of the mission is to determine the origin of the satellites of the Red Planet. The model will help navigate and set the necessary restrictions on the elements.

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