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A spacecraft documenting giant hurricanes in the orbit of Mars



The Russian-European spacecraft (TresGas Orbiter) of the ExoMars 2016 mission documented giant cyclones in the orbit of Mars.


"Giant hurricanes, or dust storms, are a permanent phenomenon on the surface of Mars," the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos) wrote in a report on its website, according to the Russian agency Sputnik today.


The agency published two pictures of the hurricanes on Mars, and wrote: "Two moving tornadoes can be seen in these two images, which were taken 45 seconds apart by the CaSSIS camera on board the vehicle (Trace Gas Orbiter) of the Russian-European Mission Exomars 2016."


She explained that the bright spots move along the bottom of a crater of a volcano of a length of 70 km in the southern hemisphere of Mars, leaving behind a dark line .. And also shows moving shadows of two pillars of dust, and one of the vortices moves at a speed of about 4 meters per second, and the other at 8 meters in the second.


Roscosmos pointed out that the vortices of Mars dust form largely the same way they do on Earth: When the surface becomes hotter than the air above it, the currents of hot air move onto cooler and denser air, creating an upward current. Then cold air descends to create vertical circulation. This flow is rotated by the blowing of horizontal winds. Having gained enough velocity, the vortex can pull dust and carry it over the surface.


However, Mars hurricanes are much larger than their terrestrial "counterparts," as they can reach heights of 8 km on the Red Planet, leaving behind traces tens to hundreds of kilometers wide. Their sheer size makes them extremely effective in raising dust high in the Martian atmosphere.


The report said that studying hurricanes on Mars is very important and interesting to understand how they can affect the climate on the planet over time.

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