Have you ever wondered what a solar eclipse on Mars looks like? Well, you have to see it to believe it. But first things first, it turned out that the eclipses captured on Mars by NASA’s rovers, namely Opportunity, Curiosity, and Perseverance, dropped some impressive specifications to go with them. You would be thrilled to know that the eclipses on Mars are totally different from those that occur on Earth. Mars has two moons, specifically “Phobos”, meaning fear in Ancient Greek, and “Deimos”, meaning dread. They revolve around Mars once every 7.65 and 30.35 hours. Watch the video below to see the solar eclipse on Mars captured by NASA’s rover:
Hence, to put that into perspective, Mars exhibits an entirely different phenomenon in the event of a solar eclipse due to its moons. One of the most intriguing things about its moons is that they are comparatively smaller than Earth’s moon and hence cannot completely block the sunlight during an eclipse, mainly due to their small size. It has been projected by the rovers that whenever Mars’ moons pass between the sun and the Martian observers on the surface, they lack covering the whole of the sun as compared to the phenomenon exhibited by the moon on the Earth.
However, the above video shows how the sun is still depicting itself as a giant eyeball when Mars’ moon passes by. Coupled with this, there is a bizarre effect noted by the scientists when the Phobos moon passes by Mars. It has been noted that an observatory located on Mars, known as the InSight lander, used to tilt on every occasion whenever Phobos passes. This observatory measures the seismic activity on Mars. However, the observation stunned the scientists, and later on, they revealed that this was due to the cooling effect produced by solar radiation.
Comparatively, Phobos is the moon that is bigger and more efficient in terms of blocking sunlight as compared to Deimos. As it has been reported that Phobos can block about 40% of sunlight when it passes during a solar eclipse. When it comes to Earth, the mechanism here is just incredible, as our Moon magnificently covers the sun, although it is not equal to the size of the sun. This phenomenon makes Earth more special as compared to Mars. Have you ever wondered what would be the reason behind this amazing coincidence? Actually, it’s all due to the size of the moon. Earth’s moon is about 400 times smaller than the sun, and at the same time, it is 400 times closer to Earth. This co-relation makes the moon cover the whole of the sun during solar eclipses.
Similarly, the strange behavior of Phobos on Mars has been analyzed by scientists to further detect its nature and see its gravitational impact on Mars. Through this information, they become able to uncover mysterious details about the Martian climate.