It was thanks to the Rover Perseverance that the images were captured. We knew the planet Mars was as beautiful as it was distressing with its glowing desert expanses. This time, Perseverance has succeeded in revealing a new facet of this celestial body: a blue-green sunset on the surface of the planet. A strange and sublime vision at the same time.
A surprising Martian sunset
The image captured by the rover is strikingly beautiful. Captured when it was on the 842nd Martian sol (842 days after its arrival on Mars), the photograph shows a sunset very different from those we know on Earth.
It is counterintuitive for our brain to tell us that a sunset can take on colors other than orange-red. And yet, Perseverance demonstrates that it is possible that it is rather blue-green from the surface of the Red Planet.
It is not so much the color that astonishes scientists, but what it reveals about the content of the atmosphere present on Mars. Thanks to the study of the dispersion of light on this planet, their hope is now to understand a little better the behavior of the particles present there. With a more complete understanding of this phenomenon, the gaseous envelope surrounding Mars will thus be decoded with more precision.
Between Earth and Mars, a different light dance
If our sky is blue during the day, it is the result of the dispersion of sunlight by the Rayleigh scattering phenomenon. This, originally white, is in fact dispersed in all directions by gases and particles present in the atmosphere. The blue light which makes up part of the Sun's light is thus more dispersed than the others, which explains the color of our sky.
When dawn or dusk occurs, the tendency #8217;inverse, and the dominant colors of the Sun's light spectrum are reddish and orange.
On Mars, everything is different. During the day, red is dominant due to the dust of the same color present in its atmosphere. But when night falls, it is blue that surpasses other shades. A fact mainly explained by the difference in interaction between sunlight and the Martian atmosphere compared to ours.
This image of Perseverance is not only; a simple visual spectacle, it is also a window wide open to a better understanding of Mars. In any case, the NASA rover is far from having given us all the secrets of the Red Planet.
- Perseverance, the NASA rover, has captured a sunset of blue Sun on the surface of Mars.
- A difference in colors which can be explained by the different compositions of the atmospheres of our two planets.
- Such an image is a given important to exploit to allow a better understanding of the Martian atmosphere.