Skip to comments.Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Phobos 360
Posted on 12/24/2013 9:13:13 PM PST by SunkenCiv
Explanation: What does the Martian moon Phobos look like? To better visualize this unusual object, images from ESA's Mars Express orbiter have been combined into a virtual rotation movie. The rotation is actually a digital illusion -- tidally-locked Phobos always keeps the same face toward its home planet, as does Earth's moon. The above video highlights Phobos' chunky shape and an unusually dark surface covered with craters and grooves. What lies beneath the surface is a topic of research since the moon is not dense enough to be filled with solid rock. Phobos is losing about of centimeter of altitude a year and is expected to break up and crash onto Mars within the next 50 million years. To better understand this unusual world, Mars Express is on course to make the closest flyby ever on Sunday.
(Excerpt) Read more at 184.108.40.206 ...
[Video Credit: Mars Express, ESA]
Seriously, what could possibly be at the core besides solid rock. Can't be molten magma for something so tiny. Perhaps it's fragmented rock.
Ice. The density of the four inner planets (Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars) are similar, and about four times that of Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune, which are similar to each other.
But Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune are all gas giants. Rocky planets like Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars, would obviously be much denser than them. I wonder how it stacks up, density-wise, to these rocky planets. Ice at the center would seem to suggest it would have a hollow core. That would be odd, given its rocky exterior.
They say here below, with 3 references, that the small moon is known to have “significant porosity” (has internal crevices). I guess that would explain the low over all density.
“Spectroscopically it appears to be similar to the D-type asteroids, and is apparently of composition similar to carbonaceous chondrite material. Phobos’s density is too low to be solid rock, and it is known to have significant porosity.”
Every time I read the word, “Phobos,” I remember the storyline to the video game, “Doom.”
Pretty scary stuff.
Thanks for the post.
I don’t know what that means.
Sounds like you could be right about it having some ice in its interior. But it could just as well have had empty space in those internal crevices.
“D-type asteroids have a very low albedo and a featureless reddish electromagnetic spectrum. It has been suggested that they have a composition of organic rich silicates, carbon and anhydrous silicates, possibly with water ice in their interiors. D-type asteroids are found in the outer asteroid belt and beyond; examples are 152 Atala, and 944 Hidalgo as well as the majority of Jupiter’s Trojans.
The Nice model suggests that D-type asteroids may have originated in the Kuiper belts.
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See post 13
You got that right, Talisker - the powers that be have intentionally blacked out the part of Phobos they don’t want us to see; This is probably where an extra-terrestrial development is located!
The one crater looks like it was dug by an antlion.
Yeah, I noticed that hyper-blurred section too. Nothing to see there, move along!
Old spaceship parked in orbit millions of years ago. It’s hollow.
Hoagland has some ideas!
Astronaut Buzz Aldrin says there is a monolith on Phobos.
If you think that is wild wait until you see what’s on the Moon!
Moon Rising trailer
Object on the Moon mentioned in ‘Moon Rising’ looked at more closely
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