The Martian dust storm which has grown now in a huge size and is now officially a “planet-encircling” dust event.
The Curiosity rover in the orbit of Mars will let our scientists for the very first time by which they can collect a wealth and mystery of dust’s information both from its surface and from the space too. A storm of these tiny dust particles has engulfed much more of Mars over the last two weeks and have prompted to the NASA’s Opportunity to suspend various special science operations on it. But around the planet, NASA’s Curiosity is still wandering that has been studying Martian soil at Gale Crater, and it is expected that it will remain largely unaffected by this mysterious dust. While the Opportunity is being powered by the sunlight, which has blotted out by the dust at its actual and present venue. Curiosity includes a huge technical system of nuclear- powered battery and it runs through whole day and night.
According to the Bruce Cantor of ‘Malin Space Science Systems’, San Diego, who is a deputy principal investigator of
the ‘Mars Color Imager camera’ (MARCI) on the board of NASA’s Mars. Though the Curiosity is on the other side of Mars from the having Opportunity, the dust has gradually increased over it, which equals more than the doubling over the weekend. The sunlight-blocking haze, which is called as “tau,” is now just above 8.0 at Gale Crater – the highest tau mission has ever recorded.
This Tau was at last time measured near 11 over Opportunity, and it was thick enough that the accurate measurements are no more possible for Mars’ oldest active rover. For NASA’s scientists who are watching from the ground, Curiosity offers an incredible platform and window to reveal such questions. From which One of the biggest is: why do some Martian dust storms stay for a long interval and become huge and terrible while some are small and lasts for only 1 week?
Atmospheric Scientist Scott D Guzewich at NASA said:- “We don’t have any good idea,” Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, leading Curiosity’s dust storm investigation. He indicates:- Curiosity, plus a fleet of spacecraft in the orbit of Mars, will allow our hardworking and curious scientists for the first time to collect a mysterious wealth of dust information both from the surface and from space.
As per the records and reports The last storm of global magnitude that enveloped Mars occurred in 2007, five years before the Curiosity landed there.
In the animation above, Curiosity is facing the crater rim, which is about 18.6 miles (30 kilometers) away from where it stands inside the crater. Daily photos are captured by its Mast Camera, which is also known as Mastcam. It has shown that sky is getting a hazier layer. This sun-retarding layer of haze is about six to eight times thicker than normal.
Curiosity’s Engineers of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, have found the potential for the growing dust storm which can affect the rover’s instruments and other technical gadgets, and say it that it is no harm as it poses little risk. The largest impact is to the rover’s cameras, as these require extra exposure time due to the low lighting process. The rover had already routinely pointed to its Mastcam down at the ground after its every use to reduce the amount of dust which is blowing at its optical based instruments.
These Martian dust storms are common and usual, especially during the period of southern hemisphere spring and summer, and when the planet gets closer to the Sun. As the atmosphere gets warmer, and winds generated by larger contrasts in surface temperature at different lieu to propagate the dust particles and the size of individual talcum powder grains.
Carbon dioxide which is in the frozen form on the winter polar cap evaporates, thickening the atmospheric layers and keep on increasing the surface pressure. This also increases the process by helping in suspending the dust
particles in the atmosphere. In some cases, these dust clouds can reach up to 40 miles (60 kilometers) or more. Though they are frequent, Martian dust storms basically stay contained within a local area. By the compare and contrast reports, Guzewich had said that if it has happened on Earth is bigger too much than Russia and many other parts combined together. This dust storm may be an exotic thing to some Earthlings, but it’s common to Martians. we want to clear you that Earth has dust storms, also, as in desert regions of North Africa, the Middle East, and the
southwest United States.
But conditions which are present here prevent them from spreading out globally on a large scale, said Ralph A. Kahn,
(Goddard senior research scientist who studies the atmospheres of Earth and Mars). These also include the structure of our thicker atmosphere and stronger gravity force that helps to settle this dust. Our mother Earth has also vegetation cover on the land that binds the soil with the roots and helps them to block the wind and rain that can wash the particles out from the atmosphere.