Thursday, October 4, 2012

Where is Mars Moon Deimos?

Where is Deimos?

In order to improve the orbital models for the martian moon, researchers have developed a new technique that compares images taken by Mars Express.

By ESA, Noordwijk, Netherlands Published: October 3, 2012
Mars Express image of the moons Phobos (foreground) and Deimos (background). // Credit: ESA/DLR/FU Berlin (G. Neukum)

Despite more than a century of observations, scientists still don’t know the orbit of the martian moon Deimos to a high degree of accuracy. But a new study using images taken by the European Space Agency’s (ESA) Mars Express orbiter has provided the best orbital model to date.

Some 135 years have passed since Asaph Hall discovered Phobos and Deimos, two small companions of the planet Mars. Since that time, the satellites have been imaged innumerable times from Earth and from spacecraft, including recent measurements by the panoramic cameras on the Mars Exploration Rovers and instruments on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter.

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Source: Astronomy Magazine.


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