Space & Astronomy
Most detailed ever photograph of Mars' moon Deimos revealed
By T.K. Randall
April 25, 2023 · 15 comments
The image shows Deimos in unprecedented detail. Image Credit: Emirates Mars Mission
The image was recently captured by the UAE's Emirates Mars Mission spacecraft.
You might be forgiven for thinking that Mars doesn't actually have any moons, but it does in fact have two - Phobos and Deimos - which measure 14 miles and 8 miles across respectively.
Unlike our own moon, these two much smaller moons are more akin to asteroids that, some scientists argue, may have been captured by the gravitational pull of Mars at some point in the distant past.
Up until relatively recently, we have only been able to view Phobos and Deimos from a distance, but now, thanks to the Emirates Mars Mission spacecraft, we've finally been given the opportunity to view one of them - Deimos - up closer than it has ever been seen before.
"These images and observations represent a significant step forward in our knowledge of Deimos, its atmosphere, composition, origins, and what this means for our understanding of Mars more broadly," the United Arab Emirates Space Agency said in a statement about the mission.
So far the mission has collected a great deal of interesting data that has suggested, for example, that Deimos is more likely to have originated from Mars itself, which could put the captured asteroid theory to bed once and for all.
It will be interesting to see what else the spacecraft discovers over the coming months.
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