Wednesday, May 6, 2020

The Annual Changes Of Temperature On A Planet - 1021 Words

The annual changes of temperature on a planet, also known as seasons, are caused by two distinct factors: the planet’s axial tilt and its variable distance from the sun, also called orbital eccentricity. The temperature on a singular point on a planet is determined by the amount of sun that falls on that particular location. If a planet does not contain an axis tilt, then the temperatures would be highest along the equator, where light from the sun falls directly, and coldest at the north and south pole, where the light of the sun almost never touches. This would stay constant year round and never vary. However, when a planet does contain an axis tilt, the angle in which the light from the sun falls on any given point on the planet will†¦show more content†¦This seemingly small number, is actually quite large, and that variation, in combination with the planet’s axis tilt, is the cause of much more extreme seasons that what we see on our own planet, Earth. On E arth, the seasons are divided into near equal lengths of approximately three months for each season. This is caused by two factors: Earth’s circular orbit and that fact that Earth moves at a relatively constant speed as it orbits the sun. The same cannot be said for Mars. The high eccentricity of Mars’ orbit also changes the speed of which it orbits around the sun. When Mars orbits slowest when it is at aphelion and fastest at perihelion. This change is speed makes some of Mars’ seasons longer than others. Spring is considered the longest season, lasting approximately 194 Martian days, whereas autumn is the shortest season, lasting approximately 142 Martian days. These extreme seasons of Mars can have some very interesting effects on the planet. Research has shown that global atmospheric pressure is 25% lower during the local wintertime than during summer. This happens for two reasons: first, the eccentricity of Mars s orbit and secondly, there is a pattern-lik e exchange of carbon dioxide between the north and south polar caps and the mostly CO2 atmosphere. When the north pole is tilted away from the sun around the winter solstice, the northern polar cap expands as the carbon dioxide within the atmosphere freezes. On the opposite side of the

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