LYNETTE COOK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY LYNETTE COOK / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Mars. Cutaway illustration showing the interior structure of the planet Mars. Mars is thought to have an inner core of molten iron (yellow), surrounded by a mantle (orange) of semi-liquid rock. A thin crust of solid rock lies on top. It is the next farthest planet from the Sun after Earth, and measures about half Earth's diameter. Like the Earth year, the Martian year has a summer and winter, but lasts longer (687 days). A day on Mars lasts 24 hours, 39 minutes and 35 seconds. The surface of Mars is a rocky desert landscape, coloured red by abundant iron oxide. The planet was once thought to support life but this theory has now been abandoned.
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