Next time you feel the urge to complain about the weather in your country or region, you should keep in mind that the one from Mars is much worse. The weather on our neighboring planet is quite the hot topic (pun intended). Let’s just say it’s not exactly a tropical paradise. You see, Mars is pretty far away from the sun, and that means it’s pretty darn cold.
Imagine the coldest winter day you’ve ever experienced, now multiply that a few times, add a dash of a dust storm, and you’ve got the average weather on Mars. But don’t let that discourage you from visiting (if you ever get the chance, that is). Mars does have its perks. For one, you’ll never have to worry about getting a sunburn. And you’ll never have to worry about getting caught in a rainstorm because, well, it never rains on Mars.
Minus 67 degrees Fahrenheit is the average temperature at the Jezero Crater
NASA’s Perseverance rover is like the weatherman of Mars, equipped with the Mars Environmental Dynamics Analyzer (MEDA) – a set of sensors that measure everything from temperature to dust levels, and even radiation. Built by a team of Spanish scientists, these sensors have been busy gathering data on the Red Planet’s atmosphere, and the results are in.
The average air temperature at Jezero was recorded at a chilly -67 Fahrenheit, but it can swing as much as 90-110 degrees Fahrenheit between day and night, as Space.com reveals. The air pressure also goes through a rollercoaster ride, fluctuating daily and seasonally, as the carbon dioxide frost at the poles sublimates in the early summer “heat”, making the thin atmosphere puff up like a marshmallow in a campfire.
The data collected by Perseverance covers the time period from northern hemisphere spring to early summer and focuses on the “atmospheric surface layer” which is like the layer of the atmosphere that hugs the planet’s surface. This layer is where heat and dust are exchanged between the surface and the atmosphere, and it’s a real tug-of-war.