How Many Natural Satellites or the Moons Are on Mars?
If you didn’t know, a Natural satellite is what is commonly known as the moon. In its basics, it is an astronomical body that orbits around a solar system body such as a planet, minor planet, dwarf planets, etc. While there is only one moon on planet earth, there are two moons of Mars - our neighbouring planet.
As of now, scientists have discovered 205 natural satellites in six planetary satellite systems. There are about 334 minor satellites known to have moons, while the dwarf planets including Haumea, Eris, Makemake, and Pluto also have their own natural satellites.
Anyways, in this article today, we focus on learning about the moons of Mars below, which are called Phobos and Deimos.
Two Moons of Mars
The planet Mars is an interesting planet, not least because of its red soils and dry weather. It is almost half the size of our planet, yet seems to have larger highlands and deeper canyons. The trend continues to the moons of Mars, which are double the number of natural satellites we have got on earth.
The two moons of Mars are called Phobos and Deimos. They have an irregular shape. Compared to the size of our moon, these two are smaller. They were discovered by Asaph Hall - an American astronomer in the year 1877. Deimos was discovered first on 12th August, while Phobos was discovered 6-days later on 18th August. The astronomer used a 26-inch refractor telescope to discover the moons on Mars.
The naming of the Two Moons
Originally written as Phobus and Deimus, the names of the moons of Mars were derived from Greek mythology. The two words mean fear and panic respectively. In the mythology, the twin characters Phobos and Deimus go to the battlefield with their father Ares - the god of war known as Mars in Romans.