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The Space Portal
Space (or ) describes the vast empty regions between outer space planets and stars. The study of these, and other, astronomical objects is called , one of the oldest astronomy sciences. It is often said that began with the space exploration launch of Sputnik 1, the first man-made object to orbit the Earth. Then, in an almost unbelievable feat of human achievement, in 1969 Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin travelled to the Moon and set foot on the surface during the Apollo 11 mission. Recently, it has become clear that the possibility of space colonization may no longer be exclusively reserved for science-fiction stories, and many controversial issues surrounding space have come to light, including commercial spaceflight, space laws and space weapons.
is the fourth Mars planet from the Sun and is known as the Red Planet due to its reddish appearance as seen from Earth. The planet is named after Mars, the Roman god of war. A terrestrial planet, Mars has a thin atmosphere and surface features reminiscent both of the impact craters of the Moon and the volcanoes, valleys, deserts and polar ice caps of Earth. It has the highest mountain in the solar system, Olympus Mons, and the largest canyon, Valles Marineris. Mars' rotational period and seasonal cycles are also similar to those of the Earth. Of all the planets in our solar system other than Earth, Mars is the most likely to harbor liquid water, and perhaps life. Mars is currently host to three functional orbiting spacecraft: Mars Odyssey, Mars Express, and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. This is more than any planet except Earth. The surface is also home to the two Mars Exploration Rovers ( and Spirit ). Geological evidence gathered by these and preceding missions suggests that Mars previously had large-scale water coverage, while observations also indicate that small Opportunity geyser-like water flows have occurred in recent years. Mars has two moons, Phobos and Deimos, which are small and irregularly shaped.
is the seventh planet from the Uranus Sun and the fourth most massive in the Solar System. In this photograph from 1986 the planet appears almost featureless, but recent terrestrial observations have found seasonal changes to be occurring.
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