Martian Cepheids

Last March, the Spirit rover took an interesting picture showing a streak of light across the Martian sky.

Martian Meteor
IMAGE: NASA/JPL/Cornell/Texas A&M

At the time it was theorised that it could be a meteor or an out of commission spacecraft orbiting the red planet. Now, some French researchers not only think that it was a meteor, but think they know which comet it came from. The comet is named Wiseman-Skiff and was originally discovered in 1987 by Dr Jennifer Wiseman and Brian Skiff.

Assuming that it did originate from comet Wiseman-Skiff, the meteor shower would appear to come from the direction of the constellation of Cepheus if you were stood on the surface of Mars. That makes the meteor a Cepheid and the first meteor seen from the surface of another planet.

Posted in astro blog by Stuart on Thursday 02nd Jun 2005 (16:47 UTC) | Permalink
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