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The Martian Moons

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Mars and How to Observe It

Part of the book series: Astronomers' Observing Guides ((OBSERVING))

Abstract

Phobos and Deimos, the two satellites of Mars, are potato-shaped city-sized lumps of rock orbiting in near-circular paths almost directly above the Martian equator. Both moons are made of very dark material and display cratering. Because of their low surface brightness and composition it was once widely considered that both Phobos and Deimos were captured asteroids, but models show that the likelihood of captured asteroids assuming equatorial, near-circular orbits is extremely low. It is possible that they accreted from orbiting debris, perhaps from material blasted from Mars itself by large impacts.

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© 2012 Springer Science+Business Media New York

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Grego, P. (2012). The Martian Moons. In: Mars and How to Observe It. Astronomers' Observing Guides. Springer, New York, NY. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-2302-7_5

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-2302-7_5

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  • Publisher Name: Springer, New York, NY

  • Print ISBN: 978-1-4614-2301-0

  • Online ISBN: 978-1-4614-2302-7

  • eBook Packages: Physics and AstronomyPhysics and Astronomy (R0)

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