Mission Briefing

Earth and Mars. What's the Difference? What can you see from space?

Perhaps your answer went something like this:

Earth is larger than Mars. Earth is blue - mostly covered by water (70%). It has visible clouds in a thick active atmosphere. A landmass is visible with some covering of green (plants). Polar ice-caps are visible.

Mars is smaller than Earth. Mars is mostly a reddish-brown and has no visible water. There are wispy clouds in a thin atmosphere. Polar ice-caps are visible.

One planet is bursting with life, and the other is a cold, dead planet.

Why are Earth and Mars so different? Will Earth end up like Mars one day? What keeps Earth's environment dynamic and alive?

Your first task is to compare Earth and Mars (make sure you have set up your science notebook first).