A storm on Mars right now is the size of North America & Russia... combined

Dan Broadbent

Right now on Mars, things are... Not great.

There's a storm. A big storm. So big that it's the size of North America and Russia, combined. That's over 16 million square miles.

NASA made the announcement tonight about the storm, and will hold a press teleconference tomorrow to go over how the storm is affecting the rover Opportunity.

Opportunity landed on Mars in January 2004, and despite the odds, keeps on keepin' on today.

While the storm itself sounds rather dramatic, and despite the storm that set the basis for the fantastic film The Martian, in reality, a storm on Mars isn't nearly as scary. The atmosphere on Mars is 100 times thinner than that on Earth, so what would be an extremely strong wind on Earth would hardly be noticeable on Mars.

Participants in the teleconference will include:

  • John Callas, Opportunity project manager at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL)
  • Rich Zurek, Mars Program Office chief scientist at JPL
  • Jim Watzin, director of the Mars Exploration Program at NASA Headquarters
  • Dave Lavery, program executive at NASA Headquarters for the Opportunity and Curiosity rovers

Visuals accompanying the teleconference will be posted at the start of the event at:

Audio of the teleconference will be streamed live at:

The teleconference andvisuals will be carried live and archived on:

To ask questions via social media during the televised event, use the hashtag #askNASA