• Question: does it snow on other planets?

    Asked by abiola to Karen, Gabriele on 20 Nov 2013.
    • Photo: Karen McCarthy

      Karen McCarthy answered on 20 Nov 2013:

      Hi Abiola, well there is a type of snow falls on Mars actually – dry snow, similar to the idea of dry ice. This is essentially a chemical reaction between water ice and frozen carbon dioxide, which are present in the polar caps in Mars. Clouds of frozen carbon dioxide can then appear to be snowing!

      An funnily enough, the snow on Mars doesn’t look like our snow – its actually little cubic crystals, meaning snow on Mars probably looks something like granulated sugar!

    • Photo: Gabriele De Chiara

      Gabriele De Chiara answered on 20 Nov 2013:

      Hello abiola , if you think about water snow like on the earth then I’m afraid that there are no planets in the solar system with such a kind of snow. Astronomers believe that it snows on Titane but this is a methane snow. On Mars it actually frosts as Karen says but the ice is CO2 not water. Then astronomers have some indication of solid types of precipitation on other planets orbiting around Jupiter, but again these are made of CO2, methane, nitrogen and ammonia, so very poisonous for people!