A Martian Bolt of Thunder
January 24, 2015 7:10 PM   Subscribe

Does Mars have thunder?

I understand there is certainly electrical discharge happening within Martian dust devils and Martian dust storms. And it is theorized that much of the Mars landscape is scarred by lightning strikes.

So with consideration of Mars' atmosphere (CO2) and pressure ( 0.6% of Earth's), my question is this:

Would Martian lightning result in Martian thunder?
posted by Mike Mongo to Science & Nature (6 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Ask Nick Heavens.
posted by zamboni at 9:33 PM on January 24, 2015 [1 favorite]

I'm gonna go with yes. A sudden huge plasma discharge is a sudden huge plasma discharge regardless of the constituents of the surrounding atmosphere.
posted by flabdablet at 10:04 PM on January 24, 2015

Yes. Any vibration would produce sound. But Martian thunder likely wouldn't sound exactly like Earth thunder, for the very reasons you mention -- atmosphere and pressure.
posted by Cool Papa Bell at 10:06 PM on January 24, 2015

What you want is this - the Mars Microphone. Unfortunately, it hasn't quite made it to Mars yet--the first attempt failed during Mars entry and the second mission was cancelled. So they're still trying to thumb a ride to Mars on some future mission.
posted by flug at 7:15 AM on January 25, 2015 [3 favorites]

Response by poster: Thanks, zamboni, I did: And he answered!
posted by Mike Mongo at 5:17 AM on February 3, 2015 [1 favorite]

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