It is to develop the elderly of Africa, Uganda financially.


Secondly, it is to assist the needy and disabled.


Third, it is to humanely visit the sick and stressed.


Fourth it is to create financial projects for the needy to generate income for the elderly and young.


This organization has carried out such activities as:

Cake and bread baking.


Members have been involved in rural building construction and road making and repairs.


Members have been involved in decoration on functions.


Members have been involved in all means of assistance in burial ceremonies in the communities.



Ugandan workers are less educated and poorly paid:

Publish Date: 22 September, 2014


By Samuel Sanya



MOST working Ugandans are only educated up to secondary level, work for 10 years, six days a week and earn at least shillings 403/- per hour according to a wages survey.


In the wage indicator survey, released recently, 1,306 Ugandans from all administrative regions were interviewed by the Federation of Uganda Employers (FUE) in conjunction with Dutch and Tanzanian researchers.


Conservative estimates place Uganda’s working population at 17 million. The average working week of respondents is almost 60 hours and they work six days per week.


Slightly over half (51%) work evenings, seven of 10 workers report working on Saturdays, while four of 10 work on Sundays.


Nearly half of the workers in the sample were managers. Only two of 10 workers had a permanent contract, three of 10 were on fixed term contract while four of 10 workers said they are entitled to social security.


Despite the low numbers entitled to pensions, respondents indicated having four dependants on average. The analysis showed that 77% of the workers were paid on or above the poverty line of sh403 per hour or $1.25 (about sh3,000) per day.


Five percent of workers had no formal education, 14% studied to primary education 48% had secondary education certificates, 16% had a college education and 17% a university degree. Only 62% of informal workers are paid above the poverty line compared to 97% of the most formal workers.


Workers in trade, transport and hospitality are most at risk of poverty with 30% paid less than a dollar a day. Public servants are best paid. At least 92% earned above the poverty line.


Labour State minister Rukutana Mwesigwa recently revealed that Cabinet is considering creation of a wage board and a minimum wage.


The Government last set a minimum wage of sh6,000 in 1984. In 1975, the Minimum Wage Advisory Council recommended a sh75,000 minimum monthly wage. It remains on paper.

Why are the poor citizens of Uganda receiving money that is accounted for as a national pension for the elderly of this country?


By Joseph Kato


Posted  Tuesday, July 5   2016


The Senior Citizens Grant in Uganda is given to the elderly aged 65 and above to help them live decent livelihoods; however, in some districts, it is the young, energetic poor that are being given the money.

Over 110,000 persons aged 65 and above in 141 sub-counties, towns and 6,028 villages in 15 districts are beneficiaries of the Senior Citizens Grant (SCG) that was started in 2010. SCG is one of the essential modules of the Social Assistance Grant for Empowerment (SAGE), financed by government and development partners such as DFID and Irish Aid.

SCG is aimed at enhancing access to basic needs such as food security, better nutrition, health care and improving housing among others which is legal onus of the state to provide wellbeing and upkeep for the elderly.

David Lambert Tumwesigye, advocacy advisor at Expanding Social Protection (ESP) at the Ministry Gender, Labour and Social Development (MGLSD) calls upon the new MPs to join the Uganda Parliamentary Forum on Social Protection (UPFSP) so that they can advocate care for the elderly.

What do MPs say?

Agnes Taka, Bugiri Woman MP, appreciates the services that have been offered to the elderly through SAGE. However, she calls upon the government to be open and involve grassroots leaders when selecting beneficiaries saying it will help to avoid issues of segregation.

“We need to know what criterion is followed when choosing SAGE beneficiaries. It is perturbing to learn about activities being done in your constituency from locals. Leaders need to be involved,” argues Taka.

She wonders why majority of the 15 districts where SAGE has been enrolled and the next 20 districts targeted to benefit from the programme are not from poverty stricken areas.

She asks her colleagues to push the government hard so that there can be transparency in the enrollment.

Rtd Lt Cyrus Amodoi, MP Tonoma County, Katakwi district, marvels at why the programme in some districts has been shifted from the elderly to the poorest people.

“What I have seen is that there is political interference in some parts where SAGE has been enrolled. In some places they target the poorest people instead of senior citizens,” says Amodoi.

In response to MPs queries, Drake Rukundo, Policy and Monitoring and Evaluation, UPFSP, says they have on ground people who gather information for the befitting citizens. He encourages the MPs to advocate countrywide enrollment for the elderly.

Rukundo says they want government to commit resources as a priority towards social protection to help the elderly live decent livelihoods because they are the bridge between the past and the future.

He applauds the 9th Parliament for being instrumental in ensuring the survival of the SAGE programme and extending it from 15 districts to additional 40 districts in the next five years.

In the FY 2015/16 Budget process, Parliament made a resolution where the SAGE programme was to be rolled out to the whole country covering 100 oldest persons in every sub-county.

Tumwesigye says the 10th parliament and the government did their work and it remains critical that all districts get covered for fairness and equitable development. The new MPs are expected to enlist to become members so that advocacy on social protection is boosted.

The forum undertakes to provide information and create spaces for engagement on issues touching social protection.

The cabinet passed the social protection policy which proposes a myriad of progressive interventions that if implemented will significantly contribute to the journey from third world to middle income status as envisaged in the Vision 2040.

However, even with the current roll-out plan, only a total of 55 districts will be reached leaving out 57 districts. To maximise pressure on government, the Forum has conducted regional consultative meetings that bring together Members of Parliament, District Chairpersons, District Community Development Officers and the civil society.

Reports from the Ministry

Reports from the Ministry of Gender, Labour and Social Development indicate that the senior citizens grant is increasing productive investment where 32 per cent of the beneficiaries use the money to buy livestock or engage in petty trading while 27 per cent of the beneficiaries invest their money in hiring additional labour to work in their gardens.

“At least 16 per cent of the beneficiaries save their month’s payment purposely to cover emergencies, 17 per cent use the gratuities to support productive investments, cultivation (15 per cent and meeting the educational needs of children and/or grandchildren taking 14 per cent,” reads the report on expanding social protection programme for senior citizens grant.

According to the report, majority of the senior citizens grant beneficiaries spend the large part of their transfers on food leading to increased frequency, quantity and quality of meals eaten by beneficiary households.

The report further shows that SCG beneficiaries especially women consistently report improved participation in community affairs, sense of self-esteem and empowerment. Older people report feeling less discriminated against in their communities and more valued by their families on account of their ability to make social contributions to community-based social support mechanisms which are based on reciprocity like contributing to funerals and weddings.

About SAGE

SAGE is a financial support programme for people aged 65 years and above. Currently, the programme is covering 15 districts. A total of 40 more districts have been lined up to benefit from SAGE by 2020.

In the 2015/16 budget, over Shs30b was expected for the national rollout where 100 persons per sub-county were to benefit but government committed Shs9 billion only.



There is no official national register of pensioners in the country of Uganda:

10 June, 2016


By Nelson Wesonga, Kampala


Government says it does not have records of pensioners due to “lack of data and personal files.”

According to the ministry of Public Service, many pensioners do not show up for verification thus leading to delays in payment of their monthly dues and the once off gratuity.

The State minister for Public Service, Mr David Karubanga told MPs during plenary that the ministry will, carry out a census and biometric validation of pensioners starting February 20.

“The ministry of Public Service does not have a national register of pensioners,” Mr Karubanga said yesterday.

“Despite the decentralisation of pension management, a number of votes [ministries] have not verified the records on the payroll.”

A day earlier, Aruu Member of Parliament, Odonga Otto had told the August House that many pensioners have not been paid for several months.

Many were, therefore, depending on their relatives – who already have other financial responsibilities – to pay their bills or to buy basics.

Those without relatives are borrowing items from shopkeepers.

Shopkeepers though can only lend them for a few months expecting to be paid once they get their gratuity.

Following Mr Odonga’s remarks, the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga said the government was treating the senior citizens disrespectfully.

On Wednesday, Mr Karubanga also said the Public Service ministry had for the last four years not carried out verification of pensioners “due to funding shortage and lack of clear addresses" [of the pensioners].

The verification of the pensioners will be done between February 20 and March 24 at the district headquarters by Face Technologies.

According to Mr Karubanga, Face Technologies will do the work, which the ministry failed.

However, it is still not clear how much the ministry will pay the company.

Face Technologies is the company that processes driving permits for motorists.

Workers Members of Parliament Margaret Rwabushaija and the Erute Member of Parliament Jonathan Odur said the government should tell Ugandans when it would pay the pensioners all their arrears.

Mr Karubanga said payments are the responsibility of the Finance ministry.

All that Public Service does is to furnish the Finance ministry with the particulars of the claimants.



NASA films Mercury as it passes between Earth and the Sun:



By NASA filming Mercury as it passes between Earth and the Sun
12 November, 2019

NASA has published a film showing Mercury transiting the sun - passing between it and the Earth.


a star filled sky: Mercury transitted between the Earth and the sun
© Press Release Mercury transitted between the Earth and the sun

The video shows the silhouetted planet - which is the smallest in the solar system, and the closest to the sun - passing across the face of it.


The last time Mercury passed between the Earth and the sun was on 9 May 2016, and the next won't be until 13 November 2032.

The first time a transit was ever observed was on 7 November 1631, although one of the fathers of modern astronomy Johannes Kepler predicted the existence of these transits before. 

The film: Astronomers consider the transits to be important for two special developments in astronomy.


Kepler had predicted that planets orbited the sun in elliptical shapes, rather than perfect circles, running contrary to the previous theories of the solar system - believed to revolve around the Earth.


An image of Mercury captured by NASA's Messenger spacecraft

© Press Release An image of Mercury captured by NASA's Messenger spacecraft

"Transits of Mercury and Venus can happen because they are the only planets that orbit between the Earth and the sun," NASA said.

"By using ellipses to describe the orbits of the planets Kepler was able to predict when transits would occur.

"The Ptolemaic theory that used circular orbits did not have the accuracy needed to predict these events, even after epicycles and equants were introduced.

"In 1627, Kepler predicted that a transit of Mercury would occur on November 7 1631. Pierre Gassendi watched from his Paris observatory and saw a small black dot move across the face of the sun on that day."

Related Slideshow: Famous milestones in space (Provided by Photo Services)








Voyager 2 probe which launched 42 years ago reaches interstellar space

By Rob Waugh
5th November, 2019
Data from the NASA spacecraft Voyager 2 has helped further characterize the structure of the heliosphere - the wind sock-shaped region created by the sun's wind as it extends to the boundary of the solar system, as depicted in this image released by NASA. NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory/Handout via REUTERS ATTENTION EDITORS - THIS IMAGE HAS BEEN SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY

A probe which blasted off from Earth on August 20, 1977 has become the second man-made object to leave the Solar System.

The Voyager 2 probe has sent back signals from the edge of our solar system - which scientists say prove that it has entered interstellar space.

The probe blasted off from Earth 16 days before its twin spacecraft, Voyager 1 - but entered the interstellar medium six years after Voyager 1 due to its slower trajectory.

It crossed the outer edge of the Sun's protective bubble, known as the heliopause, on November 5 2018.


Voyager, the Solar System and beyond

Mysterious ‘gravity waves’ seen rippling in our atmosphere

In a series of papers published in the journal Nature Astronomy, researchers confirmed the spacecraft's journey into the "space between the stars" by noting a "definitive jump" in the density of the plasma - made up of charged particles and gas - in interstellar space.

According to the scientists, this jump was detected by one of the instruments on Voyager 2 and is evidence of the probe making its way "from the hot, lower-density plasma characteristic of the solar wind to the cool, higher-density plasma of interstellar space".



© Provided by Oath Inc. Trajectory of Voyager 1 and 2, The Voyager missions are now over, in principle.
At the end of 2004, Voyager 1 was 14 billion km from Earth, making it the most distant artificial object in space. It is expected that both probes will continue to function until 2020. (Photo by: QAI Publishing/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

It is also similar to the plasma density jump experienced by Voyager 1 when it crossed into interstellar space, the researchers added.

Among many things, the astronomers are looking to gain a better understanding of how the solar winds - the stream of charge particles coming out of the Sun - interact with the interstellar winds - made up of particles from other stars.

Dr Edward Stone, a professor of physics at the California Institute of Technology and former director of the Nasa Jet Propulsion Laboratory, said: "We are trying to understand the nature of the boundary where these two winds collide."

The astronomers believe the probes' journeys - with their different mission goals and trajectories - give "valuable clues" about the structure of the heliosphere - a vast bubble encompassing the Sun and the Solar System.

Bill Kurth, a research scientist at the University of Iowa and one of the authors of the studies, said: "It implies that the heliosphere is symmetric, at least at the two points where the Voyager spacecraft crossed."

In one of the papers, the researchers suggest that the interstellar medium near the heliopause is hotter than expected, with a temperature of around 30,000-50,000K (29,000-49,000C).

In another study, a different team reported the presence of layers "on both sides of the heliopause".

While scientists were aware of the inner layer, the presence of the outer layer became evident only after Voyager 2 crossed into interstellar space.






United Arabia Emirates is determined to send its first astronaut into space on 25 Sptember, 2019 with the help of Russia:

February 26, 2019

Written by VOA

UAE astronauts Sultan Saif Al Niadi (left) and Haza Ali Al Mansouri

 UAE astronauts Sultan Saif Al Niadi (left) and Haza Ali Al Mansouri


The first astronaut from the United Arab Emirates will blast off into space on September 25 on a trip to the International Space Station, authorities announced Monday.

Either military pilot Hazza al-Mansoori or engineer Sultan al-Neyadi will be the first Emirati in space, part of an ambitious space program for this Gulf Arab nation home to the world’s tallest building and the busiest airport for international travel.

But the two men, selected from over 4,000 applicants, say they aren’t worried after the recent failure of another Russian rocket carrying astronauts to the space station.

“After the incident we were more confident with the preparedness of the mission,” al-Mansoori told The Associated Press. “In case of any failure there is equipment onboard the rocket to ensure the safety of the crew, which made us more confident that the system works with a high level of adequacy.”

That incident happened October 11, which saw a Soyuz-FG rocket carrying U.S. astronaut Nick Hague and Russian cosmonaut Alexei Ovchinin fail shortly after launch due to a damaged sensor. The two men landed safely in Kazakhstan.

“The astronauts who were involved will go into space soon,” al-Neyadi said. “This shows how safe the Soyuz is, that astronauts are able to survive in case of any accident.”

Both men have undergone intensive training at the Star City space center outside of Moscow, which included pressure chamber tests, centrifuge tests, parabolic flight training, and winter survival training. Parabolic flights allow astronauts to train for being weightless in space.

“Since I’m a pilot, I was able to withstand a gravitational force of 9-G,” al-Mansoori said. “Now I must train in this sort of gravitational force, 0-G, the lack of gravity.”

Al-Neyadi said the biggest challenge he faced was not a physical one.

“The most difficult thing perhaps was learning Russian, since it’s the only language which we will use to communicate with the crew onboard the vessel,” he told the AP. “It was also the language they used while training at the center in Russia.”

The Russian Soyuz spacecraft is currently the only vehicle that can ferry crews to the International Space Station after the U.S. space shuttle fleet retired.

Organizers had said they’d announce the name of the astronaut going Monday. They didn’t, without offering an explanation. It remains unclear when authorities will choose the first astronaut to go in September.

The first astronaut will travel in September with the Russian space mission aboard Soyuz MS-15 and spend eight days at the International Space Station. The selected astronaut will return onboard the Soyuz MS-12 and then be replaced by the second astronaut.

The UAE has a fledgling space program with big ambitions. It launched its first locally made satellite, KhalifaSat, in October from Japan. It also wants to launch a probe to Mars in 2020. The UAE also says it wants to colonize Mars by 2117, with a fully functioning city of 600,000.

Though the men will be over 400 kilometers (250 miles) above the earth’s surface while on their trip, the Emirati astronauts will have a taste of home when they travel closer to the stars.

Russia’s state-owned RIA Novosti news agency quoted an unnamed industry source saying that UAE space travelers have been offered a menu of Arab dishes to select from when they go into space. The men have chosen maqloubeh, a one-pot rice dish, salona, a lamb stew, and the standard hummus, the agency reported.


Indeed congratulations for the United Arab Emirates to join up with Russia for space explorations. 
However, having a space program of all the way to Mars and to build a city of 600,000 residents by 2117 is not a good scientific dream. 
Mars has no unique climate that planet earth has. No oil, no gravity and no air to breath that has made UAE very rich on this planet. 

If all this money for this expensive program is invested in rejuvenating a forest cover on the big deserts of Arabia and the Sahara, there will certainly be a future for the children and grand children of UAE. 
And then they will be the ones to make it to the Stars as an Extra life from planet earth. UAE must not forget that oil depletes and these super powers must not mislead up coming countries to dodgy destinies. 

Russia has great vast green forests in its temperate climate regions. 
But UAE has no green forests in the life giving subtropical regions that are suffering desert climates. 
Technology is here now that can spring up thousands of miles of forests in these sun soaked regions. One wants to bet that there is plenty of water underground in these tropical deserts on our planet than on Mars!







In North America, NASA declares Mars Rover dead after it was crippled in a Mars red dust storm:


A six-wheeled robot which has sent signals to Earth from Mars since 2004 has been declared 'dead' by NASA after it stopped responding.

The Opportunity rover has been on the Red Planet for 15 years – after a planned 90-day mission, but was enveloped in a huge dust storm last year.

NASA hoped the robot would return to working order after the storm once sunlight could reach its solar panels, but it never responded, despite more than 1,000 attempts to contact it.


Slideshow preview image
Surface of Mars

In a Tweet, the space agency said, 'Rest well, rover. Your mission is complete.

'To the robot who turned 90 days into 15 years of exploration. You were, and are, the Opportunity of a lifetime.'

After more than a thousand commands to restore contact, engineersat NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) made their last attempt to revive Opportunity on Tuesday, to no avail.

Spirit and Oppy

Opportunity revealed the beauty of Mars, from blue sunrise, to blue sunset. 

View image on Twitter
Spirit and Oppy

Opportunity trekked more than a marathon’s distance and set the off-world driving record, spotting dust devils along the way. 

Spirit and Oppy

Together with Opportunity, we watched the clouds roll by on Mars... 

The solar-powered rover's final communication was received June 10.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine said, 'It is because of trailblazing missions such as Opportunity that there will come a day when our brave astronauts walk on the surface of Mars.

'And when that day arrives, some portion of that first footprint will be owned by the men and women of Opportunity, and a little rover that defied the odds and did so much in the name of exploration.'

Designed to last just 90 Martian days and travel 3,300 feet, Opportunity vastly surpassed all expectations in its endurance, scientific value and longevity.

In addition to exceeding its life expectancy by 60 times, the rover traveled more than 28 miles by the time it reached its most appropriate final resting spot on Mars – Perseverance Valley.






Total lunar(Moon) eclipse is up and going on Sunday night to Monday 21st January, 2019:


21st January, 2019

By AFP media 

During a lunar eclipse, the Moon appears red because the light of the Sun no longer directly illuminates it, since Earth is passing in between the Moon and Sun. Total or partial lunar eclipses happen at least twice a year on average,

Florent Deleflie, an astronomer at the Observatory of Paris-PSL told AFP.

It's just that they are not visible everywhere.

The Red Moon as it is seen

The full Moon will appear bigger than normal because it is closer to the Earth -- about 222,000 miles (358,000 kilometers) away -- which earns it the nickname "super Moon."

Other monikers include a "Wolf Moon," a traditional way of coining an eclipse in the month of January, and a "Blood Moon" because of its rusty, red colour. Hence the name for this year's event: a "super blood wolf Moon."
At the peak of the eclipse, and if the night skies are clear of clouds, Venus and Jupiter should be shining brightly in the night sky.

What time?
- Monday at 0334 GMT, or 4:34 in the morning in France or 10:34 pm in Quebec, the partial eclipse will begin as the Moon passes into Earth's shadow.

- In the United States, the edge of the Moon will begin to fall into shadow at about 7:33 pm on the West Coast and 10:33 pm on the East Coast, according to NASA.
- From 0441 to 0543 GMT: for an hour and two minutes, the Moon will be entirely in Earth's shadow. But the Moon will not be invisible: it will appear tinted in hues of red, orange and pink.
- At 0651 GMT, the Moon will be completely out of the Earth's shadow.

- Where is it visible from? -
Europe and West Africa will have a good view of the eclipse, but not all the way until the end. Eastern Europe will see the beginning of totality, but not the end. North Africa and West Africa should see the end of totality, but will miss the final phases of the eclipse.
The entire eclipse should be visible in North America, Central America and South America, as well as France, Belgium and Spain.
That is, as long as the view is not obscured by clouds.
If conditions are cloudy where you are, NASA recommends checking out a live stream of the eclipse at

Why red?
During a lunar eclipse, the Moon appears red because the light of the Sun no longer directly illuminates it, since Earth is passing in between the Moon and Sun.
"The color is due to Rayleigh scattering -- where the Sun's blue light is scattered off molecules in Earth's atmosphere -- which also happens at sunsets," explained the Royal Astronomical Society of Britain.
"The Sun's red light is scattered much less by air, and is bent by Earth's atmosphere in a process called refraction, traveling all the way through it to light up the Moon's surface."

Last eclipse this decade
Total or partial lunar eclipses happen at least twice a year on average, Florent Deleflie, an astronomer at the Observatory of Paris-PSL told AFP. It's just that they are not visible everywhere.
It's a rare event when a total lunar eclipse is visible on so many parts of the Earth's land mass, as is the case Monday.

Europeans last saw a total lunar eclipse in July 2018. The next chance for a glimpse at a lunar eclipse will be in 2022, but the entire continent won't be able to see the totality of a lunar eclipse again until 2029.
North Americans may get their next glimpse of a blood moon in 2021 along the West coast and 2022 on the East coast.






NASA’s Voyager 2 probe has entered interstellar space following its twin craft the Voyager 1:

Reaching interstellar space isn't just something that happens in science fiction movies.

NASA has confirmed that its Voyager 2 probe has just entered interstellar space, becoming the second man-made object in history to do so.

Voyager 1 was the first in 2012, but its successor has the tech to make unprecedented observations.

Scientists say Voyager 2 exited the heliosphere, our Sun's protective bubble, on November 5th.

Now, the probe is more than 11 billion miles from Earth in interstellar space.

The probe was launched back in 1977 and has gone way beyond its original mission, but it's just getting started studying a region we don't know much about.







NASA has found Mars rover Opportunity after MASSIVE dust storm settles - but it's not all good news

27 September, 2018

By Ian Morris
Opportunity is in the middle of the white square according to NASA© NASA Opportunity is in the middle of the white square according to NASA

Opportunity, the Mars Exploration Rover (MER), has been spotted in a satellite image. The photo was taken by NASA 's HiRISE camera on-board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), which is used to monitor the planet and communicate with the rover.

The white box shows a 47 metre-wide area of Mars and Opportunity is in the middle of it.


The rover was recently caught up in a massive dust storm on the red planet. Several of these occurred at the same time blocking out the sun and thus depriving Opportunity of the solar power it needs to operate.

The rover was exploring Mars' Perseverance Valley when the storm started. It's been a little over 100 days since Opportunity last spoke to mission command.

Such events are planned for and NASA was aware of the approaching storm as the solar panels were generating less and less power as it grew in intensity. Opportunity was put into low power mode to conserve energy.

a close up of a logo: The left image shows Mars as it usually looks, the right demonstrates the dust and haze in the atmosphere© Credits: NASA The left image shows Mars as it usually looks, the right demonstrates the dust and haze in the atmosphere

In this mode the rover wakes for its morning update from mission command and then takes a nap. In the afternoon it uses its onboard camera to check the atmosphere and sends an update to the MRO, it then goes back to sleep.

The rover then wakes on the next day - a Martian day, or sol, is 24 hours and 39 minutes - for further updates.

NASA put Opportunity into this low power mode on June 7. However the storm's intensity increased and that caused Opportunity to experience a low power fault and the rover has been silent since.

a close up of a rock: Opportunity has been on Mars now for nearly 15 years and has survived massive storms before© Credits: NASA Opportunity has been on Mars now for nearly 15 years and has survived massive storms before

Because it hasn't heard from Earth in some time the rover will now be in a mode called "uploss". This means it will try to communicate with home in a variety of different ways. NASA uses the deep space network to listen for signs it's operating.

NASA is also sending signals that will make the rover beep if it does happen to wake up. Initially it was doing this three times per week, it has since started transmitting signals multiple times per day.

All of the safety procedures are designed to protect the rover and prevent the onboard batteries from discharging too much. If Opportunity gets too cold then it could permanently disable it and end the mission.

Gallery: Interesting facts about Mars (Photos)



Slide 1 of 21Slide 3 of 21 


Named after the Roman god of war, Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun and last of the terrestrial planets. It is called the Red Planet because of the brownish-red color of its surface. Chinese astronomers call Mars the “fire star” while ancient Egyptian priests called it “Her Desher,” meaning “the red one.”