The Mars Curiosity Rover mission is big news, and rightly so enjoying fantastic coverage around the globe. Keeping things ticking along when it takes a signal 14 minutes to travel to and from the red planet is no mean feat. And, that's without taking into account having to keep track of the time, on Mars.
While a Martian 'day' is split into the same segments as an earth day -- 24 hours, 60 minutes per hour, 60 seconds per minute -- on Mars, a second lasts longer than on Earth. Each day then ends up 39.5 minutes longer than on Earth, meaning that Crackberry Kevin's $500 watch app is of no use to anyone.
There are smartphones involved though. Telling the time on Mars used to involve custom built quartz watches, but there is another way. Turns out that some of the team involved use their smartphones to keep track of time with a Mars Time app. The question about Martian watches was raised during a Q&A session on Reddit, and prompted this response from Surface Systems Engineer, Eric Blood:
Some of us do, but a lot of us have iPhone and Android apps with Mars time.
Even on Mars, there's still room for Android. The app cited on Reddit was MarsClock by Scott Maxwell, grab it from the Google Play link above!
Original Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS
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