A radio wave, sent from Mars to the Earth when the two are cloest each other, takes 3.03 minutes. Another radio wave, sent from Mars to the Earth when the two are farthest apart, takes 22.27 minutes. Calculate the distance between perihelion and aphelion for Mars.
Radio waves travel at the speed of light, 299 792 458 m / s.
To get the distance travelled within a span of time, we simply use the formula: d = vt, where v is the speed and t is the time.
`d = 22.27 min (60 sec/min) (299792458 m/sec) = 4.01 x 10^(11).`
`d = 3.03 min (60 sec/min)(299792458 m/sec) = 5.45 x 10^(10) `
The distance between aphelion and perihelion is the sum of these two quantities:
4.01E+11 + 5.45E+10 = 4.56 x 10^11 meters.