Mars

climate change Astronomy Mars science - 8396989440
Via NY Times
  • -
  • Vote
  • -

Via NY Times:

Today Mars is an arid, frigid desert, suggesting that the mother of all climate changes happened there, about four billion years ago or so. The question that haunts planetary scientists is why? And could it happen here?

"I think the short story is the atmosphere went away and the oceans froze but are still there, locked up in subsurface ice," said Chris McKay, an astrobiologist and Mars expert at NASA's Ames Research Center.

In September a new spacecraft known as Maven, the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution mission, swung into orbit around the planet. Its job is to get a longer answer to one part of the mysterious Martian climate change, namely where the planet's atmosphere went.

spaceships technology Mars science funny - 7683528960
By Unknown
  • -
  • Vote
  • -
Which leads us neatly onto the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in the UK, which has devised a "mini magnetosphere" that essentially recreates the protection provided by the Earth's magnetic field. The scientists have so far used the magnetosphere to protect a scale spacecraft from radiation, and they're now working on a concept spacecraft, called Discovery, with a full-scale magnetosphere that could theoretically take humans to Mars.
There was a problem rendering this tweet - it may have been deleted.
By Unknown
  • -
  • Vote
  • -
life habitable Mars science - 7230929408
  • -
  • Vote
  • -
"We have found a habitable environment," said John Grotzinger, project scientist for the Curiosity mission. "The water that was here was so benign and supportive of life that if a human had been on the planet back then, they could drink it."
opportunity awesome Mars science rover space - 8272521216
  • -
  • Vote
  • -
"Opportunity has driven farther than any other wheeled vehicle on another world," said Mars Exploration Rover Project Manager John Callas, of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. "This is so remarkable considering Opportunity was intended to drive about one kilometer and was never designed for distance. But what is really important is not how many miles the rover has racked up, but how much exploration and discovery we have accomplished over that distance."

A drive of 157 feet (48 meters) on July 27 put Opportunity's total odometry at 25.01 miles (40.25 kilometers). This month's driving brought the rover southward along the western rim of Endeavour Crater. The rover had driven more than 20 miles (32 kilometers) before arriving at Endeavour Crater in 2011, where it has examined outcrops on the crater's rim containing clay and sulfate-bearing minerals. The sites are yielding evidence of ancient environments with less acidic water than those examined at Opportunity's landing site.
rna Mars science funny - 7565371648
Via MNN
  • -
  • Vote
  • -
At a time when life as we know it was just getting its start on Earth, Martian clay may have harbored a key component for one of life's molecular building blocks, researchers say. Boron found in a Martian meteorite suggests the Red Planet may once have had the right chemistry to give rise to RNA, according to a new study.