Posts Tagged ‘mars’

Mars Curiosity rover drills hole in Mars for the first time – powder samples collected for testing

// February 8th, 2013 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

The Mars Curiosity Rover has drilled a hole in Mars for the first time yesterday. Curiosity used the drill at the tip of its robotic arm to drill a small .8 inch (2 centimeter) hole into the Martian rock affectionately named “John Klein”. The so-called “mini-drill test” marked the first time Curiosity used both the […]

MRO discovers interesting process on Mars surface – underground dry ice causes exploding sand dunes

// January 28th, 2013 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spacecraft, or MRO, has discovered an interesting process on the surface of Mars – exploding sand dunes! Enormous pressure from underground frozen carbon dioxide deposits is being released through the surface creating feathery looking sand dunes in Mar’s northern hemisphere. The results of these new studies will be published in the […]

Probe finds strongest evidence yet that Mars may have (or does) support life

// January 22nd, 2013 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

On Sunday, January 20, officials announced that data from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) and ESA’s Mars Express spacecraft provides evidence of a wet underground environment, and clues that suggest a groundwater-fed lake could have existed in McLaughlin Crater, a crater fifty-seven miles in diameter and 1.4 miles deep.  According to NASA: “A combination of […]

Cornerstone of Mars Curiosity Rover mission, drilling Martian surface, is about to begin

// January 16th, 2013 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

No spacecraft has ever penetrated the rocky surface of Mars, or any planet for that matter, but that is about to change. In the past few weeks, Curiosity Rover has been stationed in a region called Yellowknife Bay, which features fractured ground with different temperature swings compared to other nearby terrain – and plenty of […]

SpaceX founder solidifying plans to start civilian colony of 80,000 people on Mars

// November 27th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

Not content with simply blasting civilians into the stratosphere, Elon Musk, the founder and CEO of the private spaceflight company SpaceX, is now aiming his sights towards starting a Mars colony of up to 80,000 people. Once the infrastructure is in place, Musk intends to ferry people to Mars at a cost of $500,000 per […]

NASA has “big news” to report but are holding out until results can be confirmed [UPDATE]

// November 20th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

NPR reported today that NASA has some ‘”big news” to report – but will not release the finding until they’ve had more time to confirm the results. According to NASA: “We’re getting data from SAM as we sit here and speak, and the data looks really interesting, The science team is busily chewing away on […]

Say “Cheese” – Mars Curiosity Rover sends back high-res self-portrait from Gale Crater

// November 5th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

NASA’s Curiosity Rover has sent back a high-res photo of itself in the Gale crater on Mars. The image was taken by Curiosity’s MAHLI hand held camera which sits on the end of the rover’s extendable arm. MAHLI took a total of 55 pictures which were stitched together to create the stunning hi-res self portrait. […]

NASA’s Curiosity rover conducts first soil sample analysis and finds the soil is volcanic and similar to soil on Hawaiian Islands

// October 31st, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover conducted its first soil sample analysis using its miniaturized X-Ray diffraction instrument that is a part of CheMin instrument (a miniature lab on wheels). The soil sample was collected from an area known as Rocknest in the Gale Crater. The analysis revealed that the sample is a weathered volcanic type similar […]

Could humans play God and seed life on Mars? – Lichen survive in Mars Simulation Laboratory for 34 days

// October 23rd, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

Scientists at the European Geosciences Union meeting reported that Lichen collected from Antarctica were placed inside Germany’s Mars Simulation Laboratory for 34 days where they were subjected to the same conditions they would experience on the Martian surface – same atmospheric, temperature, radiation, and pressure conditions. They survived.

Curiosity Rover finds mysterious metallic object while scooping its first soil samples [UPDATE]

// October 9th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

Curiosity Rover scooped its first soil samples yesterday and while scooping, took a picture of something that NASA cannot identify. It’s a small, silver metallic looking chip or flake of some kind. It could be something left over from the MSL descent mechanisms or some previously unknown soil anomaly.

NASA Curiosity Rover finds evidence of ancient flowing streams on Mars – UPDATED PICTURES

// September 27th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

Sedimentary conglomerate on Mars

NASA announced today (on the evening of Sol 51), that Curiosity Rover has found evidence of an ancient flowing stream on Mars at a few sites. Round-shaped rocks, called clasts, have lead Geologists to the conclusion that they have been moved about by water. The clasts are too heavy to have been moved by wind.

Curiosity Rover performs driveby blast, then stops and fondles its first Martian rock on route to Glenelg

// September 25th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

This past weekend, on route to Glenelg, the Curiosity Rover’s first target on Mars, Curiosity arrived at the “Jake Matijevic” rock where it stopped and probed the rock with its huge robotic arm to determine its chemical composition. Curiosity also blasted the specimen with its Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer. Then Curiosity shot laser pulses at […]

NASA finds evidence that it snows dry ice on Mars

// September 14th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

It might not be accurately termed “a snowball’s chance in hell” but it comes close.  NASA thinks it might be snowing on Mars, just not the sort of snow we’d expect.  NASA has obtained evidence that it snows Dry Ice, the stuff we use to simulate fog in haunted houses.  That’s pretty cool given that […]

Mars Curiosity Rover leaves tracks visible from space

// September 8th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

Curiosity Rover has certainly left its mark on the planet Mars.  Photos taken by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter have been released showing the tire tracks left by Curiosity on the planet’s surface.  The bluish color spots are where Curiosity landed (named Bradbury landing after famous science fiction writer, Ray Bradbury) blowing Mars dust away from […]

Curiosity sending back telescopic images of nearby Mars features

// September 5th, 2012 // No Comments » // Astronomy and Space News

As part of the Mars Science Lab Mission (MSL), Curiosity is now sending back telescopic images from Mars.  This image is from a test series used to characterize the 100-millimeter Mast Camera on NASA’s Curiosity rover.  It was taken on Aug. 23, 2012, and looks south-southwest from the rover’s landing site.  The 100-millimeter Mastcam has […]