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PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 4:17 pm
 


What do you think the Martian material is? Maybe something unknown to man!


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2012 5:45 pm
 


Quote:
Mars Mystery: Has Curiosity Rover Made Big Discovery?
by Mike Wall, SPACE.com Senior WriterDate: 20 November 2012 Time: 01:14 PM ET


NASA's Mars rover Curiosity used its Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) to snap a set of 55 high-resolution images on Oct. 31, 2012. Researchers stitched the pictures together to create this full-color self-portrait.

NASA's Mars rover Curiosity has apparently made a discovery "for the history books," but we'll have to wait a few weeks to learn what the new Red Planet find may be, media reports suggest.

The discovery was made by Curiosity's Sample Analysis at Mars instrument, NPR reported today (Nov. 20). SAM is the rover's onboard chemistry lab, and it's capable of identifying organic compounds — the carbon-containing building blocks of life as we know it.


SAM apparently spotted something interesting in a soil sample Curiosity's huge robotic arm delivered to the instrument recently.

"This data is gonna be one for the history books," Curiosity chief scientist John Grotzinger, of Caltech in Pasadena, told NPR. "It's looking really good."


The rover team won't be ready to announce just what SAM found for several weeks, NPR reported, as scientists want to check and double-check the results. Indeed, Grotzinger confirmed to SPACE.com that the news will come out at the fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union, which takes place Dec. 3-7 in San Francisco.

The $2.5 billion Curiosity rover landed inside Mars' huge Gale Crater on Aug. 5, kicking off a two-year mission to determine if Mars has ever been capable of supporting microbial life.

The car-size robot carries 10 different instruments to aid in its quest, but SAM is the rover's heart, taking up more than half of its science payload by weight.

In addition to analyzing soil samples, SAM also takes the measure of Red Planet air. Many scientists are keen to see if Curiosity detects any methane, which is produced by many lifeforms here on Earth. A SAM analysis of Curiosity's first few sniffs found no definitive trace of the gas in the Martian atmosphere, but the rover will keep looking.

Curiosity began driving again Friday (Nov. 16) after spending six weeks testing its soil-scooping gear at a site called "Rocknest." The rover will soon try out its rock-boring drill for the first time on the Red Planet, scientists have said.

Follow SPACE.com senior writer Mike Wall on Twitter @michaeldwall or SPACE.com @Spacedotcom. We're also on Facebook and Google+.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2012 9:25 pm
 


...........


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 11:04 am
 


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Mars Rover Curiosity Finds Martian 'Flower' and Snake-Like Rock

New photos of Mars from NASA's Curiosity rover have sparked a buzz of discussion over an odd formation that some have dubbed a "flower" embedded in a Martian rock. The rover has also found a snake-like rock formation winding across the Red Planet's surface.

The so-called Mars "flower" photo was snapped on Dec. 19 by the microscope-like Mars Hand Lends Imager at the end of Curiosity's robotic arm. At the lower left of the image is a strange, apparently transparent formation that some Internet forum users on the website claimed looked much like a flower, according to NBCNews.com's photoblog.

NASA posted a raw, unprocessed version of the photo online on the Curiosity rover’s mission website overseen by the agency's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. Internet forum readers on the website Above Top Secret christened the object a flower, according to NBCNews.com's Alan Boyle.


Curiosity has seen bits of clear plastic (pieces of the rover itself) on the surface of Mars before, but NASA officials said that doesn’t appear to be the case this time.

JPL spokesman Guy Webster told NBCNews.com that the object "appears to be part of the rock, not debris from the spacecraft." [Face on Mars & More Martian Illusions (Photos)]

On Friday (Jan. 4), NASA also unveiled a new panorama of Curiosity’s current location on Mars, a shallow depression called YellowknifeBayinside the vast Gale Crater. The image is a mosaic of photos that is dominated by a sinewy, snake-like rock winding across its center.

NASA scientists have dubbed the rock "Snake River." It is a thin curving line of dark rock that rises above the flatter rocks of its surroundings, making it an intriguing target for Curiosity's instruments, JPL officials said.


"It's one piece of the puzzle," rover mission project scientist John Grotzinger, of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, said in a statement. "It has a crosscutting relationship to the surrounding rock and appears to have formed after the deposition of the layer that it transects."

The $2.5 billion Mars rover Curiosity landed on Aug. 5 to begin a two-year primary mission of determining whether the planet could have once been habitable for primitive microbial life. It is currently driving toward a 3-mile-high (5 kilometers) mountain rising up from the center of its Gale Crater landing site.

Curiosity is destined for a point called Glenelg at the base of the Martian peak, which scientists have named MountSharp. But first, mission scientists are looking over Curiosity's images of YellowknifeBay in order to pick a rock target for the rover to use as its first drill site. That drill test is expected soon, JPL officials said.

“The area the rover is in looks good for our first drilling target," rover project manager Richard Cook said.

You can follow SPACE.com Managing Editor Tariq Malik on Twitter @tariqjmalik. Follow SPACE.com for the latest in space science and exploration news on Twitter @Spacedotcom and on Facebook.


Image

Image

Image


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 11:08 am
 


Keep 'em coming Gun 8)

I'm just constantly amazed how Mars looks so much like Earth.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 11:10 am
 


desertdude wrote:
Keep 'em coming Gun 8)

I'm just constantly amazed how Mars looks so much like Earth.


Well, your part of Earth maybe, not mine. :wink:

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 2:30 pm
 


Gunnair wrote:
desertdude wrote:
Keep 'em coming Gun 8)

I'm just constantly amazed how Mars looks so much like Earth.


Well, your part of Earth maybe, not mine. :wink:


:evil: Seems like your also begging for a little trip to the pool

Ok, ok ... fine I'll rephrase.

I'm just constantly amazed how Mars looks so much like some parts of the Earth.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 2:48 pm
 


Rocks, rocks and more rocks... plenty of those around here too.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 06, 2013 4:35 pm
 


desertdude wrote:
Gunnair wrote:
desertdude wrote:
Keep 'em coming Gun 8)

I'm just constantly amazed how Mars looks so much like Earth.


Well, your part of Earth maybe, not mine. :wink:


:evil: Seems like your also begging for a little trip to the pool

Ok, ok ... fine I'll rephrase.

I'm just constantly amazed how Mars looks so much like some parts of the Earth.


I look at these photos and immediately think, Afghanistan. 8O


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 28, 2013 11:02 pm
 


Image

Quote:
Matijevic Hill Panorama
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell/Arizona State U.
Explanation: On January 25 (UT) 2004, the Opportunity rover fell to Mars, making today the 9th anniversary of its landing. After more than 3,200 sols (Mars solar days) the golf cart-sized robot from Earth is still actively exploring the Red Planet, though its original mission plan was for three months. Having driven some 35 kilometers (22 miles) from its landing site, Opportunity's panoramic camera recorded the segments of this scene, in November and December of last year. The digitally stitched panorama spans more than 210 degrees across the Matijevic Hill area along the western rim of Endeavour Crater. Features dubbed Copper Cliff, a dark outcrop, appear at the left, and Whitewater Lake, a bright outcrop, at the far right. The image is presented here in a natural color approximation of what the scene would look like to human eyes.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2013 4:40 pm
 


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Quote:
Curiosity's Drill in Place for Load Testing Before Drilling
The percussion drill in the turret of tools at the end of the robotic arm of NASA's Mars rover Curiosity has been positioned in contact with the rock surface in this image from the rover's front Hazard-Avoidance Camera (Hazcam).

The drill was positioned for pre-load testing, and the Hazcam recorded this image during the 170th Martian day, or sol, of Curiosity's work on Mars (Jan. 27, 2013). Other tests with the drill are planned before the first drilling into a rock on Mars to collect a sample of rock material for analysis.

In this view, the drill is positioned on a target on a patch of flat, veined rock called "John Klein." The site is within the "Yellowknife Bay" area of Gale Crater.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 03, 2013 4:41 pm
 


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Neighborhood for Curiosity's First Drilling Campaign
This wide view of the "John Klein" location selected for the first rock drilling by NASA's Mars rover Curiosity is a mosaic taken by Curiosity's right Mast Camera (Mastcam) during the afternoon of the 153rd Martian day, or sol, of the rover's work on Mars.

Veins interpreted as evidence of a wet past are common in the flat-lying rocks of the area. An excerpt from this scene, PIA16568, provides an indication of scale.

This mosaic of telephoto images has been white-balanced to show what the rocks would look like if they were on Earth. A raw-color version is also available, showing what the rocks look like on Mars to the camera.

Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS


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