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Active cratering and near-surface water ice on Mars Answered

The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has taken some high-resolution pictures of brand new (two months old!) craters, where the impact exposed a layer of water ice just below the surface. Repeated pictures taken since the impact show the ice slowly sublimating, leaving behind the dark regolith.

Read the whole press release and see some of the pictures here: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/MRO/news/mro-20090924r.html

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Goodhart
Goodhart

11 years ago

Although there is some possibility of water being found on Mars, the likelihood of finding organic material there, seems less likely then the find on Titan, Jupiter's moon.

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kelseymh
kelseymh

Reply 11 years ago

In terms of large hydrocarbons, I agree with you. However, Mars has water, carbon dioxide, and methane (and ammonia, I think). There's certainly a nontrivial likelihood of smaller organics (formaldehyde, simple amino acids, etc.), which can be formed from those simple components via non-biological processes involving UV etc.

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Goodhart
Goodhart

Reply 11 years ago

although this may be so, I have to agree with Dr. Sagan here, Titan would be many a hundred times more interesting to study then Mars

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lemonie
lemonie

11 years ago

It's a God-awful small affair, to the girl with the mousey-hair...

Interesting stuff, did you read that (thing) about weathering & redness, some guys had tumbled iron-mineral dust in CO2 to produce the classic red.

L