Feeds

Curiosity finds . . . wait for it . . . a ROCK on MARS!

Tales of an Earth-like igneous rock named Jake

SANS - Survey on application security programs

NASA reports that the first Martian rock it has examined with the Curiosity's arm-mounted Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometer (APXS) shows curious similarities to a rare form of mineral found on Earth.

The rock, named "Jake Matijevic" after a JPL engineer who died just after Curiosity landed on Mars, was lasered 30 times on 14 analysis points by the rover in an attempt to discover the process that formed it. The APXS results show that it closely resembles rocks found on the volcanic islands of Hawaii and St. Helena that are formed when relatively water-rich magma is pressurized in an unusual way.

"When you make magma of this type on Earth it takes particular conditions of crystallization," said Edward Stolper of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena during a press conference on Thursday. "Typically it takes place at relatively high pressure, at least several thousands of bars, and also takes place in conditions with relatively elevated amounts of water that is dissolved in the magma."

The process is similar to how the American settlers used to make apple liquor, or applejack, back in the day, he explained: by placing barrels of apple cider in snow drifts and skimming off water as it crystalized, leaving hard liquor behind.

In this case, the magma goes through cooling, which eliminates feldspar and other minerals from the rock before it hardens. On Earth, such minerals are then typically scattered by volcanic eruptions, but Stolper warned that it was too early to say if this was the reason for the formation of Jake.

jake

No, that's not graffiti on Jake – those are NASA's aiming points highlighted

The rock is a pyramid-shaped lump of minerals, probably similar to basalt. Curiosity will now rumble forward another 100 yards to the east of its current position and begin drilling into the Martian crust for more samples. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Most Americans doubt Big Bang, not too sure about evolution, climate change – survey
Science no match for religion, politics, business interests
So, just how do you say 'the mutt's nuts' in French?
Vital linguistic question interrupts LOHAN spaceplane mission
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane
Our Vulture 2 livery is wrapped, and it's les noix du mutt
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
STEALTHY NANOROBOTS dress up as viruses, prepare to sneak into YOUR BODY
Cloaking techniques nicked from viruses tackle roadblocks on way to medical frontier
prev story

Whitepapers

Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.