Articles about mars

his low-angle self-portrait of NASA's Curiosity Mars rover shows the vehicle at the site from which it reached down to drill into a rock target called "Buckskin." The MAHLI camera on Curiosity's robotic arm took multiple images on Aug. 5, 2015, that were stitched together into this selfie. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Curiosity's computer silent on science, baffling boffins

Since last weekend, an as-yet-undiagnosed glitch in the Mars Curiosity Rover has baffled boffins at NASA. In an update posted to the mission page, JPL's Ashwin Vasavada wrote that the project team is trying to work out what's preventing the rover from transmitting “much of the science and engineering data stored in its memory …
Astronaut on mars . Photo by shutterstock

Flying to Mars will be so rad, dude: Year-long trip may dump 60% lifetime dose of radiation on you

A year-long round trip to Mars could give you more than half the maximum radiation dose recommended for an astronaut's entire career, according to data collected by the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter. The spacecraft, weighing in at over 4,000 kilograms (8,801lb), was launched by the European Space Agency and its Russian counterpart …
Katyanna Quach, 20 Sep 2018
NASA Opportunity Rover on Mars (pic: NASA)

Martian weather has cleared at last: Now NASA's wondering, will Opportunity knock?

As skies clear over NASA's stricken Mars Rover, the clock has begun ticking for Opportunity to call home. A Martian storm, which engulfed NASA's solar-powered trundle-bot, Opportunity, is clearing, with boffins reporting that the amount of haze in the skies above the robot has finally dropped below 1.5 tau for two consecutive …
Richard Speed, 12 Sep 2018
mars_radar_lake

Hurrah! Boffins finally discover liquid water sloshing around on Mars

Scientists have discovered a lake of liquid water on Mars hidden beneath multiple layers of dust and ice, according to a paper published in Science on Wednesday. It has long been suspected that the Red Planet is not as dry and arid as it looks. Over the years, spacecrafts and rovers have uncovered evidence of its watery past. …
Katyanna Quach, 26 Jul 2018
Astronaut on mars . Photo by shutterstock

All that dust on Mars is coming from one weird giant alien structure

Have you ever wondered where Mars got all that striking iron-rich rust-colored dust from? Weirdly enough, it appears it is mostly drawn from a formation on its surface called the Medusae Fossae, a single geological object that is slowly crumbling and scattering debris all over the Red Planet. The formation stretches for about …
Katyanna Quach, 25 Jul 2018
mars_ghost_dunes

Geoboffins spot hundreds of ghost dunes on Mars

Mars was once covered in hundreds of giant dunes as big as the US Capitol Building billions of years ago, according to new research. A pair of scientists from the University of Washington have discovered more than 300 crescent-shaped structures wedged into the eastern side of Hellas Planitia, an impact crater measuring over 2, …
Katyanna Quach, 12 Jul 2018
NASA's Opportunity Rover

Da rude sand storm seizes the Opportunity, threatens to KO rover

Video Time may be up for America's plucky Opportunity rover that has trundled across the surface of Mars for more than 14 years. During a press conference on Wednesday, NASA officials said that the robot had been caught in a massive dust storm encircling a quarter of the planet, and this had blocked the probe's solar cells from …
Iain Thomson, 14 Jun 2018
Martian Dust Storm

Done and dusted? Vast storm gobbles NASA's long-lived Mars robot

As NASA's Opportunity rover nears its 15th birthday, engineers are worried the plucky little robot may not survive a worsening Martian dust storm. The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) spotted the approaching storm on 1 June, giving the Opportunity team notice to kick off their contingency plans. The storm now covers more than …
Richard Speed, 11 Jun 2018
alien

NASA finds more stuff suggesting Mars could have hosted life, maybe

NASA’s Curiosity rover has again found evidence that Mars was potentially capable of hosting life. As detailed in a new Science paper, “Organic matter preserved in 3-billion-year-old mudstones at Gale crater, Mars”, some of the soil samples Curiosity took from the bottom of Gale Crater turned up molecules of “thiophenes, …
NASA tech inspects MOMA

Toaster oven-sized boffin box bound for Mars to search for life

A team from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center gathered last week to bid farewell to a mass spectrometer as it began its journey to the red planet via an assembly plant in Italy. The instrument is a key component of a toaster oven-sized lab, called the Mars Organic Molecule Analyzer (MOMA), which will detect evidence of …
Richard Speed, 25 May 2018
Curiosity

NASA fix for Curiosity rovers's damaged drill: hitting it, repeatedly

NASA's top engineers think they've figured out a way to get the Curiosity rover's drill back to work holing the rock faces of Mars. Back in 2016 the nuclear-powered rover's rock-sampling drill broke down after a motor failed. As 225 million km (140 million miles) is too far to make an on-site visit, the men and women of NASA …
Iain Thomson, 18 May 2018
NASA Mars InSight Lander (pic: NASA/JPL-CALTECH)

The Rocky Planet Picture Show: NASA Mars InSight ready for launch

NASA's Mars InSight will launch from California’s Vandenberg airbase tomorrow morning, with the aim of discovering how rocky planets form. InSight will lift off at 1105 UTC and is intended to be the first mission to peer beneath the Martian surface, studying the planet's interior by measuring its heat output and listening for …
Richard Speed, 4 May 2018
old_soaker_mars

Here's another headline where NASA is dragged through the mud for cheap Mars wise cracks

Pic Water that once flowed across the surface of Mars caused the formation of mud cracks that were spotted by NASA's Curiosity rover, scientists have confirmed. The fractures were discovered in 2017 while the nuclear-powered robot was busy snapping away pictures of the Gale Crater – an area believed to be a 3.5-billion-year-old …
Katyanna Quach, 20 Apr 2018
ExoMars parachute inflation (credit: ESA/I.Barel)

Let's go to Mars, dude: Euro space parachute passes maiden test

The European Space Agency (ESA) claimed today that the first test of the giant parachute destined for use by the ExoMars lander has been a success, paving the way for more ambitious trials before an eventual attempt on the Red Planet itself. The 195kg parachute assembly was lofted to 1.2km above Kiruna, Sweden, before being …
Richard Speed, 29 Mar 2018
Mars_ocean

Geoboffins believe gigantic volcanoes kickstarted Mars' oceans

A team of geophysicists have developed a new theory explaining how eruptions from some of the biggest volcanoes in the Solar System could have led to oceans on Mars. Tharsis, a region in equatorial Mars stretching about 5,000 kilometers across, is home to some of the biggest volcanoes on the planet. The largest one, Olympus …
Katyanna Quach, 19 Mar 2018
Mars

Martian microbes may just be resting – boffins

Demonstrating that scientists can extrapolate with the best of them, researchers have speculated that long dormant microbes on the Red Planet might reawaken with the introduction of liquid water. The Washington State University team, led by astrobiology boffin-in-chief, Dirk Schulze-Makuch, found that microbes lurking in the …
Richard Speed, 28 Feb 2018
 Schiaparelli separating from Trace Gas Orbiter. Pic: ESA–D. Ducros

Euro Space Agency probe begins search for guff gas on Mars

The European Space Agency's ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) is to conduct its final aerobraking manoeuvre this evening prior to starting its mission of sniffing for Martian methane. TGO should finally settle into its proper orbit tonight, 400km above the red planet. It was launched nearly two years ago aboard a Russian Proton …
Richard Speed, 21 Feb 2018
NASA Opportunity Rover on Mars (pic: NASA)

Opportunity knocked? Rover survives Martian winter, may not survive budget cuts

The knives are out for MER-B, better known as the Opportunity rover, at NASA beancounter central. The beloved rover has just passed the 5,000 sol mark on Mars and is approaching the 15th anniversary of its launch (thankfully without the desolate rendition of "Happy Birthday" played by its plutonium-powered successor, Curiosity …
Richard Speed, 19 Feb 2018

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