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Tag Archives: Mars

Mars: One Mystery Revealed, Many More to Solve

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The recent announcement by NASA that there is evidence of salty, liquid water seeping out of the ground on Mars is both exciting and scientifically puzzling at the same time. As a member of the science team for the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) camera on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO), I’ve been   …Continue Reading

Orion Test Flight: Back to the Future

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If weather permits and no last-minute technical issues arise, NASA’s next-generation crew exploration vehicle launches into space for the first time on December 4*, 2014. The engineering test flight with no one aboard the craft is planned to last four hours, make two orbits at a distance of 3,600 miles, and splash down off the   …Continue Reading

10 Years on Mars

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For the last ten years while participating in the missions of the Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and Opportunity, I have watched in amazement as the beauty of Mars was revealed via images associated with discoveries made by the rovers. From stark alien landscapes, to others looking vaguely familiar, to gorgeous Martian sunsets, these images have   …Continue Reading

Digging up some Dirt on Mars

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The Viking program represents a major effort by the United States to explore Mars, with the particular goal of performing experiments on Martian soil to look for possible evidence of life.  Four individual spacecraft were sent to Mars as part of the Viking project, two orbiters and two landers, launched as identical orbiter/lander pairs.     …Continue Reading

Mars Rover Discovers Chocolate on Mars

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Scientists at the National Air and Space Museum’s Center for Earth and Planetary Studies announced an astounding discovery at a press conference this morning: the NASA Mars rover Curiosity has found chocolate on Mars.* “Definitely more than just a trace,” said CEPS spokesperson Dr. John Grant. “More than a trace, less than a Snickers. But   …Continue Reading