September 25, 2009 |
There is much more water on Mars than anyone had thought -- possibly twice as much as in Greenland's ice sheet, scientists said Thursday. NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter spotted ice in five recently formed meteorite craters midway between the northern pole and the equator, researchers said in a report in the journal Science. That's the farthest south the underground ice sheet has been found. The spacecraft's instruments were able to confirm that the bluish material inside the crater was, indeed, ice. "Buried ice on Mars is much more extensive than we had thought," Shane Byrne, an astronomer at the University of Arizona, said at a news briefing Thursday at the Jet Propulsion Lab in La CaÃ±ada Flintridge.
May 12, 2009 |
The long-lived rover Spirit is stuck in the sand on Mars, and controllers at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Canada Flintridge are scrambling to find a way to extricate the vehicle before it becomes entombed on the Red Planet. "This is quite serious," said JPL's John Callas, the project manager for Spirit and its twin, Opportunity. "Spirit is in a very difficult situation. We are proceeding methodically and cautiously. It may be weeks before we try moving Spirit again."
February 3, 2009 |
Google finally put the world's oceans on the map. During a splashy presentation Monday at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, the Internet giant unveiled a feature in its Google Earth program that will allow users to swim through undersea canyons as deep as the Mariana Trench and encounter creatures like a critically endangered, prehistoric fish called the coelacanth.
November 11, 2008 |
After hearing nothing from the Phoenix spacecraft in more than a week, NASA officials on Monday declared an end to the nearly six-month mission at Mars' north pole, the first to touch and taste the water on an alien planet. Phoenix sent its last message on Nov. 2 before a lack of power caused it to go to sleep -- permanently, it now appears.
November 1, 2008 |
The death watch is on for NASA's Phoenix lander, the first spacecraft to sample water on another planet. Buffeted by dust storms and chilled by temperatures as low as minus-141 degrees Fahrenheit from the impending arrival of the Martian winter, Phoenix is clinging to life, but barely, NASA officials said Friday. "We knew this was coming," said project manager Barry Goldstein. "It's bittersweet." Days earlier, Phoenix fell silent, going into safe mode to save battery power.
September 30, 2008 |
The latest forecast on Mars calls for morning fog and swift-moving clouds -- along with light snow. The surprising weather report was part of the latest scientific findings from NASA's Phoenix lander, which has been taking measurements at the Martian north pole since May 25.