OH YES THEY DID: NASA’s Mars Rover Just Found an ‘Alien Egg’ on MarsPosted: November 3, 2016 Filed under: Breaking News, Science & Technology, Space & Aviation | Tags: Atmosphere of Mars, Curiosity (rover), European Space Agency, ExoMars, ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter, Mars, Martian surface, NASA, Opportunity (rover), Schiaparelli EDM lander 1 Comment
NASA’s Curiosity rover has just found something truly surreal on Mars – a black, shiny object which looks like an alien egg.
The object is actually a metallic meteorite – but that (of course) hasn’t stopped UFO sites from suggesting that the thing might actually hatch.
“Iron meteorites provide records of many different asteroids that broke up, with fragments of their cores ending up on Earth and on Mars.”
Mystery Vault says that the find raises, ‘hopes of finding life on Mars’.
It doesn’t of course – but what NASA scientists call the ‘Egg Rock’ is interesting nonetheless.
Scientists of the Mars Science Laboratory project, which operates the rover, first noticed the odd-looking rock in images taken by Curiosity’s Mast Camera (Mastcam) at at a site the rover reached by an Oct. 27 drive.
‘The dark, smooth and lustrous aspect of this target, and its sort of spherical shape attracted the attention of some MSL scientists when we received the Mastcam images at the new location,’ said ChemCam team member Pierre-Yves Meslin.
ChemCam found iron, nickel and phosphorus, plus lesser ingredients, in concentrations still being determined through analysis of the spectrum of light produced from dozens of laser pulses at nine spots on the object. Read the rest of this entry »
Kennedy Space Center Displays Suit Worn By Buzz Aldrin While Lobbying For NASA FundingPosted: May 5, 2016 Filed under: Humor, Science & Technology, Space & Aviation | Tags: Apollo 11, Buzz Aldrin, Cape Canaveral, Countdown, Curiosity (rover), Dragon (spacecraft), Earth, Elon Musk, Florida, International Space Station, Kennedy Space Center, Mars, NASA, Neil Armstrong, SpaceX, United States Leave a comment
CAPE CANAVERAL, FL—Expressing their excitement to share the historic item with visitors, Kennedy Space Center officials confirmed Thursday that the suit worn by Buzz Aldrin on February 24, 2015 when he lobbied the Senate to increase NASA funding was now on display for public viewing. “We are honored to add to our collection the actual jacket and trousers Dr. Aldrin wore that fateful day when he stepped out into room 253 of the Russell Senate Office Building and uttered the immortal words ‘I wish to thank the committee for the opportunity to speak with you about the future of American human spaceflight,’” the facility’s associate director, Kelvin Manning, said of the charcoal single-breasted suit, which was displayed together with the crisp button-down shirt, mission patch–patterned tie, and various lapel pins the former astronaut donned as he made the case for expanding the U.S. space program through strategic investments…(more)
[VIDEO] A Brief History of the SpacesuitPosted: December 16, 2015 Filed under: Mediasphere, Science & Technology, Space & Aviation | Tags: Apollo 13, Application software, Astronaut, Atacama Pathfinder Experiment, Curiosity (rover), International Space Station, Mars, Martian, Matt Damon, NASA Leave a comment
We take a brief look at the history of the spacesuit as NASA engineers work on the next generation of spacesuits for future Martian astronauts.
SELFIE: Mars Rover Curiosity Gears UpPosted: February 15, 2015 Filed under: Mediasphere, Science & Technology, Space & Aviation | Tags: Aeolis Mons, Curiosity (rover), Gale (crater), Google, HiRISE, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Mars, Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, Mars rover, NASA, Nevada, Opportunity (rover), Pahrump 1 Comment
After cooling its heels for a month on the Red Planet, NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity is gearing up for lots of action in the coming weeks.
Curiosity’s handlers sent no commands to the rover for most of April, because Mars was on the opposite side of the sun from Earth at the time. But this planetary alignment, known as a Mars solar conjunction, is now over, and the mission team is planning to drill into a Red Planet rock soon and then send Curiosity off on an epic, miles-long trek to the base of a huge and mysterious mountain.
“A couple of weeks to move to the site and drill, and then the experiments themselves can take also a couple of weeks — that’s about the time scale we’re looking at,” said Curiosity deputy project scientist Ashwin Vasavada, of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. “And then we’d hopefully get going.”
[Curiosity’s Latest Amazing Mars Photos]
He stressed, however, that this timeframe could shift depending on how the drilling operation goes, and what Curiosity discovers.
Curiosity healthy after ‘spring break’
The Curiosity rover wasn’t idle during conjunction. It continued monitoring Martian weather and radiation and perfomed some relatively simple science work using commands sent up in advance, Vasavada said.
“That all went fine — it kind of executed flawlessly a long set of preplanned activities,” he told SPACE.com. “We had never planned 30 days at once [before], so that was a relief.”
But things have picked up since mission controllers got back in touch with Curiosity late last week. They’ve already uploaded a minor software update to the rover, which emerged from conjunction in fine health, Vasavada said.
Curiosity continues to operate on its backup, or B-side, computer, which it switched to after a glitch knocked out its primary computer (or A-side) in late February.
The rover team has still not fully figured out what happened to the A-side, but engineers have made significant troubleshooting progress. For example, Curiosity would have been OK if an issue during conjunction had forced the rover to swap back over to the A-side computer, Vasavada said.
Drilling another hole
Curiosity touched down inside Mars’ huge Gale Crater last August, kicking off a two-year surface mission to determine if the Red Planet could ever have supported microbial life.
The rover team has already checked off this primary goal, announcing in March that a spot dubbed Yellowknife Bay was indeed habitable billions of years ago. Scientists reached this conclusion after studying Curiosity’s analyses of material pulled from a 2.5-inch-deep (6.4 centimeters) hole the rover drilled into a Red Planet outcrop.
[Ancient Mars Could Have Supported Life (Photos)]
Now that conjunction’s over, the mission team wants to drill another hole in a nearby rock, to confirm and perhaps extend the exciting results gleaned from the first drilling activity.
“Probably in the next week or two, we will slightly move the rover to a new location, which the science team is actively choosing right now,” Vasavada said. “Primarily, it will be to duplicate the results from the first hole, because they were so exciting and, in some cases, unexpected that the people who run the experiments just want to make sure it’s really correct before writing all the papers up.” Read the rest of this entry »