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Follow the Water

September 27, 2012 Leave a comment

NASA Rover Finds Old Streambed on Martian Surface

This set of images compares the Link outcrop of rocks on Mars (left) with similar rocks seen on Earth (right). Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS and PSI

Read between the lines. Scientifically, Water means Life as we know it. That’s why evidence of such, is on the top of the list, of what we look for on other planets.

September 27, 2012

PASADENA, Calif. — NASA’s Curiosity rover mission has found evidence a stream once ran vigorously across the area on Mars where the rover is driving. There is earlier evidence for the presence of water on Mars, but this evidence — images of rocks containing ancient streambed gravels — is the first of its kind.

Scientists are studying the images of stones cemented into a layer of conglomerate rock. The sizes and shapes of stones offer clues to the speed and distance of a long-ago stream’s flow.

“From the size of gravels it carried, we can interpret the water was moving about 3 feet per second, with a depth somewhere between ankle and hip deep,” said Curiosity science co-investigator William Dietrich of the University of California, Berkeley. “Plenty of papers have been written about channels on Mars with many different hypotheses about the flows in them. This is the first time we’re actually seeing water-transported gravel on Mars. This is a transition from speculation about the size of streambed material to direct observation of it.”  – http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/news.php?release=2012-305#7

“The importance of liquid water as an organizing principle in the exploration for extraterrestrial life often is articulated in the simple expression ‘follow the water.'” – Astrobiology: Water and the Potential for Extraterrestrial Life, http://www.waterencyclopedia.com/A-Bi/Astrobiology-Water-and-the-Potential-for-Extraterrestrial-Life.html

 

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