Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

NASA to Announce Mars Mystery Solved: Liquid water today!

  1. Sep 25, 2015 #1

    mfb

    User Avatar
    2016 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    That's the title of the NASA press release (I added the date).
    8 a.m. PDT = 3 p.m. UCT = 5 p.m. CEST (Central European Summer Time)

    The panel includes an expert for the HiRISE experiment, a high-resolution telescope in Mars orbit. Whatever they have, apparently images of some area are highly relevant.

    One of the panel members is Lujendra Ojha, a PhD candidate. If they include him, it is very likely the discovery is directly connected to his work. According to his website:
    Those structures are visible to HiRISE. Variations from year to year are not new. Did they see something in action?

    Mary Beth Wilhelm is an organic biogeochemist (research interests).

    How to combine organic biogeochemistry with Recurring Slope Lineae?


    Update: Very strong indications of liquid water on Mars - today. Spectroscopy of the RSL shows chemical compounds called perchlorates, and it is expected that they cannot form without liquid water.
    This liquid water is probably very salty, which lowers its freezing point. It is unclear if life can survive the high expected salt contents.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2015
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 25, 2015 #2

    Borg

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Hmmm. Suspicion of some non-geologic processes? :nb)

    Monday's announcement should be interesting.
     
  4. Sep 26, 2015 #3
    Exciting! I'll try to tune in on the broadcast on Monday. :woot:
     
  5. Sep 26, 2015 #4

    Rio Larsen

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Expect conspiracy theorists to say that the Mars landing was fake as early as a year after it will happen.
     
  6. Sep 26, 2015 #5
    I am adding a link to the upcoming live stream here, in case there are others who'd like to watch it on Sep 28, 8:30 a.m. PT :
    Quote: "The event will also be carried live on: http://www.ustream.tv/NASAJPL"
    Well, now you made it impossible for me to resist posting a link to this sketch. :smile:
     
  7. Sep 26, 2015 #6
    Looking forward to whatever this is about.
    After all, the presence of liquid water on the surface of Mars in the past is something which now seems indisputable.
    Have they found something indicating possible life in the past?

    As for conspiracy nuts, well somebody I was chatting with on another site a while ago thinks that the curiosity lander (and the previous ones) are 'government propaganda', and even the government itself is propaganda.
    (They were not clear about which government they were referring to, apparently the government is the same guys everywhere on Earth.)
    Everything is really being made up by a very small group of 'elites', whatever that is, who control every aspect of every kind of media which is just 'slush' planned to keep to the wider population dumbed down.

    Mmm Hmm.
     
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2015
  8. Sep 27, 2015 #7

    DaveC426913

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    http://www.nasa.gov/press-release/nasa-to-announce-mars-mystery-solved

    Any speculations? I'm not seeing a lot of chatter about it, but it seems they've assembled a lot of top scientists for the announcement.

    I'm positing something between
    "We've discovered flowing water on Mars", and
    "There's no way Mark Watney could survive on potatoes alone."
     
  9. Sep 27, 2015 #8

    Vanadium 50

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Education Advisor

  10. Sep 27, 2015 #9

    mfb

    User Avatar
    2016 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    I merged the threads.
     
  11. Sep 27, 2015 #10

    DaveC426913

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

  12. Sep 28, 2015 #11

    DaveC426913

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    "The Saline Slopes of Mars".
     
  13. Sep 28, 2015 #12

    DaveC426913

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Bah! Video feed is utterly kerplotz.
     
  14. Sep 28, 2015 #13
  15. Sep 28, 2015 #14
    Hmm, well interesting news OK, but is really a confirmation of what was first suspected a couple of years ago.
    Confirmation is undoubtedly a good thing though.
     
  16. Sep 28, 2015 #15

    DaveC426913

    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Not merely confirmation. Some very interesting implications:
    1] We can finally begin to construct a possible mechanism for Martian life.
    2] We finally know where to look for Martian Life.
    3] The briny areas are on the sides of slopes - terrain that is very challenging for rovers to reach, but trivial for a spacesuited human.
    4] We can send people to Mars and they will have resources to live.
     
  17. Sep 28, 2015 #16

    mfb

    User Avatar
    2016 Award

    Staff: Mentor

    The conditions there are considered to be too good for life to explore them with the current or upcoming rovers. Oh, the irony!
    Humans would make the problem even worse, as we cannot sterilize humans or even humans in a spacesuit.
     
  18. Sep 28, 2015 #17

    russ_watters

    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Who is protecting who from what, here? Is this some sort of NASA "Prime Directive"?
     
  19. Sep 28, 2015 #18
    I have often heard NASA top people referring to the high importance of sterilising exploration craft to the greatest possible extent, so there is at least an implicit sort of 'prime directive' of non-interferance.
    I believe the Cassini mission currently exploring the Saturn system will be intentionally crashed on to the planet when it's fuel is exhausted so that there is no risk of contaminating one of the moons.

    The motivation for this however is very different to that of the star trek federation of planets directive, which was based in a moral-philosophical reasoning.
    In the case of NASA and other missions the reason is more likely to do with not polluting so that future missions won't be producing false positive results.
     
  20. Sep 28, 2015 #19
    http://www.nature.com/news/microbial-stowaways-to-mars-identified-1.15249
    I think NASA is worried about spreading earth bacteria/microbes into the Martian liquid water reservoirs, if that happens and then if we find any recognizable microbes on mars ,we can't be sure whether they are martians or earthlings.

     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2015
  21. Sep 28, 2015 #20
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: NASA to Announce Mars Mystery Solved: Liquid water today!
Loading...