Daily Archives: September 16, 2011

  • Apollo landing site

    Tack on another few megabytes of data in favor of reality.

    On Tuesday, NASA released the best images yet of an Apollo landing site. They show an unprecedented view of the Apollo 12, 14, and 17 landing sites, as taken from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter. Of course, that won’t stop some from claiming we never landed on the Moon… but those people will never be convinced anyways. For conspiracy theorists and anti-science minds, data will always be subject to their conclusions. All we can do is increase the pile of data

  • “This is a brand new mission…”

    So said Prof. Steven Squyres last week about Opportunity, the rover that keeps on ticking. Now 7 years and 20 miles outside of warranty, Opportunity has reached what is almost sure to be its final destination: Endeavor Crater. Already, the plucky rover is turning up new discoveries, such as a breccia with unexpectedly high levels of zinc and bromine. Those elements in that type of rock suggest a hydrothermal ore deposit. That would be yet another line of evidence of water on ancient Mars, suggesting

  • They R Us?

    It sounds crazy, but it is looking more and more likely that astroid strikes can splash ejecta – and perhaps microbial hitchhikers – from planet to planet within our Solar System, and possibly beyond. We’ve know for years that ejecta from Mars can reach the Earth, based on chemical analyses that tell us that some meteorites could only come from Mars. That’s led some to wonder if we might actually be Martians. Now, a new modeling study – the largest yet undertaken – revels that the odds of