Skip to comments.Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Curiosity on Mars: Mt. Sharp in View
Posted on 08/27/2012 3:31:29 PM PDT by SunkenCiv
Explanation: What's that on the horizon? The light peak is Mt. Sharp -- an eventual destination of the Curiosity rover. The above image mosaic was taken from Bradbury Landing, the landing spot of Curiosity, and shows in the foreground the rover's extended robotic arm. Curiosity's is already on the move crossing the intermediate gravel field toward an interesting terrain feature named Glenelg. Curiosity has also already started analyzing its surroundings by zapping a nearby rock with its laser to analyze the chemical composition of the resulting gas plume. If life ever existed on Mars it might well have been here in Gale crater, with the Curiosity rover being humanity's current best chance to find what remains.
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Looks a little bit like Kilamanjaro
Fascinating picture. Thank you for the post.
In a “desolate beauty” sort of way, it’s like “the moon but with mountains”.
The “life” of the “Red Planet” so far, seems limited to the macro-level “life of the whole planet” as in the dynamics of what changing wind, sunlight, and other cyclical conditions produce, moving and reshaping the seemingly barren soil, and not much else.
Amazing. Add in some pine trees and some sagebrush and it would look amazingly like where I live.
They’re blocking out the camera crew...I need to contact Alex Jones.
Waiting for Richard Hoagland to chime in.
Those little electric motors on the robotic arm are a long way from a stocking distributor.
This whole thing is just delightfully neato!
Thanks again, Mr. Civilizations.
I want color pics and I want audio. I want to hear what the red planet sounds like. Is there audible wind on Mars? Even its silence would be interesting. I’d also like to hear the sounds Curiosity makes, the sound of its motors and the sand crunching under its tires. The audio component has been completely absent on all of the Mars missions, at least that I’m aware of. Anybody know if Curiosity is outfitted with mics?
Which is why I fully understand Val Kilmer giving the finger to Mars in "Red Planet" when he finally split.
As Carl Sagan once said: on this day Mars went from mystery to becoming just “a place”.
We’re lucky to be the generation this happens to.
Going off road.....zapping rocks with lasers.....hill climbing.....there’s a lot of kid left in those people at NASA.
That’s interesting. I don’t know. The way to build and test such listening equipment would be via high altitude balloons; the atmospheric pressure on Mars at the surface is the same as 40 miles altitude on Earth. Probably pretty quiet, and you couldn’t use your naked ears to listen.
That’s an excellent summation, ToL!
The Lewin experiment on the Voyager lander back in the 1970s detected biological activity. There won’t be any “face-builder” civilization though. :’)
Sounds like a great job to have. Of course, it’s all coming to a screeching whoa under the Kenyan.
January’s “Air & Space” magazine (from the museum of that name) has a great article about Elon Musk and his SpaceX — his ultimate goal is colonization of Mars.
“detected biological activity”
to be accurate, they did not detect “biological activity”
they detected what “could” represent evidence of “past” biological avtivity
and in fairness to me, I actually said “seemingly barren” landscape, leaving to future exploration to determine if what seems barren is actually barren, or not
[smiles fondly at you, my friend]
No, to be accurate, there wasn’t anything to do with “past” biological activity, LR detected biological activity in the soil samples, or (as was claimed at the time, in order to avoid A) a PR firestorm from people who would refuse to accept the results and B) the end of human missions to other celestial bodies.
or (as was claimed at the time... [whoops, omitted] discovered completely unknown chemical reactions which couldn’t be reproduced and which left no byproducts or other traces).
“Nonetheless, on 12 April 2012, an international team of scientists reported studies, based on mathematical speculation through complexity analysis of the Labeled Release experiments of the 1976 Viking Mission, that may suggest the detection of “extant microbial life on Mars.”
They could not rxplain the chemical reaction; ergo it was not proof of life. But they later found a research team willing to make a “mathematical speculation” (like the ICCP global warming model) “that may” (as in “might”) “suggest” (as is in propose the “possibility of”) extant microbial life.
Ergo - they did NOT find evidence of microbial life. They found a mathematical speculation that proposed the possibility (could be other possibilities too) that they found evidence of life.
as in the conclussions they said:
“so detecting no trace of any organic compound on the surface of Mars came as a surprise”
“Most researchers surmise that the results of the Viking biology experiments can be explained by purely chemical processes that do not require the presence of life, and the GC-MS results rule out life.”
“Despite the positive result from the Labeled Release experiment, a general assessment is that the results seen in the four experiments are best explained by oxidative chemical reactions with the Martian soil. One of the current conclusions is that the Martian soil, being continuously exposed to UV light from the Sun (Mars has no protective ozone layer), has built up a thin layer of a very strong oxidant. A sufficiently strong oxidizing molecule would react with the added water to produce oxygen and hydrogen, and with the nutrients to produce carbon dioxide”
and then the article descends into contesting new arguments over the same evidence - theories - but as yet NOT verifiable and verified evidence
The experiment has nothing to do with the ICCP.
The only current, viable explanation for the LR results is, Martian microbial life. “Surmise” and “can are the operative words regarding “Most researchers”, who speculate that the results can be explained chemically — yet show NO experimental results, unlike the LR results, which WERE checked. It is they who are speculating.
The LR found microbial life, and the burden of proof is on those who say it didn’t. Every effort over more than thirty years has come up short, and remains speculation.