Organic carbon might have originated on Mars

A new study conducted by NASA indicates that large molecules containing carbon came to Earth from Mars – molecules which are a key ingredient for life as we know it. Studying meteorites that landed on Earth and originated on Mars, the Carnegie Institution for Science alongside NASA researchers concluded that the reduced carbon – carbon that’s bonded to hydrogen or

Rover snaps self-shot and Mars panorama [STUNNING PHOTO]

After a long and well deserved “hibernation”, the Mars Opportunity Rover was guided out of the rim of the massive Endeavour crater a few weeks ago, where it sat winter out. Before it left though, the Opportunity Rover used its panoramic camera to take about a dozen shots using an assortment of filters of its surroundings. The images were transmitted back to Earth,

NASA spacecraft detects change in Martian sand dunes

NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has revealed yet another surprising fact about our red neighbor: movement in sand dunes occurs on a large scale, about the same as in dune fields here on Earth. This is totally unexpected because Mars has a much thinner atmosphere than our planet, and high speed winds are much less common than here as well; researchers

More evidence shows Mars was wet

Several studies performed in the last decade have shown Mars used to be warmer and wetter, but scientists still haven’t figured out exactly why we are seeing these clues and how our red neighbor used to look like ages ago. Now, a new study concluded that Mars was much, much wetter than previously believed and that its atmosphere was significantly

NASA turns to engineering crowd source for Mars mission in 2018

NASA is equivalent to innovation and cutting edge technology, and this was made possible by the creative flow of whole generations of brilliant scientists. The same philosophy is in place today, as well, and even though the agency has been faced with drastic budget cuts in the past few years, it has kept an open mind and still hasn’t abandoned

Mars life search will go on, despite of budget cuts

When the administration gives you budget cut lemons, make a different scientific lemonade – that’s pretty much what NASA is trying to do in light of these decisions. Less money, more problems Citing lack of funds, the Obama administration is cutting healthy chunks of the NASA budget, placing a big question mark on many important projects, including the quest to

Today is Mars opposition – best time to see the red planet with the naked eye

The term Mars opposition basically refers to a geometric event. Thus on the 3rd of March, Mars will appear exactly opposite the sun in Earth’s sky, 180 degrees away from it, as well as come at one of the closest distances to Earth, making it easy observable even with the naked eye. This event takes place every two years and

NASA wants you to taste what’s on the Martian space-food menu

NASA  recently issued a call-out to all those interested in joining a special, four-month long study, in which a stay on a Martian outpost would be simulated. The main objective is that of assessing space food, namely whether it’s better if astronauts are provided with meals made out of “shelf-stable” ingredients such as flour, beans, rice and cheese or  freeze-dried and dehydrated

Drought on Mars for the past 600 million years: life impossible on surface

For the past three years, scientists have been analyzing  data fed back by the 2008 NASA Phoenix mission to Mars, which touch landed on the planet’s northern poles. Even though there was ice, soil analysis showed that the planet has been suffering from a massive, 600 million years long drought, providing inhospitable life supporting conditions on its surface. Despite previous research  claimed Mars

Mars rock fell in Africa last July

Well if we can’t go to Mars, it seems Mars is coming to us… at least some chunks of it. Scientists have reported a rather unusual invasion by Martians: meteorite-like chunks that fell from the Red Planet in Morocco last summer. This is the first time since 1962 that researchers have confirmed such a sample, and only the fifth time

NASA parks Mars Opportunity Rover for the winter

There’s no bigger drag on a busy Monday morning than finding your car under a heap of snow in the driveway. Taking measures and parking it under some kind shelter, if possible, would be advised if you don’t plan on driving an ice truck. Take NASA for instance, which, like every year, has routed the precious Opportunity Rover, currently the

Russia gives up on Phobos failed mission, scientist apologizes

After what can only be described has a frustrating, sleepless month for the Russian scientists involved in the Phobos grunt mission, which failed just after it escaped Earth’s atmosphere and became stranded into low-orbit, officials have announced that they have finally lost all hope and have abandoned any future efforts of re-salvaging the probe. Russia’s Phobos- Grunt did indeed manage to

NASA’s Curiosity Rover might contaminate Martian samples

Every NASA spacecraft sent to missions on other space bodies, like other planets, asteroids or moons, needs to adhere to a strict internal protoocl which needs to ensure that no biological contamination is brought in from Earth. This is a vital preparatory step before the launch of a spacecraft, especially if the later in cause is sent for a life

Worms show that Mars colonization is possible

There are numerous challenges that come with outer Earth colonization of distant planets like Mars, or our neighboring moon, and one of the major issues scientists have addressed is reproduction. Part of a  recently published study, scientists have tracked the development of worm cultures in space in an experiment designed to study how micro-gravity and radiation has affected them. Back in 2006, researchers blasted

Watch the Mars rover launch LIVE this Saturday [video stream]

On November 26, after countless delays, budget overruns and buckets of sweat, humankind’s most capable machine of landing on and traveling through the red planet will finally touch base and launch towards its ambitious destination. The Curiosity rover‘s lift off is currently scheduled for 10:02 a.m. EST, this Saturday. Also known as the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL), the Curiosity rover will

Russia’s Phobos probe is alive! Contact established with the failed Russian craft

Two weeks ago, panic engulfed the Russian space agency after one of its dearest project, the  $170 million Phobos-Grunt mission, which was set to land on Mars’ moon Phobos, collect samples and then return to moon, got stranded in orbit, completely blocked off from any kind of communication. Valiant efforts were made to restore the craft, but in vain. However, just

NASA Curiosity Mars Rover will pave the way for the search for life

After a two year delay, almost a decade of planning, and several budget overruns, NASA’s proudest rover, Curiosity, is finally good to go. The car sized vehicle is twice as big and holds twice as much instruments as its predecessors, including a drill that will allow it to bore deep into the red planet’s rocks. Curiosity, the center of NASA’s

The past and future of space exploration at the ‘Beyond Planet Earth’ exhibit

This year, mankind celebrated 50 years of space exploration since Yuri Gagarin‘s pioneering flight around Earth’s orbit, however the American Museum of Natural History  is more concerned to set its eyes towards future, once with the opening of its new “Beyond Planet Earth” exhibit, which features tomorrow’s space age wonders, as well as relics from the old space programs. Colonies on

Russia struggles to fix Grunt Phobos mission

The drama continues for the Russian Grunt mission, which had the purpose of going to Phobos and extracting samples. The mission was supposed to launch, go to Mars, orbit it for a few months, then land on Phobos, extract samples of soil and rocks, then lift back up and return to Earth. However, the mission, as well as the Russian

The Mars curse strikes again: Russian Phobos mission gets stuck on Earth’s orbit

Just yesterday I was telling you about an extremely ambitious and admirable mission planned by the Russian, which has the purpose of extracting samples from Phobos, a moon of Mars. However, the mission seems to face some serious problems right after launch. According to Russian officials, the probe is currently stuck in orbit and engineers have three days to solve