Mars Scoop May Not Be So 'Earth-Shaking' After All

But it will be 'interesting,' spokesman promises

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 20, 2012 7:23 PM CST

(Newser) – An NPR story about NASA's Mars mission generated lots of attention today because of a big tease from a lead scientist looking at soil samples taken by the Curiosity rover:

  • "This data is gonna be one for the history books. It's looking really good."
But NASA's John Grotzinger couldn't divulge details on the potential discovery because it has yet to be confirmed—we'll have to a wait a few weeks for that.

Might it be bombshell news about the planet's ability to sustain life? Eh, maybe: A subsequent post by Time quotes a NASA spokesman who sounds like he's trying very hard to dampen expectations:

  • “As for history books, the whole mission is for the history books."
  • "It won't be earth-shaking, but it will be interesting."
  • "John was excited about the quality and range of information coming in" on the day of the interview. "He has been similarly excited by results at other points during the mission so far."

This image released by NASA on Aug. 29 shows Curiosity's wheels after it made its third drive on Mars.   (AP Photo/NASA)
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