NEWS ABOUT: Mars

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NASA Tries to Explain Mars 'Mystery Light'

Vent hole, shiny rock could have caused it

(Newser) - NASA has offered a few more explanations for a strange beam of light spotted in a photo from its Curiosity rover—and none of them involve Martians. The bright spot that has excited UFO enthusiasts is probably either "the glint from a rock surface reflecting the sun" or sunlight... More »

'Mystery Light' Spotted in Mars Photo

NASA says blip was caused by cosmic rays

(Newser) - Is there life on Mars—and has it left its lights on? A strange blip of light in a photo snapped April 3 by NASA's Curiosity rover has excited UFO enthusiasts, the Houston Chronicle reports. While experts suspect a pixel problem, some believe the light shining upward signals Martians.... More »

Mars Gets Up Close, Personal With Earth

Red planet is closest it's been to us since 2007

(Newser) - The red planet is coming in for a close-up with our night sky: As Sky & Telescope reports, Mars will be closer to Earth this month than it's been since the end of 2007, appearing bigger and brighter in the night sky for the middle two weeks of April.... More »

Astronomers: No, You Can't Name Mars Craters

IAU won't recognize paid-for names

(Newser) - A plan to raise money by selling the names of Mars' craters has hit a snag: the organization in charge of naming craters on Mars and most other features in our solar system. The International Astronomical Union says Uwingu—a commercial venture that aims to raise money for space research—... More »

Imams Forbid Muslims From Traveling to Mars

Fatwa in UAE likens it to suicide

(Newser) - Muslims in the United Arab Emirates hoping to colonize the red planet have had their hopes dashed by the country's General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowment, which has issued a fatwa against them doing that very thing. The group was specifically concerned about the one-way trip to Mars... More »

NASA Lays to Rest Mars' Rock Mystery

Rover kicked it into camera's view, says NASA

(Newser) - Remember when the weird "jelly doughnut" object on Mars made news last month? NASA scientists were happily baffled after it suddenly appeared in images taken by the Opportunity rover. They're baffled no more: Scientists today said they're sure that the object is indeed a rock that got... More »

This Is What Earth Looks Like From Mars

Curiosity rover photographs our planet

(Newser) - The Mars rover Curiosity paused last week to take a photo of its home planet, and NASA points out that Earth is "shining brighter than any star in the Martian light." If you look carefully—one of the images provides help—you can pick out the moon just... More »

NASA Sued Over Mystery Mars Rock

Critic thinks it's a sign of life, wants a more thorough investigation

(Newser) - NASA says it's a rock, a weird one for sure, but "clearly a rock." One critic, however, thinks it just might be evidence of life on Mars, and he's sued the space agency to demand a closer investigation, reports the Houston Chronicle . The strangeness began last... More »

1K Make First Cut for One-Way Trip to Mars

297 Americans among the chosen

(Newser) - In the end, more than 200,000 people applied, but just 1,058 candidates got an email Monday letting them know they're still in the running for a one-way ticket to Mars . The Mars One project to send average Joes to colonize the red planet has narrowed down its... More »

Mars Rover Finds Evidence of 'Very Earth-Like' Lake

It might have supported life for millions of years

(Newser) - The Curiosity rover has discovered evidence of an ancient freshwater lake on Mars that was brimming with the key chemicals necessary to support microbial life, and its findings suggest that it could have held that life more recently than we thought—and possibly for millions of years before that. "... More »

NASA Launches Robotic Mission to Mars

Maven will investigate red planet's loss of wet atmosphere

(Newser) - NASA's newest robotic explorer, Maven, rocketed toward Mars today on a quest to unravel the ancient mystery of the red planet's radical climate change. The Maven spacecraft is due at Mars next fall following a journey of more than 440 million miles. Scientists want to know why Mars... More »

Latest Entry in Race to Mars: India

Country could be 4th to get to red planet

(Newser) - It may soon get a little more crowded around Mars: India has successfully launched a spacecraft headed for the red planet, putting the country a 300-day journey away from being the fourth space agency to get there, the BBC reports. The Mars Orbiter Mission took off from a base on... More »

Supervolcanoes May Have Rocked Early Mars

Scientists find huge craters that don't look like asteroid strikes

(Newser) - It’s been a busy few weeks for Mars news: the discovery of water in the soil , the news that there’s less and less evidence for current life , and now a new theory that the planet might be home to some of nature’s most destructive volcanoes. We already... More »

We've Found Water on Mars—a 'Surprising Amount'

Two pints per cubic foot of soil, to be exact

(Newser) - If you hear a dull roar, it's probably just the collective scream of science buffs the world over. NASA's Curiosity rover has found water in Mars' soil, and the BBC describes it as a "surprising amount." The find occurred at the hands of Curiosity, which scooped... More »

Rover Curiosity Deflates Hopes of Life on Mars

It can't find any trace of methane

(Newser) - If there are any little green men on Mars, or at least little green microbes, the Mars rover Curiosity can't find any trace of them. NASA reported today that a series of tests turned up no signs of telltale methane, reports Space.com . The results are especially disappointing given... More »

Study Suggests Earth Life Began on Mars

Building blocks of life may have arrived via meteorite: scientist

(Newser) - Were our earliest ancestors Martians? A new study suggests that all life on Earth may have originated on the Red Planet, the BBC reports. That's because Mars would have had plenty of the minerals that are best at forging RNA, which is one of the key components of life... More »

Turns Out, People Aren't So Eager to Go to Mars

Mars One project doesn't get application numbers it hoped

(Newser) - Mars One, the heavily-hyped private expedition to Mars planned for 2023, hasn't quite found as many people willing to leave Earth forever as it had hoped. The project had expected 1 million people to jump at the chance to colonize the red planet; instead, just 165,000 applied, Space.... More »

Aging Mars Rover May Have Made Its Best Find

Rocks full of likely clay minerals point to water

(Newser) - It's been more than nine years, but the Mars rover Opportunity just made a discovery that ranks among its biggest. The rover has discovered rock in the Endeavour Crater that's full of what appear to be clay minerals—suggesting it had extended contact with water, the BBC reports.... More »

'Space Ark' Returns, With Lots of Dead Animals

Few mice survive month in orbit aboard Russian capsule

(Newser) - The first Russian critter on Mars likely won't be a mouse, if the results of a month-long "space ark" mission are anything to go by. A capsule containing 45 mice, along with eight gerbils, 15 newts, crayfish, snails, and other small animals, landed yesterday with more than half... More »

Colbert: NASA's Penis Doodle Proves Our Cosmic Might

He discusses NASA's latest 'feat'

(Newser) - The United States has its problems, but Stephen Colbert thinks that NASA's latest feat clearly shows America's cosmic might—that feat being an image of a penis left on Mars. The Internet erupted after a photo of the seemingly phallic track patterns the Curiosity rover left in the... More »

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