Martian Soil Is a Lot Like ... Hawaii's?

Curiosity scans soil sample
By Liam Carnahan,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 31, 2012 7:00 AM CDT
This photo provided by NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS, taken Oct. 15, 2012, shows part of the small pit created when Curiosity collected its second scoop of Martian soil at a sandy patch called "Rocknest."   (APPhoto/NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS)

(Newser) – Aloha, Mars! The Curiosity rover has scanned a sample of Martian soil, and the ground composition on the Red Planet isn't all that unlike Hawaii's, reports the BBC. It's not a huge surprise to NASA scientists, who theorized that the soil would be comprised of "materials of volcanic origin," like the Hawaiian islands. Next the rover will look for signs of organic molecules within the soil. That could give clues about whether life ever existed on Mars, or if it's there today. (Click here, here and here to read about other curious Curiosity discoveries.)

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