|dethalternate||Date: Tuesday, 17-December-2013, 8:33 PM | Message # 1|
-- dragon lord--
Dutch space firm Mars One have taken the first step in their goal of building a commercial, permanent base on Mars. The company have announced that they have teamed up with Surrey Satellite Technologies Ltd and Lockheed Martin to build a communications orbiter and lander which will attempt to extract water from the Martian soil. The company says it plans to have the craft launched by 2018 in preparation for a manned mission in 2025.
Nasa's Mars Science Laboratory, better known as the Curiosity rover, has found what appears to be a freshwater lake in the gale crater. The 31 by three mile lake survived until at least 70 million years ago, much more recently than it was thought Mars could support stable water. It's also thought the lake could contain organic compounds -- the basic building blocks of life, but that they may have been destroyed by catalysing chemicals when analysed in Curiosity's on-board oven.
It's a bit of a Mars special on this week's 90 Second Science. First up, Nasa's Curiosity rover has found what appears to be a life-friendly lake bed, filled with fresh, liquid water until just 70 million years ago, and possibly containing organic materials. Next, we take a look at Mars One, who have just announced that Surrey Satellites and Lockheed Martin will build their first lander and orbiter, due for launch in 2018. And finally, a new study suggests that life forms could have been blasted off Earth following major asteroid impacts in the last 3.5 billion years, and spread to Mars, and even the moons of Jupiter.