Mars

Mars News -- ScienceDaily Planet Mars News. Read astronomy articles on how Mars could have once supported life, the Mars Rover and more. See images and read full-text articles on Mars exploration.

  • The threat of Centaurs for the Earth
    on October 9, 2018 at 2:24 pm

    Astrophysicists have investigated the long-term path development of Centaurs -- small icy bodies that orbit the Sun between Jupiter and Neptune. […]

  • Experimental Martian dirt: $20 a kilogram, plus shipping
    on September 28, 2018 at 8:22 pm

    A team of astrophysicists has developed a scientifically based, standardized method for creating Martian and asteroid soil known as simulants. […]

  • Software finds the best way to stick a Mars landing
    on September 27, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    Researchers have developed a software tool for computer-aided discovery that could help mission planners make these decisions. It automatically produces maps of favorable landing sites, using the available data on Mars' geology and terrain, as well as a list of scientific priorities and engineering constraints that a user can specify. […]

  • How a tiny Curiosity motor identified a massive Martian dust storm
    on September 26, 2018 at 6:07 pm

    When dust filled the Martian atmosphere during the recent planet-wide dust storm, observations were plentiful -- even from unlikely instruments. […]

  • Martian moon may have come from impact on home planet
    on September 24, 2018 at 6:40 pm

    Phobos, the larger of Mars' two tiny satellites, is the darkest moon in the solar system. This dark aspect inspired the hypothesis that the close-orbiting moon may be a captured asteroid, but its orbital dynamics seemed to disagree. A new study suggests Phobos' composition may be more like the volcanic crust of the Red Planet than it appears, consistent with an origin for the moon in an ancient, violent impact on Mars. […]

  • Ancient Mars had right conditions for underground life, new research suggests
    on September 24, 2018 at 2:20 pm

    A new study shows that the breakdown of water molecules trapped in ancient Martian rocks likely produced enough chemical energy to sustain microorganisms for hundreds of millions of years beneath the Red Planet's surface. […]

  • Curiosity rover surveys a mystery under dusty Martian skies
    on September 7, 2018 at 9:56 pm

    NASA's Curiosity rover recently surveyed its surroundings on Mars, producing a 360-degree panorama of its current location on Vera Rubin Ridge. […]

  • Spinning heat shield for future spacecraft
    on August 9, 2018 at 3:25 pm

    A newly developed prototype flexible heat shield for spacecraft could reduce the cost of space travel and even aid future space missions to Mars. […]

  • Mars terraforming not possible using present-day technology
    on July 30, 2018 at 4:03 pm

    Science fiction writers have long featured terraforming, the process of creating an Earth-like or habitable environment on another planet, in their stories. Scientists themselves have proposed terraforming to enable the long-term colonization of Mars. A solution common to both groups is to release carbon dioxide gas trapped in the Martian surface to thicken the atmosphere and act as a blanket to warm the planet. […]

  • New family photos of Mars and Saturn from Hubble
    on July 26, 2018 at 8:10 pm

    In summer 2018 the planets Mars and Saturn are, one after the other, in opposition to Earth. During this event the planets are relatively close to Earth, allowing astronomers to observe them in greater detail. Hubble took advantage of this preferred configuration and imaged both planets to continue its long-standing observation of the outer planets in the solar system. […]

  • Mars Express detects liquid water hidden under planet’s south pole
    on July 26, 2018 at 12:50 pm

    Radar data collected by ESA's Mars Express point to a pond of liquid water buried under layers of ice and dust in the south polar region of Mars. […]

  • Where Martian dust comes from
    on July 24, 2018 at 4:08 pm

    The dust that coats much of the surface of Mars originates largely from a single thousand-kilometer-long geological formation near the Red Planet's equator. […]

  • Mars valleys traced back to precipitation
    on June 28, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    The valley networks of Mars bear a strong resemblance to those found in arid landscapes on Earth. Researchers have been able to demonstrate this using the branching angles of river valley confluences. Based on these observations, they infer that Mars once had a primeval climate in which sporadic heavy precipitation eroded valleys. […]

  • More clues that Earth-like exoplanets are indeed Earth-like
    on June 28, 2018 at 7:17 pm

    Researchers suggest that two Earth-like exoplanets (Kepler-186f and 62f) have very stable axial tilts, much like the Earth, making it likely that each has regular seasons and a stable climate. […]

  • Mars dust storm may lead to new weather discoveries
    on June 28, 2018 at 4:44 pm

    Mars is experiencing an estimated 15.8-million-square-mile dust storm, roughly the size of North and South America. This storm may not be good news for the NASA solar-powered Opportunity rover, but one professor sees this as a chance to learn more about Martian weather. […]

  • Meteorite 'Black Beauty' expands window for when life might have existed on Mars
    on June 28, 2018 at 2:50 pm

    New evidence for a rapid crystallization and crust formation on Mars has just been published. The study, based on the analysis of the rare Mars meteorite Black Beauty, significantly expands the window for when life might have existed on Mars. […]

  • Martian dust storm grows global: Curiosity captures photos of thickening haze
    on June 20, 2018 at 9:09 pm

    A storm of tiny dust particles has engulfed much of Mars over the last two weeks and prompted NASA's Opportunity rover to suspend science operations. But across the planet, NASA's Curiosity rover, which has been studying Martian soil at Gale Crater, is expected to remain largely unaffected by the dust. The Martian dust storm has grown in size and is now officially a 'planet-encircling' (or 'global') dust event. […]

  • Learning about the Himalayas using Mars technology
    on June 20, 2018 at 9:09 pm

    he Himalayan Range includes some of the youngest and most spectacular mountains on Earth, but the rugged landscape that lends it the striking beauty for which it is known can also keep scientists from fully understanding how these mountains formed. […]

  • Explosive volcanoes spawned mysterious Martian rock formation
    on June 18, 2018 at 2:25 pm

    Explosive volcanic eruptions that shot jets of hot ash, rock and gas skyward are the likely source of a mysterious Martian rock formation, a new study finds. The new finding could add to scientists' understanding of Mars's interior and its past potential for habitability, according to the study's authors. […]

  • Minerology on Mars points to a cold and icy ancient climate
    on June 8, 2018 at 4:31 am

    The climate throughout Mars' early history has long been debated -- was the Red Planet warm and wet, or cold and icy? New research published in Icarus provides evidence for the latter. […]

  • NASA finds ancient organic material, mysterious methane on Mars
    on June 7, 2018 at 6:29 pm

    NASA's Curiosity rover has found new evidence preserved in rocks on Mars that suggests the planet could have supported ancient life, as well as new evidence in the Martian atmosphere that relates to the search for current life on the Red Planet. […]

  • New data-mining technique offers most-vivid picture of Martian mineralogy
    on June 6, 2018 at 6:37 pm

    A team of scientists have revealed the mineralogy of Mars at an unprecedented scale, which will help them understand the planet's geologic history and habitability. Understanding the mineralogy of another planet, such as Mars, allows scientists to backtrack and understand the forces that shaped their formation in that location. […]

  • Mars rocks may harbor signs of life from 4 billion years ago
    on May 25, 2018 at 4:32 pm

    Iron-rich rocks near ancient lake sites on Mars could hold vital clues that show life once existed there, research suggests. […]

  • Scientists shrink chemistry lab to seek evidence of life on Mars
    on May 24, 2018 at 9:45 pm

    An international team of scientists has created a tiny chemistry lab for a rover that will drill beneath the Martian surface looking for signs of past or present life. […]

  • Scientists use Dorset, UK, as model to help find traces of life on Mars
    on May 15, 2018 at 12:17 pm

    By studying a stream on the UK coast, experts have calculated how much organic matter we might find on Mars, and where to look. […]

  • Mission to study how Mars was made
    on May 7, 2018 at 3:22 pm

    NASA's Mars Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport (InSight) mission is on a 300-million-mile (483-million-kilometer) trip to Mars to study for the first time what lies deep beneath the surface of the Red Planet. InSight is scheduled to land on the Red Planet around 3 p.m. EST (noon PST) Nov. 26, where it will conduct science operations until Nov. 24, 2020, which equates to one year and 40 days on Mars, or nearly two Earth years. […]

  • Mars growth was stunted by early giant planetary instability
    on May 7, 2018 at 12:48 pm

    An astrophysics team explains why the growth of Mars was stunted by an orbital instability among the outer solar system's giant planets in a new study on the evolution of the young solar system. The study builds on the widely accepted Nice Model, which invokes a planetary instability to explain many peculiar observed aspects of the outer solar system. The research shows how planet accretion (growth) is halted by the outer solar system instability. […]

  • Recent work challenges view of early Mars, picturing a warm desert with occasional rain
    on May 2, 2018 at 1:46 pm

    The climate of early Mars is a subject of debate. A recent study suggests that the early Martian surface may not have been dominated by ice, but instead it may have been modestly warm and prone to rain, with only small patches of ice. […]

  • Microbes living in a toxic volcanic lake could hold clues to possible life on Mars
    on May 2, 2018 at 11:58 am

    Researchers have discovered microbes living in one of the harshest environments on Earth. Their findings could guide scientists looking for signs of ancient life on Mars. […]

  • Clear as mud: Desiccation cracks help reveal the shape of water on Mars
    on April 19, 2018 at 9:26 pm

    As Curiosity rover marches across Mars, the red planet's watery past comes into clearer focus. […]