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Scientists confirm that strange streaks on the Red Planet are formed by flowing water.The holy grail of space exploration is to find extraterrestrial life. An important precursor to that is finding liquid water—and that's exactly what NASA today announced scientists have discovered on Mars.

The new images don't actually show flowing water, which doesn't last long on the Martian surface. It evaporates quickly, and the thin atmosphere wicks it up and away. The orbiter collects its data at about 3 p.m. Mars time. That's a bad time for watching water, because the relative humidity is so low. Eight hours earlier or later, the scientists may have caught the water itself, Ojha said.
Instead, what's left are these patches of freshly hydrated salts, which bond with molecular water whenever it's around, leaving dark streaks. That's what Ojha and colleagues see in the images, and how they know there's water on Mars. It's locked in these salts, and couldn't be there without some recent influx.

. "There were these stark, linear, narrow features forming" all over the planet, Ojha said, "and they were only forming when the temperature was ideal for liquid water." In the Martian winter, the features, called "recurring slope lineae," disappeared.
 

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The average temperature on Mars is a frigid -80 degrees Fahrenheit, but on a summer day near the equator, the temperature can reach up to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Ojha and his team speculated that when conditions are warm enough, liquid water filled with perchlorates — a type of salt — flow downhill on the planet's sloping geological features. Together, water and perchlorates form a brine solution, which has a much lower freezing point than water. This allows the brine to stay in a liquid state even when temperatures grow colder. Ultimately, the streaks are the leftover salt deposits from these briny flows, Ojha believed.
The new study published today offers direct evidence that liquid water is indeed involved. Using the MRO's imaging spectrometer, the researchers studied the chemical makeup of the recurring slope lineae. The visible-infrared spectrometer, which can determine the composition of minerals by observing them in different light wavelengths, showed that the dark streaks were indeed composed of hydrated salts that have molecular water in their crystal structure. "What that seems to be telling us is that water plays a key role in the formation mechanism of these features

The water also may be from a subsurface reservoir of ice that turns into liquid when it comes in contact with the salts. There's even the possibility of an aquifer that is generating the water needed for the briny flows. Whatever the source, Ojha said the evidence is unambiguous proof that liquid water exists on Mars. And if so, that strengthens the possibility of finding microbial life on the Red Planet.
 

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there's likely water and other things we can't see or know
of on mars and other planets as well. we base our science
and "facts" off of what we see here on earth, and about
half of that is hypothesis.
 

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Scibaer said:
Scientists confirm that strange streaks on the Red Planet are formed by flowing water.The holy grail of space exploration is to find extraterrestrial life. An important precursor to that is finding liquid water—and that's exactly what NASA today announced scientists have discovered on Mars.
Life creates life, water does not create life.
To say otherwise is noting more that idealist wishful thinking.

They speak as if this is an absolute but all it is is a semi-educated guess.

Okur moon could possibly serve a purpose to serve this world.
Going to Mars is a huge waste of money and people will die before any one gets there and back.

As scientist, in NASA, said years ago, it would be easier to launch for Mars from the moon than from Earth but all this is political grandstanding with little purpose other than that and spending tax payers money on their favorite project of the week.
 

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Bob said:
Scibaer said:
Scientists confirm that strange streaks on the Red Planet are formed by flowing water.The holy grail of space exploration is to find extraterrestrial life. An important precursor to that is finding liquid water—and that's exactly what NASA today announced scientists have discovered on Mars.
Life creates life, water does not create life.
To say otherwise is noting more that idealist wishful thinking.

They speak as if this is an absolute but all it is is a semi-educated guess.

Okur moon could possibly serve a purpose to serve this world.
Going to Mars is a huge waste of money and people will die before any one gets there and back.

As scientist, in NASA, said years ago, it would be easier to launch for Mars from the moon than from Earth but all this is political grandstanding with little purpose other than that and spending tax payers money on their favorite project of the week.
The moon is easier to launch from only if you are comparing launches from the surface AND have the capability of manufacturing the ships components on the moon. Otherwise, assembling and launching the ship in orbit is the easiest.

As far as exploration being a waste, we will either get off this planet in the next century or our civilization will stagnate and die off due to overpopulation and lack of resources.
 

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But we do have our probes and machines, we are getting very good at that just look how far the drones have come in just a few years. I think our Rovers on Mars have done an outstanding job going much farther than was expected of them. I agree with you Bob as far as humans we should be focusing on the moon.
Let our machines deal with Mars at least until we get our act together. The year long trip getting there in confinement is going to put a heavy toll on any human, they might end up bouncing off the walls.
Not to mention all the provisions that a ship would have to carry as well as life support for a year each way.


Provisions would have to be sent there ahead of the ships arrival, for the stay there and the trip back.
What about being weightless for an entire year? The test we have done show once the astronauts come back into gravity they can can barely walk, and that wasn't for no year. That's two years in weightlessness we have no idea what that's going to do to the human body. I firmly believe it's going to be robotics that make these first trips and others think that as well. We are getting good at robotics, in fact we are a lot more advanced in that field than we are with anything related to sending humans to Mars.
 

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Bob said:
Scibaer said:
water does not 'create' life but it allows a place for life to have foothold.
Which arrives from where, magic land?
I don't trust anything NASA says about this. They have a long history of crackpot ideas that were highly speculative to begin with and were wrong, and were clearly just attempts at getting publicity. We've seen variations on this water story before and it's always been related to wind.
 

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Unless we conduct suicide missions like some scientist have suggested we do. That's a one way ride where the ones we send do not come back. Everything they would need to survive for the rest of their lives is sent in advance. They construct a HAB, and try to grow food. What they would ever need could be sent to them in smaller less expensive vehicles. In other words they become Martians.
 

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As far as exploration being a waste, we will either get off this planet in the next century or our civilization will stagnate and die off due to overpopulation and lack of resources.



That's what I think the underlying reason is, colonisation. Terra forming, and we do now have the ability to do that, on paper. But our species is at its best with exploration and expansion. There is no room for that anymore on this planet only taking from what others have through wars or massive immigration.
This was the theme of Interstellar the earth was already dieing. Only corn had survived.
 

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What a coincidence - the NASA announcement just happens to come at the same time of the release of the movie "The Martian"! And the director of the movie is quoted as saying he saw these NASA pictures two weeks ago. Coincidence my ............!!!


Think about this for a minute. NASA is saying this "water" comes out of the ground and evaporates. Well, where does it go? It can't just go out into space, even the thin atmosphere of mars would prevent that. NASA apparently has no evidence of rain or snow. So, I guess we're supposed to think it's just magic and disappears!


Assuming Mars is trillions of years old (who knows how old) it could only contain so much water and if it continuously leaks, and the water "disappears" then explain how there is still any water left inside???


Even if it is true there is water that doesn't mean there was ever any life there.


Nope, this is nothing more than government hyperbole. A bunch of scientists interpreting some pictures and making a WAG about what they're seeing, with no scientific proof whatsoever to back up their claims.
 

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Spruce somethings up and I think it's more than just the agency wanting to boost funding. There was a site promoting suicide missions but it was bogus, now NASA is actually mentioning it.
All this is right on the heels of what we were talking about a month ago. And they are saying there is more to come once they validate their findings like with the water. Curiosity hasnt moved from where it was a month ago it's only going in circles taking readings.


I think NASA is coming clean on what it's known for some time. Not the ghost lady but they are still investigating the crab thing there was something there the pic didn't lie. And it wasn't there the day after.
But is that any reason to be talking about suicide missions, to go get a crab?
 

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spruce said:
Think about this for a minute. NASA is saying this "water" comes out of the ground and evaporates. Well, where does it go? It can't just go out into space, even the thin atmosphere of mars would prevent that.

we dont know that the thin atmospheric conditions of mars would or would not allow it to just gas off into space
until some testing and experimenting is done, no one can say one way or the other really

mars gets extremely cold and can get upwards of 70 `C at the equator .. with temp fluctuations like that , the atmosphere would be very dynamic and full of possibilities
 

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Bob said:
Bear said:
As far as exploration being a waste, we will either get off this planet in the next century or our civilization will stagnate and die off due to overpopulation and lack of resources.
War and disease takes care of that problem.
Always has, always will.
No, they haven't. It took until 1800 for the world population to reach 1 billion. The population has exploded to 6 billion since then - in a mere 200 years. The population will easily double, and more likely quadruple in the next century. At some point, there will be more people on this planet than it can sustain, and it will be downhill from there.
 

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Well, NASA even entertaining the idea of suicide missions is dynamic. But it is mentioning it now in passing.
And I'm sure it isn't to chase some ghost lady around or to catch a stupid crab, no it's more than that.
I think it's political, what with Russia saying she is looking into an aggressive Mars program in conjunction with China. It's the same thing we had with the moon race.
Who gets there first and claims it as their own tuff, send a bunch of old codgers up there and claim it as their own even if they die in the process. China is already prepared to go to the moon, they are to launch rovers up there later this year. And where are we?
 

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The actual facts are: they don't know if it's water, cause they admit they haven't actually seen it. They don't even know if the salt is actually salt, and if it holds water or buzzard pee. Their guessin.
 

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we dont know that the thin atmospheric conditions of mars would or would not allow it to just gas off into space
until some testing and experimenting is done, no one can say one way or the other really




Well, if the atmosphere of Mars is that thin, the water vapor would be too heavy to "float". It would just pool at ground level. Well, assuming that gravity works on Mars.
 
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