Mars

NASA hit with lawsuit for not realizing Mars mystery rock is really an alien mushroom

NASA hit with lawsuit for not realizing Mars mystery rock is really an alien mushroom

NASA, busy developing cutting edge technologies and exploring the dark unknown corners of the vast universe, has been hit with a quite unusual lawsuit by Rhawn Joseph of the Journal of Cosmology. The reason? He claims the mystery rock that appeared on Mars earlier this month is, in fact, a mushroom and that NASA has failed in its duties to recognize it as such.

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Mars mystery rock analysis shows unusual composition following sudden appearance

Mars mystery rock analysis shows unusual composition following sudden appearance

The NASA rover Opportunity sent back a couple of surprising images from Mars last week, both of which were taken with its Pancam, revealing the rather sudden appearance of a small rock. Researchers were surprised at the quick change, and though they offered a couple possible explanations, an investigation was kicked off to try and determine how it happened. Fast-forward through the weekend, and an analysis has offered a new surprise: the chemical composition is unlike anything previously analyzed on the Red Planet.

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Mars rock appears out of seemingly nowhere in Opportunity rover image

Mars rock appears out of seemingly nowhere in Opportunity rover image

A few NASA rovers have been working their way through the Red Planet, each working to expand scientists' knowledge of Mars and its history. As part of this, large quantities of images are taken and shuttled back to Earth, where researchers analyze them. Recently, the rover Opportunity sent back two images of the same area that had one surprising difference: the sudden appearance of a rock that hadn't been there shortly before.

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Mars hit with thousands of Earth rocks possibly containing life following asteroid impact

Mars hit with thousands of Earth rocks possibly containing life following asteroid impact

Mars has been a playground for NASA's various robots and missions, and it was back in March that the Curiosity rover found evidence of conditions for habitable life, something that has cropped up in various degrees since then. According to some US researchers, it is possible that rocks containing life could have been blasted, so to speak, to the Red Planet from the Chicxulub impact that took out the dinosaurs and many other strikes.

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Life on Mars: Curiosity sends back first rock datings

Life on Mars: Curiosity sends back first rock datings

This week the NASA folks behind the Curiosity Mars rover mission have published a set of papers which suggest that they're closer than ever to finding habitable environments on the planet. These findings are pre-emptive in finding actual organic materials, and show how life could maybe, possibly have existed on Mars at one time. Basically the scientists on this project have said they're confident that there's a possibility of life at this point without literally saying they've found that life outright.

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Mars flyby mission aiming for 2017 launch, says Dennis Tito

Mars flyby mission aiming for 2017 launch, says Dennis Tito

Back in February, Dennis Tito revealed his ambitious plan to send a married couple on a flyby mission to Mars, something he has detailed today to members of Congress in a push to get the US government on board (figuratively speaking). Despite the science fiction-esque sound of it all, Tito says that the project can take place within the next couple of years rather than decades, and that he is aiming for December 2017.

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NASA’s “MAVEN” Mars orbiter launched without a hitch

NASA’s “MAVEN” Mars orbiter launched without a hitch

NASA's Mars orbiter MAVEN launched successfully today from Cape Canaveral, Florida at 1:28PM EST. Once it arrives in orbit around the Red Planet, the Mars Atmosphere and Volatile EvolutioN orbiter will gather data about Mars' upper atmosphere to try and discover how exactly the planet got to be so dry and atmosphere-poor. Earlier probes suggest the planet used to be much more like Earth in terms of moisture and atmosphere thickness.

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Indian Mars probe engine issues resolved

Indian Mars probe engine issues resolved

India launched its first mission to Mars earlier this month in an attempt to become the fourth nation on the planet to reach Mars. Shortly after launch, India's Mars spacecraft encountered engine problems that prevented mission controllers from placing the spacecraft into the desired orbit. The engine problem had to do with the primary and secondary coils inside the engine that were unable to fire at the same time.

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NASA MAVEN probe to launch Nov 18

NASA MAVEN probe to launch Nov 18

NASA announced in February of this year that assembly had completed on its MAVEN spacecraft that was set to travel to Mars. The spacecraft was built by Lockheed Martin and the completion of its construction opened the door for the spacecraft to launch this month. The MAVEN mission is set to launch November 18.

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India’s Mars spacecraft encounters engine problems

India’s Mars spacecraft encounters engine problems

Earlier this month we mentioned that India had launched a mission to send a spacecraft to Mars. India is attempting to become the fourth nation on earth to send a spacecraft to the red planet. Other countries have tried and failed to reach Mars. While India was able to successfully put its spacecraft in orbit, the mission has now hit a snag.

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India to launch mission to Mars this week

India to launch mission to Mars this week

India wants to become the fourth nation or group of nations on the planet to reach Mars. India plans to launch a spacecraft called Mangalyaan, which means "Mars Craft" in Hindi. If successful, India will become the fourth nation to reach the red planet behind the Soviet Union, US, and a European conglomerate of countries.

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Curiosity Rover finds no evidence of methane on Mars

Curiosity Rover finds no evidence of methane on Mars

One of the main goals of putting the rover Curiosity on the surface of Mars was to help determine if the planet could've harbored life in the past, or perhaps still has life on its surface or under. Prior to putting Curiosity on the surface of the red planet, measurements taken from Earth and by orbiting satellites and sensors suggested that methane might be present on the surface of Mars.

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