NASA - "Mars" - Significant Findings News Conference Tomorrow.

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Joseph Howard, Mar 1, 2004.

  1. Joseph Howard

    Joseph Howard Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 1997
    Messages:
    227
    Likes Received:
    0
    FYI---....

    An article about tomorrow's news conference, plus the
    official NASA press release about the conference:

    Have a look at this article on space.com
    http://www.space.com/scienceastronomy/opportunity_evidence_040229.html

    Quote from the article:

    "There is a palpable buzz here at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California that something wonderful is about to happen in the exploration of Mars."


    Press Release...

    Donald Savage
    Headquarters, Washington
    (Phone: 202/358-1547)

    Guy Webster
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.
    (Phone: 818/354-5011)

    March 1, 2004
    NOTE TO EDITORS : N04-038


    NASA Headquarters Mars-Rover Opportunity Press Briefing March 2

    Significant findings from NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity, now exploring Meridiani Planum on Mars, will be announced at a press briefing at 2 p.m. EST, Tuesday, March 2, 2004, at NASA Headquarters, Washington.

    The briefing will originate from the James E. Webb Auditorium, 300 E St., S.W., Washington, and will be carried live on NASA TV with two-way question-and-answer capability for reporters covering the event from participating NASA centers.

    Dr. Ed Weiler, Associate Administrator, Office of Space Science at NASA Headquarters, will make opening remarks. The panelists include:


    Professor Steve Squyres, Mars Exploration Rover (MER) Principal Investigator, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.

    Professor John Grotzinger, MER science team geologist, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Mass.

    Dr. Benton C. Clark III, MER science team member and Chief Scientist of Space Exploration, Lockheed Martin Space Systems Astronautics Operations, Denver

    Dr. Joy Crisp, MER Project Scientist, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif.

    Dr. Jim Garvin, Lead Scientist for Mars and the Moon, NASA Headquarters

    NASA Television is available on AMC-9, transponder 9C, C-Band, located at 85 degrees west longitude. The frequency is 3880.0 MHz. Polarization is vertical, and audio is monaural at 6.80 MHz. Audio of the broadcast will be available on voice circuit at the Kennedy Space Center on 321/867-1220.

    For a live webcast of the briefing and information about NASA TV on the Internet, visit: http://www.nasa.gov/ntv


     
  2. Alex-C

    Alex-C Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2000
    Messages:
    1,238
    Likes Received:
    0
    Well, its pretty obvious what they plan to report:

    Elvis has been found and is doing well.
     
  3. Craig S

    Craig S Producer

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2000
    Messages:
    5,727
    Likes Received:
    199
    Location:
    League City, Texas
    Real Name:
    Craig Seanor
    Water, life - they found Nemo. [​IMG]

    Seriously - looking forward to this one.
     
  4. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2000
    Messages:
    3,185
    Likes Received:
    0
    They found the British Beagle.
     
  5. Bill Williams

    Bill Williams Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 28, 2003
    Messages:
    1,699
    Likes Received:
    0
    Maybe they'll find Jimmy Hoffa there, too?
     
  6. BrettB

    BrettB Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2001
    Messages:
    3,019
    Likes Received:
    0
    "something wonderful is about to happen"

    Sounds like something from 2010.
    (My sincere apologies to Jack[​IMG])
     
  7. Casey Trowbridg

    Casey Trowbridg Lead Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2003
    Messages:
    9,209
    Likes Received:
    0
    People, people, the announcement is that they have found silica on Mars.

    Also, they found the hide out of Lord Helmet.
     
  8. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 1999
    Messages:
    16,738
    Likes Received:
    129
    No apologies needed, Brett. This time. [​IMG]

    The announcement concerns the presence of water past and present, according to everything I've been reading.

    But let's fantasize for a moment: Suppose Opportunity, with its high-resolution microscopic camera, captured something similar to what scientists found in AH00084, the so-called "Martian meteorite" that made headlines back in 1996? Wouldn't conclusive proof of microbiological activity -- again, past or present -- be absolutely stunning?
     
  9. Bryan X

    Bryan X Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2003
    Messages:
    3,469
    Likes Received:
    3

    I find it hard to believe that they found Silica on Mars. Everyone knows that Mars is red because it's made of Salsa. If there was Silica anywhere near Mars, the planet would just suddenly cease to exist.
     
  10. Christ Reynolds

    Christ Reynolds Producer

    Joined:
    May 6, 2002
    Messages:
    3,597
    Likes Received:
    0
    Real Name:
    CJ
    actually, you are both right. since silica absorbs moisture, they found a bunch of silica that had absorbed water.

    CJ
     
  11. Bill Williams

    Bill Williams Screenwriter

    Joined:
    May 28, 2003
    Messages:
    1,699
    Likes Received:
    0

    To quote the immortal Bard, Jerry Seinfeld:

    That's because we like to say salsa! "Do you have some salsa? I want some salsa! Pass me the salsa!" [​IMG]
     
  12. Nathan*W

    Nathan*W Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2001
    Messages:
    1,076
    Likes Received:
    2
    Real Name:
    Nathan
    The moon's made out of cheese.

    Mars is made out of salsa.

    Find me the tortilla chip planet and you got yerself somethin'.[​IMG]
     
  13. Kevin M

    Kevin M Producer

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2000
    Messages:
    5,172
    Likes Received:
    2
    I thought they had finally found the giant psychic grasshoppers who created us.......
     
  14. Danny Tse

    Danny Tse Producer

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2000
    Messages:
    3,185
    Likes Received:
    0
  15. Steve Christou

    Steve Christou Long Member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2000
    Messages:
    15,709
    Likes Received:
    381
    Location:
    Manchester, England
    Real Name:
    Steve Christou
    MARS DISCOVERY SHLOCKER

    The frozen remains of Tim Robbins?

    An Illudium Pu-36 Explosive Space Modulator still in working condition?
     
  16. Peter Kline

    Peter Kline Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 1999
    Messages:
    2,393
    Likes Received:
    0
    From NASA/JPL website:

    March 02, 2004

    Opportunity Rover Finds Strong Evidence Meridiani Planum Was Wet

    Scientists have concluded the part of Mars that NASA's Opportunity rover is exploring was soaking wet in the past.

    Evidence the rover found in a rock outcrop led scientists to the conclusion. Clues from the rocks' composition, such as the presence of sulfates, and the rocks' physical appearance, such as niches where crystals grew, helped make the case for a watery history.

    "Liquid water once flowed through these rocks. It changed their texture, and it changed their chemistry," said Dr. Steve Squyres of Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., principal investigator for the science instruments on Opportunity and its twin, Spirit. "We've been able to read the tell-tale clues the water left behind, giving us confidence in that conclusion."

    Dr. James Garvin, lead scientist for Mars and lunar exploration at NASA Headquarters, Washington, said, "NASA launched the Mars Exploration Rover mission specifically to check whether at least one part of Mars ever had a persistently wet environment that could possibly have been hospitable to life. Today we have strong evidence for an exciting answer: Yes."

    Opportunity has more work ahead. It will try to determine whether, besides being exposed to water after they formed, the rocks may have originally been laid down by minerals precipitating out of solution at the bottom of a salty lake or sea.

    The first views Opportunity sent of its landing site in Mars' Meridiani Planum region five weeks ago delighted researchers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., because of the good fortune to have the spacecraft arrive next to an exposed slice of bedrock on the inner slope of a small crater.

    The robotic field geologist has spent most of the past three weeks surveying the whole outcrop, and then turning back for close-up inspection of selected portions. The rover found a very high concentration of sulfur in the outcrop with its alpha particle X-ray spectrometer, which identifies chemical elements in a sample.
    "The chemical form of this sulfur appears to be in magnesium, iron or other sulfate salts," said Dr. Benton Clark of Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver. "Elements that can form chloride or even bromide salts have also been detected."

    At the same location, the rover's Mössbauer spectrometer, which identifies iron-bearing minerals, detected a hydrated iron sulfate mineral called jarosite. Germany provided both the alpha particle X-ray spectrometer and the Mössbauer spectrometer. Opportunity's miniature thermal emission spectrometer has also provided evidence for sulfates.

    On Earth, rocks with as much salt as this Mars rock either have formed in water or, after formation, have been highly altered by long exposures to water. Jarosite may point to the rock's wet history having been in an acidic lake or an acidic hot springs environment.

    The water evidence from the rocks' physical appearance comes in at least three categories, said Dr. John Grotzinger, sedimentary geologist from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge: indentations called "vugs," spherules and crossbedding.

    Pictures from the rover's panoramic camera and microscopic imager reveal the target rock, dubbed "El Capitan," is thoroughly pocked with indentations about a centimeter (0.4 inch) long and one-fourth or less that wide, with apparently random orientations. This distinctive texture is familiar to geologists as the sites where crystals of salt minerals form within rocks that sit in briny water. When the crystals later disappear, either by erosion or by dissolving in less-salty water, the voids left behind are called vugs, and in this case they conform to the geometry of possible former evaporite minerals.

    Round particles the size of BBs are embedded in the outcrop. From shape alone, these spherules might be formed from volcanic eruptions, from lofting of molten droplets by a meteor impact, or from accumulation of minerals coming out of solution inside a porous, water-soaked rock. Opportunity's observations that the spherules are not concentrated at particular layers in the outcrop weigh against a volcanic or impact origin, but do not completely rule out those origins.

    Layers in the rock that lie at an angle to the main layers, a pattern called crossbedding, can result from the action of wind or water. Preliminary views by Opportunity hint the crossbedding bears hallmarks of water action, such as the small scale of the crossbedding and possible concave patterns formed by sinuous crestlines of underwater ridges.

    The images obtained to date are not adequate for a definitive answer. So scientists plan to maneuver Opportunity closer to the features for a better look. "We have tantalizing clues, and we're planning to evaluate this possibility in the near future," Grotzinger said.

    JPL, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the Mars Exploration Rover project for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington.
     
  17. Joe Szott

    Joe Szott Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2002
    Messages:
    1,962
    Likes Received:
    0
    Pretty Sweet! Hopefully NASA can get a nice budget increase to properly explore these findings.
     
  18. Peter Kline

    Peter Kline Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 1999
    Messages:
    2,393
    Likes Received:
    0
    Dr. Squyres said they need to get some of the rocks back here on earth in the future. I believe they have plans to do that eventually.
     
  19. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 1999
    Messages:
    16,738
    Likes Received:
    129
    Well, NASA's budget request for fiscal 2005 is already being boosted to past $16 billion per request of the White House (as part of the new space-policy initiative).
     

Share This Page