10 Years Since Landing, NASA’s Curiosity Mars Rover Still Has Drive – NASA Mars Exploration

10 Years Since Landing, NASA’s Curiosity Mars Rover Still Has Drive – NASA Mars Exploration

Despite signs of wear, the intrepid spacecraft is about to start an exciting new chapter of its mission as it climbs a Martian mountain. Ten years ago today, a jetpack lowered NASA’s Curiosity rover onto the Red Planet, beginning the SUV-size explorer’s pursuit of evidence that, billions of years ago, Mars had the conditions needed … Read more

JWST to reveal chemistry of ancient galaxies, is taking data for first of six Carnegie-led projects

JWST to reveal chemistry of ancient galaxies, is taking data for first of six Carnegie-led projects

Pasadena, CA— The first of six projects led by Carnegie-affiliated astronomers will, for the next three days, use the James Webb Space Telescope to make some of the most-accurate measurements ever taken of the chemistry of very early galaxies—studying light that traveled 10 billion years to reach us. Carnegie’s Gwen Rudie and Allison Strom, formerly … Read more

Life Helps Make Almost Half of All Minerals on Earth

Life Helps Make Almost Half of All Minerals on Earth

“Each one of those kinds of pyrite is telling us something different about our planet, its origin, about life, and how it’s changed through time,” said Hazen. For that reason, the new papers classify minerals by “kind,” a term that Hazen and Morrison define as a combination of the mineral species with its mechanism of … Read more

Why the Search for Life on Mars Is Happening in Canada’s Arctic

Why the Search for Life on Mars Is Happening in Canada’s Arctic

Only the hardiest organisms can thrive in one of the coldest springs on earth. That’s why in the summers of 2017 and 2019, Lyle Whyte took a helicopter to Lost Hammer Spring in the unpopulated High Arctic region of Nunavut, Canada. Snow, ice, salt tufa, rocks, and permafrost surround the unassuming spring, which is nestled … Read more

Life on Venus unlikely, says new study. Aim …

Life on Venus unlikely, says new study.  Aim …

False-color view of Venus (to bring out details) from Japan’s Akatsuki orbiter. A new study suggests that biology – at least as we know it – can’t explain the sulfur dioxide anomalies in the planet’s atmosphere. Life on Venus – in its atmosphere – may therefore be unlikely. Image via JAXA/ ISAS/ Akatsuki Project Team/ … Read more

Perseverance Now Selects its Own Targets to Zap

Perseverance Now Selects its Own Targets to Zap

Perseverance has continued into Hawksbill Gap, making remote sensing observations of small portions of outcropping rock layers in search of a good place to collect a sample. Since Perseverance is in the Shenandoah quadrangle, we are using target names from Shenandoah National Park. Some of the names this past week included “Bald_Face_Mountain,” “Little_Devil_Stairs,” “Sunset_Hill,” “Luck_Hollow,” … Read more

Greenland Ice, Jupiter Moon Share Similar Feature – NASA’s Europa Clipper

Greenland Ice, Jupiter Moon Share Similar Feature – NASA’s Europa Clipper

Parallel ice ridges, a common feature on Jupiter’s moon Europa, are found on Greenland’s ice sheet – and could bode well for Europa’s potential habitability. Parallel ice ridges in Greenland bear a striking resemblance to ridges on Jupiter’s ice-encased moon Europa, suggesting the moon’s icy shell could be riddled with pockets of water. This similarity … Read more