Tag Archives: carbonate minerals

Mars hasn’t enough CO2 for terraforming

A new study of the quantity of carbon dioxide on Mars has compiled a planet-wide inventory of the CO2 it holds in all its accessible reservoirs: atmosphere, ice, and locked up in surface carbonate rocks and other potential sources. The … Continue reading

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How Mars’ atmosphere lost its carbon

Mars is blanketed by a thin, mostly carbon dioxide atmosphere — one that is far too thin to keep water from freezing or quickly evaporating. However, geological evidence has led scientists to conclude that ancient Mars was once a warmer, … Continue reading

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Tallying up where the Martian carbon went

Scientists may be closer to solving the mystery of how Mars changed from a world with surface water billions of years ago to the arid Red Planet of today. A new analysis of the largest known deposit of carbonate minerals … Continue reading

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ALH84001′s carbonates record ancient climate

A new analysis of a Martian rock that meteorite hunters plucked from an Antarctic ice field 30 years ago this month reveals a record of the planet’s climate billions of years ago, back when water likely washed across its surface … Continue reading

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CRISM: Carbonate minerals near Huygens Crater

Here we see Fe/Ca carbonates (pink) along the southeastern wall of an unnamed crater’s central pit. Because these carbonates are seen in the central pit, it is thought that they were formed in the subsurface (underground) but then brought up … Continue reading

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CRISM: Carbonate minerals in Nili Fossae

This image shows a site near Nili Fossae, a group of long, narrow tectonic depressions called graben, and reveals the presence of hydrated iron-magnesium (green) phyllosilicate and carbonate minerals (shown in yellow). Phyllosilicates, which include clay and clay-like minerals, form … Continue reading

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“Lake Gusev” possible source for Comanche carbonates

The rock outcrop dubbed Comanche in the Columbia Hills of Gusev Crater is unusually rich in magnesium-iron carbonate minerals. This discovery was first announced in 2010 using data from the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit. At the time, scientists thought that … Continue reading

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