Tag Archives: methane

Curiosity finds ancient organic material and seasonally varying methane on Mars

[Editor’s note: press briefing video here.] NASA’s Curiosity rover has found new evidence preserved in rocks on Mars that suggests the planet could have supported ancient life, as well as new evidence in the Martian atmosphere that relates to the … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

ExoMars poised to start science mission

The ExoMars orbiter will soon begin its search for gases that may be linked to active geological or biological activity on the Red Planet. The Trace Gas Orbiter has reached its final orbit after a year of ‘aerobraking’ that ended … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

James Webb Space Telescope will investigate how Mars went from wet to dry

The planet Mars has fascinated scientists for over a century. Today, it is a frigid desert world with a carbon dioxide atmosphere 100 times thinner than Earth’s. But evidence suggests that in the early history of our solar system, Mars … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , , , , | Comments Off

Can methanogens survive on Mars?

Researchers at the University of Arkansas recently took a step toward answering a question for the ages: Is there life on Mars? Answer: they can’t rule it out. Two recent publications suggest that life, in the form of ancient, simple … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , | Comments Off

Did bursts of methane warm early Mars?

The presence of water on ancient Mars is a paradox. There’s plenty of geographical evidence that rivers periodically flowed across the planet’s surface. Yet in the time period when these waters are supposed to have run — three to four … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , | Comments Off

Curiosity ends second Mars year at Gale Crater

NASA’s Curiosity Mars rover today completes its second Martian year since landing inside Gale Crater nearly four Earth years ago, which means it has recorded environmental patterns through two full cycles of Martian seasons. The repetition helps distinguish seasonal effects … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Curiosity update: ‘Drilling at Greenhorn’

Sol 1136-1138, October 16, 2015, update from USGS scientist Lauren Edgar: Unfortunately the Sol 1135 bundles were not uplinked due to a DSN issue, so the activities that we planned yesterday never made it onboard.  However, that meant that Curiosity … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Curiosity update: ‘Sniffing the Martian air’

Sol 1135, October 15, 2015, update from USGS scientist Lauren Edgar: The Sol 1134 mini-start hole on “Pilgrim” went well, as seen in the MAHLI image [at right].  Side note: if that doesn’t look like a hole to you, try rotating … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

Evidence of methane found in Mars meteorites

An international team of researchers has discovered traces of methane in Martian meteorites, a possible clue in the search for life on the Red Planet. The researchers examined samples from six meteorites of volcanic rock that originated on Mars. The … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , | Comments Off

Methanogens can survive low pressures on Mars

New research at the University of Arkansas suggests that methanogens – among the simplest and oldest organisms on Earth – could survive on Mars. Methanogens, microorganisms in the domain Archaea, use hydrogen as their energy source and carbon dioxide as … Continue reading

Posted in Reports | Tagged , , | Comments Off