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Mars Polar Lander found?

Mars Polar Lander found? The Mars Polar Lander was lost while attempting to land on Mars in December 1999. An initial search for the lander was fruitless. But now Michael Malin of Malin Space Science Systems thinks he may have found the lander's parachute and crashed remains. Meanwhile, some scientists are worried about landers and crashed vehicles contaminating Mars; others think it's not a problem. [via Slashdot]
posted by flug on May 6, 2005 - 4 comments

Beam me up and away

NASA is funding a research project that looks into a new and much faster way of getting astronauts to Mars.
posted by C17H19NO3 on May 2, 2005 - 24 comments

Life suspected, WMDs probable

ESA scientists announced that a giant sea is hidden under the Martian surface. With discoveries like this and weird photos like this, how long can it be before we find conclusive proof of extraterrestrial life?
posted by borkingchikapa on Feb 21, 2005 - 30 comments

NewsFilter - More evidence of life on mars

Life - a strong case for life on mars was presented sunday
posted by sourbrew on Feb 17, 2005 - 12 comments

Mars' so called life

A pair of NASA scientists told a group of space officials at a private meeting here that they have found strong evidence that life may exist today on Mars. Spirit has also recently taken a very intriguing photo. Of course this is just making things official, since we've known the truth for years.
posted by jikel_morten on Feb 16, 2005 - 85 comments

Men are for Mars

"After all, women are fragile and delicate creatures; that is why men should lead the way to distant planets and carry women there in their strong hands," said Russian Academy of Sciences' Anatoly Grigoryev to students of the Moscow International University, by way of explaining why there will be NO WOMEN on the first flight to Mars. Ok, that sounds right. But they might at least need some swishy gay guy to wash socks and do dishes for the fellas, nyet? (Meanwhile, looks like Comrade Anatoly here is bucking for a job at Harvard.) (RIA link via NASA Watch).
posted by jellybuzz on Feb 10, 2005 - 49 comments

Who can invent for us a cartography of autonomy, who can draw a map that includes our desires? - Hakim Bey

Cartography is a skill pretty much taken for granted now, but it wasn't always so. Accurate maps were once prized state secrets, laborious efforts that cost a fortune and took years (or even decades) to complete.

How things have changed. (Yours now, $110) It took almost 500 years to map North America, but it's only taken one tenth of that to map just everything else. In the last 50 years, we've been able to create acurate atlases of two planets and one moon (with a second in the works). Actually, we've done a lot more than that. We're actually running out of things to map.

Maybe Not.
posted by absalom on Jan 27, 2005 - 17 comments

You spin me right round baby, right round...

Mars Express Image Browser The European Space Agency's Mars Express site has been linked before, but this neat little flash globe lets you rotate the planet yourself and select various viewpoints for more detailed pictures of the surface. Some of the pictures are stunning, others just don't look real.
posted by The Ultimate Olympian on Dec 23, 2004 - 3 comments

90 Sols in 90 Seconds

With all this talk of wars in distant countries, it's easy to forget that there's exciting things going on just 300 million km from your back porch. NASA has provided 90 second videos of the first 90 sols of the Spirit [5MB .mov] and Opportunity rovers [5MB .mov].
posted by fatbobsmith on May 18, 2004 - 11 comments

Life On Mars's Meethane Traces Thought To Be Detected

Life on Mars? Methane has been found in the Martian atmosphere which scientists say could be a sign of present-day life on Mars. It was detected by telescopes on Earth and has recently been confirmed by instruments onboard the European Space Agency's orbiting Mars Express craft. Methane lives for a short time in the Martian atmosphere so it must be being constantly replenished. There are two possible ways to do this. Either active volcanoes, but none have yet been found on Mars, or microbes. The Independent has it as Methane find on Mars may be sign of life. The second group to detect signals of methane in the Martian atmosphere is led by Michael Mumma of Nasa's Goddard Space Flight Centre in Maryland, who used powerful spectroscopic telescopes based on Earth. This team is even believed to have detected variations in the concentrations of methane, with a peak coming from the ancient Martian seabed of Meridiani Planum, which is being explored by a Nasa rover. This could indicate a subterranean source of methane which is pumping out the gas, either due to some residual geological activity or because of the presence of living organisms producing it as a waste gas. Asked whether the continual production of methane is strong evidence of a biological origin of the gas, Dr Mumma said: "I think it is, myself personally." As to how...
posted by y2karl on Mar 28, 2004 - 25 comments

Martian Sea

Old Mars and the Sea. A salty sea may once have covered the Opportunity rover's landing site on Mars, boosting the possibility that the planet may once have evolved life. (Of course, there are those who believe NASA has been conspiring to cover it all up, but the Bad Astronomer has words on that. Bunnies and faces, my foot.)
posted by brownpau on Mar 23, 2004 - 4 comments

A Light at Bonneville

Meanwhile, on Mars, The Spirit rover has reached Bonneville Crater, a primary mission objective, and snapped photos of the far side of the crater rim with its navcam. But what is that glint to the left side? (more within)
posted by brownpau on Mar 11, 2004 - 40 comments

The Mars Bunny

NASA and the Mars Bunny. I first heard about it from our own kokogiak. Then the conspiracy theorists: "They're destroying the evidence!" But now NASA has come out to tell us, "It's probably just airbag material."
posted by brownpau on Mar 5, 2004 - 17 comments

Mars RAWKS!

From R.E.M. to Whitesnake, by way of Tangerine Dream, Buster Poindexter, and the Bobs, here's what the Mars rovers listen to.
posted by Vidiot on Feb 28, 2004 - 11 comments

Mars-o-vision

Mars 3D, without the red & green glasses. The work is being carried out by Antonio Criminisi and Andrew Blake from Microsoft's research labs in Cambridge. The pair have developed algorithms that can take a single flat image or painting and turn it into an virtual environment.
posted by MintSauce on Feb 24, 2004 - 11 comments

Green Mars

More Mars Express images. The German space agency (DLR) has the biggest and fastest loading set of Mars Express images I've seen so far. Among them is one which apparently was not part of the press kit (it hasn't been in any MEX-related report), and is not on the official ESA site: This one. It shows the Spirit rover landing site in Gusev crater -- and the area is covered with a green substance. Olivine or salt, perhaps. It should be highly interesting to get spectral readings. [Note: These images are, to my knowledge, near true color like all other MEX/HRSC photos.]
posted by Eloquence on Jan 23, 2004 - 14 comments

Mars-Time Apps

You may be familiar with the story, reported here, about the southern California watch maker who supplied wrist watches for Mars scientists to get to work on time. You may not have seen these time applications that make the time story equally as compelling for the rest of us. What is interesting from a graphics standpoint is the different qualities expressed with these versions, as a table of exact times for specific locations (this site has a lot of great detail about the mission), or as an approximate time with shadows projected on the Mars map (for Mac OS X). Any other Mars time graphics that you know about?
posted by xtian on Jan 23, 2004 - 5 comments

Yeeeeeeeha!

Even better than flash Friday?
European Mars Express probe confirms water ice on Mars
posted by magullo on Jan 23, 2004 - 13 comments

Mars Colours

NASA is not altering Mars colours It's much less exciting than a conspiracy theory, admittedly.
posted by Mwongozi on Jan 19, 2004 - 11 comments

MAKE IT RED, DAMMIT

It looks like NASA may be altering the colors of the Mars Spirit rover photos.
posted by mrbula on Jan 18, 2004 - 36 comments

Mars Rover, Quicktime.

Next Best Thing to Being There. A Quicktime Mars Rover Simulation.
posted by kozad on Jan 17, 2004 - 8 comments

Machinery found at Spirit landing site!

Machinery found at Spirit landing site!
posted by Irontom on Jan 14, 2004 - 37 comments

Martian Watches

24:39 NASA is running their Spirit Martian explorer program on Martian solar time. With the project day running 39 minutes longer than a real day, engineers found they faced difficulties adjusting to this virtual timezone. Their solution was nearly as old as timekeeping itself.
posted by Ogre Lawless on Jan 9, 2004 - 13 comments

Reinventing NASA

To the moon, Alice! (And then, on to Mars) Time will tell whether this declaration will lead to an actual rebirth of NASA and realignment of goals for the agency. But I for one am absolutely thrilled that Bush is planning to give NASA a long-overdue new mission and goal. Avoiding the obvious pro/con debate of doing this (or the cost), I think it's absolutely vital to the national psyche for the United States to have a long-range goal that it can focus positive energy upon. This could be the first real "Challenge to the Union" that I think should become an annual event to replace the State of the Union.
posted by tgrundke on Jan 9, 2004 - 84 comments

Mars Exploration Rover Spirit lands on Mars

We landed on Mars. The Mars Exploration Rover Spirit has captured its first color image of Mars. It is the highest resolution picture ever taken of another planet. Fascinating.
posted by mad on Jan 7, 2004 - 27 comments

Lunar Photo of the Day

Lunar Photo of the Day started January 1st, 2004 to document human's never ending obsession with the moon. LPOD now joins APOD, MPOD, and ESPOD as quality picture of the day websites.
posted by jasonspaceman on Jan 7, 2004 - 2 comments

mars navigation history

The most accurate navigation in history. "We had to know everything from how the iron molten lava in the center of the Earth was churning to how plate tectonic movements were affecting the wobble of the Earth to how the plasma in the atmosphere delayed the radio signals to and from the Deep Space Network stations". ..even the seemingly insignificant solar radiation pressure and thermal radiation forces acting on the spacecraft to a level equal to less than a billionth of the acceleration of gravity one feels on the Earth needed to be taken into account. This mission set a new standard for navigation accuracy for all future interplanetary missions.
posted by stbalbach on Jan 4, 2004 - 2 comments

Brace yourself for immediate disintegration

Mars, take II - Still no word from Beagle 2 (discussed here), unfortunately, as Mars maintains its tough reputation. However, the first of two rovers much larger than 1997's very successful Pathfinder is expected to hit the Martian surface with a giant bounce tonight at 8:35 p.m. PST. Check out the realistic simulation videos of how it will land and get to work, then watch Nasa TV (RealVideo) for live coverage.
posted by planetkyoto on Jan 3, 2004 - 51 comments

European Space Agency's webpage about the Mars Express / Beagle 2 project.

Mars ho! In about 24 hours, the Beagle 2 lander will descend to the surface of Mars, courtesy of the European Space Agency. After a few mighty bounces, encased in a giant rubber ball, the lander will open up and allow its instrument payload to start sampling the surface. This is the first in a trifecta of landers destined for Mars during the next month. NASA's landers, Spirit and Opportunity, land on January 3rd and January 24th.
posted by warhol on Dec 23, 2003 - 25 comments

Mars is getting close, real close

"This summer Mars will be the brightest it will ever be in our lifetimes." On August 26–27 Mars will be the closest it has been in 60,000 years. Some viewing tips can be found here. You can generate different viewpoints with NASA's Solar System Simulator as some have done recently.
posted by john on Jul 18, 2003 - 11 comments

Lego Astrobots Blog From Mars Rovers

Lego Astrobots Blog From Mars Rovers - The Planetary Society has teamed with NASA to "man" it's two Mars Exploration Rover spacecraft with Lego "Astrobots." The bots, Biff Starling and Sandy Moondust, are blogging their adventure "to allow kids to vicariously experience life in space, from launch, through the six-month space cruise, to landing and roving on the Martian surface."
posted by tpl1212 on Jun 13, 2003 - 4 comments

mars express

The European Space Agency's Mars Express blasted off from Russia's Baikonur base today carrying the British-built Beagle 2 space probe atop a modified version of Russia's Soyuz rocket (a modified ICBM) tasked with finding water and life on Mars. Will it overcome the curse of Mars? Of 30 missions to Mars, 8 have gone as planed, a %74 Martian mission failure rate.
posted by stbalbach on Jun 2, 2003 - 13 comments

Earth from Mars

Pale Blue Dot: The Earth and Moon as photographed from Mars. Just in case you needed a bit of perspective.
posted by aladfar on May 22, 2003 - 14 comments

Martian Law

Martian Law: From the Cato Institute comes this paper exploring the best choices for law on the red planet when colonization occurs.

Mars is a case of what political theorists would call a perfect state of nature. No one lives on Mars. No one currently has legal title to any part of Mars. On what basis then can Mars be exploited by individuals or consortia?

Of course, Kim Stanley Robinson has already explored this subject in his ground-breaking Martian trilogy.
posted by jdroth on Feb 7, 2003 - 10 comments

Constance Adams, Space Architect

Constance Adams, Space Architect She designed the International Space Station's TransHab module (a prototype for manned Mars missions), and says cool things about what the role of architecture is: "Architecture involves forming harmony around the human system, balancing culture, biology, planetary knowledge and technology in counterpoint to the unknowable." (via boingboing)
posted by vraxoin on Jan 24, 2003 - 3 comments

Is there Life on Mars?

Is there Life on Mars? As NASA announce a nuclear-powered Mars and beyond project, British scientists are looking forward to the launch of the Beagle 2 which will search for signs of life on the Red Planet. Is this the return of the Space Race in a new form? And will they find any sign of life?
posted by anyanka on Jan 22, 2003 - 3 comments

Santa Lives on the South Pole....of Mars?

Santa found living on the South Pole....of Mars!?! Mysterious tracks that look like 250-mile long ski or sled trails have been found near the South Pole of Mars. Researchers at the University of Colorado have found the broad, sweeping lines cutting through a section of the southern ice caps of the frigid planet, but haven't a clue what caused them. via the excellent laputan logic
posted by Ufez Jones on Dec 17, 2002 - 7 comments

Art goes to Mars.

Art goes to Mars. This may be the very first art that our species sends into space, unless you count the little naked folks on the Voyager plaque, or broadcast television. In a somewhat bold move, they've chosen shock artist putter-of-sharks-in-formaldehyde Damien Hirst. Is it me, or would the chosen painting be much dorkier if this were NASA rather than the European Space Agency? Like a duck or something.
posted by condour75 on Nov 30, 2002 - 12 comments

The Mars Gravity Biosatellite Project

The Mars Gravity Biosatellite Project is an unmatched international effort that pools top-notch technical talent from MIT, the University of Washington in Seattle, and the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. The mission is nothing short of groundbreaking. The plan is to build a spacecraft capable of housing a small crew of mice, including pregnant females, which will simulate the gravity of Mars to determine its effects on mammalian development.
posted by David Dark on Sep 18, 2002 - 9 comments

Martians may resemble the Spanish.

Martians may resemble the Spanish. Scientists are studying a red river in Spain which flows through a deposit of pyrite, "has a pH similar to that of automobile battery acid and contains virtually no oxygen in its lower depths" to get an idea of what Martian microbes might be like. The critters found in the Rio Tinto are extremophiles, little microscopic buggers that can live miles underground, or in water 170 degree Celsius under deep-sea hydrothermal vents. (No word yet on whether there's a Portuguese connection.)
[via Red Rock Eater]

posted by slipperywhenwet on Aug 25, 2002 - 5 comments

The Mars Exploration Program Landing Sites

The Mars Exploration Program Landing Sites has kept me enthralled for most of the day. Explore the surface with a beautiful scalable map or argue over a landing site. Personally, I'm leaving a geocache here. (Warning: circa 1994 web design combined with possible browser crashing applets)
posted by Stan Chin on Aug 23, 2002 - 2 comments

The New Frontier-

The New Frontier- Preparing the law for settling on Mars. "Like the abandoned launch fields [at Cape Canveral], the Outer Space Treaty [of 1967] needs to have its valuable parts salvaged, and the dangerous ones demolished."
posted by Ty Webb on Jun 4, 2002 - 12 comments

Next Thursday, NASA will announce the discovery of huge water ice oceans on Mars. Lying less than a metre beneath the surface south of 60° latitude, the water ice reservoirs if melted would form an ocean 500m deep covering the entire planet. NASA insiders believe these findings could result in a manned landing within 20 years.
posted by adrianhon on May 26, 2002 - 24 comments

Oh cripes. Not again.

Oh cripes. Not again. Remember like a year or two ago when M&M/Mars switched the lime flavored Skittle with green apple? And it totally upset that harmonic flavor balance you get when you shove a handful of Skittles into your gaping maw? This time, it's much much worse. The lemon Skittle has been replaced with one of nine white Mystery Flavors! Guess all nine and get a "FREE CHEW THE CLUETM Screensaver."

Jesus Christ. Quit screwing with my candy, people.

Warning: site saturated with #FFFF00. May cause blindness.
posted by andnbsp on Apr 15, 2002 - 43 comments

Huge ice field found on Mars

Huge ice field found on Mars The Mars Odyssey orbiter has found a vast field of water ice stretching from the Martian south pole to 60 degrees south.
posted by Zool on Mar 4, 2002 - 29 comments

The most detailed map of Mars ever produced.

The most detailed map of Mars ever produced. Brought to you by Malin Space Science Systems. The images were captured from The Mars Global Surveyor. They really are incredibly clear. I'm trying find the Mars Face. No luck yet though. (Click image to zoom in)
posted by RobertLoch on Feb 25, 2002 - 12 comments

Good news for fans of the late, great Replacements

Good news for fans of the late, great Replacements Paul Westerberg has signed a new deal, will return in April with a 2 cd set and is also considering a tour.Hey Paul, Tommy Stinson is wasting his time with Axl Rose, so call him up.I'm guessing Chris Mars and Slim Dunlap would be available for gigs too.Billboard articles have a pop-up, sorry 'bout that.
posted by BarneyFifesBullet on Jan 14, 2002 - 13 comments

The Martians are coming!

The Martians are coming!... and I feel fine!
posted by geronimo_rex on Nov 28, 2001 - 7 comments

Success!

Success! Mars Odyssey 2001 is in orbit around Mars.
posted by rosvicl on Oct 24, 2001 - 7 comments

With the Mars Odyssey about to finalize gravitational orbit tomorrow, you too can observe the surface of Mars via a simulcast with PBS or through the NASA website on October 30th. NASA is still searching for irrefutable evidence that Mars could have supported an ecosystem or more importantly life. Interesting.
posted by Benway on Oct 23, 2001 - 3 comments

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