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#426 2014-01-20 21:34:41

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,368

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

You mean the Martians have learned how to video loop the transmission until they want us to see the real thing....

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#427 2014-01-21 06:50:28

Void
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Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,023

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

Hi Void:

"Bowl shaped rocks in Antarctica" -- if you say so.  But,  how did it get there?  Can't be by wind,  the pebbles would have blown around.  The bowl-shaped artifact is clearly a lot larger,  cavity notwithstanding.  If it's stone,  it's a lot heavier than any of the pebbles. 

GW

Maybe deposited by a volcanic eruption?  Why didn't it shatter?  Maybe it happened when the atmosphere was thicker?

Obviously I don't know.  I have noticed you puzzling about cavities like this before, and all I have to offer is the brine thing.  I don't even know how it works, but I speculate that wind blown dust carries a bit of salt, and if a temporary encounter within the cavity with an elivated humidity, perhaps tiny droplets of a very cold brine can extract the salt into a temporary very cold liquid.  Then it might tend to adhere to the bowl, and from time to time absorb moisture and become brine again, and then in the night of very cold temperatures freeze, and work the rock.  How the rock itself got there is outside of any of my notions.

However I will note that it seems like the Martian surface typically changes at a far slower rate than that of the Earth, and what we see may be leftovers from some very distant past.


I like people who criticize angels dancing on a pinhead.  I also like it when angels dance on my pinhead.

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#428 2014-01-21 09:13:39

GW Johnson
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From: McGregor, Texas USA
Registered: 2011-12-04
Posts: 3,831
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Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

The problem I cannot fathom is that it was not there in one photo,  and is there 12 Mars days later,  without any evidence of enough wind to have moved it,  assuming that it is some kind of rock. 

So (1) it is something very lightweight (not a rock at all),  or (2) something carried it there (either aliens or the rover itself).  Or possibly both. 

GW


GW Johnson
McGregor,  Texas

"There is nothing as expensive as a dead crew,  especially one dead from a bad management decision"

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#429 2014-01-21 11:23:41

Void
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Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,023

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

The link above the picture discusses some of that.  Sorry for my previous un-useful reply.


I like people who criticize angels dancing on a pinhead.  I also like it when angels dance on my pinhead.

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#430 2014-01-21 18:57:30

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

Mystery Mars rock reveals unexpected chemical composition

The rock that suddenly appeared next to the NASA's Opportunity rover in the beginning of January turns out to have an irregular chemical composition for Mars: it has too much sulfur, magnesium and manganese, scientists say.

In particular, the rock has twice as much manganese as anything previously analyzed on Mars.

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#431 2014-01-21 19:28:51

RobertDyck
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From: Winnipeg, Canada
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Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

Are they saying this is salt accumulation? I notice the "rock" has a hollow in the centre. The older image shows a shallow donut shaped depression the same size and location. Magnesium sulphate is a salt, commonly called Epsom salt. Are they saying brine leached to the surface, water evaporated leaving a salt deposit? A similar process is known to happen on Earth. It can happen on soil, or highly porous rock.

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#432 2014-01-21 20:48:59

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,368

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

The image with the rock does look more wet as it appears to be darker towards the left side of the image.

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#433 2014-01-22 06:50:43

Void
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Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,023

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

It might just poor perception on my part, but there seems to be a circular outline in that area in the before picture, one that is flatter, and covered with dust.


I like people who criticize angels dancing on a pinhead.  I also like it when angels dance on my pinhead.

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#434 2014-01-22 20:03:50

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
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Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

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#435 2014-01-23 09:09:35

Void
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Registered: 2011-12-29
Posts: 3,023

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

So as RobertDyck suggested, could there have been a pocket of Epsum Salt Solution below, and the rovers vibrations disturbed the situation enough to release the solution through a crack between rocks?

Last edited by Void (2014-01-23 11:38:42)


I like people who criticize angels dancing on a pinhead.  I also like it when angels dance on my pinhead.

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#436 2014-01-26 11:36:11

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,368

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

I am sure that there is more to the story NASA Requires You To Pay To See Mars Curiosity Results (update)

Keith's note: NASA has spent $2 billion on Curiosity. But NASA allows researchers to post the research results - results paid for by taxpayers - behind a paywall at Science. You have to pay twice if you want to see what has been discovered. Too bad NASA is not interested in following OSTP guidelines on Open Data, Transparency, etc.

Paying twice as an American tax payer does seem more than wrong but then again if we want Nasa to be a business then we would be paying even higher prices for the information than what it is charging now to offset the launch/design/operations costs.....

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#437 2014-02-14 18:23:04

GW Johnson
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From: McGregor, Texas USA
Registered: 2011-12-04
Posts: 3,831
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Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

Latest internet news releases as of 2-14-2014 indicate NASA has decided the "jelly doughnut rock" was kicked-loose from some larger rock,  and then kicked into the field of view,  by one of the wheels on the rover.  Given the shape of the thing,  I think that unlikely,  but that's just an unsupported gut feel on my part.

Same set of news releases indicated us and the Russians were the only countries spending over $10B per year on space.  And yet the Chinese are launching manned missions to space stations on under $10B per year,  while at the same time planting rovers on the moon.  There are quite apparently some efficient-use-of-funds issues here.

GW


GW Johnson
McGregor,  Texas

"There is nothing as expensive as a dead crew,  especially one dead from a bad management decision"

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#438 2014-04-22 19:32:44

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,368

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

In its Sixth Martian winter NASA Rover Opportunity's Selfie Shows Clean Machine

The mission is using the rover's added energy to inspect "Murray Ridge," on the western rim of Endeavour Crater, to learn about wet environments on ancient Mars.

mer20140417-full.jpg

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#439 2014-05-16 22:11:44

SpaceNut
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From: New Hampshire
Registered: 2004-07-22
Posts: 18,368

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

Lets go prospecting....
Opportunity In Search Of Aluminum-Hydroxyl Clays

Opportunity is exploring south of 'Solander Point' on the west rim of Endeavour Crater. The rover is approaching a region of aluminum-hydroxyl clay minerals detected from orbit.

Motor currents on the right-front wheel have been well behaved since resumption of backward driving. As of Sol 3656, solar-array energy production is 689 watt-hours, with a re-calibrated atmospheric opacity (Tau) of 0.607 and an improved solar-array dust factor of 0.916. Perfectly clean solar arrays would have a dust factor of 1.0, so the larger the dust factor, the cleaner the arrays.

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#440 2014-05-25 20:52:40

SpaceNut
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Registered: 2004-07-22
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#441 2014-05-26 01:39:50

Glandu
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From: France
Registered: 2011-11-23
Posts: 106

Re: Mars Exploration Rovers (MER)

GW Johnson wrote:

(.../...) And yet the Chinese are launching manned missions to space stations on under $10B per year,  while at the same time planting rovers on the moon.  There are quite apparently some efficient-use-of-funds issues here.

GW

Chinese have 2 main advantages :
(1) cheaper workforce
(2) a more stable political environment

(2) deserves a few details. In the USA, you've got elections every 2 years, big ones every 4 years, and never-ending electoral campaigns. In the meantime, not much is done. Europe is worse : as there are many deciders, and always one or two involved in an electoral campaign, clear goals are never set for a long amount of time. China is a dictatorship, which has a lot of drawbacks(primary higher corruption levels and less creativity allowed due to the need of controlling people), but also a few advantages : they change of leadership every 10 years, and the process is rather smooth. This allows to plan for long-term projects, and more efficient planning.

Plus, but this is not inherent & just a matter of skill, they are just better in project management, those days. a 6-years old example of their skill in terms of project management.


"I promise not to exclude from consideration any idea based on its source, but to consider ideas across schools and heritages in order to find the ones that best suit the current situation." (Alistair Cockburn, Oath of Non-Allegiance)

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