Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Active Glacier Found on Mars?

(image source: BBC)
A probable active glacier has been identified for the first time on Mars.

The icy feature has been spotted in images from the European Space Agency's (Esa) Mars Express spacecraft.

Ancient glaciers, many millions of years old, have been seen before on the Red Planet, but this one may only be several thousand years old.

The young glacier appears in the Deuteronilus Mensae region between Mars' rugged southern highlands and the flat northern lowlands.

"If it was an image of Earth, I would say 'glacier' right away," Dr Gerhard Neukum, chief scientist on the spacecraft's High Resolution Stereo Camera (HRSC) told BBC News.

"We have not yet been able to see the spectral signature of water. But we will fly over it in the coming months and take measurements. On the glacial ridges we can see white tips, which can only be freshly exposed ice."



Zach said...

This is actually pretty awesome. On the other hand, every minute you spend talking about astronomy and Putin, you could be telling me about Permian anapsids!!! ;-)

Will Baird said...

I am guessing by Sat, Zach. I've had some goofy hiccups at work and we took my daughter to the ballet last night (the Nut Cracker).

Zach said...

You know I'm just giving you a hard time. Ah, the Nut Cracker. Brings back memories (both good and bad) of piano recitals and sweaty palms.