Photos of Mars Lander Show Water Droplets...Maybe?

by shanai on Mar. 17th, 2009

Mysterious material on the landing strut of the Phoenix Mars Lander
Mysterious material on the landing strut of the Phoenix Mars LanderCourtesy NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory-Caltech
In photographs taken by NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander there appear to be droplets of some kind of liquid. Is it water from just below the planet's surface? Some scientists suspect that this is exactly what you see in the photograph here. Although the temperature of the area where the photographs were taken never warmed above -15 degrees Fahrenheit during the spacecraft's mission, scientists think that salts called Perchlorates may have lowered the freezing point of the water, making liquid droplets possible at this temperature. Other scientists disagree, saying that the low-resolution photographs show clumps of frost or may have been formed by heat from the spacecraft's thrusters. This article explains more about the debate. What do you think?

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Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

Duh, Shanai— we are clearly dealing with Martian spit here. Or maybe snot.

posted on Tue, 03/17/2009 - 12:33pm
Thor's picture
Thor says:

I don't think so....I believe Martians have highly developed hygiene habits.

posted on Tue, 03/17/2009 - 1:03pm
chee's picture
chee says:

Finding water is really cool because where there is water there might be life. The water may have come from the heat or the ground, but there has to be something out there. There is always a chance that maybe Mars once contain life.

posted on Tue, 03/17/2009 - 5:50pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

Theres no way to tell that that is water. It could be any liquid.

posted on Wed, 03/18/2009 - 3:40pm
tanguy123987's picture
tanguy123987 says:

but, water was once on mars and mars has ice caps, soooo, there is a chance water is still there.

posted on Sat, 03/21/2009 - 4:42pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

wow. Liqiud water on mars...how awesome is that.

posted on Mon, 03/23/2009 - 11:11am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

you guys are so crazy. it could be just bumps on the rock!!!
I think they found a sea under the icecaps though, it might of been in a magazine...

posted on Wed, 03/25/2009 - 10:43am
JGordon's picture
JGordon says:

You might be thinking of one of Jupiter's moons, like Europa. Scientists think it might have a liquid water ocean beneath its icy surface.

posted on Sat, 03/28/2009 - 1:55pm
Cheers7500's picture
Cheers7500 says:

this is very cool. if there is a possibility that humans could live on mars, i would definitely check it out. keep up the good work NASA.

posted on Thu, 03/26/2009 - 9:22am
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:

what has NASA actually done lately? Well... aside from blowing up another space shuttle?

posted on Sat, 03/28/2009 - 3:44pm
shanai's picture
shanai says:

This is a really good question, and one that a lot of people ask in different ways. NASA does require a lot of government funding, and at times it may lead you to ask what this money actually funds? A good place to start would be to look at NASA's website, where there are links to specific programs that the agency undertakes.

This article in a previous issue of WIRED magazine also outlines some of NASA's priorities and asks why this government-funded agency seems to spending time and money on some programs and projects and not others.

Certainly worth considering!

posted on Sat, 03/28/2009 - 4:05pm
bobdabobman's picture
bobdabobman says:

Thomas Johnson,

I would love water on mars that would prove that us humans don't know everything like some nitwits think.

Water on Mars also sounds a reasonable theory because there has to be more life out there and life can be out there with water. Cause water can mean plants and plants can mean food and if theres food life can prevail there.

posted on Sat, 03/28/2009 - 4:01pm
Glen's picture
Glen says:

Well of course there was once life on Mars. Where on earth do you think we humans came from?

posted on Mon, 03/30/2009 - 1:22am

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