STANDING BODY OF WATER LEFT ITS MARK IN MARS ROCKS
NASA’s Opportunity rover has demonstrated some rocks on Mars probably formed as deposits at the bottom of a body of gently flowing saltwater.
“We think Opportunity is parked on what was once the shoreline of a salty sea on Mars,” said Dr. Steve Squyres of Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., principal investigator for the science payload on Opportunity and its twin Mars Exploration Rover, Spirit.
Clues gathered so far do not tell how long or how long ago liquid water covered the area. To gather more evidence, the rover’s controllers plan to send Opportunity out across a plain toward a thicker exposure of rocks in the wall of a crater.
[To the tune of The Who, “Love Reign O’er Me,” from the album The Ultimate Collection (Disc 2).]