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15 January 2020
Nearly barren Icelandic landscapes guide search for extraterrestrial life
New research on microbial lifeforms living in nearly barren volcanic landscapes in Iceland may help scientists understand how best to search for life on other planets. Researchers with NASA’s FELDSPAR project are studying the distribution of life in these harsh Icelandic environments to inform the search for hidden life signs on planets like Mars. So far, they have found that microbes at their study sites are often isolated in “hot spots” and that microbial communities are distributed differently in areas subjected to different geological processes, such as wind or glaciation.
2 January 2020
Research sheds light on the Moon’s dark craters
The next wave of robots to fly to Mars in 2020 could offer scientists an unprecedented understanding of Earth’s closest neighboring planet. But there are still mysteries to be solved much closer to home, on Earth’s own Moon.
10 December 2019
NASA’s treasure map for water ice on Mars
NASA has big plans for returning astronauts to the Moon in 2024, a stepping stone on the path to sending humans to Mars. But where should the first people on the Red Planet land? A new paper published in the AGU journal Geophysical Research Letters will help by providing a map of water ice believed to be as little as one inch (2.5 centimeters) below the surface.
3 December 2019
New study finds the mix that makes Titan’s lakes spew nitrogen bubbles
In a new study published in AGU’s journal Geophysical Research Letters, researchers simulated Titan’s lakes in a pressurized chamber. They found the right combination of methane, ethane and nitrogen crucial for bubbles to form. It is possible these bubble outbreaks are strong enough to shape river deltas in bodies of liquid on the moon.
12 November 2019
With Mars methane mystery unsolved, Curiosity serves scientists a new one: Oxygen
For the first time in the history of space exploration, scientists have measured the seasonal changes in the gases that fill the air directly above the surface of Gale Crater on Mars. As a result, they noticed something baffling: oxygen, the gas many Earth creatures use to breathe, behaves in a way that so far scientists cannot explain through any known chemical processes.
16 October 2019
Ancient Moon rock provides evidence of giant lunar impact 4.3 billion years ago
An Apollo 16 lunar rock sample shows evidence of intense meteorite bombardment on the Moon 4.3 billion years ago, according to new research. The results provide new insights for the Moon’s early history, showing lunar impacts were common throughout the Moon’s formation than previously thought.
18 September 2019
New study suggests gigantic masses in Earth’s mantle untouched for more than 4 billion years
Ancient, distinct, continent-sized regions of rocks, isolated since before the collision that created the Moon 4.5 billion years ago, exist hundreds of miles below the Earth’s crust, offering a window into the building blocks of our planet, according to new research.
21 August 2019
Study provides new clues to source of methane gas on Mars
A team of researchers led by scientists at York University’s Lassonde School of Engineering has created a model of how methane changes on Mars throughout the day by using data from a satellite, the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter and the Curiosity Rover. In the past, each had measured significantly different amounts of methane on Mars. The new measurements provide more clues that could help to understand what processes are important in creating the methane coming from a large 154 km- wide crater on the planet, Gale crater.
29 April 2019
Un nuevo estudio profundiza en las Nubes de Venus
Investigadores han logrado visualizar lo que sucede en las nubes intermedias de esta gruesa capa en el atmosfero de Venus gracias a imágenes en infrarrojo, y se han topado con sorpresas.
New research takes deeper look at Venus’s clouds
Researchers have used infrared images to spy into the middle layer of Venus’s clouds and they have found some unexpected surprises.