This is very cool. The remote sensing work to confirm the hypothesis is elegant.
I wonder, if the hypothesis is actually proven, or do we only call it proven when one of our machines or a human takes a physical sample and confirms water and perchlorate salts.
This makes me wonder if future explorers could, as part of a water production facility, use the extracted salts as a component for fuel for the return trip to Earth. I suppose it would depend on the source of the water (underground versus atmospheric) the exact composition of the salts and how easily they can be extracted.
This discovery gives me hope that we will go to Mars, and that someday we’ll have self sustaining colonies there.
This is progress and perhaps this discovery will spark a whole new generation of scientists.
Yes, I’m a geek, I love science and NASA!
I also learned something else during this morning’s announcement.
Under no circumstances should you monitor the Twitter #askNASA hashtag during the announcement of a discovery.
You’re suddenly exposed to a planet full of (paraphrasing Marvin here) “depressingly stupid people.”
Honestly, some of the questions were so stupid as to actually cause brain damage, which is a mercy since the damage occurs in the hippocampus and effectively erases the memory of the question instantly.
The effect leaves a trace of revulsion and disgust, which I suspect is the brain’s way of preventing further assault,without having to process the stupidity again.
In my case I shut down Twitter and the feeling passed immediately.
What was it The Keeper of Talos IV said? “Punishment and Reward, you’ll find it’s an effective combination.”
Reward your favorite Scientist with a hug or compliment today.