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Another model attempts to show how liquid water could have once existed on Mars

The uncertainty of science: Scientists today published a new model that attempts to show how it was possible in the distant past for liquid water to have existed on the surface of Mars.

New research published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters suggests that Mars was born wet, with a dense atmosphere allowing warm-to-hot oceans for millions of years. To reach this conclusion, researchers developed the first model of the evolution of the Martian atmosphere that links the high temperatures associated with Mars’s formation in a molten state through to the formation of the first oceans and atmosphere. This model shows that — as on the modern Earth — water vapor in the Martian atmosphere was concentrated in the lower atmosphere and that the upper atmosphere of Mars was “dry” because the water vapor would condense out as clouds at lower levels in the atmosphere. Molecular hydrogen (H2), by contrast, did not condense and was transported to the upper atmosphere of Mars, where it was lost to space. This conclusion – that water vapor condensed and was retained on early Mars whereas molecular hydrogen did not condense and escaped – allows the model to be linked directly to measurements made by spacecraft, specifically, the Mars Science Laboratory rover Curiosity.

As a model, this theory proves nothing, though it is very intriguing. The scientists propose that the heat from the planet’s interior replaces the known lack of energy that came from the Sun in Mars’ far past. While this could work, what makes it very uncertain is that its surface data is based on a single measurement from Curiosity, hardly a deep and convincing baseline.

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Conscious Choice cover

Now available in hardback and paperback as well as ebook!

 

From the press release: In this ground-breaking new history of early America, historian Robert Zimmerman not only exposes the lie behind The New York Times 1619 Project that falsely claims slavery is central to the history of the United States, he also provides profound lessons about the nature of human societies, lessons important for Americans today as well as for all future settlers on Mars and elsewhere in space.

 
Conscious Choice: The origins of slavery in America and why it matters today and for our future in outer space, is a riveting page-turning story that documents how slavery slowly became pervasive in the southern British colonies of North America, colonies founded by a people and culture that not only did not allow slavery but in every way were hostile to the practice.  
Conscious Choice does more however. In telling the tragic history of the Virginia colony and the rise of slavery there, Zimmerman lays out the proper path for creating healthy societies in places like the Moon and Mars.

 

“Zimmerman’s ground-breaking history provides every future generation the basic framework for establishing new societies on other worlds. We would be wise to heed what he says.” —Robert Zubrin, founder of founder of the Mars Society.

 

All editions are available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and all book vendors, with the ebook priced at $5.99 before discount. The ebook can also be purchased direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit, in which case you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.

 

Autographed printed copies are also available at discount directly from me (hardback $24.95; paperback $14.95; Shipping cost for either: $5.00). Just email me at zimmerman @ nasw dot org.

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