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New evidence suggest lake once existed in Gale Crater

Scientists have concluded that mineral veins seen by Curiosity in Gale Crater were created when a lake existed there.

The study suggests that the veins formed as the sediments from the ancient lake were buried, heated to about 50 degrees Celsius and corroded. Professor John Bridges from the University of Leicester Department of Physics and Astronomy said: “The taste of this Martian groundwater would be rather unpleasant, with about 20 times the content of sulphate and sodium than bottled mineral water for instance!”

Pioneer cover

From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.

Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.

The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.

He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.

Available everywhere for $3.99 (before discount) at amazon, Barnes & Noble, all ebook vendors, or direct from the ebook publisher, ebookit. And if you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and I get a bigger cut much sooner.


  • Localfluff

    Mars stinks like rotten eggs. I don’t think bottled Martian water will become a big seller on Earth (but who knows, people are crazy). It might however become a successful consumer product on the local Martian market, since it doesn’t have any competitors. You’ll get used to the stench and stop thinking about it, I understand this is how we react to sulfates, it numbs our nose. Just very surprising for your guests.

  • Phil Veerkamp

    Bob, I have sent the following email to the lead scientists who wrote this paper – – –

    Any bets on reply(s)?
    Susanne and John,

    My name is Phillip Veerkamp.  I am a 72-year-old retired un-credentialed “astrobiology hobbyist”.  I have zero scientific reputation at stake.  I am absolutely free to jump to wild conclusions.

    In the past few days Curiosity has returned  pictures from at least two “brushed” rocks from the Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) images for Sol 1416 –


    Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) images for Sol 1418 –

    My meager geology training says that there is one and ONLY one explanation for naturally occurring fibers in mudstone – BIOLOGICAL.

    I say we are looking at an ancient Martian “peat bog” [rough analogue].

    What say you?  J

    I do not expect you guys to risk your reputations through casual speculation, but can you comment? . . . safely?

    Kindest regards,

    Phil Veerkamp

  • You might get a reply, but it will be something likely along the lines that we doubt that is the case, but we are looking at these features very closely. And I would not expect them to say much more than that, at this point, if that.

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