8sept03_notes - Surface Exploration of Mars: Past &...

Info iconThis preview shows pages 1–6. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
8 Sept 2003 Solar System - C. C. Lang 1 Martian Meteorites Martian Moons Martian Surface Exploration The Viking Landers (early 80s) Pathfinder (1997) Current Surface Explorers (three en route!) Future of Martian Exploration (“astrobiology”) Review of Mars
Background image of page 1

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
8 Sept 2003 Solar System - C. C. Lang 2 What are these “meteorites”? Martian Meteorites Why aren’t they orange – the color of Mars surface? How did they get to Earth? How do we know these meteorites are from Mars? Martian data without going there! Unusual rocks found in Antarctica An impact on Mars (crater size: 10-100 km) ejected part of the Martian surface Chemical composition does not match usual meteorites Only 1.3 billion yrs old (most asteroid-type meteorites MUCH older); Higher content of volatile substances Has to do with how the rocks weathered
Background image of page 2
8 Sept 2003 Solar System - C. C. Lang 3 Case Study: Martian Rock ALH84001 Mass = 1.9 kg Igneous Rock Discovered in Antarctica (easier to find) 1984 Formed on Mars 4.5 Billion yr ago Ejected ~16 Million yr ago Landed ~13,000 yr ago What DO they tell us? What DON’T they tell us? - Physical processes on Mars Crust/core developed early in Solar System Volcanism until < 1 Billion Years ago - Chemical composition Different than normal asteroid (meteorite) comp. Interaction with water Martian atmosphere composition - Location of origin (on Mars – which part of surface?) - Enough about Mars’ water & atmosphere - Need to actually RETURN ROCKS from Mars!!
Background image of page 3

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
8 Sept 2003 Solar System - C. C. Lang 4 Globules of carbonate minerals (the yellow-orange grains) are scattered along cracks in this small chip of ALH 84001. The rims contain iron oxides (including magnetite) and iron sulfides--incompatible minerals that on Earth would suggest microbial action Controversial – microbial presence in meteorites?? Close up views reveal structure similar to Earth microbes? Astrobiology: exciting field of research – study of origin of life in the solar system,universe - LIFE IS UBIQUITOUS in the universe – we just haven’t found it - LIFE IS A SPECIAL quirk of nature and timing – very very rare!
Background image of page 4
8 Sept 2003 Solar System - C. C. Lang
Background image of page 5

Info iconThis preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full DocumentRight Arrow Icon
Image of page 6
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

Page1 / 31

8sept03_notes - Surface Exploration of Mars: Past &amp;...

This preview shows document pages 1 - 6. Sign up to view the full document.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Ask a homework question - tutors are online