NASA’s Curiosity Rover Finds More Signs that Ancient Mars Had Water

NASA’s Curiosity rover has found yet more evidence of ancient Martian water, this time during a recent pit stop along the way toward a huge Red Planet mountain.

The 1-ton Curiosity rover paused to examine a few rocks late last week, making the first of five planned science stops en route to the 3.4-mile-high (5.5 kilometers) Mount Sharp. The break was fruitful, returning further signs of long-ago liquid water, researchers said.

“We examined pebbly sandstone deposited by water flowing over the surface, and veins or fractures in the rock,” Curiosity science team member Dawn Sumner, of the University of California, Davis, said in a statement. “We know the veins are younger than the sandstone because they cut through it, but they appear to be filled with grains like the sandstone.”

This image shows the view from NASA's Mars rover Curiosity after it uses an autonomous proximity placement technique to place its tool-laden robotic arm on a rock science target called 'Darwin' during the 399th Martian day, or sol, of its mission. Image released Sept. 23, 2013. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

This image shows the view from NASA’s Mars rover Curiosity after it uses an autonomous proximity placement technique to place its tool-laden robotic arm on a rock science target called ‘Darwin’ during the 399th Martian day, or sol, of its mission. Image released Sept. 23, 2013.
Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech

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