Dune and ripple migration along rover Curiosity’s traverse in Gale Crater (Mars)

mars dunes The NASA Mars Science Laboratory rover, Curiosity, has safely landed near a 35 km long dark dune field in Gale Crater on Mars. This dune field crosses the landing site from the NE to the SW and lies along Curiosity’s traverse to Aeolis Mons. Dr.

Discovery of a New Unique Water-rich Meteorite from Mars

carl ageeNorthwest Africa (NWA) 7034 is a new type of martian meteorite discovered in Morocco in 2011. NWA 7034 aka "Black Beauty", nicknamed for its dark shiny appearance, contains ten times more water than other martian meteorites.

Atmospheric Polar Warming at Mars



This talk will cover two active areas of research in the field of martian atmospheric dynamics. The first is polar warming, a temperature enhancement over mid-to-high latitudes that results in a reversed (poleward) meridional temperature gradient.

A Cook's Tour of the CheMin XRD/XRF instrument and an insider's view of the MSL Curiosity mission on Mars

Dr. David Blake of the NASA research Center is the chief designer and Principle Investigator of the CHEMIN instrument on the Mars Science Laboratory Rover 'Curiosity', which is now investigating evidence of liquid-borne sediments at Gale Crater on Mars. He will give an insider's view into the mission and update us on the latest results from the MSL mission.

NASA's Curiosity Rover: Four Months on Mars

NASA's Curiosity Rover has been exploring its landing region at Gale Crater on Mars since August 5, 2012, searching for environments in early Mars' history that may have been habitable, able to support microbial life.  Much of the first 90 sols has been dedicated to engineering checkouts and initial uses of the instruments.  The rover operations to date will be discussed, along with some initial scientific results regarding the geology, mineralogy, and environmental conditions at Gale Crater on Mars.

Active geologic processes in the solar system: Mars, Io and Icy Satellites

In this talk, Dr. Phillips will address several outstanding questions regarding the dynamics of geological processes in solar system bodies. She will address several key areas she has studied on Io, Europa and Mars including dark slope streaks on Mars, impact cratering and change detection on icy satellites, and ongoing volcanic activity on Io. She will also give a brief update on the status of the Mars Curiosity rover.

The Climates of the Planet Mars

At the present time, Mars is a dry and cold planet. Surface ice is unstable for more than one season outside the polar regions, and the atmosphere is so cold or so dry that the presence of liquid water, never detected, is unlikely anywhere on the surface.

Is there methane on Mars?

Methane has been reported by several observers as a short-lived trace gas in the martian atmosphere. If verified, this would be an extraordinary result. Is the evidence for methane extraordinary? In this talk, Dr. Kevin Zahnle will discuss why one should remain skeptical of Methane on Mars.

Mars Odyssey measurements of radiation at Mars


Space radiation poses significant risks to human explorers on extended missions beyond Low-Earth Orbit. Crews cannot be fully shielded against Galactic Cosmic Rays owing to their high energies, and sporadic but intense Solar Particle Events may also be hazardous when shielding is minimal. The physics underlying the transport of these particles through matter is reasonably well understood, but the biological response has large uncertainties. In this talk I will give an overview of these risks and describe NASA's ongoing program to mitigate them.


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