The rover has uncovered a vital part of Mars’ history, finding an unusual Gale Crater not the Red Planet’s surface. The crater is unusual in its appearance, resembling a giant ring produced by an impact some 3.5billion years ago.
Despite its being a crater, a mountain protrudes and shoots up straight from the middle, known as Mt. Sharp after geologist Rovert P. Sharp.
Despite the strange mountain fixture in its centre, scientists have been drawn more to Mars orbiters detecting signals that have suggested a mix of sediments in the crater, indicating a hitherto understood complex history.
The rover landed on Mars in August 2012 and has since scoured the land in an attempt to further humankind’s understanding of foreign worlds.
It has rolled across the 100-mile wide basin on its six wheels, studying the evidence close up.
NASA finds lost oasis on Mars
The curiosity rover first landed in 2012
Scientists using satellites orbiting Mars have detected sedimentary signifiers of a multitude of climatic eras all within the same place.
Fat clay layers on the floor of the crater point to the area previously being wet, having been possibly fed by streams underneath, or perhaps ones that flowed over the sides of the crater.
Above those layers are sheets of sulphate that likely formed as a result of extremely hot weather.
Then, on top of all this, is the Geddis Valles Channel that may point towards an historic river that once rushed along the craters slopes.
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For the last seven years the robot has been rolling from place to place
The attractiveness of the Gale site comes in the fact that these layers have all been exposed, revealing the different sediments and making them easy to survey.
Scientists believe that sediments carried by wind and water were deposited in Gale Crater in gradual layers, only to then harden and once again be carried away by winds.
The new layers and geographical position of the crater has, over the years since the rovers landing, led scientists to conclude that Mars’ surface was once an oasis haven – having catered to pools of water similar to those on Earth.
NASA is reportedly close to announcing its finding life on Mars – though scientists have been quick to warn of the potential consequences.
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The rover has uncovered a vital part of Mars’ history
The mission, NASA hopes, will result in their finding evidence of living organisms
Planetary Science Division director Jim Green spoke out about the agency apparently being close to “making some announcements” about finding life on Mars.
Although highly significant in finding out more about the universe, Dr Green claims that the human race is not ready for the announcement.
In an interview with the Telegraph, the NASA scientist warned that the world isn’t prepared for the discovery of life on another planet – something of which he claims is just a few years away.
He said: “It will be revolutionary – it’s like when Copernicus stated ‘no we go around the Sun’ – completely revolutionary.
“It will start a whole new line of thinking.
“I don’t think we’re prepared for the results. We’re not.
“I’ve been worried about that because I think we’re close to finding it, and making some announcements.
“What happens next is a whole new set of scientific questions.
Dr Green claims that the human race is not ready for the announcement
“Is that life like us? How are we related? Can life can move from planet-to-planet or do we have a spark and just the right environment and that spark generates life – like us or not like us – based on the chemical environment that it is in?”
Next summer, two rovers from NASA and the European Space Agency will travel to Mars to drill into rocks and deep into the surface of the fourth planet.
The mission, NASA hopes, will result in their finding evidence of living organisms.