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mars super soil and olivine mineral find

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posted on Jan, 20 2004 @ 02:42 PM
what does everyone think about these new NASA posts? (Trying to get people to think about other things than the numbers, faces, structures, etc they are seeing in the martian rocks)

Super Soil?

This animation made of images from the microscopic imager instrument on the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit shows the patch of soil scientists examined at Gusev Crater just after Spirit rolled off the Columbia Memorial Station. The upper left corner of the soil patch in part of this animation is illuminated by direct sunlight and thus appears brighter. The actual size of the patch is about 3 centimeters (1.2 inches) across. Scientists initially thought that the soil was dust-like and therefore would collapse as the instrument pressed down on it with approximately 4 ounces (113 grams) of force. But they were surprised when, as the rotating frames show, the soil barely moved under the instrument's weight. Scientists are still determining why this happened.

larger image; Image credit: NASA/JPL/US Geological Survey

Mysterious Lava Mineral on Mars

This graph or spectrum captured by the Moessbauer spectrometer onboard the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit shows the presence of three different iron-bearing minerals in the soil at the rover's landing site. One of these minerals has been identified as olivine, a shiny green rock commonly found in lava on Earth. The other two have yet to be pinned down. Scientists were puzzled by the discovery of olivine because it implies the soil consists at least partially of ground up rocks that have not been weathered or chemically altered. The black line in this graph represents the original data; the three colored regions denote individual minerals and add up to equal the black line. The Moessbauer spectrometer uses two pieces of radioactive cobalt-57, each about the size of pencil erasers, to determine with a high degree of accuracy the composition and abundance of iron-bearing minerals in martian rocks and soil. It is located on the rover's instrument deployment device, or "arm."

larger image; Image credit: NASA/JPL/University of Mainz

posted on May, 31 2007 @ 04:36 PM
Interesting that when Cassini flew by Iapetus it captured a fleck of olivine in the comet's tail.

Now we have olivine on Mars, but for olivine to exist proves a lack of weathering. We know that Mars has dust storms and ancient evidence of large bodies of fast moving water.

What conclusion should be drawn ?

Was Olivine from an asteroid strike and more recent than the weathering effects ?

[edit on 31-5-2007 by sy.gunson]

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