HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
New CU-NASA research belies previous idea that Mars was once warm, wet planet

A new study led by University of Colorado at Boulder researchers indicates Mars has been primarily a cold, dry planet following its formation some 4 billion years ago, making the possibility of the evolution of life there challenging at best.

Led by CU-Boulder doctoral candidate Teresa Segura and her adviser, Professor Owen B. Toon, the team used Mars photos and computer models to show that large asteroids or comets hit the planet some 3.5 billion years ago. These impacts apparently occurred about the time major river channels were formed on the Red Planet, said Segura.

According to the available evidence, roughly 25 huge impactors, each about 60 miles to 150 miles in diameter, slammed into Mars roughly every 10 million to 20 million years during the period, blowing a volume of debris equivalent to a global blanket hundreds of yards thick into the atmosphere. The material is believed to have melted portions of subsurface and polar ice, creating steam and scalding water that rained back on Mars at some six feet per year for decades or centuries, causing rivers to form and flow, according to the study.

But the study belies the warm, wet, Mars theory of rivers and oceans embraced by many planetary scientists, since such impactors were so infrequent. "There apparently were some brief warm and wet periods on Mars, but we believe that through most of its history, Mars has been a cold, dry planet," said Segura, currently a visiting researcher at NASA-Ames in California.

A paper by Segura, Toon, CU-Boulder graduate Anthony Colaprete -- now at NASA-Ames -- and Kevin Zahnle of NASA-Ames, will appear in the Dec. 6 issue of Science.

"When the river valleys on Mars were confirmed in the 1970s, many scientists believed there once was an Earth-like period with warmth, rivers and oceans," said Toon, director of CU-Boulder's Program in Oceanic and Atmospheric Sciences and a professor at the University's Laboratory for Astrophysics and Space
'"/>

Contact: Teresa Segura
segurat@colorado.edu
650-604-0321
University of Colorado at Boulder
5-Dec-2002


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Leader in cancer treatment and prevention research honored
2. UT Southwestern receives $1.78 million grant for obesity research as part of NIH Roadmap initiative
3. Scientists to prototype cyberinfrastructure for research and education access to ocean observatories
4. Belgian researchers explore revolutionary approach to angiogenesis
5. Award winning researchers reveal potential new role for Glivec
6. New research shows plants can shuffle and paste gene pieces to generate genetic diversity
7. 16 APS exercise research highlights, from reduced flu mortality to proteomics & obesity
8. Gene chips research in cotton could lead to superior variety
9. Groundbreaking research could ignite new solutions to heat transfer in nano-devices
10. New hydrothermal vents discovered as South Pacific Odyssey research begins
11. University of Alberta researcher looks for clues to mysterious disease

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/22/2017)... 21, 2017   Neurotechnology , a provider ... today announced the release of the SentiVeillance ... improved facial recognition using up to 10 surveillance, ... computer. The new version uses deep neural-network-based facial ... it utilizes a Graphing Processing Unit (GPU) for ...
(Date:3/22/2017)... March 21, 2017 Vigilant Solutions , ... law enforcement agencies, announced today the appointment of retired ... of public safety business development. Mr. Sheridan ... experience, including a focus on the aviation transportation sector, ... recent position, Mr. Sheridan served as the Aviation Liaison ...
(Date:3/20/2017)... Pa. , March 20, 2017 PMD ... 2.0 personal spirometer and Wellness Management System (WMS), a ... Founded in 2010, PMD Healthcare is a Medical ... with a mission dedicated to creating innovative solutions that ... life. With that intent focus, PMD developed the first ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:5/16/2017)... ... 16, 2017 , ... Zansors has secured a patent ... or EKG) acquisition and monitoring device. This Zansors’ next-generation intellectual property (IP), will ... the skin, making them significantly easier to deploy and use. , Currently, ECG ...
(Date:5/15/2017)... ... May 15, 2017 , ... Tunnell Consulting announced that ... “The Key Role of Specifications in Process Validation,” at the Process Validation Summit ... will bring together leaders from the pharmaceutical and biotech industries to explore processes, strategies ...
(Date:5/12/2017)... , May 12, 2017 GreenMark Biomedical Inc. ... at the 36th annual Michigan Growth Capital Symposium (MGCS) ... Delaware corporation with facilities in ... investors in attendance, including more than 100 top venture ... to society through biobased targeting technologies. GreenMark ...
(Date:5/11/2017)... ... ... The key to unlocking the cause of Multiple Sclerosis may lie in ... that can rob people of their ability to see, speak, and walk. It is ... a genetic tendency towards the disease combined with an unidentified environmental trigger. The genetics ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: