NASA has been beleaguered and harassed for nearly 50 years by various tin-foil encased lunatics asserting everything from the Moon landing was a hoax to NASA Photoshopping Alien bases out of Moon photographs. One would think, considering this and the recent scandals involving Dr James Hansen the climate guru NASA would have learned to be a bit more careful about what they say in their public releases.
Sadly that just doesn’t seem to be the case.
A mysterious rock which appeared in front of the Opportunity rover is “like nothing we’ve ever seen before”, according to Mars exploration scientists at Nasa.
Experts said they were “completely confused” by both the origins and makeup of the object, which is currently being investigated by Opportunity’s various measuring instruments.
Astronomers noticed the new rock had “appeared” without any explanation on an outcrop which had been empty just days earlier. The rover has been stuck photographing the same region of Mars for more than a month due to bad weather, with scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California monitoring the images it sends.
Nasa issued a Mars status report entitled “encountering a surprise”, and lead Mars Exploration rover scientist Steve Squyres told a JPL event it seems the planet literally “keeps throwing new things at us”.
He said the images, from 12 Martian days apart, were from no more than a couple of weeks ago. “We saw this rock just sitting here. It looks white around the edge in the middle and there’s a low spot in the centre that’s dark red – it looks like a jelly doughnut.
“And it appeared, just plain appeared at that spot – and we haven’t ever driven over that spot.”
Images captured by Opportunity show the mysterious rock ‘appeared’ on an outcrop that had been empty just 12 Martian days (‘Sols’) earlier Images captured by Opportunity show the mysterious rock ‘appeared’ on an outcrop that had been empty just 12 Martian days (‘Sols’) earlier Squyres said his team had two theories on how the rock got there – that there’s “a smoking hole in the ground somewhere nearby” and it was caused by a meteor, or that it was “somehow flicked out of the ground by a wheel” as the rover went by.
“We had driven a metre or two away from here, and I think the idea that somehow we mysteriously flicked it with a wheel is the best explanation,” Squyres said.
Yet the story got even stranger when Opportunity investigated further. Squyres explained: “We are as we speak situated with the rover’s instruments deployed making measurements of this rock.
“We’ve taken pictures of both the doughnut and jelly parts, and the got the first data on the composition of the jelly yesterday.
“It’s like nothing we’ve ever seen before,” he said. “It’s very high in sulphur, it’s very high in magnesium, it’s got twice as much manganese as we’ve ever seen in anything on Mars.
“I don’t know what any of this means. We’re completely confused, and everyone in the team is arguing and fighting (over what it means).
“That’s the beauty of this mission… what I’ve realised is that we will never be finished. There will always be something tantalising, something wonderful just beyond our reach that we didn’t quite get to – and that’s the nature of exploration.”
This is one of those things that NASA would have been better off not commenting on at all.
The above photo is a pretty good explanation why the tin-foil hat crowd thrives. Yes, there are difference between the image on the left and the image on the right. But it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to notice that there is something of approximately the same size and shape in the exact same location in both pictures. This is why the tin-foil hat brigade insists that NASA is covering up Alien Bases on the Moon and Mars. Because NASA keeps sticking their feet i9n their mouth and making stupid assertion based on photo’s like this.
I don’t know what you are seeing in those two pictures, but I am certain that it is not a coincidence with regard to the physical location, size and shape. In my personal opinion, whatever it is that is in the picture on the right, didn’t suddenly appear there, since there is something of nearly identical size and shape also in the picture on the left. If I had to guess, I would suspect that the images show an area where martian wind blew away dust and exposed something that was only partially visible before, and as a consequence of recent exposure perhaps we are seeing an eruption of sulphide crystals of some sort.
It’s not uncommon here on earth to see similar alkaline crystals erupt over the course of a few days, most people who have a concrete garage floor have seen them countless times on their garage floors right next to the wall. Just small nearly white crystals that tend to look almost like dryer lint, that show up a few days after it has rained. I won’t say for certain that I know this is what we are seeing in those photos, but it seems far more likely to me to be the explanation than the suggestion the knuckleheads at NASA have put forth.