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Movies and Martians

December 7, 2012

Jessie Burgess

Do you remember that movie “Mission to Mars?”

 

I wouldn’t either, because it was horrible, but if you have any desire to see it stop reading now, because it’s about to get spoiled, maybe keep reading because as I’ve said, it’s horrible.

 

Mission to Mars Science in Seconds

 

Here’s the Jessie Burgess short notes. People go to Mars, possibly find water, then a massive dust storm kills everyone except Gary Sinise who stays behind to stay with the Martians that still live underground and whose ancestors populated the earth billions of years ago, inferring that life on Earth is a second chance of life on Mars.

 

Seriously, I can’t make that up.

 

August 6, 2012 was a historic day for NASA, (they almost crashed the internet with their live landing streams and nerdy hugging and high fiving) when they landed the Mars Curiosity Rover on the Martian surface, a two-year project that looks into the history of water on the planet and hopefully provide insights into the possibility of life on Mars.

 

 

A couple weeks ago the Curiosity team from NASA announced that they had found something. What? They wouldn’t say, just that it was big and important and amazing, and they were possibly keeping their mouths shut to avoid another “Arsenic Bug” fiasco. Side note: arsenic bugs are why paradigm-shifting discoveries should be peer reviewed. NASA, I’m looking at you.

 

Then, on December 2nd, they told us. Curiosity successfully analyzed some Martian dirt and found some things that are pretty amazing: complex chemistry of organic molecules, carbon-containing compounds, water, sulphur and chlorine containing substances.

 

So what does this mean? Nothing, for now. We don’t know the exact nature of any of the compounds and chemistry of what was found, and Curiosity still has two years of work to do and a whole planet left to explore.

 

The next Mars rover launches in 2020, and between now and then more and more tests will be done, and more and more will be learned about what secrets Mars holds.

 

So we’ll leave the life on Mars theories to science fiction. Which reminds me, there’s a Doctor Who episode called “The Waters of Mars.” Anyone want to join me? Allons-y!

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