A new analysis of images taken by NASA’s Mars Mars Sustainability Mars confirms that the rover’s landing site, Jezero Crater, is a large lake fed by a small river about 3.7 billion years ago. statement from MIT explains.
The new analysis proves the theory that led NASA to choose Jezero Crater as the landing site for Mars Perseverance. The US space agency believes that the sediment found in the ancient lake of the crater may give signs of ancient life on the red planet.
Their analysis was performed on images of the western side of the crater, which is now confirmed as an ancient river delta that flows into a Earth-like lake, the crater of Lake Mars.
I’m looking for fossils on Mars
Researchers who analyze their analysis in detail in an article published in on newspaper Science, also revealed that floods had occurred in the now desolate region. “If you look at these images, you’re basically staring at this epic desert landscape,” explains Benjamin Weiss, a professor of planetary science at MIT and a member of the analysis team. “There’s not a drop of water anywhere, and yet here we have evidence of a very different past. Something very deep has happened in the history of the planet.”
The Marse Perseverance team chose the Jezero crater as a landing site after satellite images showed fan-shaped rock formations resembling river deltas on Earth. The new images were taken in the first three months of the Martians’ arrival on Mars in February, a time when it remained motionless as NASA engineers performed a remote analysis of the machine’s instruments. Images taken by Persistence The Mastcam-Z and SuperCam Remote Micro-Imager (RMI) cameras confirm that the western side of Lake Crater was once home to a river delta.
A new MIT study explains that the lake was calm for long periods of time until climate change caused flooding in the region. According to researchers, the floods carried large rocks tens of miles from higher altitudes to the bottom of the lake, where they are still present today. Perseverance will then look for places to collect samples that will eventually be returned to Earth from future missions. Once on Earth, these samples will be analyzed for signs of ancient Martian life. “We now have the opportunity to look for fossils,” said team member Tanya Bosak, an associate professor of geobiology at MIT. “It will take some time to get to the rocks, which we really hope to try for signs of life. So, this is a marathon, with a lot of potential.”
Determining the transition of Mars to a red desert wasteland
Impressively, the flooded rocks on the lake of the ancient crater Jezero can allow scientists to determine exactly when Mars moved from an inhabitable planet to the red desert planet we know today. “The most surprising thing that came out of these images was the potential to capture the time when this crater moved from an earth-like habitat to this desolate landscape wasteland we see now,” Weiss said. “These boulder beds may be records of this transition, and we haven’t seen this elsewhere on Mars.”
As it landed on Jezero Crater on 18 February, the Mars Perseverance mission successfully made a historic list first, inclusive first controlled flight on another planet and the first extraction of breathing oxygen from the red planet using an experimental instrument called MOXIE. The rover Perseverance will spend at least two years exploring and sampling the Jezero crater. He will leave samples at certain locations on the red planet for future missions to Mars to be retrieved and returned to Earth. Perhaps we are incredibly close to confirming the existence of extraterrestrial life in the form of long-dead microorganisms, a discovery that would significantly change our understanding and perception of the universe.