NOV 04, 2016 06:38 AM PDT

NASA's Curiosity Rover Found This Alien Egg-Shaped Mass on Mars' Surface

NASA’s Curiosity rover rolls about the red planet’s surface always looking for things out of the ordinary that might be of interest to NASA. It attempts to search for life forms, as well as learn more about the composition of the red planet.
 
Curiosity is easily one of NASA’s most important red planet observation tools at this point in time, at least until the Mars 2020 rover can make its way over there.
 
Recently, however, Curiosity found something rather peculiar. It looks like a metallic alien egg straight out of science fiction movies, but NASA says it’s probably just a meteorite made of dense materials, including metals.
 

The strange egg-shaped hunk of metallic asteroid core fragment was discovered on Mars at the end of October by the Curiosity rover.

 Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

The object was first discovered on October 27th by the mast camera on the Curiosity rover, and it’s quite an interesting find actually.
 
Curiosity rover’s ChemCam, which is capable of using lasers to determine what something is made out of, fired its lasers at the rock several times. This essentially excites the electrons and emits certain light wavelengths; the type of wavelengths of light that get emitted are the key to what elements are present in the object.
 
ChemCam found traces of iron, nickel, and phosphorous among other still-undetermined elements.
 
“Iron meteorites provide records of many different asteroids that broke up, with fragments of their cores ending up on Earth and on Mars,” said Horton Newsom of the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque and a Curiosity ChemCam team member. “Mars may have sampled a different population of asteroids than Earth has.”
 
The findings reveal that this may be a piece of a once-molten core of an asteroid. It must have broken up at some point in time in space, probably due to some kind of space-based collision, and then this little guy ended up on the red planet as a result.
 


Curiosity will continue to explore the area to see if any more samples like this can be found. In addition, the rover will be looking for any signs of life in the Murray formation it’s currently driving around.
 
With NASA’s interest in one day retiring the International Space Station to put mankind on Mars, it’s important to think ahead and really understand the Martian environment before we make any big leaps.
 
Source: Space.com

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
SEP 26, 2018
Space & Astronomy
SEP 26, 2018
NASA Unveils Official Plans to Return to the Moon
NASA hasn’t sent any of its astronauts to the lunar surface for scientific exploration since the Apollo 17 mission launched from Earth’s surfac...
OCT 02, 2018
Space & Astronomy
OCT 02, 2018
NASA's Kepler Space Telescope Enters Sleep Mode to Preserve Data
NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope earned a reputation for being quite the capable exoplanet hunter, but after all these years of memorable service to the...
OCT 02, 2018
Space & Astronomy
OCT 02, 2018
Here's What'd Happen if We Detonated a Nuclear Bomb in Space
Have you ever wondered what would happen if humankind detonated its most powerful nuclear bomb in space? If so, then this is a video you’ll want to w...
OCT 09, 2018
Space & Astronomy
OCT 09, 2018
Putting the Mars 2020 Rover Together - Behind the Scenes
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you should know by now that NASA’s planning to send another rover to the Martian surface to investigate...
OCT 24, 2018
Space & Astronomy
OCT 24, 2018
The Importance of Removing Space Junk From Low-Earth Orbit
Space junk is a growing concern among space agencies all around the globe. Countless pieces of space junk surround the Earth in low-Earth orbit, and when t...
NOV 13, 2018
Space & Astronomy
NOV 13, 2018
Was Pluto Once Home to Ancient Glaciers?
When NASA’s New Horizons probe conducted its historic fly-by of Pluto in 2015, the American space agency received some of the sharpest photographs de...
Loading Comments...