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Rover Finds Weird 'Hood Ornament' on Mars

nasa curiostity ventifacted antarctica

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#1 Hum

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 22:55

NASA's Mars rover Curiosity has photographed a shiny, metallic-looking object that bears a passing resemblance to a door handle or a hood ornament.

The Curiosity rover has not stumbled onto evidence of an ancient civilization that took the family van to Olympus Mons for vacation, however. The object is simply a rock that the wind has sculpted into an interesting shape, scientists said.

"The shiny surface suggests that this rock has a fine grain and is relatively hard," Curiosity scientists wrote Monday (Feb. 11) in an explainer blurb accompanying the image, which was taken on Jan. 30. "Hard, fine-grained rocks can be polished by the wind to form very smooth surfaces."

Similar "ventifacted" (wind-eroded) rocks can be found here on Earth, notably on the dry, gusty plains of Antarctica, they added.

The rover's main task is to determine whether its landing site — a huge crater called Gale — could ever have supported microbial life.

Curiosity carries 10 different scientific instruments and 17 cameras to aid in this quest.

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#2 insanelyapple

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 23:09

http://en.wikipedia....wiki/Pareidolia ?

#3 rfirth

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 23:14

Posted Image

#4 OP Hum

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 23:17

Here's a close-up :D :

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#5 insanelyapple

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 23:28

Looks like a leg with two octopus suckers, rather than a door handle.

#6 Tuishimi

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 23:32

That looks suspiciously like a small ray gun... I wonder where it is pointed?

#7 OP Hum

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Posted 12 February 2013 - 23:34

^ At Luke Skywalker

#8 Tai

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 00:57

Its a frakkin cylon, and not the cute kind either !

#9 Skin

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 01:04

If you think that the universe is billions of years old, at least from our point of view, then things are bound to have drifted through space and crashed into planets...

So, some ancient debris passed through space and landed... or, we have more of a presence on Mars than thought, and humans left some trash behind on a visit/flyby.

Take your pick.

#10 Growled

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 01:58

Amazing what a little wind can do.

#11 LUTZIFER

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Posted 13 February 2013 - 02:14

Must have fallen off of someone's spacecraft as they were flying by, or they pulled over to take a leak or something, and it fell off when they landed.



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