back to article Europe eyes six Martian landing sites

The European Space Agency (ESA) has compiled a shortlist of places it would like to look for life (past or present) on Mars. Artists impression of the rover. Credit: ESA Artist's impression of the Rover. Credit: ESA The agency says its ExoMars mission, planned for a 2013 launch, will touch down on some of the red planet's …

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Alien

Alien sites

Why dont they go and land at the great giant head place and bring back some Martian artifacts?

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Alien

Expense

Why don't they all go and get memory implants and save the expense of going....

on the other hand, they should speed up the process and get a prison built on mars to help ease the overflow developing in the UK.

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Mars

Food for thought

Think about all the dust storms that the two rovers on planet for more then a year now have been through. Remarkably they remain clean and shiny. Who is maintaining their almost new appearance? Which has undoubtedly contributed to their greatly extended life on the red planet. Makes me wonder, how about you?

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Pirate

Wouldn't go there - it smells bad

Sulphur and stuff.

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The best location will be the deepest valley they can find

If they look carefully, they will discover that some of their images show the slightest sign of an inversion at the entrance to deep valleys. Mars has the deepest valleys, much deeper than Earth. Temperature rises at 2.7 degrees per thousand feet as you drop down through any atmosphere. A 10,000 foot deep valley will be 27 degrees warmer at the bottom than the surface. Add to that adiabatic temperature effects on the sun-ward side of the valley, (just like we find on the sides of a mountain), will drive a circulation of the warmer air towards that opening at the surface. That in turn creates the visible inversion we see in the images.

Take a look at 195-170505-0449-6-3D-01-Coprates_H and again, 195-170505-0449-6-3D-01-Coprates_L and look at the large valley in the background. I am convinced that what we can see is an inversion caused by moist air making contact with the much drier and colder surface atmosphere.

If that is correct then we have a very real chance of finding moisture and thus life at the bottom, or, on the sun-ward slopes.

I am sure they can drop into the deepest valley possible. In my humble opinion, they must do so.

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