back to article Mars is red, Earth is blue. Here's a space laser story for you

NASA has decided to use fragments of Martian meteorites for target practice ahead of the Mars 2020 mission, then send one back to Mars. The instrument doing the shooting is called SHERLOC - short for "Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman and Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals" - an instrument scheduled for the Mars …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Lasers are red, Let's hope they hit the mark, but please do tell, where's the mothertrucking shark?

    1. Spudley

      Lasers are red, Let's hope they hit the mark, but please do tell, where's the mothertrucking shark?

      Unfortunately, the shark failed to reach orbit and crashed into a house in Oxford.

      see here for the photo.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Martian sharks or African sharks?

        Either way exploring by pointing a laser at everything you see could be misinterpreted by little green men :-)

        1. genghis_uk

          Did we learn nothing from Captain Scarlet??

          1. Captain Scarlet Silver badge
            Big Brother

            Of course, puppets are better than CGI and don't shoot lasers at things at Mysteron homes.

        2. Ugotta B. Kiddingme
  2. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
    Alien

    Amateurs

    Everyone knows for this kind of work you need an Illudium Q-36 Explosive Space Modulator

  3. Evil Auditor Silver badge

    Littering

    It will also surrender some of the slab so it can travel with Mars 2020...

    Yeah, send all the litter back to where it belongs!

    How long before Mars says the same?

  4. Alister Silver badge

    And because SHERLOC's job is to apply its laser to whatever it sees on Mars,

    RUN Opportunity, RUN, Run and hide!

  5. LDS Silver badge
    Joke

    How they could spot a Mars rock in Oman?

    Last time I wen there in the desert and mountains, everything around looked to be like Mars already... <G>

    Very interesting places to visit and travel around, though.

    1. DropBear Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: How they could spot a Mars rock in Oman?

      Maybe the crater gave it away...

    2. This post has been deleted by its author

  6. Scroticus Canis
    Holmes

    "SHERLOC will be calibrated, tested, then re-tested and re-calibrated "

    And hopefully decontaminated.

    (sorry, had to find an excuse for the icon)

    1. lglethal Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: "SHERLOC will be calibrated, tested, then re-tested and re-calibrated "

      "And hopefully decontaminated."

      So? No Shit SHERLOC?

      1. Alister Silver badge

        Re: "SHERLOC will be calibrated, tested, then re-tested and re-calibrated "

        So? No Shit SHERLOC?

        Alimentary, my dear Watson.

        EDIT: just seen Drop Bear's post, I win!

        1. Cynic_999 Silver badge

          Re: "SHERLOC will be calibrated, tested, then re-tested and re-calibrated "

          Don't be so sour about it

          A lemon tree, my dear Watson

    2. DropBear Silver badge

      Re: "SHERLOC will be calibrated, tested, then re-tested and re-calibrated "

      "And hopefully decontaminated."

      Elementary, dear Watson...

  7. onefang Silver badge

    "Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman and Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals"

    Am I the only one that read that as "Ramen"? Ramen, Organics, and Chemicals, sounds like a meal. Pop them in the microwave for the Luminescence, nuke it 'til it glows. Don't leave it in the 'fridge for too long, or it will become a Habitable Environment. Think I need my word Scanning fixed.

    1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
      Trollface

      Nope - I also thought it sounded like something you'd end up noshing after a heavy night on the sake in downtown Tokyo...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Pop them in the microwave for the Luminescence, nuke it 'til it glows.

      I'll even eat the chicken if the sauce is not too blue.

      Mind you, they had a car that turned into a spaceship back in the 80s

      1. onefang Silver badge
        Pint

        "I'll even eat the chicken if the sauce is not too blue."

        Have a beer for the ZZ Top reference.

  8. Chris G Silver badge

    After millenia of hibernation, the last Martian awakes. He heads for the surface wondering if anything survived the disaster that stripped most of the atmosphere.

    Nearing the surface he senses an object in near space so he hurries to the surface, he sees an alien machine and thiinks ' there must be intelligent life out here'.....ZZZAPP!!!

    1. Anonymous Custard Silver badge
      Alien

      ...cos there's bugger all down here on Earth..

      Sorry, had to be linked after a comment like that.

      OK any excuse to play it again really...

  9. handleoclast Silver badge
    Coat

    Martian offerings?

    Predictive spooling is getting worse.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "The instrument doing the shooting is called SHERLOC"

    Clearly this name came up by following the "Naming Our Systems is a Highly Important Task" guidelines

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Yeah, I've often wondered if they are just good at acronyms/bacronyms or if they employ people with the specific job to come up with them. A Bacronym Specialist? Senior BS Team Leader?

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