NASA’s Curiosity Rover Discovers Purple Rocks On Mars

Posted: Dec 30 2016, 7:12am CST | by , Updated: Dec 30 2016, 7:40am CST, in News | Latest Science News

 
NASA’s Curiosity Rover Discovers Purple-Colored Rocks on Mars
This new image from the Mars Curiosity rover captures purple-colored rocks on the surface of lower Mount Sharp. Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

NASA’s Curiosity Rover discovered some purple-colored stones on the surface of Mars.

Recently, NASA’s Curiosity Rover sent home pictures of purple rocks on the Martian surface. The geological diversity of the region on Mars is indeed very variegated. A clue was also found with regard to why the water evaporated from the landscape of Mars.

The photographs were taken at the foothills of Mount Sharp which is 18,000 feet high. This is the highest mountain on Mars. The differences in the colors of the rocks showed that they were composed of different materials.

The winds and sandstorms on Mars kept the rocks relatively exposed. Otherwise mostly the rocks are hidden beneath a layer of dust. Since the past two years or so, the Curiosity Rover has looked into the details surrounding Mount Sharp.

NASA received the pictures back on the home planet intermittently. Apparently, the purple hue of the rocks is due to the presence of hematite, according to Space.com.

This is an iron oxide compound that is employed on earth as a coloring agent or in fancy jewelry. Hematite is normally formed in water which once again suggests that there was water existent on Mars once upon a time.

Where there is water, there may have been life which needs carbon and water to flourish. The past conditions on Mars may be reconstructed using this information and data.

Still a lot of research needs to be done before anything can be said with finality. What is strange is that Mars has a reddish tinge to it when seen from afar.

Yet the presence of these purple rocks on its surface tends to give the opposite impression. The presence of microbial life in the past may be a reality that will be uncovered one day in the future. Till then the scientists are searching high and low for signs of life on Mars.

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