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Space & Astronomy

Scientists discover huge ice deposit on Mars

By T.K. Randall
November 23, 2016 · Comment icon 5 comments

The ice deposit could prove a valuable resource for future colonists. Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech
NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has identified an ice deposit with more water than Lake Superior.
Mars may no longer be covered in rivers and oceans, but below its surface there still lies a large amount of water locked away in ice deposits that could one day sustain a human population.

This latest ice deposit, which measures up to 170 metres thick in some places, was found using data acquired from over 600 scans of Utopia Planitia - a mid-latitude region of the planet.
"This deposit is probably more accessible than most water ice on Mars, because it is at a relatively low latitude and it lies in a flat, smooth area where landing a spacecraft would be easier than at some of the other areas with buried ice," said co-author Jack Holt from the University of Texas.

Scientists believe that the deposit formed several billion years ago as a result of snowfall which gradually built up an ice sheet mixed with dust from the surface.

In total it accounts for around 1% of all the water ice known to exist on Mars.

Source: | Comments (5)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by glorybebe 8 years ago
So exciting reading articles like this!  It gives me hope for Mars to be colonized.
Comment icon #2 Posted by Astra. 8 years ago
Comment icon #3 Posted by DieChecker 8 years ago
Sounds like a good place to set up shop. With good recyclers that much water should last a long time. 
Comment icon #4 Posted by bigjonalien 8 years ago
Again! tell us something we don't know. Wat happened to the life on that planet?
Comment icon #5 Posted by XClashGames 8 years ago
How do you even know our solar system harbored life at all before us. My theory is that life was seeded onto Earth by either an asteroid made of Ice which carried the first life (bacteria), or the theory of the collision between the old Earth and Theia to create this new Earth and our Moon. Until NASA finds solid proof of past life on Mars I don't expect them to find any, Not like they would tell us anyway for at least a few years.

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