Strange Mars structures may be trace fossils
By T.K. Randall
January 6, 2018 · 36 comments
Could this be evidence of ancient life on Mars ? Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS
The Mars Curiosity rover has discovered some rather peculiar structures and nobody knows what they are.
Measuring mere millimeters in length, these angular stick-like features were visible in the first batch of photographs taken this year using the rover's Mars Hand Lens Imager (MAHLI) instrument.
"They look remarkably similar to Ordovician trace fossils I have studied and photographed here on Earth," said astrobiologist and author Barry DiGregorio.
"If not trace fossils, what other geological explanations will NASA come up with ?"
Keen to get to the bottom of the mystery, the Curiosity team sent the rover back for a closer look.
"This site was so interesting that we backtracked to get to where the rover was parked for this plan," said Curiosity team member Christopher Edwards. "In the work space in front of the rover, we have some very peculiar targets that warranted some additional interrogation."
While at present it remains unclear whether or not the mystery structures really are the fossil remnants of some ancient alien species, NASA scientists are currently not ready to rule out the possibility.
"If we see more of them... then we begin to say that this is an important process that's going on at Vera Rubin Ridge," said Curiosity project scientist Ashwin Vasavada.
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