Planetary Science Research Discoveries

Planetary scientists sharing ideas and discoveries.

Planetary Science Research Discoveries (PSRD) is an educational site sharing the latest research by NASA-sponsored scientists on meteorites, asteroids, planets, moons, and other materials in our Solar System. The website is supported by the Cosmochemistry Program of NASA's Science Mission Directorate and by Hawai'i Space Grant Consortium and is a vital link for planetary and space sciences, and for learning how science works.

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Archive of Mars Life Articles

Articles listed by publication date.

DATE POSTED

HEADLINE ARTICLES

PDF VERSIONS

15 MAR 2012 Young Tectonic Events in Martian Chaotic Terrain
by Linda M. V. Martel
Study of a faulted landslide in Aureum Chaos and its ramifications.
pdf link, Young Tectonic Events in Martian Chaotic Terrain
15 DEC 2011 Formation of Carbonate Minerals in Martian Meteorite ALH 84001 from Cool Water Near the Surface of Mars
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
A new approach to thermometry using isotopic compositions of carbon and oxygen indicates that carbonate minerals in Martian meteorite ALH 84001 formed at 18 ± 4 oC.
pdf link, Formation of Carbonate Minerals in ALH 84001
21 MAY 2010 A Younger Age for the Oldest Martian Meteorite
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
New isotopic analyses show that famous Martian meteorite ALH 84001 formed 4.09 billion years ago, not 4.50 billion years ago as originally reported.
pdf link, A Younger Age for the Oldest Martian Meteorite
30 OCT 07 Did an Impact Make the Mysterious Microscopic Magnetite Crystals in ALH 84001?
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Tiny crystals of magnetite in Martian meteorite ALH 84001 might have been made when shock waves decomposed iron carbonate.
pdf link, Microscopic Magnetite Crystals in ALH 84001
19 JUNE 07 Oxidants from Pulverized Minerals
by Linda M. V. Martel
Laboratory measurements of hydrogen peroxide produced from crushed basaltic minerals immersed in water have important implications for Martian and lunar dust.
pdf link, Oxidants from Pulverized Minerals
26 OCT 06 LIBS: Remote Chemical Analysis
by Linda M. V. Martel
Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) is an active remote sensing technique used for the rapid characterization of elemental compositions of materials.
pdf link, LIBS: Remote Chemical Analysis
23 DEC 04 Cosmochemistry and Human Exploration
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Cosmochemistry plays an important role in developing local resources on the Moon and Mars, essential to sustained human presence in space.
pdf link, Cosmochemistry and Human Exploration
1 JULY 04 Carbonates in ALH 84001: Part of the Story of Water on Mars
by Catherine M. Corrigan
The study of multi-generational carbonate assemblages in Martian meteorite ALH 84001 reveals a complex history of crystal formation, growth, and alteration.
pdf link, Carbonates in ALH 84001
28 OCT 03 Show Me the Carbonates
by Linda M. V. Martel
Carbonate minerals intermingle with silicates in the Martian surface dust.
pdf link, Show Me the Carbonates
29 AUG 03 Gullied Slopes on Mars
by Linda M. V. Martel
Do the Martian gullies tell us something about the stability and distribution of near-surface water?
pdf link, Gullied Slopes on Mars
16 JULY 03 Ancient Floodwaters and Seas on Mars
by Linda M. V. Martel
Surface deposits within the northern lowlands support the oceans hypothesis.
pdf link, Ancient Floodwaters and Seas on Mars
13 MAR 03 Gray Iron Oxide in Meridiani, Mars
by Linda M. V. Martel
A deposit of gray hematite in Terra Meridiani may suggest that water once circulated through the rock layers in this region of Mars.
pdf link, Gray Iron Oxide in Meridiani, Mars
5 JUNE 02 Dirty Ice on Mars
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Instruments on the Odyssey spacecraft show that a lot of dirty ice sits within a meter of the surface in the south polar latitudes of Mars.
pdf link, Dirty Ice on Mars
13 MAY 02 Resolution of a Big Argument About Tiny Magnetic Minerals in Martian Meteorite
by Edward R. D. Scott and David J. Barber
Magnetic minerals in Martian meteorite ALH 84001 formed as a result of impact heating and decomposition of carbonate. They were never used as compasses by Martian microorganisms.
pdf link, Resolution of a Big Argument ALH84001
14 JUNE 01 Outflow Channels May Make a Case for a Bygone Ocean on Mars
by Linda M. V. Martel
Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter data have given scientists a new perspective of the dry channels in Chryse Planitia and a new approach to testing the Martian ancient ocean hypothesis.
pdf link, Outflow Channels May Make a Case for a Bygone Ocean on Mars
24 APRIL 01 Gullies and Canyons, Rocks and Experiments: The Mystery of Water on Mars
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
The combination of analyses of Martian meteorites and laboratory experiments helps scientists understand how water in magma has changed the Martian crust and surface.
pdf link, The Mystery of Water on Mars
24 MAY 00 Liquid Water on Mars: The Story from Meteorites
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Martian meteorites may have reacted with liquid water on Mars intermittently during the past 650 million years.
pdf link, Liquid Water on Mars: The Story from Meteorites
17 DEC 99 Zapping Mars Rocks with Gamma Rays
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
One way to sterilize samples from Mars is to zap them with gamma rays. Will this ruin the rock for other studies? Apparently not.
pdf link, Zapping Mars Rocks with Gamma Rays
30 JULY 99 Fossils Blowing in the Wind: More Contamination of Antarctic Meteorites
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Terrestrial microfossils occur in cracks in Antarctic meteorites, making it difficult to search for extraterrestrial life in meteorites.
pdf link, Contamination of Antarctic Meteorites
3 JUNE 99 Martian Organic Matter in ALH84001?
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Indigenous organic compounds in ALH84001 may be from meteorite bombardment of the surface of Mars.
pdf link, Martian Organic Matter in ALH84001?
21 APRIL 99 30th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference: Some Highlights
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
The annual LPSC featured bacteria, new views of the Moon, and an intriguing new meteorite.
pdf link, 30th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference: Some Highlights
24 SEPT 98 For a Cup of Water on Mars: Gusev Crater
by Linda M. V. Martel
Gusev crater's long history as a depositional site for water-laid sediments makes it a priority site for future biological explorations.
pdf link, For a Cup of Water on Mars: Gusev Crater
17 FEB 98 Organic Compounds in Martian Meteorites May Be Terrestrial Contaminants
by A. J. T. Jull
Carbon-14 measurements indicate that most of the organic compounds in martian meteorite ALH84001 were acquired on Earth, not Mars, weakening the case for fossil martian life in the meteorite.
pdf link, Organic Compounds in Martian Meteorites May Be Terrestrial Contaminants
18 DEC 97 Fossils in Martian Meteorite: Real or Imagined?
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Some scientists suggest that the small, wormy structures in martian meteorite ALH84001 are features of the crystals in the rock, decorated with artifacts introduced during sample preparation, not nanofossils. The discoverers of the fossil-like objects disagree.
pdf link, Fossils in Martian Meteorite: Real or Imagined?
22 AUG 97 Testing the Evidence for Life on Mars: NASA and NSF Fund New Studies of Martian Meteorite
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Newly awarded grants will fund 23 projects to further analyze martian meteorite ALH84001 and the details that led to last year's announcement of possible ancient martian life.
pdf link, Testing the Evidence for Life on Mars
22 MAY 97 Shocked Carbonates may Spell N-o L-i-f-e in Martian Meteorite ALH84001
by Edward R. D. Scott
Evidence for redistribution of carbonates by shock casts doubt on fossil life in martian meteorite.
pdf link, Shocked Carbonates may Spell No Life in Martian Meteorite ALH84001
22 MAY 97 Low-temperature Origin of Carbonates Consistent with Life in ALH84001
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Evidence from magnetism and isotopes consistent with life in martian meteorite.
pdf link, Low-temp Origin of Carbonates Consistent with Life in ALH84001
31 MAR 97 Life on Mars--The Debate Continues
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
Scientists continue their search for answers to the question of fossil life in a martian meteorite. Have we found evidence for life, nonbiologic processes or contamination? The great debate is far from over.
pdf link, Life on Mars--The Debate Continues
31 MAR 97 Not Quite a Meeting of the Minds
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
The debate about life in martian meteorite ALH 84001 at the 28th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference was vigorous. Some investigators will turn out to be right, others wrong, but there will be no losers.
pdf link, Not Quite a Meeting of the Minds
18 OCT 96 Life on Mars?
by G. Jeffrey Taylor
A group of scientists, headed by Dr. David McKay of Johnson Space Center, have made a case for ancient life on Mars based on features in a meteorite found in Antarctica. Do we indeed have evidence of life on Mars?
pdf link, Life on Mars?
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