Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Science. 2008 May 23;320(5879):1063-7. doi: 10.1126/science.1155429.

Detection of silica-rich deposits on Mars.

Author information

  • 1Department of Astronomy, Space Sciences Building, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853, USA. squyres@astro.cornell.edu

Abstract

Mineral deposits on the martian surface can elucidate ancient environmental conditions on the planet. Opaline silica deposits (as much as 91 weight percent SiO2) have been found in association with volcanic materials by the Mars rover Spirit. The deposits are present both as light-toned soils and as bedrock. We interpret these materials to have formed under hydrothermal conditions and therefore to be strong indicators of a former aqueous environment. This discovery is important for understanding the past habitability of Mars because hydrothermal environments on Earth support thriving microbial ecosystems.

PMID:
18497295
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk