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Tech & Science Scientists Have Discovered Massive Ice Sheets on Mars

17:23  12 january  2018
17:23  12 january  2018 Source:   time.com

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The water they contain could be a useful resource for future astronauts.

Scientists Have Discovered Massive Ice Sheets on Mars . Massive ice sheets have been discovered on Mars that could potentially be a resource for astronauts to harness for exploration of the planet.

a close up of an animal: In this handout provided by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, dark, narrow streaks on the slopes of Hale Crater, are inferred to be formed by seasonal flow of water on surface of present-day Mars, reported on September 28, 2015.© NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona—Getty Images In this handout provided by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, dark, narrow streaks on the slopes of Hale Crater, are inferred to be formed by seasonal flow of water on surface of present-day Mars, reported on September 28, 2015. Massive ice sheets have been discovered on Mars that could potentially be a resource for astronauts to harness for exploration of the planet.

According to a report published on Friday in the journal Science, scientists examined eight areas on Mars where erosion has occurred. Researchers discovered massive ice sheets in the planet’s mid-latitudes that are believed to extend up to 100 meters deep and contain distinguishable layers that, “could preserve a record of Mars’ past climate,” the report says. “They might even be a useful source of water for future human exploration of the red planet.”

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In this handout provided by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, dark, narrow streaks on the slopes of Hale Crater, are inferred to be formed by seasonal flow of water on surface of present-day Mars , reported on September 28, 2015. NASA/JPL-Caltech/Univ. of Arizona—Getty Images.

Massive ice sheets have been discovered on Mars that could potentially be a resource for astronauts to harness for exploration of the planet.According to a

In 2005, the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) was launched to explore Mars. A few years ago, the $720 million spacecraft returned images and data that showed a pale sliver of blue amid the terracotta-colored dust. These images helped Colin Dundas, a geologist at the U.S. Geological Survey, and teamdiscover eight steep cliffs of what appears to be almost pure ice.

“This kind of ice is more widespread than previously thought,” Colin Dundas, a geologist at the U.S. Geological Survey, told Science.

This is not the first time ice has been found on Mars. Ice covers its poles, and the MRO has detected “signatures of thick, buried ice across the planet’s belly,” according to Science. Millions of years ago, Mars span on a different axis and in a different orbit, so some scientists say these signatures may be remnants of glaciers from then.

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Scientists Have Discovered Massive Canyons Beneath Antarctica's Ice Sheets .

Pure sheets of ice have been found just beneath the surface of Mars , and they could support human exploration missions in the near future. Scientists have discovered large sections of underlying water ice on Mars , opening new possibilities for future exploration of the planet.

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