NASA Discovers Mysterious Spheres On Mars

NASA claims that new mysterious spheres discovered by the Mars Opportunity rover are puzzling researchers to no end. According to Opportunity's principal investigator, Steve Squyres of Cornell University in Ithaca, "this is one of the most extraordinary pictures from the whole mission."

Soon after Opportunity landed, it discovered similar spheres. The scientists nicknamed them blueberries and soon they discovered that they were rich on hematite. Those were evidence of a Mars' past full of water. But these spheres — which are 3 millimeters in diameter — are nothing like that.

Found in the Kirkwood outcrop, in the western rim of Endeavour Crater, these spherules' composition is completely different from the old Martian blueberries. Scientists still don't know how they got there and what they are supposed to be, says Squyres:

They are different in concentration. They are different in structure. They are different in composition. They are different in distribution. So, we have a wonderful geological puzzle in front of us. We have multiple working hypotheses, and we have no favourite hypothesis at this time. It's going to take a while to work this out, so the thing to do now is keep an open mind and let the rocks do the talking.

In the image you can also see spheres that have been eroded, showing a concentric internal structure. Researchers are now conducting more tests, trying to come up with an explanation on what these may be and how they got there.

But perhaps they already got the answer in Squyres' own words: "they seem to be crunchy on the outside, and softer in the middle." Obviously, Martians knew how to make chocolate Krispies cakes. [NASA]


Comments

    I'm no scientist, but even I can tell that is some bubble that formed under the surface and some burst and others did not manage to overcome surface tension.
    Duh!

      I love it! I read that article and scrolled down wondering how long it would take somebody to tell us all exactly what it is and what NASA are missing.

      And by the way, saying it looks like bubbles and some popped bubbles is not an explanation of what they are.

    The interesting thing in the picture is the top, left of middle spherule with fibers? Fibers most of the time are organic but there is probably a simple explanation, what though ?
    On a second look it could be just shadows.

    Biker, with such insight you will be contacted by NASA soon and offered a position. ;)

    Am I the only geologist who reads giz??

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pisolite

      Heh, nice pickup, maybe you should send the link to NASA.! Seems like the most logical answer to me too. :)

        The mystery isn't what they are, more so how they were formed. These rocks on earth took hundreds of thousands of years to form, while in a wet slurry. So this picture in anecdotal evidence that Mars was wet.

        On Earth, channel iron deposits are formed by accumulation of massive deposits of what is generally referred to as “pisolite iron gravels”, which are ooids and pisoids of goethite. CIDs were initially considered to be analogous to accumulations of pisolite gravels within palaeochannels via sedimentary means. Modern evidence points to an in-situ formation of the classic pisoilitic textures.

        Nathan: rocks are made up of minerals like a lego house is made up of lego bricks.

      you could be CJ and yes.. I think you've solved the mystery for NASA

      Make sure to send them a bill for $1,000,000,000.00 to cover your expenses and all ;)

      They're not rocks, they're minerals.

    Areological puzzle. Not geological. Geo refers to earth, following form, Ares is the Greek name for Mars.

      Oh Snap !

      Actually in the scientific community, Areology is encompassed by geology.

    If you look hard enough at the top middle section, you'll see someone giving you the finger in one of the bubbles.

    Melange: The spice extends life. The spice expands consciousness. The spice is vital to space travel.

    I'm still no scientist and stand by my observation.
    Did NASA not spend millions on developing a pen that will work in zero gravity? Then USSR astronauts just resorted to pencils? Genius?
    I'm just saying.

      In zero gravity, the conductive graphite dust from pencils can float around the chamber and get into delicate electronics as well as into people's eyes causing irritation. That's why the US developed a zero-G pen.

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