American Space Agency NASA’s Perseverance rover has discovered stunning Martian rocks in the Jezero crater on the Red Planet that may have life-related traces, said a Newsweek report.
Scientists believe that the Martian surface was once filled with water. And these rocks, believed to have been altered by water, have given them confidence that the Red Planet was indeed a water world once. The collected samples have been preserved by a robot and are getting ready for their journey to Earth.
The Perseverance rover’s landing site was chosen by the space agency to be in Jezero Crater to investigate ancient lake and river deposits. The 28 miles (45 kilometres) wide crater is situated on the western margin of the Isidis Planitia, a flat plain that is located slightly north of the Martian equator. It is approximately 2,300 miles (3,700 kilometres) from Curiosity’s landing location in Gale Crater.
A study has been published in the journal Science Advances under the title “Aqueously altered igneous rocks on the floor of Jezero crater, Mars”, the research reveals that the discovery of two different forms of igneous rock astonished the experts, who had expected to find sedimentary rocks.
These rocks have sulphates and perchlorates in their voids, which were probably created by subsequent near-surface saline evaporation, the study further said. According to NASA, it was a surprise for the scientists in the spring of 2021 when its Mars rover began examining rocks on the floor of Jezero Crater.
A post has been shared by the official handle of NASA’s Perseverance Rover on Twitter on Friday along with the images of the rocks.
I came to the ancient lakebed of Jezero Crater expecting lots of sedimentary rocks. I see them now at the old river delta, but the crater floor was a surprise: lots of volcanic rocks. 🪨
— NASA’s Perseverance Mars Rover (@NASAPersevere) August 25, 2022
“I came to the ancient lakebed of Jezero Crater expecting lots of sedimentary rocks. I see them now at the old river delta, but the crater floor was a surprise: lots of volcanic rocks. Now my science team’s sharing some of what they’ve pieced together,” reads the caption of the post.