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Radar reveals 3 more subsurface polar lakes on Mars

9 Oct 2020, 11:28 UTC
Radar reveals 3 more subsurface polar lakes on Mars
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Mars is a cold, dry world on the surface, where the only water is in the form of vapor, ice or frost. But what about deeper down below where temperatures are a bit warmer? In 2018, the European Space Agency’s Mars Express orbiter found the first evidence for subsurface liquid water on Mars, below the planet’s south polar ice cap. It was an exciting discovery, a lake below the red Martian soil that could, possibly, support life. Now, additional data from Mars Express havw not only confirmed that lake, but found three more smaller lakes in close proximity to the first one, researchers have announced.
This newest peer-reviewed discovery was published in Nature Astronomy on September 28, 2020. As described in the abstract:
The detection of liquid water by the Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionosphere Sounding (MARSIS) at the base of the south polar layered deposits in Ultimi Scopuli has reinvigorated the debate about the origin and stability of liquid water under present-day Martian conditions. To establish the extent of subglacial water in this region, we acquired new data, achieving extended radar coverage over the study area. Here, we present and discuss the results obtained by a ...

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