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12 December 2013 1:00 pm ,
Vol. 342 ,
The iconic 125-year-old Lick Observatory on Mount Hamilton near San Jose, California, is facing the threat of closure...
Recent results from the Curiosity Mars rover have helped scientists formulate a plan for the next phase of its mission...
A new, remarkably powerful drug that cripples the hepatitis C virus (HCV) came to market last week, but it sells for $...
In pretoothbrush populations, gumlines would often be marred by a thick, visible crust of calcium phosphate, food...
Evolutionary biologists have long studied how the Mexican tetra, a drab fish that lives in rivers and creeks but has...
Victorian astronomers spent countless hours laboriously charting the positions of stars in the sky. Such sky mapping,...
In an ambitious project to study 1000 years of sickness and health, researchers are excavating the graveyard of the now...
Stefan Behnisch has won awards for designing science labs and other buildings that are smart, sustainable, and...
- 12 December 2013 1:00 pm , Vol. 342 , #6164
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ScienceShot: Martian Volcano Mud May Have Hosted Life
20 August 2010 2:11 pm
They're not exactly prime real estate, but Martians may have called them home. The craterlike features in this image, taken by NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, are not from comet or asteroid impacts. They're small volcanic cones about 250 meters wide, thousands of which dot a northern lowlands region of the red planet called Acidalia Planitia. Scientists analyzing the cones have concluded that their centers are filled with sediments that once harbored water. The muddy layers were ejected from deep under the surface possibly billions of years ago. If so, the team reports in this month's issue of the journal Icarus, the mud could have contained enough organic materials to support primitive forms of life. Even if the sediments turn out to be lifeless, they could reveal more about the planet's chemical and geological history.
See more ScienceShots.