Pieces Of Planet Mars Landed In Africa Last Summer

meteorite Morocco Obviously, the best result from inspection would be (additional) evidence of Martian lifeforms. Via the Globe and Mail:

Scientists are confirming a recent and rare invasion from Mars: meteorite chunks from the red planet that fell in Morocco last July. The fireball was spotted in the sky six months ago, but the rocks weren’t discovered on the ground until December.

The last time a Martian meteorite fell and was found fresh was in 1962. All the known Martian rocks on Earth add up to less than 240 pounds. This is an important and unique opportunity for scientists trying to learn about Mars’ potential for life. So far, no NASA or Russian spacecraft has returned bits of Mars, so the only Martian samples scientists can examine are those that come here in a meteorite shower.

Scientists and collectors of meteorites are ecstatic, and already the rocks are fetching big bucks because they are among the rarest things on Earth — rarer even than gold.

A Martian meteorite that was buried in Antarctica made news in 1996. NASA scientists theorized that the rock, found in 1984, showed signs of traces of life from Mars, fossils of what seemed to be lifelong forms. Even the White House made an announcement about it as the first sign of life outside of Earth. Years of study since then have led much of the astronomy world to conclude that there was not enough evidence to support the claim.

Because known Martian meteorite falls happen only once every 50 years or so — 1815 in France, 1865 in India, 1911 in Egypt and 1962 in Nigeria — this is a once-in-a-career or even one-in-a-lifetime event.

“It’s incredibly fresh. It’s highly valuable for that reason,” said Carl Agee, director of the Institute of Meteoritics and curator at the University of New Mexico. “For someone who knows their Martian, this is a beauty. It’s gorgeous.”

7 Comments on "Pieces Of Planet Mars Landed In Africa Last Summer"

  1. ….and Ron Paul thinks?

  2. Jesse Zesbaugh | Jan 26, 2012 at 5:25 pm |

    I don’t understand how they concluded they are from Mars, having no basis of comparison, as no sample has ever been recovered from the actual planet.  It seems like they are guessing that some impact event happened in the past, and they are guessing these rocks are part of that event, and they are guessing they stayed in space long enough to land here.  Very thin story to call fact, very very thin.

  3. I’ve perused the Bible, and it makes no reference to Mars. It does not exist.

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