Originally published: Mar 28 2014 - 1:00pm, Inside Science News Service
By: Marcus Woo, ISNS Contributor
(ISNS) -- Mars was once a wetter world, and according to a growing body of evidence, could have had water gushing through rivers, pooling in lakes and possibly even oceans. But the water somehow vanished, leaving behind the parched planet it is today.
Now, a new analysis of Martian meteorites is helping to reveal the history of Martian water, suggesting that large amounts of water escaped into space within the first half-billion years of Mars' existence. Most of the remaining water -- as much as one tenth of the Earth's oceans -- then froze, forming vast, yet-to-be-discovered reservoirs of ice still hidden below the surface.
Scientists have long known that there's water ice at the poles and previous observations have hinted at the presence of subsurface ice at lower latitudes. The new study now strengthens the case that huge amounts of ice remain hidden on Mars today, said study-leader Hiroyuki Kurokawa of Nagoya University in Japan. The paper describing the results has been accepted for publication in Earth and Planetary Science Letters.
|The north pole of Mars according to Mars Global Surveyor data.|
Image credit: NASA via wikicommons | http://bit.ly/1g7EUV2
Read the rest of the post . . .