Scientists may have discovered water at Mars' equator
There may be water at Mars' equator.
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND — After reexamining old satellite data, scientists may have discovered ice around Mars' equator.
A team from the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory analyzed data from 2002 to 2009 by Mars Odyssey's Neutron Spectrometer (MONS), Science News reported.
The neutron spectrometer can't directly detect water, but by measuring neutrons, it can detect hydrogen signature, which could mark the presence of water or other hydrogen-bearing substances, according to Space.com.
Researchers discovered an unexpected amount of hydrogen around the equator by reducing the blurring or "noise" in data using image-reconstruction techniques used for other spacecraft and for medicine, Space.com reported.
This improved the spatial resolution of the images to 180 miles (290 km), from the previous resolution of 320 miles (520 km).
More research needs to be done to determine if the signature is actual that from water ice.
Having water on Mars could mean that future human missions wouldn't need to bring water with them for drinking, cooling equipment or watering plants, thus reducing the number of resources needed for transport.
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