Monday, January 20, 2014

'Nasa says Mars mystery rock ‘appeared’ from nowhere'

"A mysterious rock which appeared in front of the Opportunity rover is “like nothing we’ve ever seen before”, according to Mars exploration scientists at Nasa."

"Experts said they were “completely confused” by both the origins and makeup of the object, which is currently being investigated by Opportunity’s various measuring instruments."

"Astronomers noticed the new rock had “appeared” without any explanation on an outcrop which had been empty just days earlier. The rover has been stuck photographing the same region of Mars for more than a month due to bad weather, with scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California monitoring the images it sends."

 
"We had driven a metre or two away from here, and I think the idea that somehow we mysteriously flicked it with a wheel is the best explanation," Squyres said. Squyres is the lead Mars Exploration rover scientist.
 
Where do you think this rock came from? Unserious answers welcomed.

19 comments:

chickelit said...

What's the scale of the "jelly donut"? How big is it?

Isn't it nice that they had a perfectly cropped "before" photo without the rock from the same angle? They must literally be recording everything.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

To Jupiter . . . AND BEYOND!!1!!!!

Lem said...

What's the scale of the "jelly donut"? How big is it?

The governor was unavailable.

Revenant said...

"Piece of meteorite" gets my vote, given its atypical-for-Mars composition.

virgil xenophon said...

Must have been extruded by the burrowings of the Mole People, lol..

virgil xenophon said...

BTW, anybody ever see the old 50s movie? It was just shown on the ME network recently..

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Probably the Martians felt bad for poor little Opportunity Rover, staring listlessly at the boring ground.

"Hey!! Let's put something silly down here for it to examine. Wonder what it will do.....tee hee." Juvenile Martian space pranks.

Leland said...

Styrofoam peanut that just fell off from Opportunity's packing.

Paddy O said...

Oyarsa

Lem said...

My theory is that an Obama logo fell off the rover.

Sixty Grit said...

I saw The Mole People in the theater as a child.

But I don't hold them responsible for this particular rock.

I put that rock there - just to mess with NASA.

Wait until the find the monolith I buried.

ricpic said...

Kilroy was here!

Trooper York said...

John Carter took a shit.

virgil xenophon said...

sixty/

Funny true story about the "Mole People." In late 90s I was visiting a buddy at the VA lock-down Psych ward. While waiting in the receiving room I engaged in a casual conversation with a young guy just released and waiting for his ride home. We discussed the internet and its future prospects and use as an economic money-making vehicle. Talk drifted to the laying of cable along RR right-of-ways and problems in the major cities. Up to that point (about 35 min) he appeared as sane/normal as Ozzie & Harriet as he spoke knowledgeably and rationally about all the technical details, economic prospects, etc. Then he said it might be rough going burying the lines because of the Mole People. I assumed he was jokingly referring to the so-named homeless living in places like NYCs subway system in winter because of warmth of steam pipes, etc., so I joked that it might be hard to relocate them. "Oh no", he replied, "I mean the Mole People who live further deep-down in inner earth!" He then began a detailed description of them and their surroundings in all their glorious detail. (In the piloting business we would describe this departure from reality as a "sudden departure from normal flight" lol.)

He was a true believer alright and ultimately exposed himself as nuttier than the proverbial fruit-cake, but it just goes to show how easily the truly insane/mentally disturbed can maintain a normal facade and why brief examinations aren't usually sufficient and even 72 hrs may not be enough for a good clinical diagnosis.

Sixty Grit said...

@VX - what are you saying? They aren't real? Aw man, that means someone else is digging in my yard!

Ignorance is Bliss said...

I assume that it is just what it looks like. A jelly doughnut dropped by a stage hand on NASA's sound stage. Normally they just clean it up and do another take. Unfortunately this time the shot with the doughnut made it out to the internet before anyone noticed, so now they're scrambling to come up with a plausible "Mars" explanation.

deborah said...

A disgruntled former NASA employee hacked into the system and planted the image.

Calypso Facto said...

Frozen rover fart?

Amartel said...

The Martians are littering.
Your tax dollars funding the campaign against martianpogenic global warming in 3..2..1.