Exploring Mars

  • Patrick Moore


In a way it seems strange to recall that our ideas about Mars have changed so dramatically over the past few decades. Opinions oscillated wildly to and fro. First, the polar caps were snowdrifts, then they were solid carbon dioxide, then they were due to hoar-frost no more than a millimetre thick, then they were back to snowdrifts, made of water ice mixed with CO2 ice; the dark areas were old seabeds coated with vegetation, then made up of hygroscopic salts which darkened with the arrival of moisture-laden winds from the poles, then areas where the dusty covering had been blown away, and then areas covered with lava-flows; the bright regions were dust-deserts made of sand, then coloured minerals such as felsites and limonite; Phobos and Deimos, the two midget satellites, were captured asteroids or (according to one eminent Soviet astronomer) artificial space-stations, built by Martians. The best advice was “Make up your own mind!”


Impact Crater Good Advice Ancient Lake Past Eruption Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Patrick Moore
    • 1
  1. 1.FarthingsSelseyUK

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