Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

1/17/2014 (7 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Rock appeared in images, shocking scientists.

Scientists are baffled after a rock suddenly appeared beside the Mars Opportunity rover. Scientists currently have no explanation how a rock, the size of a jelly doughnut, ended up beside the rover.

The before and after image that shows where the mysterious rock appeared.

The before and after image that shows where the mysterious rock appeared.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

1/17/2014 (7 months ago)

Published in Technology

Keywords: Mars, opportunity, aliens, rock, rover, threw, mystery, life


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Something on Mars is throwing rocks at the Mars Opportunity rover, and scientists are unsure why. Have we angered the martians with our invasion?

Scientists at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, CA, where the mission is managed, noticed a rock in a recent photo taken by the rover. When scientists compared the most recent photo to one taken 12 days earlier, they were startled.

Lead scientist Steve Squyres told the media, "It's about the size of a jelly doughnut. It was a total surprise, we were like 'wait a second, that wasn't there before, it can't be right. Oh my god! It wasn't there before!' We were absolutely startled."

Could the rock have been thrown at the rover by an angry Martian?

Given the relative inhospitable nature of the planet, it's thin atmosphere and freezing cold temperatures, that's highly unlikely. There does not appear to be any life on Mars whatsoever and even searches for microbial life have been inconclusive at best with most results providing on outright "no."

So while it might be fun to joke and speculate that the rock was tossed by aliens, the reality is probably a bit more mundane than that.

Evidence of angry aliens? Probably not.

Evidence of angry aliens? Probably not.


The first notion was that the rock was a meteorite that fell and happened to land next to the rover. Or possibly the rock was tossed near the rover by a close meteorite impact. Both of these ideas are considered long shots because meteorite impacts are extremely rare. The odds of such an event happening right next to the rover are astronomically slim.

The other possibility is that the rock rolled there from somewhere else. While that's more likely than it being the result of a meteorite impact, even that too is pretty unlikely.

The most likely scenario scientists say is that it is just a piece of rick churned up by the rover's wheels. Opportunity did a turn-in-place recently and a bit of rock may have been picked up by the wheels and moved.

Scientists say it looks like the rock has been turned over, so it's freshly exposed to the Martian atmosphere. This makes the rock worth studying.

The mystery will be brief, as analysis will reveal the origin of the rock. Still, it's a reminder that there's a lot of work being done on a planet millions of miles away with the hopes many being to travel there someday.

Let's hope there are no rock throwing aliens there to greet us when we arrive.

Pope Francis calls for your 'prayer and action'...

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2014
Refugees:
That refugees, forced by violence to abandon their homes, may find a generous welcome and the protection of their rights.
Oceania: That Christians in Oceania may joyfully announce the faith to all the people of that region.



Comments


More Technology

What are these mysterious objects found underneath Stonehenge? Watch

Image of Using underground radar and 3D imaging technology, a new study has revealed that there are numerous monuments underneath the famous Stonehenge.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

England's iconic and mysterious Stonehenge has just revealed a new mystery, as a first-of-its-kind study suggests that 15 previously undiscovered or poorly understood monuments lie hidden under the ancient monument and the surrounding countryside. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Forget the zombie apocalypse, the ROBOT APOCALYPSE is near! Watch

Image of In the future, robots will be connected through a kind of internet which will allow connected robots to gather and use information in everyday tasks.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A large scale computational system that learns from publicly available Internet resources-called Robo Brain-is currently downloading a processing about 1 billion images, 120,000 YouTube videos, and 100 million how-to documents and appliance manuals. This ... continue reading


You'll never believe what Amazon picked up for nearly $1 billion Watch

Image of Tech giant Amazon purchased the live-streaming gaming network Twitch for $970 million, beating out several rival competitors including Google.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Defeating tech rivals Google and Yahoo, Amazon purchased the live-streaming gaming network Twitch for $970 million in a move announced late on August 25 which is the largest deal in Amazon's 20-year history. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The firm raised $20 ... continue reading


China bucks American tech giant Microsoft over fears of spying Watch

Image of China is creating its own operating system after blacklisting Windows 8 from government computers over fears that the American operating system could provide avenues for intelligence agencies.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

China's state-controlled Xinhua News Agency announced that China is developing their own operating system for desktop computers and mobile devices, citing U.S. surveillance as one of the key factors. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - China intends the new ... continue reading


Robots with an internet of their own! This is the way of the future Watch

Image of In the future, robots will be connected through a kind of internet which will allow connected robots to gather and use information in everyday tasks.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A large scale computational system that learns from publicly available Internet resources-called Robo Brain-is currently downloading a processing about 1 billion images, 120,000 YouTube videos, and 100 million how-to documents and appliance manuals. This ... continue reading


A confident Ballmer leaves Microsoft 'completely' to run the Clippers Watch

Image of Steve Ballmer has left all positions of authority at Microsoft, leaving behind the tech giant to run the Los Angeles Clippers, for which Ballmer paid a record $2 billion.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Eight months after he ended his role as Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer resigned from Microsoft's board, a move that ends more than three decades of direct involvement in the world's largest software maker. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The 58-year-old, who ... continue reading


Why did NASA turn the cameras off? Live feed from Space Station shows UFO, NASA cuts the feed Watch

Image of Is this evidence of a UFO? Or perhaps just venting gasses or debris from the ISS?

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Fans of the International Space Station got an eyeful recently when an alleged UFO appeared on NASA's live feed from the station. Curiously, the feed was interrupted as soon as the object appeared fueling rumors that NASA is engaged in a cover-up. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Have you been hacked? New report says millions of personal information has been stolen Watch

Image of Russian hackers recently gathered customer individuals from more than 420,000 websites.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Russian hackers gathered information from over 420,000 websites, both smaller sites and "household name" sites, in an attempt to gather passwords to send out spam. LOS ANGLES, CA (Catholic Online) - Hold Security, a Milwaukee-based firm, discovered the theft but ... continue reading


ROSETTA: After 10 long years - 'We're in orbit!' Watch

Image of Exciting new images, taken from just 80 miles away shows boulders, craters and steep cliffs.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

All things come to those who wait. "After 10 years, five months and four days travelling towards our destination, looping around the sun five times, we are delighted to announce finally 'we are here,'" Jean-Jacques Dordain, ESA's Director General, said in a ... continue reading


Xiaomi overtakes Samsung as leading Smartphone maker Watch

Image of Xiaomi has evolved from a niche player in China to a major force in its home market.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

How do you pronounce Xiaomi? Think of "show me," and then pronounce the first syllable as if it was in "shower." While Xiaomi in English translates as "little rice," there's nothing little about this Chinese Smartphone manufacturer - Xiaomi has knocked South ... continue reading


All Technology News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 1:1-9
1 Paul, called by the will of God to be an apostle of ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 145:2-3, 4-5, 6-7
2 Day after day I shall bless you, I shall praise ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 24:42-51
42 'So stay awake, because you do not know the day ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for August 28th, 2014 Image

St. Augustine of Hippo
August 28: St. Augustine of Hippo is the patron of brewers because of his ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter