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  • 1.
    Beaty, D.W
    et al.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology.
    Fernández-Remolar, David
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Centro de Astrobiologia.
    The potential science and engineering value of samples delivered to Earth by Mars sample return2019In: Meteoritics and Planetary Science, ISSN 1086-9379, E-ISSN 1945-5100, Vol. 54, no 3, p. 667-671Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 2.
    Beaty, D.W
    et al.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology.
    Fernández-Remolar, David
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Centro de Astrobiologia.
    The potential science and engineering value of samples delivered to Earth by Mars sample return: International MSR Objectives and Samples Team (iMOST)2019In: Meteoritics and Planetary Science, ISSN 1086-9379, E-ISSN 1945-5100, Vol. 54, no S1, p. 3-152Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Executive Summary: Return of samples from the surface of Mars has been a goal of the international Mars science community for many years. Affirmation by NASA and ESA of the importance of Mars exploration led the agencies to establish the international MSR Objectives and Samples Team (iMOST). The purpose of the team is to re-evaluate and update the sample-related science and engineering objectives of a Mars Sample Return (MSR) campaign. The iMOST team has also undertaken to define the measurements and the types of samples that can best address the objectives. Seven objectives have been defined for MSR, traceable through two decades of previously published international priorities. The first two objectives are further divided into sub-objectives. Within the main part of the report, the importance to science and/or engineering of each objective is described, critical measurements that would address the objectives are specified, and the kinds of samples that would be most likely to carry key information are identified. These seven objectives provide a framework for demonstrating how the first set of returned Martian samples would impact future Martian science and exploration. They also have implications for how analogous investigations might be conducted for samples returned by future missions from other solar system bodies, especially those that may harbor biologically relevant or sensitive material, such as Ocean Worlds (Europa, Enceladus, Titan) and others. Summary of Objectives and Sub-Objectives for MSR Identified by iMOST: Objective 1 Interpret the primary geologic processes and history that formed the Martian geologic record, with an emphasis on the role of water. Intent To investigate the geologic environment(s) represented at the Mars 2020 landing site, provide definitive geologic context for collected samples, and detail any characteristics that might relate to past biologic processesThis objective is divided into five sub-objectives that would apply at different landing sites. 1.1 Characterize the essential stratigraphic, sedimentologic, and facies variations of a sequence of Martian sedimentary rocks. Intent To understand the preserved Martian sedimentary record. Samples A suite of sedimentary rocks that span the range of variation. Importance Basic inputs into the history of water, climate change, and the possibility of life 1.2 Understand an ancient Martian hydrothermal system through study of its mineralization products and morphological expression. Intent To evaluate at least one potentially life-bearing “habitable” environment Samples A suite of rocks formed and/or altered by hydrothermal fluids. Importance Identification of a potentially habitable geochemical environment with high preservation potential. 1.3 Understand the rocks and minerals representative of a deep subsurface groundwater environment. Intent To evaluate definitively the role of water in the subsurface. Samples Suites of rocks/veins representing water/rock interaction in the subsurface. Importance May constitute the longest-lived habitable environments and a key to the hydrologic cycle. 1.4 Understand water/rock/atmosphere interactions at the Martian surface and how they have changed with time. Intent To constrain time-variable factors necessary to preserve records of microbial life. Samples Regolith, paleosols, and evaporites. Importance Subaerial near-surface processes could support and preserve microbial life. 1.5 Determine the petrogenesis of Martian igneous rocks in time and space. Intent To provide definitive characterization of igneous rocks on Mars. Samples Diverse suites of ancient igneous rocks. Importance Thermochemical record of the planet and nature of the interior. Objective 2 Assess and interpret the potential biological history of Mars, including assaying returned samples for the evidence of life. Intent To investigate the nature and extent of Martian habitability, the conditions and processes that supported or challenged life, how different environments might have influenced the preservation of biosignatures and created nonbiological “mimics,” and to look for biosignatures of past or present life.This objective has three sub-objectives: 2.1 Assess and characterize carbon, including possible organic and pre-biotic chemistry. Samples All samples collected as part of Objective 1. Importance Any biologic molecular scaffolding on Mars would likely be carbon-based. 2.2 Assay for the presence of biosignatures of past life at sites that hosted habitable environments and could have preserved any biosignatures. Samples All samples collected as part of Objective 1. Importance Provides the means of discovering ancient life. 2.3 Assess the possibility that any life forms detected are alive, or were recently alive. Samples All samples collected as part of Objective 1. Importance Planetary protection, and arguably the most important scientific discovery possible. Objective 3 Quantitatively determine the evolutionary timeline of Mars. Intent To provide a radioisotope-based time scale for major events, including magmatic, tectonic, fluvial, and impact events, and the formation of major sedimentary deposits and geomorphological features. Samples Ancient igneous rocks that bound critical stratigraphic intervals or correlate with crater-dated surfaces. Importance Quantification of Martian geologic history. Objective 4 Constrain the inventory of Martian volatiles as a function of geologic time and determine the ways in which these volatiles have interacted with Mars as a geologic system. Intent To recognize and quantify the major roles that volatiles (in the atmosphere and in the hydrosphere) play in Martian geologic and possibly biologic evolution. Samples Current atmospheric gas, ancient atmospheric gas trapped in older rocks, and minerals that equilibrated with the ancient atmosphere. Importance Key to understanding climate and environmental evolution. Objective 5 Reconstruct the processes that have affected the origin and modification of the interior, including the crust, mantle, core and the evolution of the Martian dynamo. Intent To quantify processes that have shaped the planet's crust and underlying structure, including planetary differentiation, core segregation and state of the magnetic dynamo, and cratering. Samples Igneous, potentially magnetized rocks (both igneous and sedimentary) and impact-generated samples. Importance Elucidate fundamental processes for comparative planetology. Objective 6 Understand and quantify the potential Martian environmental hazards to future human exploration and the terrestrial biosphere. Intent To define and mitigate an array of health risks related to the Martian environment associated with the potential future human exploration of Mars. Samples Fine-grained dust and regolith samples. Importance Key input to planetary protection planning and astronaut health. Objective 7 Evaluate the type and distribution of in-situ resources to support potential future Mars exploration. Intent To quantify the potential for obtaining Martian resources, including use of Martian materials as a source of water for human consumption, fuel production, building fabrication, and agriculture. Samples Regolith. Importance Production of simulants that will facilitate long-term human presence on Mars. Summary of iMOST Findings: Several specific findings were identified during the iMOST study. While they are not explicit recommendations, we suggest that they should serve as guidelines for future decision making regarding planning of potential future MSR missions. The samples to be collected by the Mars 2020 (M-2020) rover will be of sufficient size and quality to address and solve a wide variety of scientific questions. Samples, by definition, are a statistical representation of a larger entity. Our ability to interpret the source geologic units and processes by studying sample sub sets is highly dependent on the quality of the sample context. In the case of the M-2020 samples, the context is expected to be excellent, and at multiple scales. (A) Regional and planetary context will be established by the on-going work of the multi-agency fleet of Mars orbiters. (B) Local context will be established at field area- to outcrop- to hand sample- to hand lens scale using the instruments carried by M-2020. A significant fraction of the value of the MSR sample collection would come from its organization into sample suites, which are small groupings of samples designed to represent key aspects of geologic or geochemical variation. If the Mars 2020 rover acquires a scientifically well-chosen set of samples, with sufficient geological diversity, and if those samples were returned to Earth, then major progress can be expected on all seven of the objectives proposed in this study, regardless of the final choice of landing site. The specifics of which parts of Objective 1 could be achieved would be different at each of the final three candidate landing sites, but some combination of critically important progress could be made at any of them. An aspect of the search for evidence of life is that we do not know in advance how evidence for Martian life would be preserved in the geologic record. In order for the returned samples to be most useful for both understanding geologic processes (Objective 1) and the search for life (Objective 2), the sample collection should contain BOTH typical and unusual samples from the rock units explored. This consideration should be incorporated into sample selection and the design of the suites. The retrieval missions of a MSR campaign should (1) minimize stray magnetic fields to which the samples would be exposed and carry a magnetic witness plate to record exposure, (2) collect and return atmospheric gas sample(s), and (3) collect additional dust and/or regolith sample mass if possible.

  • 3.
    Bhardwaj, Anshuman
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Sam, Lydia
    Institut für Kartographie, Technische Universität Dresden.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Fonseca, Ricardo
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martian slope streaks as plausible indicators of transient water activity2017In: Scientific Reports, ISSN 2045-2322, E-ISSN 2045-2322, Vol. 7, no 1, article id 7074Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Slope streaks have been frequently observed in the equatorial, low thermal inertia and dusty regions of Mars. The reason behind their formation remains unclear with proposed hypotheses for both dry and wet mechanisms. Here, we report an up-to-date distribution and morphometric investigation of Martian slope streaks. We find: (i) a remarkable coexistence of the slope streak distribution with the regions on Mars with high abundances of water-equivalent hydrogen, chlorine, and iron; (ii) favourable thermodynamic conditions for transient deliquescence and brine development in the slope streak regions; (iii) a significant concurrence of slope streak distribution with the regions of enhanced atmospheric water vapour concentration, thus suggestive of a present-day regolith-atmosphere water cycle; and (iv) terrain preferences and flow patterns supporting a wet mechanism for slope streaks. These results suggest a strong local regolith-atmosphere water coupling in the slope streak regions that leads to the formation of these fluidised features. Our conclusions can have profound astrobiological, habitability, environmental, and planetary protection implications

  • 4.
    Bhardwaj, Anshuman
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Sam, Lydia
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Institut für Kartographie, Technische Universität Dresden, Dresden, Germany. Department of Environmental Science, Sharda University, Greater Noida, India.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (CSIC ‐ UGR), Armilla, Spain. UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, UK.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (INTA ‐ CSIC), Madrid, Spain.
    Are Slope Streaks Indicative of Global‐Scale Aqueous Processes on Contemporary Mars?2019In: Reviews of geophysics, ISSN 8755-1209, E-ISSN 1944-9208, Vol. 57, no 1, p. 48-77Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Slope streaks are prevalent and intriguing dark albedo surface features on contemporary Mars. Slope streaks are readily observed in the equatorial and subequatorial dusty regolith regions with low thermal inertia. They gradually fade over decadal timescales. The proposed mechanisms for their formation vary widely based on several physicochemical and geomorphological explanations. The scientific community is divided in proposing both dry and wet mechanisms for the formation of slope streaks. Here we perform a systematic evaluation of the literature for these wet and dry mechanisms. We discuss the probable constraints on the various proposed mechanisms and provide perspectives on the plausible process driving global‐scale slope streak formation on contemporary Mars. Although per our understanding, a thorough consideration of the global distribution of slope streaks, their morphology and topography, flow characteristics, physicochemical and atmospheric coincidences, and terrestrial analogies weighs more in favor of several wet mechanisms, we acknowledge that such wet mechanisms cannot explain all the reported morphological and terrain variations of slope streaks. Thus, we suggest that explanations considering both dry and wet processes can more holistically describe all the observed morphological variations among slope streaks. We further acknowledge the constraints on the resolutions of remote sensing data and on our understanding of the Martian mineralogy, climate, and atmosphere and recommend continuous investigations in this direction using future remote sensing acquisitions and simulations. In this regard, finding more wet and dry terrestrial analogs for Martian slope streaks and studying them at high spatiotemporal resolutions can greatly improve our understanding.

  • 5.
    Bhardwaj, Anshuman
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Sam, Lydia
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Discovery of recurring slope lineae candidates in Mawrth Vallis, Mars2019In: Scientific Reports, ISSN 2045-2322, E-ISSN 2045-2322, Vol. 9, article id 2040Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    utside of established RSL regions and further prompt the inclusion of a new geographical region within the RSL candidate group. Our inferences on the RSL candidates are based on several morphological and geophysical evidences and analogies: (i) the dimensions of the RSL candidates are consistent with confirmed mid-latitude RSL; (ii) albedo and thermal inertia values are comparable to those of other mid-latitude RSL sites; and (iii) features are found in a summer season image and on the steep and warmest slopes. These results denote the plausible presence of transient liquid brines close to the previously proposed landing ellipse of the ExoMars rover, rendering this site particularly relevant to the search of life. Further investigations of Mawrth Vallis carried out at higher spatial and temporal resolutions are needed to identify more of such features at local scales to maximize the scientific return from the future Mars rovers, to prevent probable biological contamination during rover operations, to evade damage to rover components as brines can be highly corrosive, and to quantify the ability of the regolith at mid-latitudes to capture atmospheric water which is relevant for in-situ-resource utilization.

  • 6.
    Bhardwaj, Anshuman
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Sam, Lydia
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (CSIC-UGR), Armilla, Granada, Spain.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (INTA-CSIC), Torrejón de Ardoz, Madrid, Spain.
    Distribution and Morphologies of Transverse Aeolian Ridges in ExoMars 2020 Rover Landing Site2019In: Remote Sensing, ISSN 2072-4292, E-ISSN 2072-4292, Vol. 11, no 8, article id 912Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Aeolian processes are believed to play a major role in the landscape evolution of Mars. Investigations on Martian aeolian landforms such as ripples, transverse aeolian ridges (TARs), and dunes, and aeolian sediment flux measurements are important to enhance our understanding of past and present wind regimes, the ongoing dust cycle, landscape evolution, and geochemistry. These aeolian bedforms are often comprised of loose sand and sharply undulating topography and thus pose a threat to mobility and maneuvers of Mars rovers. Here we present a first-hand account of the distribution, morphologies, and morphometrics of TARs in Oxia Planum, the recently selected ExoMars 2020 Rover landing site. The gridded mapping was performed for contiguous stretches of TARs within all the landing ellipses using 57 sub-meter high resolution imaging science experiment (HiRISE) scenes. We also provide the morphological descriptions for all types of TARs present within the landing ellipses. We use HiRISE digital terrain models (DTMs) along with the images to derive morphometric information for TARs in Oxia Planum. In general, the average areal TAR coverage was found to be 5.4% (±4.9% standard deviation), increasing from west to east within the landing ellipses. We report the average TAR morphometrics in the form of crest–ridge width (131.1 ± 106.2 m), down-wind TAR length (17.6 ± 10.1 m), wavelength (37.3 ± 11.6 m), plan view aspect ratio (7.1 ± 2.3), inter-bedform spacing (2.1 ± 1.1), slope (10.6° ± 6.1°), predominant orientations (NE-SW and E-W), and height (1.2 ± 0.8 m). While simple TARs are predominant, we report other TAR morphologies such as forked TAR, wavy TAR with associated smaller secondary ripples, barchan-like TAR, networked TAR, and mini-TARs from the region. Our results can help in planning the rover traverses in terms of both safe passage and scientific returns favoring aeolian research, particularly improving our understanding of TARs.

  • 7.
    Bhardwaj, Anshuman
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Sam, Lydia
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martín-Torres, F. Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Revisiting enigmatic Martian slope streaks2019In: Earth Space and Science News - Editors Vox, Vol. 100Article in journal (Other academic)
  • 8.
    Castro, Juan Francisco Buenestado
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Mier, Maria-Paz Zorzano
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Liquid water at crater Gale, Mars2015In: Journal of Astrobiology and Outreach, ISSN 2332-2519, Vol. 3, no 3, article id 131Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Suspicion that Mars could have transient liquid water on its surface through deliquescence of salts to form aqueous solutions or brines is an old proposal whose inquiry was boosted by Phoenix Lander observations. It provided some images of what were claimed to be brines, the presence of which at its landing site was compatible with the atmospheric parameters and the composition of the soil observed. On the other hand, the so called Recurrent Slope Lineae (RSL) often imaged by orbiters, were considered as another clue pointing to the occurrence of the phenomenon, since it was thought that they might be caused by it. Now, Curiosity rover has performed the first in-situ multi-instrumental study on Mars’ surface, having collected the most comprehensive environmental data set ever taken by means of their instruments Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS), Dynamic Albedo of Neutrons (DAN), and Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM). REMS is providing continuous and accurate measurements of the relative humidity and surface and air temperatures among other parameters, and DAN and SAM provide the water content of the regolith and the atmosphere respectively. Analysis of these data has allowed to establish the existence of a present day active water cycle between the atmosphere and the regolith, that changes according to daily and seasonal cycles, and that is mediated by the presence of brines during certain periods of each and every day. Importantly, the study shows that the conditions for the occurrence of deliquescence are favourable even at equatorial latitudes where, at first, it was thought they were not due to the temperature and relative humidity conditions. This study provides new keys for the understanding of martian environment, and opens interesting lines of research and studies for future missions which may even have a bearing on extant microbial life.

  • 9.
    Castro, Juan Francisco Buenestado
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Mier, Maria-Paz Zorzano
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Planetary exploration; Mars on the scope2015In: Journal of Astrobiology and Outreach, ISSN 2332-2519, Vol. 3, no 3, article id 133Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article summarizes a practical case of introduction to research and planetary exploration through the analysis of data from the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS), one of the ten scientific instruments on board the Curiosity rover of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL), currently operating at the impact crater Gale, on Mars. It is the main aim of this work to show how the data that are publicly available at the Planetary Data System (PDS) can be used to introduce undergraduate students and the general public into the subject of surface exploration and the environment of Mars. In particular, the goal of this practice was to investigate and quantify the heat flux between the rover spacecraft and the Martian surface, the role of the atmosphere in this interaction, and its dependence with seasons, as well as to estimate the thermal contamination of the Martian ground produced by the rover. The ground temperature sensor (GTS) of the REMS instrument has measured in-situ, for the first time ever, the diurnal and seasonal variation of the temperature of the surface on Mars along the rover traverse. This novel study shows that the rover radiative heat flux varies between 10 and 22 W/m2 during the Martian year, which is more than 10% of the solar daily averaged insolation at the top of the atmosphere. In addition, it is shown that the radiative heat flux from the rover to the ground varies with the atmospheric dust load, being the mean annual amplitude of the diurnal variation of the surface temperature of 76 K, as a result of solar heating during the day and infrared cooling during the night. As a remarkable and unexpected outcome, it has been established that the thermal contamination produced by the rover alone induces, on average, a systematic shift of 7.5 K, which is indeed about 10% of the one produced by solar heating. This result may have implications for the design and operation of future surface exploration probes such as InSight.

  • 10.
    Cockell, Charles S.
    et al.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, SUPA, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Midlothian, UK.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. UK Centre for Astrobiology, SUPA, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, Midlothian, UK; Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (UGR-CSIC), Granada, Spain .
    Zorzano, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejon de Ardoz, 28850 Madrid, Spain.
    Bhardwaj, Anshuman
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Soria-Salinas, Álvaro
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Mathanla, Thasshwin
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Israel Nazarious, Miracle
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Vakkada Ramachandran, Abhilash
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Suckling, Barbara
    Boulby Underground Laboratory, Boulby, UK.
    Subsurface scientific exploration of extraterrestrial environments (MINAR 5): analogue science, technology and education in the Boulby Mine, UK2019In: International Journal of Astrobiology, ISSN 1473-5504, E-ISSN 1475-3006, Vol. 18, no 2, p. 157-182Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The deep subsurface of other planetary bodies is of special interest for robotic and human exploration. The subsurface provides access to planetary interior processes, thus yielding insights into planetary formation and evolution. On Mars, the subsurface might harbour the most habitable conditions. In the context of human exploration, the subsurface can provide refugia for habitation from extreme surface conditions. We describe the fifth Mine Analogue Research (MINAR 5) programme at 1 km depth in the Boulby Mine, UK in collaboration with Spaceward Bound NASA and the Kalam Centre, India, to test instruments and methods for the robotic and human exploration of deep environments on the Moon and Mars. The geological context in Permian evaporites provides an analogue to evaporitic materials on other planetary bodies such as Mars. A wide range of sample acquisition instruments (NASA drills, Small Planetary Impulse Tool (SPLIT) robotic hammer, universal sampling bags), analytical instruments (Raman spectroscopy, Close-Up Imager, Minion DNA sequencing technology, methane stable isotope analysis, biomolecule and metabolic life detection instruments) and environmental monitoring equipment (passive air particle sampler, particle detectors and environmental monitoring equipment) was deployed in an integrated campaign. Investigations included studying the geochemical signatures of chloride and sulphate evaporitic minerals, testing methods for life detection and planetary protection around human-tended operations, and investigations on the radiation environment of the deep subsurface. The MINAR analogue activity occurs in an active mine, showing how the development of space exploration technology can be used to contribute to addressing immediate Earth-based challenges. During the campaign, in collaboration with European Space Agency (ESA), MINAR was used for astronaut familiarization with future exploration tools and techniques. The campaign was used to develop primary and secondary school and primary to secondary transition curriculum materials on-site during the campaign which was focused on a classroom extra vehicular activity simulation.

  • 11.
    Cockell, C.S.
    et al.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Bush, T.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Bryce, C.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Direito, S.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Fox-Powell, M.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Harrison, J.P
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Lammer, H.
    Austrian Academy of Sciences, Space Research Institute, Graz.
    Landenmark, H.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Nicholson, N.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Noack, L.
    Department of Reference Systems and Planetology, Royal Observatory of Belgium, Brussels.
    O'Malley-James, J.
    School of Physics and Astronomy, University of St Andrews, St Andrews.
    Payler, S.J.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Rushby, A.
    Centre for Ocean and Atmospheric Science (COAS), School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich.
    Samuels, T.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Schwendner, P.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Wadsworth, J.
    UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Edinburgh.
    Mier, Maria-Paz Zorzano
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Habitability: a review2016In: Astrobiology, ISSN 1531-1074, E-ISSN 1557-8070, Vol. 16, no 1, p. 89-117Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Habitability is a widely used word in the geoscience, planetary science, and astrobiology literature, but what does it mean? In this review on habitability, we define it as the ability of an environment to support the activity of at least one known organism. We adopt a binary definition of “habitability” and a “habitable environment.” An environment either can or cannot sustain a given organism. However, environments such as entire planets might be capable of supporting more or less species diversity or biomass compared with that of Earth. A clarity in understanding habitability can be obtained by defining instantaneous habitability as the conditions at any given time in a given environment required to sustain the activity of at least one known organism, and continuous planetary habitability as the capacity of a planetary body to sustain habitable conditions on some areas of its surface or within its interior over geological timescales. We also distinguish between surface liquid water worlds (such as Earth) that can sustain liquid water on their surfaces and interior liquid water worlds, such as icy moons and terrestrial-type rocky planets with liquid water only in their interiors. This distinction is important since, while the former can potentially sustain habitable conditions for oxygenic photosynthesis that leads to the rise of atmospheric oxygen and potentially complex multicellularity and intelligence over geological timescales, the latter are unlikely to. Habitable environments do not need to contain life. Although the decoupling of habitability and the presence of life may be rare on Earth, it may be important for understanding the habitability of other planetary bodies

  • 12.
    Cordoba-Jabonero, Carmen
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiología.
    Patel, Manish R.
    Planetary and Space Sciences Research Institute, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes .
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología.
    Cockell, Charles Seaton
    British Antarctic Survey, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge .
    Assessments for possible habitability in Martian polar environments: Fundaments based in ice screening of UV radiation2004In: ESA SP, ISSN 0379-6566, E-ISSN 1609-0438, Vol. 545, p. 187-188Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We present a study of the solar UV radiation in Martian high latitude environments covered by ice, where the UV propagation through the polar cover depends on the ice radiative properties (layers of H2O or CO 2 ice). But also we will investigate the changes in the subsurface UV levels induced by the seasonal variations of solar UV flux on the surface, as well as by the seasonal freezing-thawing and related CO2 sublimation processes. The biological dose relative to DNA-damage will be also estimated for biological implication assessments. All these studies will be compared with the biological dose received in the Antarctic snow-ice covered environment which is seasonally exposed to high UV radiation levels (formation of "ozone hole"), where the environmental conditions could be similar to those present on Mars

  • 13.
    Cordoba-Jabonero, Carmen
    et al.
    Instituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial, Área de Investigación e Instrumentación Atmosférica.
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología, CSIC-INTA.
    Selsis, Franck
    Centro de Astrobiología, CSIC-INTA.
    Patel, Manish R.
    Planetary and Space Sciences Research Institute, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes .
    Cockell, Charles Seaton
    British Antarctic Survey, High Cross, Madingley Road, Cambridge .
    Radiative habitable zones in martian polar environments2005In: Icarus (New York, N.Y. 1962), ISSN 0019-1035, E-ISSN 1090-2643, Vol. 175, no 2, p. 360-371Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The biologically damaging solar ultraviolet (UV) radiation (quantified by the DNA-weighted dose) reaches the martian surface in extremely high levels. Searching for potentially habitable UV-protected environments on Mars, we considered the polar ice caps that consist of a seasonally varying CO2 ice cover and a permanent H2O ice layer. It was found that, though the CO2 ice is insufficient by itself to screen the UV radiation, at ∼1 m depth within the perennial H2O ice the DNA-weighted dose is reduced to terrestrial levels. This depth depends strongly on the optical properties of the H2O ice layers (for instance snow-like layers). The Earth-like DNA-weighted dose and Photosynthetically Active Radiation (PAR) requirements were used to define the upper and lower limits of the northern and southern polar Radiative Habitable Zone (RHZ) for which a temporal and spatial mapping was performed. Based on these studies we conclude that photosynthetic life might be possible within the ice layers of the polar regions. The thickness varies along each martian polar spring and summer between ∼1.5 and 2.4 m for H2O ice-like layers, and a few centimeters for snow-like covers. These martian Earth-like radiative habitable environments may be primary targets for future martian astrobiological missions. Special attention should be paid to planetary protection, since the polar RHZ may also be subject to terrestrial contamination by probes.

  • 14.
    Córdoba-Jabonero, Carmen
    et al.
    Instituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial (INTA), Área de Investigación e Instrumentación Atmosférica, Madrid, Spain.
    Sicard, Michaël
    CommSensLab, Dept. of Signal Theory and Communications, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC), Barcelona, Spain. Ciències i Tecnologies de l'Espai-Centre de Recerca de l'Aeronàutica i de l'Espai/Institut d'Estudis Espacials de Catalunya (CTE-CRAE/IEEC), Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC), Barcelona, Spain.
    Del Águila, Ana
    nstituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial (INTA), Área de Investigación e Instrumentación Atmosférica, Madrid, Spain. emote Sensing Technology Institute, German Aerospace Centre (DLR), Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany.
    Jiménez, Marcos
    Instituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial (INTA), Área de Sistemas de Teledetección, Madrid, Spain.
    Zorzano, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Madrid, Spain.
    Performance of a dust model to predict the vertical mass concentration of an extreme Saharan dust event in the Iberian Peninsula: Comparison with continuous, elastic, polarization-sensitive lidars2019In: Atmospheric Environment, ISSN 1352-2310, E-ISSN 1873-2844, Vol. 214, article id 116828Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    An intense dusty event unusually occurred in wintertime over the Iberian Peninsula was detected over two Spanish NASA/MPLNET sites: the temporary Torrejón Observational Tower for Environmental Monitoring (TOTEM, 40.5°N 3.5°W) and the Barcelona station (BCN, 41.4°N 2.1°E). The highest dust incidence was observed from 22 to 23 February 2017; this two-day dusty scenario is examined in order to evaluate the performance of the operational NMMB/BSC-Dust model on forecasted mass concentration profiling in comparison with polarized Micro-Pulse (P-MPL) mass estimates for dust particles. First, the optical properties of the dust (DD) were effectively separated from the non-dust (ND) component by using the combined P-MPL/POLIPHON method. Lidar-derived DD optical depths reached maximums of 1.6–1.7 (±0.1) at both stations. Typical features for dust were obtained: linear particle depolarization ratios between 0.3 and 0.4, and lidar ratios in the range of 41–70 sr and 36–66 sr, respectively, for TOTEM and BCN. Lower AERONET Ångström exponents were reported for TOTEM (0.12 ± 0.04) than at BCN (0.5 ± 0.3). HYSPLIT back-trajectory analysis showed air masses coming from the Sahara region, mostly transporting dust particles. AERONET-derived Mass Extinction Efficiencies (MEE) under dusty conditions were used for the extinction-to-mass conversion procedure as applied to the P-MPL measurements: MEE values were lower at TOTEM (0.57 ± 0.01 m2 g−1) than those found at BCN (0.87 ± 0.10 m2 g−1). Those results reveal that dust particles were predominantly larger at TOTEM than those observed at BCN, and a longer transport of dust particles from the Sahara sources to BCN could favour a higher gravitational settling of coarser particles before reaching BCN than TOTEM. A comparative analysis between profiles as obtained from the lidar DD component of the mass concentration and those forecasted by the NMMB/BSC-Dust model (25 available dusty profiles) was performed. The degree of agreement between both datasets was determined by the percentage of dusty cases satisfying selected model performance criteria (favourable cases) of two proxies: the Mean Fractional Bias, M&#x2062;F&#x2062;B" role="presentation" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; display: inline; line-height: normal; word-spacing: normal; overflow-wrap: normal; white-space: nowrap; float: none; direction: ltr; max-width: none; max-height: none; min-width: 0px; min-height: 0px; border: 0px; position: relative;">MFBM⁢F⁢B, and the correlation coefficient, C&#x2062;C" role="presentation" style="box-sizing: border-box; margin: 0px; padding: 0px; display: inline; line-height: normal; word-spacing: normal; overflow-wrap: normal; white-space: nowrap; float: none; direction: ltr; max-width: none; max-height: none; min-width: 0px; min-height: 0px; border: 0px; position: relative;">CCC⁢C. A good agreement is found (72% and 76%, respectively, of favourable cases); however, large discrepancies are found at low altitudes between the dust model and the lidar observations, mostly at early stages of the arrival of the dust intrusion. Higher model-derived centre-of-mass (CoM) heights are found in 60% of the cases (with differences < 15% w.r.t. the lidar CoM, whose values ranged between 1.8 and 2.3 km height). In addition, modelled mass loading (ML) values were generally higher than the lidar-derived ones. However, the evolution of the mass loading along the two days, 22 and 23 February, was rather similar for both the model forecasting and lidar observations at both stations. The relative ML differences (<50%) of the mass loading represented 60% of all cases. Discrepancies can be based on the uncertainties in the lidar retrievals (mainly, the use of single extinction-to-mass conversion factors). In general, a moderately good agreement is observed between the P-MPL-derived dust mass concentration profiles and the NMMB/BSC-Dust model ones at both sites; large discrepancies are found at lower altitudes, plausibly due to a lower sedimentation of dust particles coming from upper layers by gravitational settling than that introduced by the NMMB/BSC-Dust model in the simulations. The methodology described for the dust model evaluation against the continuous P-MPL observations can be easily adopted for an operational use of the NMMB/BSC-Dust model for forecasting the mass concentration profiling in frequently dust-affected regions with serious climate and environmental implications, as long as a typical MEE for dust could be accurately specified. Hence, a statistical analysis for determining AERONET-based MEE values over the Iberian Peninsula is on-going.

  • 15.
    Delgado-Bonal, Alfonso
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martín, Sandra Vázquez
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Mier, Maria-Paz Zorzano
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Solar and wind exergy potentials for Mars2016In: Energy, ISSN 0360-5442, E-ISSN 1873-6785, Vol. 102, p. 550-558Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The energy requirements of the planetary exploration spacecrafts constrain the lifetime of the missions, their mobility and capabilities, and the number of instruments onboard. They are limiting factors in planetary exploration. Several missions to the surface of Mars have proven the feasibility and success of solar panels as energy source. The analysis of the exergy efficiency of the solar radiation has been carried out successfully on Earth, however, to date, there is not an extensive research regarding the thermodynamic exergy efficiency of in-situ renewable energy sources on Mars. In this paper, we analyse the obtainable energy (exergy) from solar radiation under Martian conditions. For this analysis we have used the surface environmental variables on Mars measured in-situ by the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station onboard the Curiosity rover and from satellite by the Thermal Emission Spectrometer instrument onboard the Mars Global Surveyor satellite mission. We evaluate the exergy efficiency from solar radiation on a global spatial scale using orbital data for a Martian year; and in a one single location in Mars (the Gale crater) but with an appreciable temporal resolution (1 h). Also, we analyse the wind energy as an alternative source of energy for Mars exploration and compare the results with those obtained on Earth. We study the viability of solar and wind energy station for the future exploration of Mars, showing that a small square solar cell of 0.30 m length could maintain a meteorological station on Mars. We conclude that the low density of the atmosphere of Mars is responsible of the low thermal exergy efficiency of solar panels. It also makes the use of wind energy uneffective. Finally, we provide insights for the development of new solar cells on Mars.

  • 16.
    Delgado-Bonal, Alfonso
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Mier, Maria-Paz Zorzano
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martian Top of the Atmosphere 10–420 nm spectral irradiance database and forecast for solar cycle 242016In: Solar Energy, ISSN 0038-092X, E-ISSN 1471-1257, Vol. 134, p. 228-235Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Ultraviolet radiation from 10 to 420 nm reaching Mars Top of the Atmosphere (TOA) and surface is important in a wide variety of fields such as space exploration, climate modeling, and spacecraft design, as it has impact in the physics and chemistry of the atmosphere and soil. Despite the existence of databases for UV radiation reaching Earth TOA, based in space-borne instrumentation orbiting our planet, there is no similar information for Mars. Here we present a Mars TOA UV spectral irradiance database for solar cycle 24 (years 2008–2019), containing daily values from 10 to 420 nm. The values in this database have been computed using a model that is fed by the Earth-orbiting Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) data. As the radiation coming from the Sun is not completely isotropic, in order to eliminate the geometrically related features but being able to capture the general characteristics of the solar cycle stage, we provide 3-, 7- and 15-days averaged values at each wavelength. Our database is of interest for atmospheric modeling and spectrally dependent experiments on Mars, the analysis of current and upcoming surface missions (rovers and landers) and orbiters in Mars. Daily values for the TOA UV conditions at the rover Curiosity location, as well as for the NASA Insight mission in 2016, and ESA/Russia ExoMars mission in 2018 are provided.

  • 17.
    Ekman, Jonas
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Embedded Internet Systems Lab.
    Antti, Marta-Lena
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Material Science.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Emami, Reza
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Törlind, Peter
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences, Innovation and Design.
    Kuhn, Thomas
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Nilsson, Hans
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Machine Elements.
    Minami, Ichiro
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Machine Elements.
    Öhrwall Rönnbäck, Anna
    Gustafsson, Magnus
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Material Science.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Milz, Mathias
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Grahn, Mattias
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Civil, Environmental and Natural Resources Engineering, Chemical Engineering.
    Parida, Vinit
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences, Innovation and Design.
    Behar, Etienne
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering.
    Wolf, Veronika
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Dordlofva, Christo
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences, Innovation and Design.
    Mendaza de Cal, Maria Teresa
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Jamali, Maryam
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Roos, Tobias
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Ottemark, Rikard
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Nieto, Chris
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Soria Salinas, Álvaro Tomás
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Vázquez Martín, Sandra
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Nyberg, Erik
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Machine Elements.
    Neikter, Magnus
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Material Science.
    Lindwall, Angelica
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences, Innovation and Design.
    Fakhardji, Wissam
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Engineering Sciences and Mathematics, Material Science.
    Projekt: Rymdforskarskolan2015Other (Other (popular science, discussion, etc.))
    Abstract [en]

    The Graduate School of Space Technology

  • 18.
    Fonseca, Ricardo Morais
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    MARSWRF Prediction of Entry Descent Landing Profiles: Applications to Mars Exploration2019In: Earth and Space Science, E-ISSN 2333-5084Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In this paper we use the Mars implementation of the Planet Weather Research and Forecasting model, MarsWRF, to simulate the Entry, Descent and Landing (EDL) vertical profiles from six past missions: Pathfinder, Mars Exploration Rovers Opportunity and SpiritPhoenix, Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover and ExoMars 2016 (Schiaparelli), and compare the results with observed data. In order to investigate the sensitivity of the model predictions to the atmospheric dust distribution, MarsWRF is run with two prescribed dust scenarios. It is concluded that the MarsWRF EDL predictions can be used for guidance into the design and planning stage of future missions to the planet, as it generally captures the observed EDL profiles, although it has a tendency to underestimate the temperature and overestimate the density for heights above 15 km. This could be attributed to an incorrect representation of the observed dust loading. We have used the model to predict the EDL conditions that may be encountered by two future missions: ExoMars 2020 and Mars 2020. When run for Oxia Planum and Jezero Crater for the expected landing time, MarsWRF predicts a large sensitivity to the dust loading in particular for the horizontal wind speed above 10‐15 km with maximum differences of up to ±30 m s‐1 for the former and ±15 m s‐1 for the latter site. For both sites, the best time for EDL, i.e. when the wind speed is generally the weakest with smaller shifts in direction, is predicted to be in the late morning and early afternoon.

  • 19.
    Fonseca, Ricardo
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (INTA-CSIC), Madrid, Spain.
    Azu-Bustos, Armando
    Centro de Astrobiología (INTA-CSIC), Madrid, Spain. Instituto de Ciencias Biomédicas, Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Universidad Autónoma de Chile, Santiago, Chile.
    González-Silva, Carlos
    Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Tarapacá, Iquique, Chile.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (UGR-CSIC), Granada, Spain.
    A surface temperature and moisture intercomparison study of the Weather Research and Forecasting model, in‐situ measurements and satellite observations over the Atacama Desert2019In: Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society, ISSN 0035-9009, E-ISSN 1477-870X, Vol. 145, no 722, p. 2202-2220Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Good knowledge of the environmental conditions of deserts on Earth is relevant forclimate studies. The Atacama Desert is of particular interest as it is considered tobe the driest region on Earth. We have performed simulations using the WeatherResearch and Forecasting (WRF) model over the Atacama Desert for two week-longperiods in the austral winter season coincident with surface temperature and relativehumidity in-situ observations at three sites. We found that the WRF model generallyoverestimates the daytime surface temperature, with biases of up to 11◦C, despitegiving a good simulation of the relative humidity. In order to improve the agree-ment with observed measurements, we conducted sensitivity experiments in whichthe surface albedo, soil moisture content and five tuneable parameters in the NoahLand Surface Model (namely soil porosity, soil suction, saturated soil hydraulic con-ductivity, thebparameter used in hydraulic functions and the quartz fraction) areperturbed. We concluded that an accurate simulation is not possible, most likelybecause the Noah Land Surface Model does not have a groundwater table that maybe shallow in desert regions. The WRF-predicted land surface temperature is alsoevaluated against that estimated from the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectrora-diometer (MODIS) instrument. While at night the satellite-derived and ground-basedmeasurements are generally in agreement, during the day MODIS estimates aretypically lower by as much as 17◦C. This is attributed to the large uncertainty inthe MODIS-estimated land surface temperatures in arid and semi-arid regions. Thefindings of this work highlight the need for ground-based observational networksin remote regions such as the Atacama Desert where satellite-derived and modelproducts may not be very accurate.

  • 20.
    Fonseca, Ricardo
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (INTA-CSIC).
    Martín-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (CSIC-UGR).
    Planetary Boundary Layer and Circulation Dynamics at Gale Crater, Mars2018In: Icarus (New York, N.Y. 1962), ISSN 0019-1035, E-ISSN 1090-2643, Vol. 302, p. 537-559Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Mars implementation of the Planet Weather Research and Forecasting (PlanetWRF) model, MarsWRF, is used here to simulate the atmospheric conditions at Gale Crater for different seasons during a period coincident with the Curiosity rover operations. The model is first evaluated with the existing single-point observations from the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS), and is then used to provide a larger scale interpretation of these unique measurements as well as to give complementary information where there are gaps in the measurements.

    The variability of the planetary boundary layer depth may be a driver of the changes in the local dust and trace gas content within the crater. Our results show that the average time when the PBL height is deeper than the crater rim increases and decreases with the same rate and pattern as Curiosity's observations of the line-of-sight of dust within the crater and that the season when maximal (minimal) mixing is produced is Ls 225°-315° (Ls 90°-110°). Thus the diurnal and seasonal variability of the PBL depth seems to be the driver of the changes in the local dust content within the crater. A comparison with the available methane measurements suggests that changes in the PBL depth may also be one of the factors that accounts for the observed variability, with the model results pointing towards a local source to the north of the MSL site.

    The interaction between regional and local flows at Gale crater is also investigated assuming that the meridional wind, the dynamically important component of the horizontal wind at Gale, anomalies with respect to the daily mean can be approximated by a sinusoidal function as they typically oscillate between positive (south to north) and negative (north to south) values that correspond to upslope/downslope or downslope/upslope regimes along the crater rim and Mount Sharp slopes and the dichotomy boundary. The smallest magnitudes are found in the northern crater floor in a region that comprises Bradbury Landing, in particular at Ls 90° when they are less than 1 m s−1, indicating very little lateral mixing with outside air. The largest amplitudes occur in the south-western portions of the crater where they can exceed 20 m s−1. Should the slope flows along the crater rims interact with the dichotomy boundary flow, which is more likely at Ls 270° and very unlikely at Ls 90°, they are likely to interact constructively for a few hours from late evening to nighttime (∼17-23 LMST) and from pre-dawn early morning (∼5-11 LMST) hours at the norther crater rim and destructively at night (∼22-23 LMST) and in the morning (∼10-11 LMST) at the southern crater rim.

    We conclude that a better understanding of the PBL and circulation dynamics has important implications for the variability of the concentration of dust, non-condensable and trace gases at the bottom of other craters on Mars as mixing with outside air can be achieved vertically, through changes in the PBL depth, and laterally, by the transport of air into and out of the crater.

  • 21.
    Freissinet, C.
    et al.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Glavin, D.P.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Mahaffy, P.R.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Miller, K.E.
    Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge.
    Eigenbrode, J.L.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Summons, R.E.
    Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge.
    Brunner, A.E.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Buch, A.
    Laboratoire de Génie des Procédés et les Matériaux, Ecole Centrale Paris.
    Szopa, C.
    Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales, Univ. Pierre et Marie Curie, Univ. Versailles Saint-Quentin & CNRS, Paris.
    Archer Jr., P.D.
    Jacobs Technology, NASA Johnson Space Center.
    Franz, H.B.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Atreya, S.K.
    Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
    Brinckerhoff, E.B.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Cabane, M.
    Laboratoire Atmosphères, Milieux, Observations Spatiales, Univ. Pierre et Marie Curie, Univ. Versailles Saint-Quentin & CNRS, Paris.
    Coll, P.
    Laboratoire Interuniversitaire des Systèmes Atmosphériques, Université Paris-Est Créteil, Univ. Paris Diderot and CNRS.
    Conrad, P.G.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Marais, D.J. Des
    Exobiology Branch, NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Kalifornien.
    Dworkin, J.P.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Fairén, A.G.
    Department of Astronomy, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York.
    François, P.
    Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
    Grotzinger, J.P.
    Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology.
    Kashyap, S.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Kate, I.L. ten
    Earth Sciences Department, Utrecht University.
    Leshin, L.A.
    Department of Earth and Environmental Science and School of Science, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York.
    Malespin, C.A.
    Solar System Exploration Division, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano, María-Paz
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Organic molecules in the Sheepbed Mudstone, Gale Crater, Mars2015In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Planets, ISSN 2169-9097, E-ISSN 2169-9100, Vol. 120, no 3, p. 495-514Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument [Mahaffy et al., 2012] onboard the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity rover is designed to conduct inorganic and organic chemical analyses of the atmosphere and the surface regolith and rocks to help evaluate the past and present habitability potential of Mars at Gale Crater [Grotzinger et al., 2012]. Central to this task is the development of an inventory of any organic molecules present to elucidate processes associated with their origin, diagenesis, concentration and long-term preservation. This will guide the future search for biosignatures [Summons et al., 2011]. Here we report the definitive identification of chlorobenzene (150–300 parts per billion by weight (ppbw)) and C2 to C4 dichloroalkanes (up to 70 ppbw) with the SAM gas chromatograph mass spectrometer (GCMS), and detection of chlorobenzene in the direct evolved gas analysis (EGA) mode, in multiple portions of the fines from the Cumberland drill hole in the Sheepbed mudstone at Yellowknife Bay. When combined with GCMS and EGA data from multiple scooped and drilled samples, blank runs and supporting laboratory analog studies, the elevated levels of chlorobenzene and the dichloroalkanes cannot be solely explained by instrument background sources known to be present in SAM. We conclude that these chlorinated hydrocarbons are the reaction products of martian chlorine and organic carbon derived from martian sources (e.g. igneous, hydrothermal, atmospheric, or biological) or exogenous sources such as meteorites, comets or interplanetary dust particles.

  • 22.
    Gaite, José A.
    et al.
    Inst. de Matemat./Fis. Fundamental, CSIC.
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología, CSIC-INTA.
    Nonlinear spherical gravitational downfall of gas onto a solid ball: Analytic and numerical results2003In: Physica D: Non-linear phenomena, ISSN 0167-2789, E-ISSN 1872-8022, Vol. 183, no 1-2, p. 102-116Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The process of downfall of initially homogeneous gas onto a solid ball due to the ball's gravity (relevant in astrophysical situations) is studied with a combination of analytic and numerical methods. The initial explicit solution soon becomes discontinuous and gives rise to a shock wave. Afterwards, there is a crossover between two intermediate asymptotic similarity regimes, where the shock wave propagates outwards according to two self-similar laws, initially accelerating and eventually decelerating and vanishing, leading to a static state. The numerical study allows one to investigate in detail this dynamical problem and its time evolution, verifying and complementing the analytic results on the initial solution, intermediate self-similar laws and static long-term solution.

  • 23.
    Guzewich, Scott D.
    et al.
    NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center,Greenbelt, MD, USA.
    Lemmon, M.
    Space Science Institute, College Station, TX, USA.
    Smith, C.L
    Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
    Martínez, G.
    College of Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA.
    de Vicente‐Retortillo, Á.
    College of Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI, USA.
    Newman, C. E.
    Aeolis Research, Pasadena, CA, USA.
    Baker, M.
    Department of Earth and Planetary Science, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD, USA.
    Campbell, C.
    Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
    Cooper, B.
    Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
    Gómez‐Elvira, J.
    Centro de Astrobiología (INTA‐CSIC), Madrid, Spain.
    Harri, A.‐M.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki, Finland.
    Hassler, D.
    Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, CO, USA.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (CSIC‐UGR), Armilla, Granada, Spain.
    McConnochie, T.
    Department of Astronomy, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA.
    Moores, J. E.
    Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
    Kahanpää, H.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, , Helsinki, Finland; School of Electrical Engineering, Aalto University, , Espoo, Finland.
    Khayat, A.
    NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA;CRESST II and Department of Astronomy, University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA.
    Richardson, M. I.
    Aeolis Research, Pasadena, CA, USA.
    Smith, M.D
    NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center, Greenbelt, MD, USA.
    Sullivan, R.
    Cornell Center for Astrophysics and Planetary Science, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, USA.
    de la Torre Juarez, M.
    Cornell Center for Astrophysics and Planetary Science, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY, USA.
    Vasavada, A.R
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA, USA.
    Viúdez‐Moreiras, D.
    Centro de Astrobiología (INTA‐CSIC), Madrid, Spain.
    Zeitlin, C.
    Leidos, Houston, TX, USA.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Mars Science Laboratory Observations of the 2018/Mars Year 34 Global Dust Storm2019In: Geophysical Research Letters, ISSN 0094-8276, E-ISSN 1944-8007, Vol. 46, no 1, p. 71-79Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity rover observations of the 2018/Mars year 34 global/planet‐encircling dust storm represent the first in situ measurements of a global dust storm with dedicated meteorological sensors since the Viking Landers. The Mars Science Laboratory team planned and executed a science campaign lasting approximately 100 Martian sols to study the storm involving an enhanced cadence of environmental monitoring using the rover's meteorological sensors, cameras, and spectrometers. Mast Camera 880‐nm optical depth reached 8.5, and Rover Environmental Monitoring Station measurements indicated a 97% reduction in incident total ultraviolet solar radiation at the surface, 30K reduction in diurnal range of air temperature, and an increase in the semidiurnal pressure tide amplitude to 40 Pa. No active dust‐lifting sites were detected within Gale Crater, and global and local atmospheric dynamics were drastically altered during the storm. This work presents an overview of the mission's storm observations and initial results.

  • 24.
    Guzewich, Scott D.
    et al.
    Universities Space Research Association/NASA Goddard Space Flight Center.
    Newman, C.
    Ashima Research Inc.
    De La Torre Juárez, Manuel
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Mason, E.
    Texas A&M University, College Station, TX.
    Battalio, M.
    Texas A&M University, College Station, TX.
    Zorzano Mier, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Moores, John E.
    Earth and Space Science and Engineering , York University.
    Moore, C.A.
    Earth and Space Science and Engineering , York University.
    Kloos, J.L
    Earth and Space Science and Engineering , York University.
    Martinez, M.D.
    Uni-versity of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
    Smith, M.D.
    NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt.
    The Mars Science Laboratory dust storm campaign2017Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 25.
    Guzewich, Scott D.
    et al.
    NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center, Greenbelt, MD.
    Newman, C. E.
    Aeolis Research, Pasadena, CA.
    Smith, M. D.
    NASA Goddard Spaceflight Center, Greenbelt, MD.
    Moores, J. E.
    Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University, Toronto, ON, Canada.
    Smith, C. L.
    Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University, Toronto, ON, Canada.
    Moore, C.
    Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University, Toronto, ON, Canada.
    Richardson, M. I.
    Aeolis Research, Pasadena, CA.
    Kass, D.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA.
    Kleinböhl, A.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA.
    Mischna, M.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA.
    Martín-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (CSIC-UGR), Granada, Spain.
    Zorzano Mier, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (INTA-CSIC), Torrejón de Ardoz, Madrid, Spain.
    Battalio, M.
    Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX.
    The Vertical Dust Profile over Gale Crater, Mars2017In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Planets, ISSN 2169-9097, E-ISSN 2169-9100, Vol. 122, no 12, p. 2779-2792Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We create a vertically coarse, but complete, vertical profile of dust mixing ratio from the surface to the upper atmosphere over Gale Crater, Mars, using the frequent joint atmospheric observations of the orbiting Mars Climate Sounder (MCS) and the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity rover. Using these data and an estimate of planetary boundary layer (PBL) depth from the MarsWRF general circulation model, we divide the vertical column into three regions. The first region is the Gale Crater PBL, the second is the MCS-sampled region, and the third is between these first two. We solve for a well-mixed dust mixing ratio within this third (middle) layer of atmosphere to complete the profile.

    We identify a unique seasonal cycle of dust within each atmospheric layer. Within the Gale PBL, dust mixing ratio maximizes near southern hemisphere summer solstice (Ls = 270°) and minimizes near winter solstice (Ls = 90-100°) with a smooth sinusoidal transition between them. However, the layer above Gale Crater and below the MCS-sampled region more closely follows the global opacity cycle and has a maximum in opacity near Ls = 240° and exhibits a local minimum (associated with the “solsticial pause” in dust storm activity) near Ls = 270°. With knowledge of the complete vertical dust profile, we can also assess the frequency of high-altitude dust layers over Gale. We determine that 36% of MCS profiles near Gale Crater contain an “absolute” high-altitude dust layer wherein the dust mixing ratio is the maximum in the entire vertical column.

  • 26.
    Gómez-Elvira, J.
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Armiens, C.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Castañer, L.
    Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña.
    Domínguez, M.
    Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña.
    Genzer, M.
    FMI-Arctic Research Centre, Sodankylä.
    Gómez, F.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Haberle, R.
    NASA Ames Research Center.
    Harri, A. M.
    FMI-Arctic Research Centre, Sodankylä.
    Jiménez, V.
    Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña.
    Kahanpää, H.
    FMI-Arctic Research Centre, Sodankylä.
    Kowalski, L.
    Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña.
    Lepinette, A.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Martín, J.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Martínez-Frías, J.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    McEwan, I.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Mora, L.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Moreno, J.
    EADS-CRISA.
    Navarro, S.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Pablo, M. A. De
    Universidad de Alcalá de Henares.
    Peinado, V.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Peña, A.
    EADS-CRISA.
    Polkko, J.
    FMI-Arctic Research Centre, Sodankylä.
    Ramos, M.
    Universidad de Alcalá de Henares.
    Renno, N. O.
    Michigan University.
    Ricart, J.
    Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña.
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    REMS: The environmental sensor suite for the Mars Science Laboratory rover2012In: Space Science Reviews, ISSN 0038-6308, E-ISSN 1572-9672, Vol. 170, no 1-4, p. 583-640Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) will investigate environmental factors directly tied to current habitability at the Martian surface during the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission. Three major habitability factors are addressed by REMS: the thermal environment, ultraviolet irradiation, and water cycling. The thermal environment is determined by a mixture of processes, chief amongst these being the meteorological. Accordingly, the REMS sensors have been designed to record air and ground temperatures, pressure, relative humidity, wind speed in the horizontal and vertical directions, as well as ultraviolet radiation in different bands. These sensors are distributed over the rover in four places: two booms located on the MSL Remote Sensing Mast, the ultraviolet sensor on the rover deck, and the pressure sensor inside the rover body. Typical daily REMS observations will collect 180 minutes of data from all sensors simultaneously (arranged in 5 minute hourly samples plus 60 additional minutes taken at times to be decided during the course of the mission). REMS will add significantly to the environmental record collected by prior missions through the range of simultaneous observations including water vapor; the ability to take measurements routinely through the night; the intended minimum of one Martian year of observations; and the first measurement of surface UV irradiation. In this paper, we describe the scientific potential of REMS measurements and describe in detail the sensors that constitute REMS and the calibration procedures. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media B.V.

  • 27.
    Gõmez-Elvira, Javier
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Armiens, Carlos
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Carrasco, Isaias
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Genzer, Maria
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Gómez, Felipe
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Haberle, Robert M.
    NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, CA.
    Hamilton, Victoria E.
    Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, CO.
    Harri, Ari-Matti
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Kahanpää, Henrik
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Kemppinen, Osku
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Lepinette, Alain
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC - INTA), Torrejón de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Martin-Soler, Javier
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Martínez-Frías, Jesús
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Mischna, Michael A.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA.
    Mora, Luis
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Navarro, Sara
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Newman, Claire E.
    Ashima Research Inc.
    De Pablo, Miguel Ángel
    Universidad de Alcalá de Henares, Alcalá de Henares.
    Peinado, Verõnica
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Polkko, Jouni
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Rafkin, Scot C Randell
    Southwest Research Institute, Boulder, CO.
    Ramos, Miguel A.
    Universidad de Alcalá de Henares, Alcalá de Henares.
    Rennó, Nilton O.
    University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI.
    Richardson, Mark E.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena, CA.
    Rodríguez Manfredi, José Antonio
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Romeral Planellõ, Julio J.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Sebastián, Eduardo M.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    De La Torre Juárez, Manuel
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Torres, Josefina
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Urquí, Roser
    Ingeniería de Sistemas Para la Defensa de España, Madrid.
    Vasavada, Ashwin R
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA.
    Verdasca, José
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Torrejõn de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Curiosity's rover environmental monitoring station: Overview of the first 100 sols2014In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Planets, ISSN 2169-9097, E-ISSN 2169-9100, Vol. 119, no 7, p. 1680-1688Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    In the first 100 Martian solar days (sols) of the Mars Science Laboratory mission, the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) measured the seasonally evolving diurnal cycles of ultraviolet radiation, atmospheric pressure, air temperature, ground temperature, relative humidity, and wind within Gale Crater on Mars. As an introduction to several REMS-based articles in this issue, we provide an overview of the design and performance of the REMS sensors and discuss our approach to mitigating some of the difficulties we encountered following landing, including the loss of one of the two wind sensors. We discuss the REMS data set in the context of other Mars Science Laboratory instruments and observations and describe how an enhanced observing strategy greatly increased the amount of REMS data returned in the first 100 sols, providing complete coverage of the diurnal cycle every 4 to 6 sols. Finally, we provide a brief overview of key science results from the first 100 sols. We found Gale to be very dry, never reaching saturation relative humidities, subject to larger diurnal surface pressure variations than seen by any previous lander on Mars, air temperatures consistent with model predictions and abundant short timescale variability, and surface temperatures responsive to changes in surface properties and suggestive of subsurface layering. Key Points Introduction to the REMS results on MSL mission Overiview of the sensor information Overview of operational constraints

  • 28.
    Haberle, R. M.
    et al.
    NASA Ames Research Center.
    Gõmez-Elvira, J.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Juárez, M. De La Torre
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Harri, A. M.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute.
    Hollingsworth, J. L.
    NASA Ames Research Center.
    Kahanpää, H.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute.
    Kahre, M. A.
    NASA Ames Research Center.
    Lemmon, M.
    Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas.
    Mischna, M.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Moores, J. E.
    Department of Earth and Space Science and Engineering, York University.
    Newman, C.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Rafkin, S. C R
    Southwest Research Institute, San Antonio, Texas.
    Rennõ, N.
    Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
    Richardson, M. I.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Rodríguez-Manfredi, J. A.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Vasavada, A. R.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Zorzano-Mier, M. P.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Preliminary interpretation of the REMS pressure data from the first 100 sols of the MSL mission2014In: Journal of Geophysical Research, ISSN 0148-0227, E-ISSN 2156-2202, Vol. 119, no 3, p. 440-453Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We provide a preliminary interpretation of the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) pressure data from the first 100 Martian solar days (sols) of the Mars Science Laboratory mission. The pressure sensor is performing well and has revealed the existence of phenomena undetected by previous missions that include possible gravity waves excited by evening downslope flows, relatively dust-free convective vortices analogous in structure to dust devils, and signatures indicative of the circulation induced by Gale Crater and its central mound. Other more familiar phenomena are also present including the thermal tides, generated by daily insolation variations, and the CO2 cycle, driven by the condensation and sublimation of CO2 in the polar regions. The amplitude of the thermal tides is several times larger than those seen by other landers primarily because Curiosity is located where eastward and westward tidal modes constructively interfere and also because the crater circulation amplifies the tides to some extent. During the first 100 sols tidal amplitudes generally decline, which we attribute to the waning influence of the Kelvin wave. Toward the end of the 100 sol period, tidal amplitudes abruptly increased in response to a nearby regional dust storm that did not expand to global scales. Tidal phases changed abruptly during the onset of this storm suggesting a change in the interaction between eastward and westward modes. When compared to Viking Lander 2 data, the REMS daily average pressures show no evidence yet for the 1-20 Pa increase expected from the possible loss of CO 2 from the south polar residual cap. Key Points REMS pressure sensor is operating nominally New phenomena have been discovered Familiar phenomena have been detected ©2014. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

  • 29.
    Hamilton, Victoria E.
    et al.
    Department of Space Studies, Southwest Research Institute.
    Vasavada, Ashwin R.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Sebastián, Eduardo
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Juárez, Manuel De La Torre
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Ramos, Miguel
    Departamento de Física y Matemática, University of Alcalá.
    Armiens, Carlos
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Arvidson, Raymond E.
    Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, Washington University, St. Louis.
    Carrasco, Isaías
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Christensen, Philip R.
    School of Earth and Space Exploration, Arizona State University.
    Pablo, Miguel A. De
    Departamento de Geología, Geografía y Medio Ambiente, University of Alcalá.
    Goetz, Walter
    Max-Planck-Institut für Solar System Research.
    Gõmez-Elvira, Javier
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Lemmon, Mark T.
    Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas.
    Madsen, Morten B.
    Niels Bohr Institute, Copenhagen University.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid , Instituto Andaluz de Cienccias de la Tierra (CSIC-UGR), Grenada.
    Martínez-Frías, Jesús
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid , Instituto de Geociencias (CSIC-UCM), Ciudad Universitaria.
    Molina, Antonio
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid , Departamento de Física y Matemática, University of Alcalá.
    Palucis, Marisa C.
    Department of Earth, Planetary, and Space Sciences, University of California, Los Angeles.
    Rafkin, Scot C R
    Department of Space Studies, Southwest Research Institute.
    Richardson, Mark I.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Yingst, R. Aileen
    Planetary Science Institute, Tucson.
    Zorzano, María-Paz
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Observations and preliminary science results from the first 100 sols of MSL Rover Environmental Monitoring Station ground temperature sensor measurements at Gale Crater2014In: Journal of Geophysical Research, ISSN 0148-0227, E-ISSN 2156-2202, Vol. 119, no 4, p. 745-770Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We describe preliminary results from the first 100 sols of ground temperature measurements along the Mars Science Laboratory's traverse from Bradbury Landing to Rocknest in Gale. The ground temperature data show long-term increases in mean temperature that are consistent with seasonal evolution. Deviations from expected temperature trends within the diurnal cycle are observed and may be attributed to rover and environmental effects. Fits to measured diurnal temperature amplitudes using a thermal model suggest that the observed surfaces have thermal inertias in the range of 265-375?J m-2 K-1 s-1/2, which are within the range of values determined from orbital measurements and are consistent with the inertias predicted from the observed particle sizes on the uppermost surface near the rover. Ground temperatures at Gale Crater appear to warm earlier and cool later than predicted by the model, suggesting that there are multiple unaccounted for physical conditions or processes in our models. Where the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) descent engines removed a mobile layer of dust and fine sediments from over rockier material, the diurnal temperature profile is closer to that expected for a homogeneous surface, suggesting that the mobile materials on the uppermost surface may be partially responsible for the mismatch between observed temperatures and those predicted for materials having a single thermal inertia. Models of local stratigraphy also implicate thermophysical heterogeneity at the uppermost surface as a potential contributor to the observed diurnal temperature cycle. Key Points Diurnal ground temperatures vary with location Diurnal temperature curves are not well matched by a homogeneous thermal model GTS data are consistent with a varied stratigraphy and thermophysical properties.

  • 30.
    Harri, A. M.
    et al.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Genzer, M.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Kemppinen, O.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Kahanpää, H.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Gomez-Elvira, J.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CAB).
    Rodriguez-Manfredi, J. A.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CAB).
    Haberle, R.
    NASA Ames Research Center.
    Polkko, J.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Schmidt, W.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Savijärvi, H.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Kauhanen, J.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Atlaskin, E.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Richardson, M.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Siili, T.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Paton, M.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Juarez, M. De La Torre
    NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena.
    Newman, C.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Rafkin, S.
    Southwest Research Institute, Boulder.
    Lemmon, M. T.
    Texas A&M University.
    Mischna, M.
    NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena.
    Merikallio, S.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Haukka, H.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Division of Earth Observation.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid.
    Zorzano, María-Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología (CAB).
    Peinado, V.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CAB).
    Rennõ, N.
    University of Michigan.
    Pressure observations by the curiosity rover: Initial results2014In: Journal of Geophysical Research, ISSN 0148-0227, E-ISSN 2156-2202, Vol. 119, no 1, p. 82-92Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    REMS-P, the pressure measurement subsystem of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Rover Environmental Measurement Station (REMS), is performing accurate observations of the Martian atmospheric surface pressure. It has demonstrated high data quality and good temporal coverage, carrying out the first in situ pressure observations in the Martian equatorial regions. We describe the REMS-P initial results by MSL mission sol 100 including the instrument performance and data quality and illustrate some initial interpretations of the observed features. The observations show both expected and new phenomena at various spatial and temporal scales, e.g., the gradually increasing pressure due to the advancing Martian season signals from the diurnal tides as well as various local atmospheric phenomena and thermal vortices. Among the unexpected new phenomena discovered in the pressure data are a small regular pressure drop at every sol and pressure oscillations occurring in the early evening. We look forward to continued high-quality observations by REMS-P, extending the data set to reveal characteristics of seasonal variations and improved insights into regional and local phenomena. Key Points The performance and data quality of the REMS / MSL pressure observations. MSL pressure observations exhibit local phenomena of the Gale crater area. Small pressure oscillations possibly linked to gravity waves. ©2013. American Geophysical Union. All Rights Reserved.

  • 31.
    Harri, A.-M.
    et al.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Genzer, M.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Kemppinen, O.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Gomez-Elvira, J.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Haberle, R.
    NASA Ames Research Center, Moffett Field.
    Polkko, J.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Savijärvi, H.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Rennó, N.
    Department of Atmospheric, Oceanic and Space Sciences, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
    Rodriguez-Manfredi, J. A.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CAB).
    Schmidt, W.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Richardson, M.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Siili, T.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Paton, M.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Torre-Juarez, M. De La
    NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena.
    Mäkinen, T.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Newman, C.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Rafkin, S.
    Southwest Research Institute, Boulder.
    Mischna, M.
    NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena.
    Merikallio, S.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Haukka, H.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Komu, M.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Zorzano, María-Paz
    Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Peinado, V.
    Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Vazquez, L.
    Department of Applied Mathematics, Complutense University of Madrid.
    Urqui, R.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CAB).
    Mars Science Laboratory relative humidity observations: Initial results2014In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Planets, ISSN 2169-9097, E-ISSN 2169-9100, Vol. 119, no 9, p. 2132-2147, article id 16Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) made a successful landing at Gale crater early August 2012. MSL has an environmental instrument package called the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) as a part of its scientific payload. REMS comprises instrumentation for the observation of atmospheric pressure, temperature of the air, ground temperature, wind speed and direction, relative humidity (REMS-H), and UV measurements. We concentrate on describing the REMS-H measurement performance and initial observations during the first 100 MSL sols as well as constraining the REMS-H results by comparing them with earlier observations and modeling results. The REMS-H device is based on polymeric capacitive humidity sensors developed by Vaisala Inc., and it makes use of transducer electronics section placed in the vicinity of the three humidity sensor heads. The humidity device is mounted on the REMS boom providing ventilation with the ambient atmosphere through a filter protecting the device from airborne dust. The final relative humidity results appear to be convincing and are aligned with earlier indirect observations of the total atmospheric precipitable water content. The water mixing ratio in the atmospheric surface layer appears to vary between 30 and 75 ppm. When assuming uniform mixing, the precipitable water content of the atmosphere is ranging from a few to six precipitable micrometers.

  • 32.
    Herr, Werner
    et al.
    CERN, SL Division.
    Zorzano, María Paz
    CERN, SL Division.
    Jones, F.
    TRIUMF, Vancouver.
    Hybrid fast multipole method applied to beam-beam collisions in the strong-strong regime2001In: Physical Review Special Topics. Accelerators and Beams, ISSN 1098-4402, E-ISSN 1098-4402, Vol. 4, no 5, p. 37-45Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The strong-strong interactions of two colliding beams are simulated by tracking the motion of a set of macroparticles. The field generated by each distribution is evaluated using the fast multipole method together with some elements of particle-mesh methods. This technique allows us to check the exact frequencies of the coherent modes and the frequencies of oscillations of individual particles in the beam. The agreement between the simulations and analytical calculations is largely improved. Furthermore, it is an efficient method to study the coherent modes in the case of separated beams.

  • 33.
    Hochberg, David
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Mirror symmetry breaking as a problem in dynamic critical phenomena2007In: Physical Review E. Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics: Statistical Physics, Plasmas, Fluids, and Related Interdisciplinary Topics, ISSN 1063-651X, E-ISSN 1095-3787, Vol. 76, no 2, article id 021109Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The critical properties of the Frank model of spontaneous chiral synthesis are discussed by applying results from the field theoretic renormalization group (RG). The long time and long wavelength features of this microscopic reaction scheme belong to the same universality class as multicolored directed percolation processes. Thus the following RG fixed points (FPs) govern the critical dynamics of the Frank model for d<4: one unstable FP that corresponds to complete decoupling between the two enantiomers, a saddle point that corresponds to symmetric interspecies coupling, and two stable FPs that individually correspond to unidirectional couplings between the two chiral molecules. These latter two FPs are associated with the breakdown of mirror or chiral symmetry. In this simplified model of molecular synthesis, homochirality is a natural consequence of the intrinsic reaction noise in the critical regime, which corresponds to extremely dilute chemical systems.

  • 34.
    Hochberg, David
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiologia (CSIC/INTA), Associated to NASA Astrobiology Institute.
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiologia (CSIC/INTA), Associated to NASA Astrobiology Institute.
    Path integral evaluation of the one-loop effective potential in field theory of diffusion-limited reactions2007In: Physica A: Statistical Mechanics and its Applications, ISSN 0378-4371, E-ISSN 1873-2119, Vol. 278, no 2, p. 238-254Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The well-established effective action and effective potential framework from the quantum field theory domain is adapted and successfully applied to classical field theories of the Doi and Peliti type for diffusion controlled reactions. Through a number of benchmark examples, we show that the direct path integral calculation of the effective potential in fixed space dimension d = 2 to one-loop order reduces to a small set of simple elementary functions, irrespective of the microscopic details of the specific model. Thus the technique, which allows one to obtain with little additional effort, the potentials for a wide variety of different models, represents an alternative to the standard model-dependent diagram-based calculations. The renormalized effective potential, effective equations of motion and the associated renormalization group equations are computed in d = 2 spatial dimensions for a number of single species field theories of increasing complexity.

  • 35.
    Hochberg, David
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Reaction-noise induced homochirality2006In: Chemical Physics Letters, ISSN 0009-2614, E-ISSN 1873-4448, Vol. 431, no 1-3, p. 185-189Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Starting from the chemical master equation, we employ field theoretic techniques to derive Langevin-type equations that exactly describe the stochastic dynamics of the Frank chiral amplification model with spatial diffusion. The intrinsic multiplicative noise properties are completely and rigorously derived by this procedure. We carry out numerical simulations in two spatial dimensions. When the inherent spatio-temporal fluctuations are properly included, then complete chiral amplification results from a purely racemic initial configuration. Phase separation can also arise in which the enantiomers coexist in spatially segregated domains separated by a sharp racemic interface or boundary.

  • 36.
    Hochberg, David
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Morán, Federico
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Complex noise in diffusion-limited reactions of replicating and competing species2006In: Physical Review E. Statistical, Nonlinear, and Soft Matter Physics, ISSN 1539-3755, E-ISSN 1550-2376, Vol. 73, no 6, article id 066109Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We derive exact Langevin-type equations governing quasispecies dynamics. The inherent multiplicative noise has both real and imaginary parts. The numerical simulation of the underlying complex stochastic partial differential equations is carried out employing the Cholesky decomposition for the noise covariance matrix. This noise produces unavoidable spatiotemporal density fluctuations about the mean-field value. In two dimensions, the fluctuations are suppressed only when the diffusion time scale is much smaller than the amplification time scale for the master species

  • 37.
    Hochberg, David
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Morán, Federico
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA).
    Complex reaction noise in a molecular quasispecies model2006In: Chemical Physics Letters, ISSN 0009-2614, E-ISSN 1873-4448, Vol. 423, no 1-3, p. 54-58Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    We have derived exact Langevin equations for a model of quasispecies dynamics. The inherent multiplicative reaction noise is complex and its statistical properties are specified completely. The numerical simulation of the complex Langevin equations is carried out using the Cholesky decomposition for the noise covariance matrix. This internal noise, which is due to diffusion-limited reactions, produces unavoidable spatio-temporal density fluctuations about the mean field value. In two dimensions, this noise strictly vanishes only in the perfectly mixed limit, a situation difficult to attain in practice

  • 38.
    Hochberg, David
    et al.
    Centro de Astrobiología, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Instituto Nacional de T́cnica Aeroespacial (CSIC-INTA).
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología, Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Instituto Nacional de T́cnica Aeroespacial (CSIC-INTA).
    Morán, Federico
    Departamento de Bioquímica y Biología Molecular, Facultad de Ciencias Químicas, Universidad Complutense de Madrid.
    Spatiotemporal patterns driven by autocatalytic internal reaction noise2005In: Journal of Chemical Physics, ISSN 0021-9606, E-ISSN 1089-7690, Vol. 122, no 21, article id 214701Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The influence that intrinsic local-density fluctuations can have on solutions of mean-field reaction-diffusion models is investigated numerically by means of the spatial patterns arising from two species that react and diffuse in the presence of strong internal reaction noise. The dynamics of the Gray-Scott (GS) model [P. Gray and S. K. Scott, Chem. Eng. Sci. 38, 29 (1983); P. Gray and S. K. Scott, Chem. Eng. Sci.39, 1087 (1984); P. Gray and S. K. Scott,J. Phys. Chem. 89, 22 (1985)] with a constant external source is first cast in terms of a continuum field theory representing the corresponding master equation. We then derive a Langevin description of the field theory and use these stochastic differential equations in our simulations. The nature of the multiplicative noise is specified exactly without recourse to assumptions and turns out to be of the same order as the reaction itself, and thus cannot be treated as a small perturbation. Many of the complex patterns obtained in the absence of noise for the GS model are completely obliterated by these strong internal fluctuations, but we find novel spatial patterns induced by this reaction noise in the regions of parameter space that otherwise correspond to homogeneous solutions when fluctuations are not included

  • 39.
    Israel Nazarious, Miracle
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Vakkada Ramachandran, Abhilash
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (INTA-CSIC), Torrejon de Ardoz, Madrid, Spain.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Calibration and preliminary tests of the Brine Observation Transition To Liquid Experiment on HABIT/ExoMars 2020 for demonstration of liquid water stability on Mars2019In: Acta Astronautica, ISSN 0094-5765, E-ISSN 1879-2030, Vol. 162, p. 497-510Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The search for unequivocal proofs of liquid water on present day Mars is a prominent domain of research with implications on habitability and future Mars exploration. The HABIT (Habitability: Brines, Irradiation, and Temperature) instrument that will be on-board the ExoMars 2020 Surface Platform (ESA-IKI Roscosmos) will investigate the habitability of present day Mars, monitoring temperature, winds, dust conductivity, ultraviolet radiation and liquid water formation. One of the components of HABIT is the experiment BOTTLE (Brine Observation Transition To Liquid Experiment). The purposes of BOTTLE are to: (1) quantify the formation of transient liquid brines; (2) observe their stability over time under non-equilibrium conditions; and (3) serve as an In-Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) technology demonstrator for water moisture capture. In this manuscript, we describe the calibration procedure of BOTTLE with standard concentrations of brines, the calibration function and the coefficients needed to interpret the observations on Mars.

    BOTTLE consists of six containers: four of them are filled with different deliquescent salts that have been found on Mars (calcium-perchlorate, magnesium-perchlorate, calcium-chloride, and sodium-perchlorate); and two containers that are open to the air, to collect atmospheric dust. The salts are exposed to the Martian environment through a high efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter (to comply with planetary protection protocols). The deliquescence process will be monitored by observing the changes in electrical conductivity (EC) in each container: dehydrated salts show low EC, hydrated salts show medium EC and, liquid brines show high EC values. We report and interpret the preliminary test results using the BOTTLE engineering model in representative conditions; and we discuss how this concept can be adapted to other exploration missions.

    Our laboratory observations show that 1.2 g of anhydrous calcium-chloride captures about 3.7 g of liquid water as brine passing through various possible hydrate forms. This ISRU technology could potentially be the first attempt to understand the formation of transient liquid water on Mars and to develop self-sustaining in-situ water harvesting on Mars for future human and robotic missions.

  • 40.
    Kahanpää, Henrik
    et al.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Newman, C.
    Ashima Research Inc.
    Moores, John E.
    Earth and Space Science and Engineering , York University.
    Zorzano Mier, Maria-Paz
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC - INTA), Torrejón de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Navarro, Sara
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC - INTA), Torrejón de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Lepinette, Alain
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC - INTA), Torrejón de Ardoz, Madrid.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    nstituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (CSIC - UGR), Granada.
    Valentin-Serrano, Patricia
    nstituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (CSIC - UGR), Granada.
    Cantor, Bruce
    Malin Space Science Systems, San Diego.
    Lemmon, Mark T.
    Department of Atmospheric Sciences , Texas A&M University.
    Ullán, Aurora
    Departamento de Teoría de la Señal y Comunicaciones, Escuela Politécnica Superior , Universidad de Alcalá, Madrid.
    Schmidt, W.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Dust Devils and Convective Vortices Detected by MSL2017Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 41.
    Kahanpää, Henrik
    et al.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Newman, C.E.
    Ashima Research, Pasadena.
    Moores, John E.
    Center for Research in Earth and Space Science, York University, Toronto, York University, Toronto, York University/Earth and Space Science and Engineering, North York, Ontario, York University, North York, Ontario.
    Zorzano, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Navarro, Sara
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid , Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Madrid, Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Lepinette, Alain
    Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Madrid, Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid , Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Cantor, Bruce
    Malin Space Science Systems.
    Lemmon, Mark T.
    Department of Atmospheric Sciences, Texas A&M University, Texas A&M University, College Station.
    Valentin-Serrano, Patricia
    CSIC-UGR - Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (IACT), Granada, Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Ullán, Aurora
    Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Schmidt, W.
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Convective vortices and dust devils at the MSL landing site: annual variability2016In: Journal of Geophysical Research - Planets, ISSN 2169-9097, E-ISSN 2169-9100, Vol. 121, no 8, p. 1514-1549Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Two hundred fifty-two transient drops in atmospheric pressure, likely caused by passing convective vortices, were detected by the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station instrument during the first Martian year of the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) landed mission. These events resembled the vortex signatures detected by the previous Mars landers Pathfinder and Phoenix; however, the MSL observations contained fewer pressure drops greater than 1.5 Pa and none greater than 3.0 Pa. Apparently, these vortices were generally not lifting dust as only one probable dust devil has been observed visually by MSL. The obvious explanation for this is the smaller number of strong vortices with large central pressure drops since according to Arvidson et al. [2014] ample dust seems to be present on the surface. The annual variation in the number of detected convective vortices followed approximately the variation in Dust Devil Activity (DDA) predicted by the MarsWRF numerical climate model. This result does not prove, however, that the amount of dust lifted by dust devils would depend linearly on DDA, as is assumed in several numerical models of the Martian atmosphere, since dust devils are only the most intense fraction of all convective vortices on Mars, and the amount of dust that can be lifted by a dust devil depends on its central pressure drop. Sol-to-sol variations in the number of vortices were usually small. However, on 1 Martian solar day a sudden increase in vortex activity, related to a dust storm front, was detected. 

  • 42.
    Korablev, O.
    et al.
    Space Research Institute (IKI)MoscowRussia.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (CSIC-UGR)GranadaSpain.
    Zorzano, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de AstrobiologíaINTA-CSICMadridSpain.
    The Atmospheric Chemistry Suite (ACS) of Three Spectrometers for the ExoMars 2016 Trace Gas Orbiter2018In: Space Science Reviews, ISSN 0038-6308, E-ISSN 1572-9672, Vol. 247, no 1, article id 7Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [sv]

    The Atmospheric Chemistry Suite (ACS) package is an element of the Russian contribution to the ESA-Roscosmos ExoMars 2016 Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) mission. ACS consists of three separate infrared spectrometers, sharing common mechanical, electrical, and thermal interfaces. This ensemble of spectrometers has been designed and developed in response to the Trace Gas Orbiter mission objectives that specifically address the requirement of high sensitivity instruments to enable the unambiguous detection of trace gases of potential geophysical or biological interest. For this reason, ACS embarks a set of instruments achieving simultaneously very high accuracy (ppt level), very high resolving power (>10,000) and large spectral coverage (0.7 to 17 μm—the visible to thermal infrared range). The near-infrared (NIR) channel is a versatile spectrometer covering the 0.7–1.6 μm spectral range with a resolving power of ∼20,000. NIR employs the combination of an echelle grating with an AOTF (Acousto-Optical Tunable Filter) as diffraction order selector. This channel will be mainly operated in solar occultation and nadir, and can also perform limb observations. The scientific goals of NIR are the measurements of water vapor, aerosols, and dayside or night side airglows. The mid-infrared (MIR) channel is a cross-dispersion echelle instrument dedicated to solar occultation measurements in the 2.2–4.4 μm range. MIR achieves a resolving power of >50,000. It has been designed to accomplish the most sensitive measurements ever of the trace gases present in the Martian atmosphere. The thermal-infrared channel (TIRVIM) is a 2-inch double pendulum Fourier-transform spectrometer encompassing the spectral range of 1.7–17 μm with apodized resolution varying from 0.2 to 1.3 cm−1. TIRVIM is primarily dedicated to profiling temperature from the surface up to ∼60 km and to monitor aerosol abundance in nadir. TIRVIM also has a limb and solar occultation capability. The technical concept of the instrument, its accommodation on the spacecraft, the optical designs as well as some of the calibrations, and the expected performances for its three channels are described.

  • 43.
    Korablev, Oleg I.
    et al.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Dobrolensky, Yurii
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Evdokimova, Nadezhda
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Fedorova, Anna A.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Kuzmin, Ruslan O.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Mantsevich, Sergei N.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Cloutis, Edward A.
    The University of Winnipeg.
    Carter, John
    Institut d'Astrophysique Spatiale IAS-CNRS/Université Paris Sud Orsay.
    Poulet, Francois
    Institut d'Astrophysique Spatiale IAS-CNRS/Université Paris Sud Orsay.
    Flahaut, Jessica
    Université Lyon 1, ENS-Lyon, CNRS.
    Griffiths, Andrew
    Mullard Space Science Laboratory, University College London, Dorking.
    Gunn, Matthew
    Department of Physics, Aberystwyth University.
    Schmitz, Nicole
    German Aerospace Center DLR, Köln.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Rodianov, Daniil S.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Vago, Jorge L.
    ESA ESTEC, Noordwijk.
    Stepanov, Alexander V.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Titov, Andrei Yu.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Vyazovetsky, Nikita A.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Trokhimovskiy, Alexander Yu.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Sapgir, Alexander G.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Kalinnikov, Yurii K.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Ivanov, Yurii S.
    Main Astronomical Observatory MAO NASU, Kyiv.
    Shapkin, Alexei A.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Ivanov, Andrei Yu.
    Space Research Institute IKI, Moscow.
    Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars: A Mast-Mounted Instrument for the Rover2017In: Astrobiology, ISSN 1531-1074, E-ISSN 1557-8070, Vol. 17, no 6-7, p. 542-564Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    ISEM (Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars) is a pencil-beam infrared spectrometer that will measure reflected solar radiation in the near infrared range for context assessment of the surface mineralogy in the vicinity of the ExoMars rover. The instrument will be accommodated on the mast of the rover and will be operated together with the panoramic camera (PanCam), high-resolution camera (HRC). ISEM will study the mineralogical and petrographic composition of the martian surface in the vicinity of the rover, and in combination with the other remote sensing instruments, it will aid in the selection of potential targets for close-up investigations and drilling sites. Of particular scientific interest are water-bearing minerals, such as phyllosilicates, sulfates, carbonates, and minerals indicative of astrobiological potential, such as borates, nitrates, and ammonium-bearing minerals. The instrument has an ∼1° field of view and covers the spectral range between 1.15 and 3.30 μm with a spectral resolution varying from 3.3 nm at 1.15 μm to 28 nm at 3.30 μm. The ISEM optical head is mounted on the mast, and its electronics box is located inside the rover's body. The spectrometer uses an acousto-optic tunable filter and a Peltier-cooled InAs detector. The mass of ISEM is 1.74 kg, including the electronics and harness. The science objectives of the experiment, the instrument design, and operational scenarios are described.

  • 44. Korablev, Oleg
    et al.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Vago, Jorge L.
    European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC), ESA, Noordwijk, The Netherlands.
    No detection of methane on Mars from early ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter observations2019In: Nature, ISSN 0028-0836, E-ISSN 1476-4687, Vol. 568, p. 517-520Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The detection of methane on Mars has been interpreted as indicating that geochemical or biotic activities could persist on Mars today1. A number of different measurements of methane show evidence of transient, locally elevated methane concentrations and seasonal variations in background methane concentrations2,3,4,5. These measurements, however, are difficult to reconcile with our current understanding of the chemistry and physics of the Martian atmosphere6,7, which—given methane’s lifetime of several centuries—predicts an even, well mixed distribution of methane1,6,8. Here we report highly sensitive measurements of the atmosphere of Mars in an attempt to detect methane, using the ACS and NOMAD instruments onboard the ESA-Roscosmos ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter from April to August 2018. We did not detect any methane over a range of latitudes in both hemispheres, obtaining an upper limit for methane of about 0.05 parts per billion by volume, which is 10 to 100 times lower than previously reported positive detections2,4. We suggest that reconciliation between the present findings and the background methane concentrations found in the Gale crater4 would require an unknown process that can rapidly remove or sequester methane from the lower atmosphere before it spreads globally.

  • 45.
    Lanza, Nina L.
    et al.
    Los Alamos National Laboratory.
    Wiens, Roger C.
    Los Alamos National Laboratory, Space Remote Sensing, Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, International Space and Response Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory.
    Arvidson, Ray E.
    Washington University, St. Louis.
    Clark, Benton C.
    Space Science Institute, Boulder, Colorado, Space Science Institute.
    Fischer, W.W.
    California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Gellert, Ralf
    University of Guelph, Ontario, University of Guelph, Department of Physics, University of Guelph, Ontario.
    Grotzinger, John P.
    California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology, Caltech, Pasadena, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Hurowitz, J.A.
    Department of Geosciences, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook University, NY, Department of Geosciences, State University of New York, Stony Brook.
    McLennan, S.M.
    Department of Geosciences, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook University, NY, Department of Geosciences, State University of New York, Stony Brook, The State University of New York, Stony Brook.
    Morris, R.V.
    NASA Johnson Space Center, NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston, Astromaterials Research and Exploration Science Directorate, NASA Johnson Space Center, Houston.
    Rice, M.S.
    California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences, California Institute of Technology.
    III, J.F. Bell
    Arizona State University, School of Earth and Space Exploration, Arizona State University, School of Earth and Space Exploration, Arizona State University, Tempe.
    Berger, Jeff A.
    University of Western Ontario, London.
    Blaney, Diana L.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Kalifornien.
    Bridges, Nathan T.
    Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Applied Physics Laboratory, Laurel, Maryland.
    Calef, Fred
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
    Campbell, J.L.
    Department of Physics, University of Guelph, Ontario, University of Guelph, Ontario.
    Clegg, S.M.
    Los Alamos National Laboratory, Chemistry Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory.
    Cousin, A.
    Los Alamos National Laboratory, Chemistry Division, Los Alamos National Laboratory.
    Edgett, Kenneth S.
    Malin Space Science Systems, San Diego, Malin Space Science Systems.
    Fabre, Cécile
    Université de Lorraine, Nancy.
    Fisk, M.R.
    Oregon State University, Corvallis.
    Forni, Olivier
    IRAP/CNRS, Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planetologie, Toulouse, Université de Toulouse, UPS-OMP, IRAP, Institut de Recherche en Astophysique et Planetologie (IRAP), Universite' Paul Sabatier, Toulouse, IRAP, CNRS/UPS, Toulouse.
    Frydenvang, J.
    Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen.
    Hardy, K.R.
    U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Oxidation of manganese in an ancient aquifer, Kimberley formation, Gale crater, Mars2016In: Geophysical Research Letters, ISSN 0094-8276, E-ISSN 1944-8007, Vol. 43, no 14, p. 7398-7407Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The Curiosity rover observed high Mn abundances (>25wt % MnO) in fracture-filling materials that crosscut sandstones in the Kimberley region of Gale crater, Mars. The correlation between Mn and trace metal abundances plus the lack of correlation between Mn and elements such as S, Cl, and C, reveals that these deposits are Mn oxides rather than evaporites or other salts. On Earth, environments that concentrate Mn and deposit Mn minerals require water and highly oxidizing conditions; hence, these findings suggest that similar processes occurred on Mars. Based on the strong association between Mn-oxide deposition and evolving atmospheric dioxygen levels on Earth, the presence of these Mn phases on Mars suggests that there was more abundant molecular oxygen within the atmosphere and some groundwaters of ancient Mars than in the present day

  • 46.
    Lasue, J.
    et al.
    Université de Toulouse, Toulouse, France.
    Cousin, A.
    Université de Toulouse, Toulouse, France.
    Meslin, P.Y
    Université de Toulouse,Toulouse, France.
    Mangold, N.
    Université de Nantes, Nantes, France.
    Wiens, R.C
    Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM, USA.
    Berger, G.
    Université de Toulouse,Toulouse, France.
    Dehouck, E.
    Université de Lyon, Villeurbanne, France.
    Forni, O.
    Université de Toulouse,Toulouse, France.
    Goetz, W.
    Max‐Planck‐Institut für Sonnensystemforschung, Göttingen, Germany.
    Gasnault, O.
    Université de Toulouse,Toulouse, France.
    Rapin, W.
    California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA, USA.
    Schroeder, S.
    German Aerospace Center (DLR), Institut für Optische Sensorsysteme, Berlin‐Adlershof, Germany.
    Ollila, A.
    Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM, USA.
    Johnson, J.
    Johns Hopkins University APL, Laurel, MD, USA.
    Le Mouélic, S.
    Université de Nantes, Nantes, France.
    Maurice, S.
    Université de Toulouse, Toulouse, France.
    Anderson, R.
    USGS, Flagstaff, AZ, USA.
    Blaney, D.
    NASA JPL, Pasadena, CA, USA.
    Clark, B.
    Space Science Institute, Boulder, CO, USA.
    Clegg, S.M
    Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM, USA.
    D'Uston, C.
    Université de Toulouse,Toulouse, France.
    Fabre, C.
    Lorraine University, Vandoeuvre, France.
    Lanza, N.
    Los Alamos National Laboratory, Los Alamos, NM, USA.
    Madsen, M.B
    Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Melikechi, N.
    University of Massachusetts Lowell, Lowell, MA, USA.
    Newsom, H.
    University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, NM, USA.
    Sautter, V.
    Muséum d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France.
    Zorzano Mier, María-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology. Centro de Astrobiología (INTA‐CSIC), Torrejón de Ardoz, Spain.
    Martian Eolian Dust Probed by ChemCam2018In: Geophysical Research Letters, ISSN 0094-8276, E-ISSN 1944-8007, Vol. 45, no 20, p. 10968-10977Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The ubiquitous eolian dust on Mars plays important roles in the current sedimentary and atmospheric processes of the planet. The ChemCam instrument retrieves a consistent eolian dust composition at the submillimeter scale from every first laser shot on Mars targets. Its composition presents significant differences with the Aeolis Palus soils and the Bagnold dunes as it contains lower CaO and higher SiO2. The dust FeO and TiO2contents are also higher, probably associated with nanophase oxide components. The dust spectra show the presence of volatile elements (S and Cl), and the hydrogen content is similar to Bagnold sands but lower than Aeolis Palus soils. Consequently, the dust may be a contributor to the amorphous component of soils, but differences in composition indicate that the two materials are not equivalent.

  • 47.
    Lasue, J.
    et al.
    IRAP-OMP, CNRS-UPS, Toulouse.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano Mier, Maria-Paz
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    What ChemCam’s first shots tell us about martian dust?2017Conference paper (Other academic)
  • 48.
    Mais, Helmut
    et al.
    DESY.
    Zorzano, María Paz
    Departamento de Matematica Aplicada, Univ. Complutense de Madrid (UCM).
    Stochastic dynamics and Fokker-Planck equation in accelerator physics1999In: Nuovo cimento. A, ISSN 0369-3546, E-ISSN 1826-9869, Vol. 12, no 5, p. 467-474Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of this contribution is to study the particle dynamics in a storage ring under the influence of noise. Some simplified stochastic beam dynamics problems are treated by solving the corresponding Fokker-Planck equations numerically

  • 49.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Mier, Maria-Paz Zorzano
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Vida Extraterrestre: Implicaciones2015In: Burgense, ISSN 0521-8195, Vol. 55, no 1, p. 197-206Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 50.
    Martin-Torres, Javier
    et al.
    Luleå University of Technology, Department of Computer Science, Electrical and Space Engineering, Space Technology.
    Zorzano, María-Paz
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid , Instituto Nacional de Técnica Aeroespacial, Madrid, Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid.
    Valentin-Serrano, Patricia
    CSIC-UGR - Instituto Andaluz de Ciencias de la Tierra (IACT), Granada.
    Harri, Ari-Matti
    Earth Observation Research Division, Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Genzer, Maria
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Earth Observation Research Division, Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Kemppainen, Osku
    Finnish Meteorological Institute, Earth Observation Research Division, Finnish Meteorological Institute, Helsinki.
    Rivera-Valentin, Edgard G.
    Arecibo Observatory, Universities Space Research Association, Arecibo, Puerto Rico.
    Jun, Insoo
    California Institute of Technology, Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
    Wray, James J.
    School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta.
    Madsen, Morten B.
    Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen.
    Goetz, Walter
    Max-Planck-Institut für Solar System Research.
    McEwen, Alfred S,
    Lunar and Planetary Lab, University of Arizona, Tucson.
    Hardgrove, Craig
    Arizona State University, Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Malin Space Science Systems.
    Renno, Nilton
    University of Michigan, College of Engineering, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
    Chevrier, Vincent F.
    Arkansas Center for Space and Planetary Sciences, University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.
    Mischna, Michael A.
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Navarro-Gonzalez, Rafael
    Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Mexico, Ciudad Universitaria, Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid , Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Mexico D.F., Laboratorio de Química de Plasmas y Estudios Planetarios, Instituto de Ciencias Nucleares, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México.
    Martínez-Frías, Jesús
    Centro de Astrobiologia, INTA-CSIC, Madrid , Instituto de Geociencias (CSIC-UCM), 28040 Madrid.
    Conrad, Pamela G.
    NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Solar System Exploration Division, Goddard Space Flight Center, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Greenbelt, Maryland.
    McConnochie, Timothy H.
    Department of Astronomy, University of Maryland, College Park.
    Cockell, Charles
    ESO, UK Centre for Astrobiology, School of Physics and Astronomy,.
    Berger, Gilles
    IRAP/CNRS, Institut de Recherche en Astrophysique et Planetologie, Toulouse, Université de Toulouse, UPS-OMP, IRAP.
    Vasavada, Ashwin
    Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena.
    Sumner, Dawn Y.
    Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences, University of California, Davis, Department of Geology, University of California, Davis.
    Vaniman, David T.
    Planetary Science Institute, Tucson.
    Transient liquid water and water activity at Gale crater on Mars2015In: Nature Geoscience, ISSN 1752-0894, E-ISSN 1752-0908, Vol. 8, no 5, p. 357-361Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Water is a requirement for life as we know it1. Indirect evidence of transient liquid water has been observed from orbiter on equatorial Mars2, in contrast with expectations from large-scale climate models. The presence of perchlorate salts, which have been detected at Gale crater on equatorial Mars by the Curiosity rover3, 4, lowers the freezing temperature of water5. Moreover, perchlorates can form stable hydrated compounds and liquid solutions by absorbing atmospheric water vapour through deliquescence6, 7. Here we analyse relative humidity, air temperature and ground temperature data from the Curiosity rover at Gale crater and find that the observations support the formation of night-time transient liquid brines in the uppermost 5 cm of the subsurface that then evaporate after sunrise. We also find that changes in the hydration state of salts within the uppermost 15 cm of the subsurface, as measured by Curiosity, are consistent with an active exchange of water at the atmosphere–soil interface. However, the water activity and temperature are probably too low to support terrestrial organisms8. Perchlorates are widespread on the surface of Mars9 and we expect that liquid brines are abundant beyond equatorial regions where atmospheric humidity is higher and temperatures are lower.

12 1 - 50 of 91
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