LATimes: Images from NASA's Phoenix lander released late yesterday appear to confirm the presence of buried ice on Mars, the first evidence that the spacecraft landed in the right spot last month to find water on the Red Planet.
Pictures taken of a trench dug earlier in the week by the lander's nearly 8-foot-long robotic arm showed that eight small, whitish chunks of material at the base of the trench had disappeared by yesterday.
If those chunks had been some form of salt, as some scientists believed, they would not have evaporated, said Peter Smith of the University of Arizona, the lead scientist for the $420-million mission.
"It must be ice," Smith said. "These little clumps completely disappearing over the course of a few days, that is perfect evidence that it's ice. This has been a wonderful day."...
Posted on 06/20/2008 6:39 AM by Rebecca Bynum