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It’s probably not aliens.
NASA’s Curiosity rover has photographed an odd object on the Martian Surface. Since scientists have no idea what the object is, it’s sending the rover to take a closer look.
One theory suggests the object is a half-buried meteorite “because it is so shiny.”
Curiosity touched down on Mars in 2012, and since it began its mission six years ago, it has helped us understand a great deal about Mars and what the planet was like in the distant past.
Along the way, it has photographed thousands of images on Mars thanks to its 17 cameras, and some of the images seem to show odd objects and shapes on the Martian Surface.
These ‘strange objects’ in the images have since been ‘analyzed’ by conspiracy theorists who believe some of the artifacts on Mars are evidence of a long-lost Martian civilization.
But conspiracy theorists aren’t the only ones who believe Mars may have supported an advanced civilization on its surface in the distant past.
Dr. John Brandenburg is a well-respected NASA scientist who has participated in a number of NASA missions in the past.
According to him, there is evidence that a catastrophic nuclear war occurred in the distant past on Mars, which caused the Martian civilization to be wiped out.
I’ve written about Dr. Brandernburg and his claims a number of times. You can read more about his Martian civilization theory here.
In brief, Dr. Bradenburg has claimed that:
“…based on new data, evidence that during this period of Earth-like climate, biological evolution produced, at length, a humanoid civilization leaving ruins at several sites, Cydonia Mensa and Galaxias Chaos being two sites most intensively investigated. Data from these sites formed the basis for the Cydonian Hypothesis (Brandenburg, DiPietro, and Molenaar, 1991) of an ancient, indigenous, approximately Bronze Age civilization on Mars.”
“Mars xenon is found to match closely the component in the Earth’s atmosphere produced by Earth’s nuclear weapons programs, both hydrogen bomb testing, and plutonium production, both of which involve large amounts of fission with fast neutrons. It is found that Mars xenon can be approximated by a mixture of 70% Nuclear Testing xenon, mixed with 30% natural Earth xenon, suggesting that Mars xenon was similar to Earth’s before a large nuclear event altered it dramatically.”
It is perhaps because of similar theories that many conspiracy theories see so many objects on Mars which they believe are artificial in nature.
But most of the time all of the weird shapes and rocks on Mars can be explained by Pareidolia; a psychological phenomenon in which the mind responds to a stimulus, usually an image or a sound, by perceiving a familiar pattern where none exists.
So what about the shiny object on mars?
Curiosity team member Suzanne Schwenzer joked that Rover has been “hunting shiny things!”
Well, NASA is sending Curiosity back to the mystery object (dubbed Little Colonsay) where the rover is going to use its ChemCam instrument and analyze the object in detail.
Curiosity’s ChemCam fires a laser and then studies the composition of the vaporized material.
“The planning team thinks it might be a meteorite because it is so shiny. But looks can deceive and the proof will only come from the chemistry. Unfortunately, the small target was missed in the previous attempt, and with the information from that, Curiosity will try again,” explained Schwenzer.