Mars craters reveal ice

By Phil Plait | January 12, 2010 8:00 am

Speaking of ice on Mars, the folks with the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter made a cool video talking about new low-latitude craters exposing water ice beneath the Martian surface:

You can watch more HiRISE videos at the MRO video gallery. Lots of cool stuff there!

Related posts:
Mars is Sublime
Water on the Moon…? Yup. It’s real.

Tip o’ the dry ice crater to the HiRISE Twitter feed.


Comments (19)

  1. mike

    You’re new method of embedding video makes my RSS reader crash :(


  2. Big Al

    One small request: for those of us on restricted use systems, would it be possible to have a still picture link? Some of us are on video-blocked systems. Thanks.

  3. How quickly does this new information get into textbooks? Don’t even elementary school science texts have a little bit about the moon and planets? When would those sources reflect (ha ha) the fact that the moon and Mars aren’t devoid of water? And suppose the methane on Mars *was* caused by life, how would schools add something so huge?

  4. Awesome! And interestingly enough, I am actually able to see this video at work! Made my day a lot better!


    @ Larian LeQuella,

    Goofing off at work again, are we?

  6. MattEU

    if the ice came from the impact and is from beneath the surface where is the red soil? How come it is 99% pure water and white and not red or pink?

  7. kevbo

    @3. Kathy

    “How quickly does this new information get into textbooks?” Hey, no worries – with the Texas State Board of Education deciding what does and doesn’t get included in textbooks, you can be sure that this kind of information would be handled appropriately…sigh…

  8. IVAN3MAN, it’s not goofing off, it’s, um… “Recharging my productivity batteries!” yeah, that’s it! ūüėÄ

    Where ya been mate? (Although I could ask myself that question!)

  9. Torbjörn Larsson, OM


    The soil is hidden under the ice thrown up, which “fades away” in the video, revealing the dust again.

  10. Charlie Young

    Considering the water is frozen and the atmospheric pressure is so low on Mars, do any astrobiologists feel there is a chance an organism might be able to survive in those extreme conditions? I know we have been looking for a while and haven’t found anything, but you’d think there might still be a possibility. We have found microbes on Earth in very challenging environments. There are even more advanced organisms living near deep sea hot water vents that appear to be thriving. I also seem to recall that viable organisms have been cultured from Antarctica, Mt. Everest, and possibly airborne organisms from the stratosphere. It seems something may be there. Its only a matter of time before we find it. At the very least, we may have an available source of water for future intrepid explorers.

  11. Steve

    Video is a bit balky and drops out audio at times.

  12. Plutonium being from Pluto

    Just to let you know but I’m not seeing any video there just a blank white square with a small icon* in the top left corner – that doesn’t do a thing when clicked on or anything. :-(

    Please BA can you or someone else fix this up somehow?


    * Icon = a box with left to right : a red circle, green triangle and purple top half-circle on a blue (top) & yellow (bottom) background. No idea what this means or if it should do something.


    @ Plutonium being from Pluto,

    Dude, it probably means that you don’t have QuickTime 7 Player installed on your computer.

  14. SionH

    Phil, speaking on behalf of those whose work computers don’t have sound, thank you for posting a video with subtitles. Greatly appreciated.
    Not that I’m surfing at work. I’m hard at it, honestly.

  15. Alan

    The video starts playing when I just opened this page in the browser….not cool. If sites decide to spontaneously make noise at me when I surf to them, I generally do something like put them on my “you can’t run any scripts, show any ads, etc.” list, or just stop visiting them.

  16. I don’t think this movie is embedded right.

    Every time I load this post (which is still on your homepage, so also happens every time I load your homepage), my Chrome browser re-downloads a new copy of a 19.4MB MOV file to its downloads folder. Had to delete about 10 of them a few minutes ago.

    REALLY annoying.

    Google Chrome on Windows XP

  17. Plutonium being from Pluto

    @ 14. IVAN3MAN AT LARGE Says:

    @ Plutonium being from Pluto, Dude, it probably means that you don’t have QuickTime 7 Player installed on your computer.

    Okay – thanks. Great to find you back here! ūüėÄ


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