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Published on : Mar 24, 2014

In an exciting development in the mission to find traces of life or life-supporting elements on mars, a NASA satellite image has shown the formation of gullies on the planet, leading to speculations of the planet bearing water. 

The image in conversation was taken showing the formation of a substantial new channel on a Martian slope by the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment camera, commonly called the HIRISE. The camera is a part of NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and is estimated to have cost NASA at around $40 million. 

According to NASA, this new addition to NASA’s store of information about Mars is a recent phenomenon and is done in the last three years. The official website for HIRISE states that structures like gully or ravines and landforms are common in mid-latitudes, particularly in the Southern highlands on Mars. These structures have a broad upslope alcove that feed into channels with debris from above the structure covering them. These gullies have shown many examples of activities that resemble water-formed ravines on Earth. 

Images that could mark such activities have been the key target of HIRISE for many recent years. It is now being hoped that a bulk of HIRISE images would help NASA scientists in understanding the full range of active surfaces on Mars. 

But these are only the preliminary bits of data. One possible reason for the formation of these gullies can also be the seasonal carbon dioxide frost and not water. But the confirmations regarding the actual reason behind the formation of these gullies will only come after many more studies, which could possibly take a very long time

With so many developments and the recent images from NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope that led to the discovery of many far off starts and galaxies situated far away from our solar system, it seems that many long-term projects of NASA are finally bearing fruits. 

The Hubble Space Telescope mentioned here has recently reported its discovery of 714 new planets in galaxies situated far off from us. A very detailed examination of the material available on these planets have suggested that at least half dozen of these newly discovered planets are possibly fit for survival, though no claims were given about the existence of life in any form as of yet on those planets.