New Mars Data Shows Evidence of Floods

Current Affairs

  • China’s Zhurong rover has peered deep under the surface of Mars, finding evidence of two major floods that probably shaped the region the robot has been exploring since it landed in May 2021.
  • The rover studied its landing site – Utopia Planitia – vast plains in Mars’s northern hemisphere.
  • These are the rover’s first results of the radar imager. Radio waves from the radar bounce off underground materials to reveal their grain size and ability to hold an electric charge. Stronger signals typically indicate larger objects.
  • Last year, European researchers reported that they had discovered the first evidence of a huge groundwater system that once existed below the surface of Mars. Another study from 2019 suggested that Gale Crater was also once home to a number of large, salty lakes.
  • Scientists have long linked the complex history of water on Mars to whether or not life ever existed on the planet.
  • The evidence that supported the earlier findings is similar to the latest evidence provided by the NASA rover. The data centers on formations – made by water and sediment – observed by Curiosity in the Gale Crater.

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