Weird Mars rock 'appears out of nowhere'

2014-01-21 13:10
Rocks lay scattered on the surface on Mars. (Nasa, JPL-Caltech, MSSS, AP, file)

Rocks lay scattered on the surface on Mars. (Nasa, JPL-Caltech, MSSS, AP, file)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - A mystery rock that suddenly appeared in front of the Mars Opportunity rover has baffled astronomers, a report says.

According to a report on the Independent as well as other media, the rock appeared without explanation in an area that had been empty just days before.

While it is conceivable that the rock could be from a meteor impact because the area was photographed days apart, the rock seems anomalous on first inspection.

What puzzles scientists is that the rock appears to look like a jam doughnut and there are ongoing discussions as experts investigate by what mechanism that rock could have landed in its present position.

The rock has been named Pinnacle Island as scientists prepare to conduct a more detailed investigation into how it appeared in front of the rover.

It is also possible that the rock may have been rolled into place but that theory would require an external agent to move the object.

Nasa's Opportunity rover landed on Mars in 2004 and has been broadcasting imagery and scientific data back to Earth. Its twin rover, Spirit, was officially declared "dead" due to freezing on the hostile Martian surface.
- News24
Read more on:    nasa  |  space
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
57 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Joburg hot spots for cocktails, craft beer, tapas and wine!

It’s the season to be jolly – so we’ve rounded up some new Joburg hot spots!

 
 

I love summer.24

Summer Survey!
Great ideas for the best summer sandwiches!
Christmas lingerie to make this festive season the best one ever!
13 things you might not know about Disneyland

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

2DAYS ONLY – 30% off Appliances

Coffee makers, blenders, fans, juicers and more. T&Cs apply. Shop now!

2 DAYS ONLY – 40% off books

Get 40% off when you buy 2 books. For two days only! T&Cs apply. Buy now!

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

The energy today is serious, materialistic and hardworking. You may find you get a new outlook on things and you may want to spend...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.