This week, NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander detected perchlorate--a salt found on Earth and used in fireworks and rocket fuel--on the surface of Mars. We'll find out what perchlorate's presence means for the possibility of life on the Red Planet.
This news follows last week's confirmation of the presence of water on Mars. The Phoenix Lander scooped an icy sample from the planet, heated it and detected water in the vapor released. "We've seen evidence for this water ice before in observations by the Mars Odyssey orbiter and in disappearing chunks observed by Phoenix last month," says William Boynton of the University of Arizona, lead scientist for the Thermal and Evolved-Gas Analyzer (TEGA), the tool responsible for identifying the water. "But this is the first time Martian water has been touched and tasted," he adds. In this segment, we'll hear the latest news from the Red Planet.
Produced by Karin Vergoth