Mars Water Hope Evaporates
Evolutionists have a strange way of expressing disappointment.
They pretend to be excited about it.
NASA’s Perseverance Rover landed in Jezero Crater on Mars in February 2021. It went there for one main reason: that crater looked like it was once filled with water. A drainage channel leading into the crater fit the picture of an ancient river that poured into the 30-mile-wide crater, filling it with water and minerals. Orbital pictures seemed to support this view, showing what looked like sedimentary layers. It was a prime target. Maybe life had found a pleasant place to emerge billions of years ago!
Sadly, those hopes were dashed when Perseverance turned its chemical analysis on rocks in the crater. Its SuperCam instrument revealed that those weren’t sedimentary rocks. They were igneous rocks. If anything flowed into the crater, it was lava—not water.
Watch how the disappointed scientists sound excited about their disappointment.
The sands of Mars are green as well as red, rover Perseverance discovers (Purdue University, 25 Aug 2022).
First, the bad news:
The accepted view of Mars is red rocks and craters as far as the eye can see. That’s much what scientists expected when they landed the rover Perseverance in the Jezero Crater, a spot chosen partly for the crater’s history as a lake and as part of a rich river system, back when Mars had liquid water, air and a magnetic field.
What the rover found once on the ground was startling: Rather than the expected sedimentary rocks – washed in by rivers and accumulated on the lake bottom – many of the rocks are volcanic in nature.
Now, the spin doctoring:
“We’re excited to see even better results about organics and ancient habitable environments,” Horgan said. “I think it’s really setting the stage that Mars is this watery, habitable place, and all the samples we’re getting back are going to help us understand the history of ancient microbial life on Mars.”
New research sheds light on when Mars may have had water (Los Alamos National Laboratory, via Phys.org, 25 Aug 2022). First the disappointing news:
“Finding these igneous rocks in the bed of an ancient lake on Mars was quite a surprise. One would have expected lakebed sediments, but it shows that Mars’ history is more complicated than expected, including lava flows in this ancient site,” said Roger Wiens, principal investigator on the SuperCam instrument.
The spin doctoring:
Scientists on NASA’s Perseverance mission made a surprising discovery about the composition of rock in Jezero Crater, one that will help them get a better idea of when water existed on Mars, and ultimately, help them understand if the red planet was ever habitable to microbial life.
“The SuperCam instrument suite of remote chemical and mineralogical tools on the Perseverance rover has made some exciting new detailed observations regarding Jezero Crater’s history that could not be fully understood before landing,” said Sam Clegg, deputy principal investigator for SuperCam. “This exciting new data will really help us better understand when the crater held water, and it also gives us insight into Mars’ climate history.”
Fact check: the lava was never alive, and igneous rock is not considered a suitable place to find life. What they should “understand” now, therefore, is that Mars looks dead. Not partly dead; real dead.
Perseverance Mars rover finds surprising volcanic rocks in crater that was once a lake (Space.com, 25 Aug 2022). Keith Cooper claims the crater was a lake. He also repeats the “excited” spin on the disappointing news, pretending that scientists were making progress on finding life.
The surprising discovery of volcanic, “igneous,” rocks by NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover on the Jezero Crater’s floor could be the key to unlocking Mars’ climate history and revealing exactly when it was wet and potentially habitable, according to a comprehensive analysis of findings made during Perseverance’s first year on the Red Planet.
“We were very excited to find igneous rocks,” Ken Farley, a professor of geochemistry at California Institute of Technology (Caltech), project scientist on the mission and lead author of the new paper, told Space.com.
First underground radar images from Mars Perseverance Rover reveal some surprises (UCLA Newsroom, 25 Aug 2022). It’s complicated, they say: “Unexpectedly tilted rock layers in the Jezero crater hint at a complex geological history.” They are still holding out hope that water played a role.
“We were quite surprised to find rocks stacked up at an inclined angle,” said David Paige, a UCLA professor of Earth, planetary and space sciences and one of the lead researchers on the Radar Imager for Mars Subsurface Experiment, or RIMFAX. “We were expecting to see horizontal rocks on the crater floor. The fact that they are tilted like this requires a more complex geologic history. They could have been formed when molten rock rose up towards the surface, or, alternatively, they could represent an older delta deposit buried in the crater floor.”
Paige said that most of the evidence gathered by the rover so far points to an igneous, or molten, origin, but based on the RIMFAX data, he and the team can’t yet say for certain how the inclined layers formed.
Compositionally and density stratified igneous terrain in Jezero crater, Mars (Wiens et al., Science Advances, 25 Aug 2022). This is one of two scientific papers released about the Perseverance data. It states, “a formerly water-rich planet with a CO2-dominated atmosphere should have left ubiquitous carbonate deposits, but these are unexpectedly sparse.”
The authors remind readers of a similar disappointment in another crater, Gale Crater, which was visited by the Curiosity Rover in 2012. It also found lava, contrary to expectations:
On Mars, the presence of igneous minerals does not necessarily imply an igneous deposit, given the low degree of alteration that is typically observed. For example, much of the Murray fm of Gale crater, which is a lacustrine deposit, consists of mostly igneous minerals. On that basis, careful consideration must be given to the depositional nature of the fms regardless of the presence of igneous minerals. Although Perseverance landed in a lacustrine basin in Jezero crater, we present arguments in the next section in favor of an igneous deposition for all of the units traversed during these sols.
Ground penetrating radar observations of subsurface structures in the floor of Jezero crater, Mars (Hamran et al., Science Advances, 25 Aug 2022). This paper based on RIMFAX data also has little to say about water, but prefers an igneous interpretation.
We have a term for NASA’s “follow the water” strategy in the search for life: hydrobioscopy, defined as “the tendency to focus on the possibility of life whenever water is found on another planet or moon.” The Purdue press release says:
The search for life is one of Perseverance’s main goals and one of the reasons it landed in Jezero Crater in the first place. Discovering the potential for habitable environments in something as uninhabitable as Jezero Crater’s aged lava flows raises hopes for what lies in the sedimentary rocks the mission is examining now.
Unfortunately, this latest rover data does not help the hydrobioscopists. They remain determined to never give up the hope that Mars had water, and therefore must have had life. Maybe it’s an unspoken rule in NASA: to keep funds flowing for the Mars missions, they must keep promising that life will be found some day. Two craters down; a million to go!
Gale Crater and now Jezero Crater have been shown to be filled with lava, not water—not even water-laid deposits. Maybe Mars was always dry, dead and uninhabitable. It seems the burden of proof is on the hydrobioscopists and astrobiologists to prove otherwise. As for connecting water with life, that should be subject to experimentation. Put sterile Mars soil in a sealed container with sterile water, and wait a few million years. See if anything alive emerges. Actually, Louis Pasteur’s experiment with swan-necked flasks did a pretty good job of dispensing with the idea of spontaneous generation.