Mars: Curiosity detects Variations in Oxygen

Seasonal Variations in Oxygen at Gale Crater.

Seasonal Variations in Oxygen at Gale Crater.
Image Credit: Melissa Trainer/Dan Gallagher/NASA Goddard

News from Nov 15, 2019

NASA's Curiosity Rover has been exploring the Martian surface since 5 August 2012. The evaluation of data measured during the last years now yielded unexpected high variations in atmospheric oxygen, with a raise of up to 30% in spring. Mars' atmosphere is predominantly made up of carbon dioxide, and contains oxygen as a trace gas. Another trace gas, methane, is also known to vary over time. Analysis results of the chemical composition of the atmosphere in Gale crater, the landing site of Curiosity, were published this week in Journal of Geophysical Research.

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