NASA finds rock formation that looks like a Teddy Bear KossyDerrickBlog KossyDerrickEnt


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Tuesday, January 31, 2023

NASA finds rock formation that looks like a Teddy Bear

NASA finds rock formation that looks like a Teddy Bear.

The circular fracture might be due to the settling of a deposit on top of a buried impact crater that had been filled in with lava or mud. The noselike feature is possibly a volcanic vent or a mud vent.

The University of Arizona, which developed the camera with Ball Aerospace, shared the image on January 25.

The photo is reminiscent of another celestial "face" glimpsed by a NASA space observatory in October 2022, when the sun appeared to smile due to dark spots called coronal holes.

A camera aboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, called the High Resolution Imaging Experiment, or HiRISE, captured an image of the unusual geological feature in December.

A circular fracture pattern on the Martian surface shapes the head, while two craters resemble eyes. A V-shaped collapse structure creates the illusion of the nose of a bear.

And last March, the Curiosity rover spotted a rock formation that resembled a flower on Mars.

The HiRISE camera has been taking images of Mars since 2006, when the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter began circling the red planet. The powerful camera was designed to capture detailed images of the Martian surface, including features as small as 3 feet (1 meter).

The orbiter circles Mars every 112 minutes, flying from about 160 miles (255 kilometers) above the south pole to 200 miles (320 kilometers) over the north pole.

The spacecraft and its suite of instruments help NASA scientists study the Martian atmosphere, weather and climate, and how they change over time. The orbiter searches for evidence of water, ice and complex terrain and scouts future landing sites for other missions.

Most recently, the orbiter returned stunning images of what winter looks like on Mars. NASA has selected 11 finalists in Phase 2 of the Deep Space Food Challenge, a public competition to extend the limits of humans in space – through food.

A first-of-its-kind coordinated effort between NASA and the Canadian Space Agency (CSA), the Deep Space Food Challenge aims to kickstart future food systems for pioneering missions to the Moon, Mars, and beyond. The multiphase technology competition invites problem-solvers around the world to design, build, and test new ways to sustain astronauts in space for months or even years at a time.

"As we prepare for long-duration human spaceflight, food is essential not only for nutrition, but also familiarity and comfort on long voyages and in isolated environments," said Jim Reuter, associate administrator for NASA's Space Technology Mission Directorate. "Drawing on the creativity of innovators is allowing us to tackle this important yet complex challenge in new and interesting ways."

The second phase of the competition opened in January 2022 and challenges both new teams and previous Phase 1 winners to build small-scale prototypes of their ideas. Dozens of teams developed innovative technologies to use minimal resources, create little waste, and produce safe, healthy, and appetizing foods for astronauts.

Among the proposed solutions are systems that create food using carbon dioxide and fungal proteins, as well as closed-looped systems designed to grow and sustain greens and vegetables. A panel of expert judges from across academia, industry, and government evaluated teams’ submissions on criteria such as design innovation, scientific and technical approach, as well as the feasibility of their design. Eleven selected teams qualified to move on to the final round of Phase 2 judging.

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