Bulls-Eye on Mars and, Apparently, an Industrial Complex

Article written: 30 Jul , 2010
Updated: 24 Dec , 2015
by

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Here’s some doses of coolness and craziness for your Friday. This top image is one of the latest from the HiRISE camera on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter, and shows what looks like a target on the Red Planet. Researchers from the HiRISE team aren’t sure yet whether this is two impacts — one impact that occurred dead center within another — or just unusual subsurface layering within one impact. I’m voting for two impacts, just because it is such a cool, lightning-strikes-twice concept. While no ejecta from the interior crater can be seen, the team says the ejecta could have been removed by extensive periglacial modification. Additionally, the floor fill around the inner crater resembles impact ejects elsewhere at this latitude, and some of the “landslides” to the East could be flow-back of ejecta off the walls of the larger crater. Likely the team will be looking closer at this impact to sort out the history and likelihood of a double impact. (UPDATE: I just saw that the Bad Astronomer has posted a more detailed CSI into this image, which you should read!)

Now, this next one is the crazy part…

Mars industrial site with (a) nozzle spray and (b,c) domes. Credit: NASA, annotations from Farsight Institute, via the SciGuy.

There’s a guy, and apparently a team of “remote viewing experts” who have found what they believe is a massive industrial complex on Mars. Eric Berger at his SciGuy blog at the Houston Chronicle wrote about this today, and it is just way too wacky to believe, kind of like the people who zoom in on rocks on Mars and say they see Bigfoot. Anyway, these folks say they can even tell that there are artificial structures at this site with a laboratory. What’s more they can see that there are lifeforms there wearing uniforms, and there are more men than women. Yep.

Check out SciGuy for all the nonsense.

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14 Responses

  1. Member
    Aqua says

    That crater looks as though… an object hit Mars then the heat released from the impact melted down to a subsurface aquifer and then the crater’s interior subsided in two phases?

    I’ve been pouring over the newly released MGS Mars map as released by NASA a week or so ago and have to note how many impact craters look as though they smashed into ‘mud’… or have obvious ‘tsunami-like’ wave pattern emanating from the central crater structure(s). Mud pie anyone?

  2. Torbjorn Larsson OM says

    My guess would be that it is likely a modified crater, which can look like anything.

    Or possibly the inflow of fluidized rock somehow made a gas bubble explosion that blew the top off the usual inner flow peak. (Say, by impacting loose sediments in water.) If so, it will be a non-unique feature on Mars, perhaps elsewhere (Earth).

    Also, I would guess that the bulls-eye impact theory have 3 strikes against it:

    * Two impacts instead of one is less likely. Post-impact modification _will_ happen.

    * The problem of no inner impact ejecta adds much to the complexity of the theory.

    * And, for my money the perhaps largest problem: the lighting condition isn’t too good, but the inner feature doesn’t look symmetrical. I get an ellipticity of ~ 0.15.

    Granted, post-impact modification may work towards asymmetry, but it doesn’t look like that was what happened.

    Now, impacts, where a typical high-speed impactor affects an area typically 20 times larger, will most often become circularized by the area increase. I.e. ellipticity from non-vertical impact angles is swamped by the feature size increase. It will take a _very_ angled impact (IIRC, more than 75-80 degrees impact angle) to make an ellipse of note. See how circular the large crater is!

    So not only would that be rare, but I’ll bet it would be very hard to put that geometry inside an existing crater with walls, as here. Too bad I don’t have access to the 3D geometry.

  3. Torbjorn Larsson OM says

    Oops, didn’t update. My “gas bubble explosion” is quite like Aqua’s “aquafer” (:-D), which is precedent.

    One can mix parts of those scenarios, but I bet a likelier explanation is based on an aquifer or sub surface ice. Also because it would cover a larger part of mars history. (How old is that crater anyway?)

  4. IVAN3MAN_AT_LARGE says

    …, and there are more men than women. Yep.

    Anyone else notice that it’s mostly men who believe in Martians/conspiracy/pseudoscience crap, but it’s mostly women who tend to believe in astrology crap.

  5. IVAN3MAN_AT_LARGE says

    Oops, I forgot the question mark… here it is: ?

  6. Olaf says

    @IVAN3MAN_AT_LARGE
    Anyone else notice that it’s mostly men who believe in Martians/conspiracy/pseudoscience crap, but it’s mostly women who tend to believe in astrology crap.

    I think you are right.

  7. Sili says

    Strange. When I saw Plait’s image, I could not get rid of the dome illusion, but it seems to be easier on your version.

  8. damian says

    The Industrial complex. hehe, whatever. BUT;
    I was intrigued by the image, so I chased down the Source and its worth a closer look.

    http://www.msss.com/moc_gallery/m07_m12/images/M11/M1100099.html

    Its within Aram Chaos on Mars: 19.73°W, 3.08°N
    This fractured Landscape is one of my favorite haunts using Google Earth (Mars) there are lots of HI-Res shots to explore. The landscape here is a strong indicator of past water. I guess hypothetically It would be a good place to set up a base. 🙂

    Interestingly, the Precise location using the (Visible Imagery Map) seems to have some kind of Digital smear. 🙂 I’m sure the conspiracy nuts will love that. (sigh)

    Damian

  9. Emilio says

    If you magnify the image, it is obvious there are two layers. The larger ringed crater and surrounding area has alligator skin surface. It almost looks like dried up muddy lakebed with cracks.

    The central crater area is more solid, more compacted look to the surface. The innermost crater does look like a cave in, but with boulder all around it. If it was straight cave in, you won’t see any thing thrown out like that.

    Other interesting features are on southern rim of outer crater. There seems to be obvious depressions, just like the inner most crater cave in feature. But there are no boulders there.

  10. Jim Krug says

    Nancy,

    Remote Viewing is a real enough concept that different US and Soviet government agencies sponsored extensive research into it, and attempted to train teams of “remote viewers” to use this ability in both warfare and explanation.

    With as little as humans still know about the human brain, to simply brush this off as a joke isn’t really following the scientific method very well.

    I suggest reading Jim Marrs’s PSI Spies to gain some understanding about the concept, before poking fun at it in another article. Thanks,

    JIm

  11. Jim Krug says

    Oops, that should read “exploration” not “explanation.” If the ability is real and can be harnessed, it would be the safest, most cost-effective way to ever explore the cosmos by far.

  12. Olaf says

    @Jim Krug

    “Remote Viewing is a real enough concept that different US and Soviet government agencies sponsored extensive research into it”

    And they stopped research very long time ago because it did not work when scientifically tested.

  13. bunker9603 says

    AQUA Said:
    I’ve been pouring over the newly released MGS Mars map as released by NASA a week or so ago and have to note how many impact craters look as though they smashed into ‘mud’… or have obvious ‘tsunami-like’ wave pattern emanating from the central crater structure(s). Mud pie anyone?

    I agree… it does remind me of a “Mud Pie”

  14. Member
    Aqua says

    That’s got to be VERY REMOTE viewing… so far ‘out there’ that there’s got to be a time lag of hundreds if not thousands of years? i.e. Maybe some day in future, there WILL be industrial complexes on Mars?

    Short story subject: The HiRise camera aboard the MRO sees an apparently artificial structure on Mars. The area becomes a major focus for NASA explorations. Eventually a lander does just that. Upon arriving at the scene the lander, named ‘Irresponsible’ finds a pair of ‘double arches’ and some clown with red hair and big feet trying to sell bad food to wayward travelers.

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