The AP is reporting that scientists have found a 154lb meteorite in a Kansas wheat field. I’m sure the net will abound with Superman jokes so thought I’d jump on board.
The team Monday uncovered the find 4 feet under a meteorite-strewn field using new ground-penetrating radar technology that someday might be used on Mars. . .
Such GPR systems had been used in the past to locate smaller meteorites in Antarctica where ice allows easier penetration of the sonar. But until the Kansas dig, the technology had not been successfully used for ground detection in heavy soils – like on Mars – to find meteorites or water there.
Okay, I’m sure it isn’t Kryptonite, but I was reading this article in the print edition of Scientific American last night, and I thought the timing of the meteorite story was a bit of synchronicity. Mars is rapidly becoming a focal point of technological research, it would seem:
The mission: to have the device, named Chronos, melt its way into Earth’s ice sheet above the Arctic circle as a test of its worthiness for the coveted NASA mission to Mars in 2011. If chosen, Chronos would drill into our neighbor’s northern ice cap. “Ice is probably the only accessible climate record on Mars; if there is a climate record, it is preserved in those ice caps.”
Since Mars is, for all practical purposes, frozen everywhere, we’ll be seeing these technologies used in conjunction with one another someday soon.