Curiosity rover found rocks made of smooth, round pebbles, adding to the growing pile of evidence for water flowing across the surface of Mars. To smooth the pebbles, they must have bounced along in a stream between 4 inches and 4 feet deep, scientists say.
Courtesy of Malin Space Science Systems / NASA
By: Denise Chow
Published: 05/30/2013 02:06 PM EDT on SPACE.com
Smooth, round pebbles found by NASA's Mars rover Curiosity provide more evidence that water once flowed on the Red Planet, according to a new study.
The Curiosity rover snapped pictures of several areas with densely packed pebbles, and by closely analyzing the rock images, researchers discovered that the shapes and sizes of the individual pebbles indicate that they traveled long distances in water, likely as part of an ancient riverbed.
The rocks were found near Curiosity's landing site, between the north rim of Gale Crater and the base of Mount Sharp, a peak that rises 3 miles (5 kilometers) above the crater floor.
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