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NASA rover may have visited ancient Martian sea in 1997

NASA rover may have visited ancient Martian sea in 1997

Science
March 15 (UPI) -- New analysis of data collected two decades ago suggests NASA's Pathfinder mission visited the edges of an ancient Martian sea in 1997. The Pathfinder mission, NASA's first Martian rover mission, was inspired by photographs snapped by the agency's Mariner 9 spacecraft. The probe's images revealed expansive channels scientists determined were carved by massive floods some 3.4 billion years ago. NASA sent Pathfinder to investigate. In 1997, Pathfinder reached the Red Planet. It set up a base station, eventually named the Carl Sagan Memorial Station, and sent out a small rover named Sojourner to explore the landscape. Sojourner identified an array of fluvial features consistent ancient flooding. However, the rover's data suggested the ancient floods were much shallower than...