It seems that Starfleet decided literallytag our planetary neighbor. Analyzing the images taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) spacecraft, scientists from the University of Arizona found one very funny feature on the surface of the Red Planet - the dune in the form of the famous Star Fleet logo from the Startrek universe. Such a discovery surprised even Kirk himself (the actor William Shatner).
The actor jokingly noted the discovery:
Hey @starwars! Will you hurry up your Rebel Scums?
- William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) June 13, 2019</ p>
Hey, Star Wars! Maybe you vile rebels already hurry up? See [in what] we walked you!
How did the Star Fleet logo appear on Mars?
You should not expect to see Spock, Jean-Luc Picardor Michael Burnham sitting side by side in lounge chairs and sipping intergalactic Mahito. Like the famous "Face of Mars" this Star Fleet logo appeared on the surface of the Red Planet by luck. According to scientists, their bizarre crescent shape, they are obliged to the interaction of lava, sand and wind.
"Enterprising observers will make a discovery,discovering that these formations look like the famous logo. But this is just a coincidence, ”writes Ross Beyer of the University of Arizona in a press release accompanying the published images.
In fact, these "icons" were foundon the surface of mars a few hundred. For example, about 300 of them are located on the Hellas Plain in the southern hemisphere of the planet, and about 480 more - in the area called the Labyrinth of the Night.
Scientists using the HiRISE tool,installed on the interplanetary spacecraft MRO, for years studied similar formations on Mars and report that they now understand how such fancy landscape features could appear on the Red Planet.
They were formed after the eruption of the Martianthe volcano. At first lava flowed through the sand, bending around the sand dunes, but it was not enough to cover the sand dunes completely. As a result, she froze in the form in which we see it now. As for the dunes, which lava skirts, then over time the winds blew out sand. Therefore, scientists also call unusual formations “dunes casts”.
“But it's still just dunes. The wind continued to blow and blow sand from them. In the end, the sand was blown out, leaving behind such formations, ”the University of Arizona said in a statement.
Despite the fact that the logo of "Startrek" appearedon Mars, by chance, after such discoveries, it is safe to say that the MRO unit is conducting a very “long and prosperous life” in Red Orbit, as they would say in a popular science fiction universe. For 13 years now, the probe tirelessly sends new images of the surface of our planetary neighbor to Earth, having long passed the threshold of the planned work time. It also serves as a communication repeater between NASA's “Curiosity” and InSight rovers, and also probably will serve the same purpose during the Mars-2020 mission, in which the new-generation rover is going to be sent to the Red Planet.
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