PIA05470: Mineral Tells Tale of Watery Past
 Target Name:  Mars
 Is a satellite of:  Sol (our sun)
 Mission:  Mars Exploration Rover (MER)
 Spacecraft:  Opportunity
 Instrument:  Moessbauer Spectrometer
 Product Size:  1920 x 1080 pixels (w x h)
 Produced By:  JPL
 Full-Res TIFF:  PIA05470.tif (427.8 kB)
 Full-Res JPEG:  PIA05470.jpg (118.6 kB)

Click on the image above to download a moderately sized image in JPEG format (possibly reduced in size from original)

Original Caption Released with Image:
This spectrum, taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity's Moessbauer spectrometer, shows the presence of an iron-bearing mineral called jarosite in the collection of rocks dubbed "El Capitan." "El Capitan" is located within the rock outcrop that lines the inner edge of the small crater where Opportunity landed. The pair of yellow peaks specifically indicates a jarosite phase, which contains water in the form of hydroxyl as a part of its structure. These data suggest water-driven processes exist on Mars. Three other phases are also identified in this spectrum: a magnetic phase (blue), attributed to an iron-oxide mineral; a silicate phase (green), indicative of minerals containing double-ionized iron (Fe 2+); and a third phase (red) of minerals with triple-ionized iron (Fe 3+).
Image Credit:
NASA/JPL/University of Mainz

Image Addition Date: