Friday, October 12, 2012


Jake Rock is the name given to a rock discovered on Mars by Curiosity. Actually Jake Matijevik is. And the reason this rock is so important as to have a first and last name, it is a rock type not seen before by all the previous Mars Rovers. Its type? It is an alkalic rock. Alkalic is a classification for a type of igneous rock that is commonly seen in the Hawaii Islands near all the volcanoes on Earth. On Mars, basically scientists are guessing the same thing. Jake Rock probably was formed deep inside Mars and made its way up through cooler rock.

This last name, Matijevik, what’s it all about? Just an igneous rock that is likely to have formed five miles below the Martian surface.

But here is the interesting part. When Curiosity’s laser shot the rick more than 400 times to vaporize and analyze the resulting dust and plasma it found that the rock contained elements such as silicon, aluminum, sodium, and potassium. Even more surprising is that it forms under tremendous pressure and often in the presence of water.

Now those of you who have read my blog regularly now that I believe that water and oxygen are not necessary for life, human life yes, but not out in the universe life. However, that doesn’t mean I don’t recognize the wonders of such a discovery. That I do admit to being human and as such feel that we are likely to require such things wherever we go in the universe as deliveries from Earth are not likely!

While I certainly accept what NASA has said regarding Curiosity’s discovery I can’t help but go to the next group of questions; first am I to assume it was formed ages ago (technical term would be days of yore) when this planet was perhaps still vibrant and if so then why wasn’t a rock of its composition found by one of the other rovers? How old is the rock? Can we estimate the age of its time on the surface? (maybe through a chemical analysis of its surface?)

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