The Slow Road to Mars
The shuttle Discovery couldn't quite launch yesterday because of weather, but they will try again Saturday. NASA has just announced evidence for recent water on Mars (much better than the evidence for "dark energy"). Photo on the left was taken in 1999, and the right photo shows a flow that wasn't there before. The cliffside at top shows evidence of erosion. Water means life.
The 1960's show THUNDERBIRDS had the first Mars landing in the year 2065. Back then that must have seemed silly; at the rate they were progressing people would be walking Mars by the 1980's. Present plans have the Mars mission no earlier than 2029, though that might be delayed or even cancelled. It is a great disappointment that my generation has been stuck in low Earth orbit. Many times I have seen Mars in the sky, and thought like John Carter that one could reach out and touch it. Evidence for water and life on another world might be just a short trip away.