Case Studies in Earth & Environmental Science Journalism

Water on Mars: The Search for Life

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  • Background information:

    "Schiaparelli, Giovanni Virginio 1835-1910.” The Internet Encyclopedia of Science: Astronomers and Astrophysicists. <> Accessed April 5, 2008.

    "Mars,” “Exploration of Mars,” “Life on Mars.” Wikipedia. <> Accessed April 5, 2008.

    “Mars, Water and Life.” NASA Mars Polar Lander, Jet Propulsion Laboratory. <> Accessed April 10, 2008

    “Mars Exploration Fun Zone” NASA Mars Exploration Program. <> Accessed April 10, 2008  

    “Mars Exploration Rover Landings: Press Kit January 2004.” NASA. <>

    Technical Article:

    Farmer, Crofton B. “Liquid Water on Mars.” ICARUS 1976(28): 279-289

    Carr, Michael H. “Review Article: Water on Mars.” Nature 1987(326): 30-35

    Head, James W., Harald Hiesinger, Mikhail A. Ivanov, Mikhail A. Kreslavsky, Stephen Pratt, and Bradley J. Thomson. “Possible Ancient Oceans on Mars: Evidence from Mars Orbiter Laser Altimeter Data.” Science 1999(286): 2134- 2137

    Haberle, Robert M., Christopher P. McKay, James Schaeffer, Nathalie A. Cabrol, Edmon A. Grin, Aaron P. Zent, and Richard Quinn. “On the possibility of liquid water on present-day Mars.” Journal of Geophysical Research 2001 (v.106 no. E10): 23,317-23,326

    McEwen et al. “A Closer Look at Water-Related Geologic Activity on Mars.” Science 2007(317): 1706-1709.

    Popular Articles:

    “New Tests Indicate No  Life on Mars”, New York Times, September 16, 1909

    “Life on Mars”, New York Times, September 18, 1909

    Johannsen, N. “Water on Mars”, New York Times, November 20, 1909

    “Life on Mars”, TIME, August 24, 1953

    “Looking for Life on Mars”, TIME, August 18, 1975

    Cowen, Robert C. “Radar Hints Possible Surprise: an “Oasis’ of Water on Mars”, Christian Science Monitor, July 23, 1980

    Corcoran, Katherine. “Scientists with eyes toward Mars work on water problem”, Denver Post, June 24, 1987

    Chandler, David L. “Speculation revived by evidence from Soviet craft, frozen lakes; Did Mars have life after all?”, The Boston Globe, November 13, 1989

    Broad, William J. “Probes will carry new hope for detecting life on Mars”, New York Times, February 20, 1996

    Oliver Morton et al. “Mars Revisited”, National Geographic, January, 2004

    Kluger, Jeffrey. “The Blueberries of Mars”, TIME, March 15, 2004

    Carmichael, Mary. “Visiting Mars? Don’t drink the water”, Newsweek, March 15, 2004

    Piller, Charles. “A salty sea long ago lapped on surface of Mars, NASA discovers”, Los Angeles Times, March 24, 2004

    Cunningham, Michael MoyerAimee. “Exploring the seas of Mars: The twin rovers turn the red planet into their scientific playground, digging into rocks and capturing images that reveal a rich, watery past”, Popular Science, December 2004.

    Lubick, Naomi. “Evidence of water on Mars flows”, Geotimes, December 15, 2004

    Paige, David A. “Ancient Mars: wet in many places”, Science, March 11, 2005

    Petit, Charles W. “Report from the Red Planet”, National Geographic, July, 2005

    “White Mars: Planetary Science”, The Economist, April 22, 2006

    Leary, Warren E. “Strongest Proof Yet of Water Flow on Mars Raises Hopes of Finding Life”, New York Times, December 7, 2006

    Henderson, Mark. “Water has been flowing on Mars within past five years, NASA says”. The Times (London), December 7, 2006

    Connor, Steve. “There was life on Mars (Probably)”, The Independent (London), June 14, 2007

    Vergano, Dan. “Prepare for Landing: Mars is again the star of space exploration as scientists look toward water, life and beyond”, USA Today, September 5, 2007

    Tyson, Neil Degrasse. “Why Go to Mars.” American Museum of Natural History. <> Accessed April 14, 2008.

    “Are Mars missions worth the money?” BBC News : ‘Have your Say’ Blog. Current. Accessed April 14, 2008.

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