Ice skating rink prohibited.
The European Space Agency has just released astonishing images of a giant crater of frozen water on Mars. Not long ago we wondered if there was water on the red planet. Now we have photographic proof of a ton of it, and it looks like icing sugar on a ginger cake.
The Korolev crater on Mars is located on the plains around the planet's north pole. Measuring 82 km wide and about 2 km deep, it contains a 1.8-kilometer layer of year-round water ice, which is maintained by a "cold trap." The air that passes over the ice cools and sinks to form a layer of cold air on its surface, which prevents the ice from melting and the water evaporating.
These new images of the prohibited skating rink were made by Mars Express's High Resolution Stereo Camera. Launched by ESA in 2003, Mars Express has been in orbit on Mars for 15 years, taking thousands of photos with the full enthusiasm of a father for the first time. The portrait of Korolev was created by combining five different images taken in different orbits.
According to Guinness World Records, the 10-km male speed skating record is currently being held by Canadian Ted-Jan Bloemen, who skated distance in just 12 minutes and 36.60 seconds. Assuming he could maintain the same average speed, it would take Bloemen about 1 hour and 43 minutes to skate through the Korolev crater. You could almost watch the whole Total Recall in that time.
Although the only water that has been confirmed on the surface of Mars has been solid rather than liquid, the existence of any water continues to fuel the fires behind the search for extraterrestrial life. We can only hope that scientists will discover a good location for a Martian pool party. It would be a big step in the search for aliens, but it would also be immensely useful if we had to send us to Mars.
Please donate to my GoFundMe to place all ice heaters on Mars
– the beep grand cherokeeper (@TheSuzannahLee) December 21, 2018