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Sample records for martian dust simulation

  1. Martian Dust Simulator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zuray, Monica; Houston, Karrie; Lorentson, Chris

    2008-01-01

    The Martian Dust Simulator (MDS) was designed to investigate the contamination effects of Martian soil and rock on the performance and function of flight-like microvalves and flight-like filters located within the Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM) instrument suite. The SAM instrument suite, which houses over fifty percent of the science payload, is located on-board the Mars exploration rover. The mission objective of the Mars Science Laboratory Rover is to determine the past, present, and future habitability of Mars. It will serve as a robot geologist, traveling the Mars surface for a period of one Martian year (equivalent to two earth years). The microvalves were designed as a conduit to control the flow of Martian gas to the science instruments. If exposed to particle sizes greater than half a micron, both the science instruments and science equipment, including forty-seven microvalves, could experience performance degradation. As a result, filters were used at various gas inlets to protect flight hardware from particulate degradation. Additionally, the filters serve as the only interface between the Martian environment and the mechanisms within SAM. The MDS operates at 7 Torr (0.135 psi) with a gas flow rate of 0 to 20 m/s. Iron (III) Oxide was the only dust particle specimen used, although several others were initially considered (i.e. JSC-Mars-1, Corundum Powder (Al2O3), Hydrated Sulfate, and Belville (Basalt)). The overarching goal of the MDS is to demonstrate that the Mars exploration program is adequately designed and prepared for the Martian mission environment.

  2. Simulation of Martian dust accumulation on surfaces

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Perez-Davis, Marla E.; Gaier, James R.; Kress, Robert; Grimalda, Justus

    1990-01-01

    Future NASA space missions include the possibility of manned landings and exploration of Mars. Environmental and operational constraints unique to Mars must be considered when selecting and designing the power system to be used on the Mars surface. A technique is described which was developed to simulate the deposition of dust on surfaces. Three kinds of dust materials were studied: aluminum oxide, basalt, and iron oxide. The apparatus was designed using the Stokes and Stokes-Cunningham law for particle fallout, with additional consideration given to particle size and shape. Characterization of the resulting dust films on silicon dioxide, polytetrafluoroethylene, indium tin oxide, diamondlike carbon, and other surfaces are discussed based on optical transmittance measurements. The results of these experiments will guide future studies which will consider processes to remove the dust from surfaces under Martian environmental conditions.

  3. Electrostatic Characteristics of Materials Exposed to Martian Simulant Dust Particles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calle, C. I.; Kim, H. S.; Young, S.; Jackson, D.; Lombardi, A. J.

    1998-11-01

    The Pathfinder mission to Mars identified Andesitic rock as the primary type of rock at the landing site. Several experiments were designed at NASA/Kennedy Space Center to determine the charging characteristics of common space materials exposed to small particles derived from those rocks. MARS-1, a Martian soil simulant prepared from Andesitic rocks by NASA/JSC was used in this work. Characterization of this simulant was made using scanning electron microscopy and inductively coupled argon plasma spectroscopy coupled with a carbon-sulfur detector. These results were compared to the Alpha Proton X-Ray Spectrometer analysis on Pathfinder. The simulant was found to be a suitable substitute for Martian soil for our purposes. Two experimental designs and methods to simulate the exposure of different materials to wind-blown dust were made. These designs permit dust particle delivery to samples at different speeds. Initial experiments made with these designs to determine their viability were promising.

  4. Martian Dust Devils: Laboratory Simulations of Particle Threshold

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald; Balme, Matthew R.; Iverson, James D.; Metzger, Stephen; Mickelson, Robert; Phoreman, Jim; White, Bruce

    2003-01-01

    An apparatus has been fabricated to simulate terrestrial and Martian dust devils. Comparisons of surface pressure profiles through the vortex core generated in the apparatus with both those in natural dust devils on Earth and those inferred for Mars are similar and are consistent with theoretical Rankine vortex models. Experiments to determine particle threshold under Earth ambient atmospheric pressures show that sand (particles > 60 micron in diameter) threshold is analogous to normal boundary-layer shear, in which the rotating winds of the vortex generate surface shear and hence lift. Lower-pressure experiments down to approx. 65 mbar follow this trend for sand-sized particles. However, smaller particles (i.e., dust) and all particles at very low pressures (w 10-60 mbar) appear to be subjected to an additional lift function interpreted to result from the strong decrease in atmospheric pressure centered beneath the vortex core. Initial results suggest that the wind speeds required for the entrainment of grains approx. 2 microns in diameter (i.e., Martian dust sizes) are about half those required for entrainment by boundary layer winds on both Earth and Mars.

  5. Martian dust devils: Laboratory simulations of particle threshold

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greeley, Ronald; Balme, Matthew R.; Iversen, James D.; Metzger, Stephen; Mickelson, Robert; Phoreman, Jim; White, Bruce

    2003-05-01

    An apparatus has been fabricated to simulate terrestrial and Martian dust devils. Comparisons of surface pressure profiles through the vortex core generated in the apparatus with both those in natural dust devils on Earth and those inferred for Mars are similar and are consistent with theoretical Rankine vortex models. Experiments to determine particle threshold under Earth ambient atmospheric pressures show that sand (particles > 60 μm in diameter) threshold is analogous to normal boundary-layer shear, in which the rotating winds of the vortex generate surface shear and hence lift. Lower-pressure experiments down to ~65 mbar follow this trend for sand-sized particles. However, smaller particles (i.e., dust) and all particles at very low pressures (~10-60 mbar) appear to be subjected to an additional lift function interpreted to result from the strong decrease in atmospheric pressure centered beneath the vortex core. Initial results suggest that the wind speeds required for the entrainment of grains ~2 μm in diameter (i.e., Martian dust sizes) are about half those required for entrainment by boundary layer winds on both Earth and Mars.

  6. Martian dust devil statistics from high-resolution large-eddy simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nishizawa, Seiya; Odaka, Masatsugu; Takahashi, Yoshiyuki O.; Sugiyama, Ko-ichiro; Nakajima, Kensuke; Ishiwatari, Masaki; Takehiro, Shin-ichi; Yashiro, Hisashi; Sato, Yousuke; Tomita, Hirofumi; Hayashi, Yoshi-Yuki

    2016-05-01

    Dust devils are one of the key elements in the Martian atmospheric circulation. In order to examine their statistics, we conducted high-resolution (up to 5 m) and wide-domain (about 20 × 20 km2) large-eddy simulations of the Martian daytime convective layer. Large numbers of dust devils developed spontaneously in the simulations, which enabled us to represent a quantitative consideration of Martian dust devil frequency distributions. We clarify the distributions of size and intensity, a topic of debate, and conclude that the maximum vertical vorticity of an individual dust devil has an exponential distribution, while the radius and circulation have power law distributions. A grid refinement experiment shows that the rate parameter of the vorticity distribution and the exponent of the circulation distribution are robust. The mode of the size distribution depends on the resolution, and it is suggested that the mode is less than 5 m.

  7. Enrichment of Inorganic Martian Dust Simulant with Carbon Component can Provoke Neurotoxicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pozdnyakova, Natalia; Pastukhov, Artem; Dudarenko, Marina; Borysov, Arsenii; Krisanova, Natalia; Nazarova, Anastasia; Borisova, Tatiana

    2017-02-01

    Carbon is the most abundant dust-forming element in the interstellar medium. Tremendous amount of meteorites containing plentiful carbon and carbon-enriched dust particles have reached the Earth daily. National Institute of Health panel accumulates evidences that nano-sized air pollution components may have a significant impact on the central nervous system (CNS) in health and disease. During inhalation, nano-/microsized particles are efficiently deposited in nasal, tracheobronchial, and alveolar regions and can be transported to the CNS. Based on above facts, here we present the study, the aims of which were: 1) to upgrade inorganic Martian dust simulant derived from volcanic ash (JSC-1a/JSC, ORBITEC Orbital Technologies Corporation, Madison, Wisconsin) by the addition of carbon components, that is, nanodiamonds and carbon dots; 2) to analyse acute effects of upgraded simulant on key characteristics of synaptic neurotransmission; and 3) to compare above effects with those of inorganic dust and carbon components per se. Acute administration of carbon-containing Martian dust analogues resulted in a significant decrease in transporter-mediated uptake of L-[14C]glutamate (the major excitatory neurotransmitter) and [3H]GABA (the main inhibitory neurotransmitter) by isolated rat brain nerve terminals. The extracellular level of both neurotransmitters increased in the presence of carbon-containing Martian dust analogues. These effects were associated with action of carbon components of upgraded Martian dust simulant, but not with its inorganic constituent. This fact indicates that carbon component of native Martian dust can have deleterious effects on extracellular glutamate and GABA homeostasis in the CNS, and so glutamate- and GABA-ergic neurotransmission disballansing exitation and inhibition.

  8. Enrichment of Inorganic Martian Dust Simulant with Carbon Component can Provoke Neurotoxicity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pozdnyakova, Natalia; Pastukhov, Artem; Dudarenko, Marina; Borysov, Arsenii; Krisanova, Natalia; Nazarova, Anastasia; Borisova, Tatiana

    2017-01-01

    Carbon is the most abundant dust-forming element in the interstellar medium. Tremendous amount of meteorites containing plentiful carbon and carbon-enriched dust particles have reached the Earth daily. National Institute of Health panel accumulates evidences that nano-sized air pollution components may have a significant impact on the central nervous system (CNS) in health and disease. During inhalation, nano-/microsized particles are efficiently deposited in nasal, tracheobronchial, and alveolar regions and can be transported to the CNS. Based on above facts, here we present the study, the aims of which were: 1) to upgrade inorganic Martian dust simulant derived from volcanic ash (JSC-1a/JSC, ORBITEC Orbital Technologies Corporation, Madison, Wisconsin) by the addition of carbon components, that is, nanodiamonds and carbon dots; 2) to analyse acute effects of upgraded simulant on key characteristics of synaptic neurotransmission; and 3) to compare above effects with those of inorganic dust and carbon components per se. Acute administration of carbon-containing Martian dust analogues resulted in a significant decrease in transporter-mediated uptake of L-[14C]glutamate (the major excitatory neurotransmitter) and [3H]GABA (the main inhibitory neurotransmitter) by isolated rat brain nerve terminals. The extracellular level of both neurotransmitters increased in the presence of carbon-containing Martian dust analogues. These effects were associated with action of carbon components of upgraded Martian dust simulant, but not with its inorganic constituent. This fact indicates that carbon component of native Martian dust can have deleterious effects on extracellular glutamate and GABA homeostasis in the CNS, and so glutamate- and GABA-ergic neurotransmission disballansing exitation and inhibition.

  9. Effect of ultraviolet on the survival of bacteria airborne in simulated Martian dust clouds.

    PubMed

    Hagen, C A; Hawrylewicz, E J; Anderson, B T; Cephus, M L

    1970-01-01

    A chamber was constructed to create simulated Martian dust storms and thereby study the survival of airborne micro-organisms while exposed to the rigors of the Martian environment, including ultraviolet irradiation. Representative types of sporeforming and non-sporeforming bacteria present in spacecraft assembly areas and indigenous to humans were studied. It was found that daily ultraviolet irradiation of 2 to 9 X 10(7) erg cm-2 was not sufficient to sterilize the dust clouds. The soil particles protected the organisms from ultraviolet irradiation since the numbers of survivors from irradiated environments were similar to those from unirradiated environments. Pending further data of the Martian environment, the contamination and dissemination of Mars with terrestrial micro-organisms is still a distinct possibility.

  10. The Role of Spatially-variable Surface Dust in GCM Simulations of the Martian Dust Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, R. John

    An outstanding problem for simulating the present Mars climate is representing the spatial and temporal variability of aerosols and the feedbacks that connect dust raising and transport with the evolving atmospheric circulation. A particular challenge has been the inability of Mars global circulation models (MGCMs) to realistically simulate interannual variability, most notably in the occurrence of major dust storms. The threshold for dust lifting by resolved surface stresses plays a central role in the current parameterizations of dust lifting used in these simulations. In the results to be presented, the GFDL MGCM is run with fairly typical representations of convective ("dust devils") and wind stress lifting. A new type of negative feedback has been introduced to the model climate system by providing a finite surface dust reservoir and allowing the stress threshold for dust lifting is vary as a function of the surface dust depth. The simulated surface dust typically evolves toward a relatively statistically-stable distribution that reflects the seasonally-integrated effects of stress dust lifting. Dust is preferentially depleted in regions with unusually high stress but surfaces are never stripped clean. Thus the stress lifting scheme continues to allow dust to be raised in these regions, but on a more episodic basis that is dependent on the replenishment by local and remote dust lifting activity. This work provides support for the concept, first proposed in a pair of papers by A. Pankine and A. Ingersoll, that surface/atmosphere dust interactions are able to organize to yield aperiodic global dust storm activity. The influence of an equilibrated finite dust reservoir with a spatially variable surface stress lifting threshold will additionally be illustrated in simulations of the 2001 planet-encircling dust storm.

  11. Pulmonary Toxicity Study of Lunar and Martian Dust Simulants Intratracheally Instilled in Mice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lam, Chiu-Wing; James, John T.; Latch, John A.; Holian, A.; McCluskey, R.

    2000-01-01

    NASA is contemplating sending humans to Mars and the Moon for further exploration. The properties of Hawaiian and Californian volcanic ashes allow them to be used to simulate Martian and lunar dusts, respectively. NASA laboratories use these dust simulants to test performance of hardware destined for Martian or lunar environments. Workers in these test facilities are exposed to low levels of these dusts. The present study was conducted to investigate the toxicity of these dust simulants. Particles of respirable-size ranges of lunar simulant (LS), Martian simulant (MS), TiO2 (negative control) and quartz (positive control) were each intratracheally instilled (saline as vehicle) to groups of 4 mice (C57BL, male, 2-3 month old) at a single treatment of 1 (Hi dose) or 0.1 (Lo dose) mg/mouse. The lungs were harvested at the end of 7 days or 90 days for histopathological examination. Lungs of the LS-Lo groups had no evidence of inflammation, edema or fibrosis. The LS-Hi-7d group had mild to moderate acute inflammation, and neutrophilic and lymphocytic infiltration; the LS-Hi-90d group showed signs of chronic inflammation and some fibrosis. Lungs of the MS-Lo-7d group revealed mild inflammation and neutrophilic and lymphocytic infiltration; the MS-Lo-90d group showed mild fibrosis and particle-laden macrophages (PLM). Lungs of the MS-Hi-7d group demonstrated mild to moderate inflammation and large foci of PLM; the MS-Hi-90d group showed chronic mild to moderate inflammation and fibrosis. To mimic the effects of the oxidative and reactive properties of Martian soil surface, groups of mice were exposed to ozone (3 hour at 0.5 ppm) prior to MS dust instillation. Lung lesions in the MS group were more severe with the pretreatment. The results for the negative and positive controls were consistent with the known pulmonary toxicity of these compounds. The overall severity of toxic insults to the lungs were TiO2

  12. Pulmonary Toxicity of Simulated Lunar and Martian Dusts Intratracheally Instilled into Mice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lam, Chiu-Wing; James, John; Holian, Andrij; Latch, Judith N.; Balis, John; Muro-Cacho, Carlos; Cowper, Shawn; McCluskey, Richard

    2000-01-01

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is contemplating sending humans to Mars and to the Moon for further exploration. Equipment designated for these extraterrestrial bases will require testing in simulated Martian or lunar environments. The properties of Hawaiian and San Francisco Mountain volcanic ashes make them suitable to be used in these test environments as Martian and lunar dust simulants, respectively. The present toxicity study was conducted to address NASA's concern about the health risk of dust exposures in the test facilities. In addition, the results obtained on these simulants can be used to design a toxicity study of actual moon dust and Martian dust, which will probably be available in a few years. Respirable portions of lunar soil simulant (LSS) and Martian soil simulant (MSS) were separated from their respective raw materials. These soil simulants, together- with fine titanium dioxide (negative control for fibrogenesis in mice), and crystalline silica (positive control) were each intratracheally instilled in saline to groups of 4 male mice (C57BL/6J, 2-3 months old) at 0.1 mg/mouse (LD) or lmg/mouse (HD). The lungs were harvested 7 or 90 days after the single dust treatment for histopathological examination. Lungs of the LSS-LD groups on either the 7- or 90-day study showed no evidence of inflammation, edema, or fibrosis. Clumps of particles and an increased number of macrophages, visible in the lungs examined after 7 days, were absent after 90 days. The LSS-HD-7d group showed mild to moderate alveolitis with neutrophilic and lymphocytic infiltration, and mild perivascular and peribronchiolar inflammation. The LSS-HD-90d group showed signs of chronic inflammation: septal thickening, mild perivascular and peribronchiolar inflammation, mild alveolitis and some fibrosis. Foci of particle-laden macrophages (PLMs) were still visible. Lungs of the MSS-LD-7d group revealed mild focal intraalveolar inflammation with neutrophilic and

  13. Toxicity of lunar and martian dust simulants to alveolar macrophages isolated from human volunteers.

    PubMed

    Latch, Judith N; Hamilton, Raymond F; Holian, Andrij; James, John T; Lam, Chiu-wing

    2008-01-01

    NASA is planning to build a habitat on the Moon and use the Moon as a stepping stone to Mars. JSC-1, an Arizona volcanic ash that has mineral properties similar to those of lunar soil, is used to produce lunar environments for instrument and equipment testing. NASA is concerned about potential health risks to workers exposed to these fine dusts in test facilities. The potential toxicity of JSC-1 lunar soil simulant and a Martian soil simulant (JSC-Mars-1, a Hawaiian volcanic ash) was evaluated using human alveolar macrophages (HAM) isolated from volunteers; titanium dioxide and quartz were used as reference dusts. This investigation is a prerequisite to studies of actual lunar dust. HAM were treated in vitro with these test dusts for 24 h; assays of cell viability and apoptosis showed that JSC-1 and TiO2 were comparable, and more toxic than saline control but less toxic than quartz. HAM treated with JSC-1 or JSC-Mars 1 showed a dose-dependent increase in cytotoxicity. To elucidate the mechanism by which these dusts induce apoptosis, we investigated the involvement of scavenger receptors (SR). Pretreatment of cells with polyinosinic acid, an SR blocker, significantly inhibited both apoptosis and necrosis. These results suggest HAM cytotoxicity may be initiated by interaction of the dust particles with SR. Besides being cytotoxic, silica is known to induce shifting of HAM phenotypes to an immune active status. The immunomodulatory effect of the dust simulants was investigated. Treatment of HAM with either simulant caused preferential damage to the suppressor macrophage subpopulation, leading to a net increase in the ratio of activator (RFD1+) to suppressor (RFD1+7+) macrophages, an effect similar to that of treatment with silica. It is recommended that appropriate precautions be used to minimize exposure to these fine dusts in large-scale engineering applications.

  14. Toxicity of Lunar and Martian Dust Simulants to Alveolar Macrophages Isolated from Human Volunteers

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Latch, Judith N.; Hamilton, Raymond F., Jr.; Holian, Andrij; James, John T.

    2007-01-01

    NASA is planning to build a habitat on the Moon and use the Moon as a stepping stone to Mars. JSC-1, an Arizona volcanic ash that has mineral properties similar to lunar soil, is used to produce lunar environments for instrument and equipment testing. NASA is concerned about potential health risks to workers exposed to these fine dusts in test facilities. The potential toxicity of JSC-1 and a Martian soil simulant (JSC-Mars-1, a Hawaiian volcanic ash) was evaluated using human alveolar macrophages (HAM) isolated from volunteers; titanium dioxide and quartz were used as reference dusts. This investigation is a prerequisite to studies of actual lunar dust. HAM were treated in vitro with these test dusts for 24 h; assays of cell viability and apoptosis showed that JSC-1 and TiO2 were comparable, and more toxic than saline control, but less toxic than quartz. HAM treated with JSC-1 or JSC-Mars 1 showed a dose-dependent increase in cytotoxicity. To elucidate the mechanism by which these dusts induce apoptosis, we investigated the involvement of the scavenger receptor (SR). Pretreatment of cells with polyinosinic acid, an SR blocker, significantly inhibited both apoptosis and necrosis. These results suggest HAM cytotoxicity may be initiated by interaction of the dust particles with SR. Besides being cytotoxic, silica is known to induce shifting of HAM phenotypes to an immune active status. The immunomodulatory effect of the simulants was investigated. Treatment of HAM with either simulant caused preferential damage to the suppressor macrophage subpopulation, leading to a net increase in the ratio of activator (RFD1+) to suppressor (RFD1+7+) macrophages, a result similar to treatment with silica. It is recommended that appropriate precautions be used to minimize exposure to these fine dusts in large-scale engineering applications.

  15. The Martian dust cycle: A proposed model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1987-01-01

    Despite more than a decade of study of martian dust storms, many of their characteristics and associated processes remain enigmatic, including the mechanisms for dust raising, modes of settling, and the nature of dust deposits. However, observations of Mars dust, considerations of terrestrial analogs, theoretical models, and laboratory simulations permit the formulation of a Martian Dust Cycle Model, which consists of three main processes: (1) suspension threshold, (2) transportation, and (3) deposition; two associated processes are also included: (4) dust removal and (5) the addition of new dust to the cycle. Although definitions vary, dust includes particles less than 4 to approx. 60 microns in diameter, which by terrestrial usage includes silt, loess, clay, and aerosolic dust particles. The dust cycle model is explained.

  16. The effects of combined application of inorganic Martian dust simulant and carbon dots on glutamate transport rat brain nerve terminals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borisova, Tatiana; Krisanova, Natalia; Nazarova, Anastasiya; Borysov, Arseniy; Pastukhov, Artem; Pozdnyakova, Natalia; Dudarenko, Marina

    2016-07-01

    During inhalation, nano-/microsized particles are efficiently deposited in nasal, tracheobronchial, and alveolar regions and can be transported to the central nervous system (Oberdorster et al., 2004). Recently, the research team of this study found the minor fractions of nanoparticles with the size ~ 50 -60 nm in Lunar and Martian dust stimulants (JSC-1a and JSC, ORBITEC Orbital Technologies Corporation, Madison, Wisconsin), whereas the average size of the simulants was 1 mm and 4mm, respectively (Krisanova et al., 2013). Also, the research team of this study discovered new phenomenon - the neuromodulating and neurotoxic effect of carbon nano-sized particles - Carbon dots (C-dots), originated from ash of burned carbon-containing product (Borisova et al, 2015). The aims of this study was to analyse acute effects of upgraded stimulant of inorganic Martian dust derived from volcanic ash (JSC-1a/JSC, ORBITEC Orbital Technologies Corporation, Madison, Wisconsin) by the addition of carbon components, that is, carbon dots, on the key characteristic of synaptic neurotransmission. Acute administration of carbon-containing Martian dust analogue resulted in a significant decrease in transporter-mediated uptake of L-[14C]glutamate (the major excitatory neurotransmitter) by isolated rat brain nerve terminals. The ambient level of the neurotransmitter in the preparation of nerve terminals increased in the presence of carbon dot-contained Martian dust analogue. These effects were associated with action of carbon component of the upgraded Martian dust stimulant but not with its inorganic constituent.

  17. The Martian Dust Cycle: Observations and Modeling

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kahre, Melinda A.

    2013-01-01

    The dust cycle is critically important for Mars' current climate system. Suspended atmospheric dust affects the radiative balance of the atmosphere, and thus greatly influences the thermal and dynamical state of the atmosphere. Evidence for the presence of dust in the Martian atmosphere can be traced back to yellow clouds telescopically observed as early as the early 19th century. The Mariner 9 orbiter arrived at Mars in November of 1971 to find a planet completely enshrouded in airborne dust. Since that time, the exchange of dust between the planet's surface and atmosphere and the role of airborne dust on Mars' weather and climate has been studied using observations and numerical models. The goal of this talk is to give an overview of the observations and to discuss the successes and challenges associated with modeling the dust cycle. Dust raising events on Mars range in size from meters to hundreds of kilometers. During some years, regional storms merge to produce hemispheric or planet encircling dust clouds that obscure the surface and raise atmospheric temperatures by tens of kelvin. The interannual variability of planet encircling dust storms is poorly understood. Although the occurrence and season of large regional and global dust storms are highly variable from one year to the next, there are many features of the dust cycle that occur year after year. A low-level dust haze is maintained during northern spring and summer, while elevated levels of atmospheric dust occur during northern autumn and winter. During years without global-scale dust storms, two peaks in total dust loading are generally observed: one peak occurs before northern winter solstice and one peak occurs after northern winter solstice. Numerical modeling studies attempting to interactively simulate the Martian dust cycle with general circulation models (GCMs) include the lifting, transport, and sedimentation of radiatively active dust. Two dust lifting processes are commonly represented in

  18. Pulmonary toxicity of simulated lunar and Martian dusts in mice: II. Biomarkers of acute responses after intratracheal instillation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lam, Chiu-Wing; James, John T.; Latch, Judith N.; Hamilton, Raymond F Jr; Holian, Andrij

    2002-01-01

    Volcanic ashes from Arizona and Hawaii, with chemical and mineral properties similar to those of lunar and Martian soils, respectively, are used by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to simulate lunar and Martian environments for instrument tests. NASA needs toxicity data on these volcanic soils to assess health risks from potential exposures of workers in facilities where these soil simulants are used. In this study we investigated the acute effects of lunar soil simulant (LSS) and Martian soil simulant (MSS), as a complement to a histopathological study assessing their subchronic effects (Lam et al., 2002). Fine dust of LSS, MSS, TiO(2), or quartz suspended in saline was intratracheally instilled into C57Bl/6J mice (4/group) in single doses of 0.1 mg/mouse or 1 mg/mouse. The mice were euthanized 4 or 24 h after the dust treatment, and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) was obtained. Statistically significant lower cell viability and higher total protein concentration in the BALF were seen only in mice treated with the high dose of quartz for 4 h and with the high dose of MSS or quartz for 24 h, compared to mice treated only with saline. A significant increase in the percentage of neutrophils was not observed with any dust-treated group at 4 h after the instillation, but was observed after 24 h in all the dust-treated groups. This observation indicates that these dusts were not acutely toxic and the effects were gradual; it took some time for neutrophils to be recruited into and accumulate significantly in the lung. A statistically significant increase in apoptosis of lavaged macrophages from mice 4 h after treatment was found only in the high-dose silica group. The overall results of this study on the acute effects of these dusts in the lung indicate that LSS is slightly more toxic than TiO(2), and that MSS is comparable to quartz. These results were consistent with the subchronic histopathological findings in that the order of severity of

  19. Pulmonary toxicity of simulated lunar and Martian dusts in mice: II. Biomarkers of acute responses after intratracheal instillation.

    PubMed

    Lam, Chiu-Wing; James, John T; Latch, Judith N; Hamilton, Raymond F; Holian, Andrij

    2002-09-01

    Volcanic ashes from Arizona and Hawaii, with chemical and mineral properties similar to those of lunar and Martian soils, respectively, are used by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to simulate lunar and Martian environments for instrument tests. NASA needs toxicity data on these volcanic soils to assess health risks from potential exposures of workers in facilities where these soil simulants are used. In this study we investigated the acute effects of lunar soil simulant (LSS) and Martian soil simulant (MSS), as a complement to a histopathological study assessing their subchronic effects (Lam et al., 2002). Fine dust of LSS, MSS, TiO(2), or quartz suspended in saline was intratracheally instilled into C57Bl/6J mice (4/group) in single doses of 0.1 mg/mouse or 1 mg/mouse. The mice were euthanized 4 or 24 h after the dust treatment, and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) was obtained. Statistically significant lower cell viability and higher total protein concentration in the BALF were seen only in mice treated with the high dose of quartz for 4 h and with the high dose of MSS or quartz for 24 h, compared to mice treated only with saline. A significant increase in the percentage of neutrophils was not observed with any dust-treated group at 4 h after the instillation, but was observed after 24 h in all the dust-treated groups. This observation indicates that these dusts were not acutely toxic and the effects were gradual; it took some time for neutrophils to be recruited into and accumulate significantly in the lung. A statistically significant increase in apoptosis of lavaged macrophages from mice 4 h after treatment was found only in the high-dose silica group. The overall results of this study on the acute effects of these dusts in the lung indicate that LSS is slightly more toxic than TiO(2), and that MSS is comparable to quartz. These results were consistent with the subchronic histopathological findings in that the order of severity of

  20. Time Dependent Responses of the Martian Upper Atmosphere to the 2001 Global Dust Storm using Mars GITM Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bougher, Stephen W.; Pawlowski, David J.; Murphy, James R.

    2014-11-01

    Various Mars spacecraft datasets reveal that the Martian thermosphere-ionosphere 100-250 km) is significantly impacted by the occurrence of regional or global lower atmosphere dust storm events. For example, thermospheric responses during the regional MY23 Noachis storm (late 1997) during its onset phase include: (a) a factor of 3 enhancement of MGS Accelerometer mass densities at 130 km near 38 N latitude, (b) a factor of 2.5 enhancement of corresponding zonal winds near 120-130 km, and (c) the associated ~8 km rise in the height of the 1.26-nbar reference pressure level (Keating et al.. 1998; Baird et al. 2007). These features correspond to a rapidly warming (and vertically expanding) lower atmosphere due to “dust-lifting latitude” aerosol heating, the resulting acceleration of global winds and amplification of tidal amplitudes throughout the atmosphere, and adiabatic warming arising from downwelling winds. Furthermore, during the 2001 MY25 global dust storm, MGS/ER photo-electron measurements at 400 km reveal that fluxes were enhanced, possibly related to long-lived changes in thermosphere-exosphere composition (Liemohn et al., 2012). These responses to dust events, and associated atmospheric feedbacks, provide excellent constraints for Mars GCMs. The recently developed and initially validated 3-D Mars Global Ionosphere-Thermosphere Model (M-GITM) (e.g. Bougher et al., 2014) is used to investigate these feedbacks and responses of the Mars thermosphere-ionosphere for the 2001 global dust storm. The M-GITM code simulates the conditions of the Martian atmosphere from the surface to the exosphere 0-250 km), utilizing physical processes and subroutines largely taken from previous Mars GCMs. Empirical (time evolving) dust opacities are specified from MGS/TES datasets for MY25 (starting in July 2001). The time evolution of the resulting thermosphere and ionosphere fields is examined; comparisons with available MGS datasets are made.

  1. Interannual Variability of Martian Global Dust Storms: Simulations with a Low-Order Model of the General Circulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pankine, A. A.; Ingersoll, Andrew P.

    2002-01-01

    We present simulations of the interannual variability of martian global dust storms (GDSs) with a simplified low-order model (LOM) of the general circulation. The simplified model allows one to conduct computationally fast long-term simulations of the martian climate system. The LOM is constructed by Galerkin projection of a 2D (zonally averaged) general circulation model (GCM) onto a truncated set of basis functions. The resulting LOM consists of 12 coupled nonlinear ordinary differential equations describing atmospheric dynamics and dust transport within the Hadley cell. The forcing of the model is described by simplified physics based on Newtonian cooling and Rayleigh friction. The atmosphere and surface are coupled: atmospheric heating depends on the dustiness of the atmosphere, and the surface dust source depends on the strength of the atmospheric winds. Parameters of the model are tuned to fit the output of the NASA AMES GCM and the fit is generally very good. Interannual variability of GDSs is possible in the IBM, but only when stochastic forcing is added to the model. The stochastic forcing could be provided by transient weather systems or some surface process such as redistribution of the sand particles in storm generating zones on the surface. The results are sensitive to the value of the saltation threshold, which hints at a possible feedback between saltation threshold and dust storm activity. According to this hypothesis, erodable material builds up its a result of a local process, whose effect is to lower the saltation threshold until a GDS occurs. The saltation threshold adjusts its value so that dust storms are barely able to occur.

  2. Pulmonary toxicity of simulated lunar and Martian dusts in mice: I. Histopathology 7 and 90 days after intratracheal instillation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lam, Chiu-Wing; James, John T.; McCluskey, Richard; Cowper, Shawn; Balis, John; Muro-Cacho, Carlos

    2002-01-01

    NASA is contemplating sending humans to Mars and to the moon for further exploration. Volcanic ashes from Arizona and Hawaii with mineral properties similar to those of lunar and Martian soils, respectively, are used to simulate lunar and Martian environments for instrument testing. Martian soil is highly oxidative; this property is not found in Earth's volcanic ashes. NASA is concerned about the health risk from potential exposure of workers in the test facilities. Fine lunar soil simulant (LSS), Martian soil simulant (MSS), titanium dioxide, or quartz in saline was intratracheally instilled into groups of 4 mice (C57BL/6J) at 0.1 mg/mouse (low dose, LD) or 1 mg/mouse (high dose, HD). Separate groups of mice were exposed to ozone (0.5 ppm for 3 h) prior to MSS instillation. Lungs were harvested for histopathological examination 7 or 90 days after the single dust treatment. The lungs of the LSS-LD groups showed no evidence of inflammation, edema, or fibrosis; clumps of particles and an increased number of macrophages were visible after 7 days but not 90 days. In the LSS-HD-7d group, the lungs showed mild to moderate alveolitis, and perivascular and peribronchiolar inflammation. The LSS-HD-90d group showed signs of mild chronic pulmonary inflammation, septal thickening, and some fibrosis. Foci of particle-laden macrophages (PLMs) were still visible. Lung lesions in the MSS-LD-7d group were similar to those observed in the LSS-HD-7d group. The MSS-LD-90d group had PLMs and scattered foci of mild fibrosis in the lungs. The MSS-HD-7d group showed large foci of PLMs, intra-alveolar debris, mild-to-moderate focal alveolitis, and perivascular and peribronchiolar inflammation. The MSS-HD-90d group showed focal chronic mild-to-moderate alveolitis and fibrosis. The findings in the O(3)-MSS-HD-90d group included widespread intra-alveolar debris, focal moderate alveolitis, and fibrosis. Lung lesions in the MSS groups were more severe with the ozone pretreatment. The effects of

  3. Pulmonary toxicity of simulated lunar and Martian dusts in mice: I. Histopathology 7 and 90 days after intratracheal instillation.

    PubMed

    Lam, Chiu-Wing; James, John T; McCluskey, Richard; Cowper, Shawn; Balis, John; Muro-Cacho, Carlos

    2002-09-01

    NASA is contemplating sending humans to Mars and to the moon for further exploration. Volcanic ashes from Arizona and Hawaii with mineral properties similar to those of lunar and Martian soils, respectively, are used to simulate lunar and Martian environments for instrument testing. Martian soil is highly oxidative; this property is not found in Earth's volcanic ashes. NASA is concerned about the health risk from potential exposure of workers in the test facilities. Fine lunar soil simulant (LSS), Martian soil simulant (MSS), titanium dioxide, or quartz in saline was intratracheally instilled into groups of 4 mice (C57BL/6J) at 0.1 mg/mouse (low dose, LD) or 1 mg/mouse (high dose, HD). Separate groups of mice were exposed to ozone (0.5 ppm for 3 h) prior to MSS instillation. Lungs were harvested for histopathological examination 7 or 90 days after the single dust treatment. The lungs of the LSS-LD groups showed no evidence of inflammation, edema, or fibrosis; clumps of particles and an increased number of macrophages were visible after 7 days but not 90 days. In the LSS-HD-7d group, the lungs showed mild to moderate alveolitis, and perivascular and peribronchiolar inflammation. The LSS-HD-90d group showed signs of mild chronic pulmonary inflammation, septal thickening, and some fibrosis. Foci of particle-laden macrophages (PLMs) were still visible. Lung lesions in the MSS-LD-7d group were similar to those observed in the LSS-HD-7d group. The MSS-LD-90d group had PLMs and scattered foci of mild fibrosis in the lungs. The MSS-HD-7d group showed large foci of PLMs, intra-alveolar debris, mild-to-moderate focal alveolitis, and perivascular and peribronchiolar inflammation. The MSS-HD-90d group showed focal chronic mild-to-moderate alveolitis and fibrosis. The findings in the O(3)-MSS-HD-90d group included widespread intra-alveolar debris, focal moderate alveolitis, and fibrosis. Lung lesions in the MSS groups were more severe with the ozone pretreatment. The effects of

  4. Electric field generation in martian dust devils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barth, Erika L.; Farrell, William M.; Rafkin, Scot C. R.

    2016-04-01

    Terrestrial dust devils are known to generate electric fields from the vertical separation of charged dust particles. The particles present within the dust devils on Mars may also be subject to similar charging processes and so likely contribute to electric field generation there as well. However, to date, no Mars in situ instrumentation has been deployed to measure electric field strength. In order to explore the electric environment of dust devils on Mars, the triboelectric dust charging physics from the Macroscopic Triboelectric Simulation (MTS) code has been coupled to the Mars Regional Atmospheric Modeling System (MRAMS). Using this model, we examine how macroscopic electric fields are generated within martian dust disturbances and attempt to quantify the time evolution of the electrodynamical system. Electric fields peak for several minutes within the dust devil simulations. The magnitude of the electric field is a strong function of the size of the particles present, the average charge on the particles and the number of particles lifted. Varying these parameters results in peak electric fields between tens of millivolts per meter and tens of kilovolts per meter.

  5. Electric Field Generation in Martian Dust Devils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barth, Erika L.; Farrell, William M.; Rafkin, Scot C. R.

    2015-01-01

    Terrestrial dust devils are known to generate electric fields from the vertical separation of charged dust particles. The particles present within the dust devils on Mars may also be subject to similar charging processes and so likely contribute to electric field generation there as well. However, to date, no Marsin situ instrumentation has been deployed to measure electric field strength. In order to explore the electric environment of dust devils on Mars, the triboelectric dust charging physics from the MacroscopicTriboelectric Simulation (MTS) code has been coupled to the Mars Regional Atmospheric ModelingSystem (MRAMS). Using this model, we examine how macroscopic electric fields are generated within martian dust disturbances and attempt to quantify the time evolution of the electrodynamical system.Electric fields peak for several minutes within the dust devil simulations. The magnitude of the electric field is a strong function of the size of the particles present, the average charge on the particles and the number of particles lifted. Varying these parameters results in peak electric fields between tens of millivolts per meter and tens of kilovolts per meter.

  6. Estimation of high altitude Martian dust parameters

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pabari, Jayesh; Bhalodi, Pinali

    2016-07-01

    Dust devils are known to occur near the Martian surface mostly during the mid of Southern hemisphere summer and they play vital role in deciding background dust opacity in the atmosphere. The second source of high altitude Martian dust could be due to the secondary ejecta caused by impacts on Martian Moons, Phobos and Deimos. Also, the surfaces of the Moons are charged positively due to ultraviolet rays from the Sun and negatively due to space plasma currents. Such surface charging may cause fine grains to be levitated, which can easily escape the Moons. It is expected that the escaping dust form dust rings within the orbits of the Moons and therefore also around the Mars. One more possible source of high altitude Martian dust is interplanetary in nature. Due to continuous supply of the dust from various sources and also due to a kind of feedback mechanism existing between the ring or tori and the sources, the dust rings or tori can sustain over a period of time. Recently, very high altitude dust at about 1000 km has been found by MAVEN mission and it is expected that the dust may be concentrated at about 150 to 500 km. However, it is mystery how dust has reached to such high altitudes. Estimation of dust parameters before-hand is necessary to design an instrument for the detection of high altitude Martian dust from a future orbiter. In this work, we have studied the dust supply rate responsible primarily for the formation of dust ring or tori, the life time of dust particles around the Mars, the dust number density as well as the effect of solar radiation pressure and Martian oblateness on dust dynamics. The results presented in this paper may be useful to space scientists for understanding the scenario and designing an orbiter based instrument to measure the dust surrounding the Mars for solving the mystery. The further work is underway.

  7. Enhancement of inorganic Martian dust simulant with carbon component and its effects on key characteristics of glutamatergic neurotransmission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borisova, Tatiana; Krisanova, Natalia; Nazarova, Anastasiya; Borysov, Arseniy; Pastukhov, Artem; Pozdnyakova, Natalia; Dudarenko, Marina

    2016-07-01

    Evidence on the past existence of subsurface organic-bearing fluids on Mars was recently achieved basing on the investigation of organic carbon from the Tissint Martian meteorite (Lin et al., 2014). Tremendous amount of meteorites containing abundant carbon and carbon-enriched dust particles have reached the Earth daily (Pizzarello and Shock 2010). National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences/National Institute of Health panel of research scientists revealed recently that accumulating evidences suggest that nano-sized air pollution may have a significant impact on central nervous system in health and disease (Block et al., Neurotoxicology, 2012). During inhalation, nano-/microsized particles are efficiently deposited in nasal, tracheobronchial, and alveolar regions and can be transported to the central nervous system (Oberdorster et al., 2004). Based on above facts, the aims of this study were: 1) to upgrade inorganic Martian dust stimulant derived from volcanic ash (JSC-1a/JSC, ORBITEC Orbital Technologies Corporation, Madison, Wisconsin) by the addition of carbon components, that is, nanodiamonds; 2) to analyse acute effects of upgraded stimulant on the key characteristic of synaptic neurotransmission and to compare its effects with those of inorganic dust and carbon components per se. Acute administration of carbon-containing Martian dust analogue resulted in a significant decrease in Na+-dependent uptake of L-[14C]glutamate that is the major excitatory neurotransmitter in the central nervous system (CNS). The ambient level of the neurotransmitter in the preparation of isolated rat brain nerve terminals increased in the presence of carbon-contained Martian dust analogue. This fact indicated that carbon component of native Martian dust can have deleterious effects on extracellular glutamate homeostasis in the CNS, and so glutamatergic neurtransmission.

  8. Geopolymers from lunar and Martian soil simulants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Alexiadis, Alessio; Alberini, Federico; Meyer, Marit E.

    2017-01-01

    This work discusses the geopolymerization of lunar dust simulant JSC LUNAR-1A and Martian dust simulant JSC MARS-1A. The geopolymerization of JSC LUNAR-1A occurs easily and produces a hard, rock-like, material. The geopolymerization of JSC MARS-1A requires milling to reduce the particle size. Tests were carried out to measure, for both JSC LUNAR-1A and JSC MARS-1A geopolymers, the maximum compressive and flexural strengths. In the case of the lunar simulant, these are higher than those of conventional cements. In the case of the Martian simulant, they are close to those of common building bricks.

  9. Instruments for the Analysis of the Martian Dust Aerosol

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merrison, J. P.; Gunnlaugsson, H. P.; Jensen, J.; Kinch, K.; Nørnberg, P.; Rasmussen, K. R.

    2004-04-01

    Dust is a dominant component in the Martian environment, featuring significantly in the atmosphere and covering most of the planets surface. The origin of this dust is of great scientific interest in the study of the Martian climate and its history. It also poses a serious hazard to both instrumentation and biological systems alike. Accurate measurements of the physical nature of the dust, the local wind flow and dust concentration are necessary for modelling the transport of this dust. Using a unique re-circulating Mars simulation wind tunnel a series of miniaturised instruments are being developed which would allow direct, in-situ measurements of a wide variety of physical properties of the Martian aerosol. Specifically three prototype instruments have been constructed and successfully tested, these were a miniature laser anemometer, which determines velocity and suspended dust concentration, an optoelectronics device for quantification of dust deposition and an instrument which collects electrically charged wind-blown dust. These instruments will be presented and the possibility for integration discussed.

  10. The effect of dust on the martian polar vortices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guzewich, Scott D.; Toigo, A. D.; Waugh, D. W.

    2016-11-01

    The influence of atmospheric dust on the dynamics and stability of the martian polar vortices is examined, through analysis of Mars Climate Sounder observations and MarsWRF general circulation model simulations. We show that regional and global dust storms produce "transient vortex warming" events that partially or fully disrupt the northern winter polar vortex for brief periods. Increased atmospheric dust heating alters the Hadley circulation and shifts the downwelling branch of the circulation poleward, leading to a disruption of the polar vortex for a period of days to weeks. Through our simulations, we find this effect is dependent on the atmospheric heating rate, which can be changed by increasing the amount of dust in the atmosphere or by altering the dust optical properties (e.g., single scattering albedo). Despite this, our simulations show that some level of atmospheric dust is necessary to produce a distinct northern hemisphere winter polar vortex.

  11. Diurnal Variation of Martian Dust Opacity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Martin, T. Z.; Tamppari, L. K.

    2005-08-01

    Recent MER Spirit rover observations of dust devils crossing the plains of Gusev crater demonstrate the similarity of that Martian desert to terrestrial sites. Near-surface thermal contrast builds during the day and promotes growth of dust- raising vortices. Evidence for corresponding transient thermal behavior has been shown in MER MiniTES profiles. How prevalent is such dust activity? Is the raised dust sufficient to modify the column dust opacity? The answers have implications for mission operations as well as for atmospheric science. We have expanded the scope of diurnal dust monitoring by going back to Viking Orbiter IR Thermal Mapper data, for which highly elliptical orbits gave good diurnal coverage (Martin, T., Icarus 45, p. 427, 1981). We examine the Spirit site and equatorial regions of similar surface character. Dust opacity is inferred from IRTM data by comparing brightness temperature within the 6-8 um range (T7), as continuum, with that in the 8-10 um band (T9), where silicate dust absorption and emission is stronger. During the daytime, when the surface is warmer than overlying dust, the spectral contrast in these two bands allows computation of opacity if a thermal profile is assumed. This research was funded by the JPL Research and Technology development program and carried out by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology.

  12. Martian Dust Collected by Phoenix's Arm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    This image from NASA's Phoenix Lander's Optical Microscope shows particles of Martian dust lying on the microscope's silicon substrate. The Robotic Arm sprinkled a sample of the soil from the Snow White trench onto the microscope on July 2, 2008, the 38th Martian day, or sol, of the mission after landing.

    Subsequently, the Atomic Force Microscope, or AFM, zoomed in one of the fine particles, creating the first-ever image of a particle of Mars' ubiquitous fine dust, the most highly magnified image ever seen from another world.

    The Atomic Force Microscope was developed by a Swiss-led consortium in collaboration with Imperial College London. The AFM is part of Phoenix's Microscopy, Electrochemistry and Conductivity Analyzer instrument.

    The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  13. The Effect of Martian Dust on Radiator Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hollingsworth, D. Keith; Witte, Larry C.; Hinke, Jaime; Hulbert, Kathryn

    2004-01-01

    Experiments were performed in which the effective emittance of three types of radiator Coatings was measured as Martian dust simulant was added to the radiator face. The apparatus consisted of multiple radiator coupons on which Carbondale Red Clay dust was deposited. The coupons were powered by electric heaters, using a guard-heating configuration to achieve the accuracy required for acceptable emittance calculations. The apparatus was containing in a vacuum chamber that featured a liquid-nitrogen cooled shroud that simulated the Martian sky temperature. Radiator temperatures ranged from 250 to 350 K with sky temperatures from 185 to 248 K. Results show that as dust was added to the radiator surfaces, the effective emittance of the high - emittance coatings decreased from near 0.9 to a value of about 0.5. A low-emittance control surface, polished aluminum, demonstrated a rise in effective emittance for thin dust layers, and then a decline as the dust layer thickened. This behavior is attributed to the conductive resistance caused by the dust layer.

  14. Electrical Activity in Martian Dust Storms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Majid, W.

    2015-12-01

    Dust storms on Mars are predicted to be capable of producing electrostatic fields and discharges, even larger than those in dust storms on Earth. Such electrical activity poses serious risks to any Human exploration of the planet and the lack of sufficient data to characterize any such activity has been identified by NASA's MEPAG as a key human safety knowledge gap. There are three key elements in the characterization of Martian electrostatic discharges: dependence on Martian environmental conditions, frequency of occurrence, and the strength of the generated electric fields. We will describe a proposed program using NASA's Deep Space Network (DSN) to carry out a long term monitoring campaign to search for and characterize the entire Mars hemisphere for powerful discharges during routine tracking of spacecraft at Mars on an entirely non-interfering basis. The resulting knowledge of Mars electrical activity would allow NASA to plan risk mitigation measures to ensure human safety during Mars exploration. In addition, these measurements will also allow us to place limits on presence of oxidants such as H2O2 that may be produced by such discharges, providing another measurement point for models describing Martian atmospheric chemistry and habitability. Because of the continuous Mars telecommunication needs of NASA's Mars-based assets, the DSN is the only instrument in the world that combines long term, high cadence, observing opportunities with large sensitive telescopes, making it a unique asset worldwide in searching for and characterizing electrostatic activity at Mars from the ground.

  15. Field Measurements of Terrestrial and Martian Dust Devils

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Murphy, Jim; Steakley, Kathryn; Balme, Matt; Deprez, Gregoire; Esposito, Francesca; Kahanpää, Henrik; Lemmon, Mark; Lorenz, Ralph; Murdoch, Naomi; Neakrase, Lynn; Patel, Manish; Whelley, Patrick

    2016-11-01

    Surface-based measurements of terrestrial and martian dust devils/convective vortices provided from mobile and stationary platforms are discussed. Imaging of terrestrial dust devils has quantified their rotational and vertical wind speeds, translation speeds, dimensions, dust load, and frequency of occurrence. Imaging of martian dust devils has provided translation speeds and constraints on dimensions, but only limited constraints on vertical motion within a vortex. The longer mission durations on Mars afforded by long operating robotic landers and rovers have provided statistical quantification of vortex occurrence (time-of-sol, and recently seasonal) that has until recently not been a primary outcome of more temporally limited terrestrial dust devil measurement campaigns. Terrestrial measurement campaigns have included a more extensive range of measured vortex parameters (pressure, wind, morphology, etc.) than have martian opportunities, with electric field and direct measure of dust abundance not yet obtained on Mars. No martian robotic mission has yet provided contemporaneous high frequency wind and pressure measurements. Comparison of measured terrestrial and martian dust devil characteristics suggests that martian dust devils are larger and possess faster maximum rotational wind speeds, that the absolute magnitude of the pressure deficit within a terrestrial dust devil is an order of magnitude greater than a martian dust devil, and that the time-of-day variation in vortex frequency is similar. Recent terrestrial investigations have demonstrated the presence of diagnostic dust devil signals within seismic and infrasound measurements; an upcoming Mars robotic mission will obtain similar measurement types.

  16. Martian Arctic Dust Devil, Phoenix Sol 104

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    The Surface Stereo Imager on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander caught this dust devil in action west-southwest of the lander at 11:16 a.m. local Mars time on Sol 104, or the 104th Martian day of the mission, Sept. 9, 2008.

    Dust devils have not been detected in any Phoenix images from earlier in the mission, but at least six were observed in a dozen images taken on Sol 104.

    Dust devils are whirlwinds that often occur when the Sun heats the surface of Mars, or some areas on Earth. The warmed surface heats the layer of atmosphere closest to it, and the warm air rises in a whirling motion, stirring dust up from the surface like a miniature tornado.

    The dust devil visible in the center of this image just below the horizon is estimated to be about 400 meters (about 1,300 feet) from Phoenix, and 4 meters (13 feet) in diameter. It is much smaller than dust devils that have been observed by NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit much closer to the equator. It is closer in size to dust devils seen from orbit in the Phoenix landing region, though still smaller than those.

    The image has been enhanced to make the dust devil easier to see.

    The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  17. ChemCam analysis of Martian fine dust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lasue, Jeremie; Mangold, Nicolas; Cousin, Agnes; Meslin, Pierre-Yves; Wiens, Roger; Gasnault, Olivier; Rapin, William; Schroder, Susanne; Ollila, Ann; Fabre, Cécile; Berger, Gilles; Le Mouélic, Stéphane; Dehouck, Erwin; Forni, Olivier; Maurice, Sylvestre; Anderson, Ryan; Bridges, Nathan; Clark, Benton; Clegg, Samuel; d'Uston, Claude; Goetz, Walter; Johnson, Jeffrey R.; Lanza, Nina; Madsen, Morten; Melikechi, Noureddine; Newsom, Horton; Sautter, Violaine; Martin-Torres, Javier; Zorzano, Maria-Paz; MSL Science Team

    2016-10-01

    In this work, we examine the chemical composition of dust observed by the Chemistry Camera (ChemCam) instrument onboard the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover at Gale Crater. The Laser Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy technique analyses samples without preparation, which allows detection of the elemental composition of surface deposits. Mars aeolian fine dust (<2-3 microns) composition is analyzed on the first shot of each Mars target. It is reproducible over time and present a composition characteristic of the global martian fine dust, which covers the entire planet and contributes to the local geology analyzed by MSL. Its composition can also be retrieved on the ChemCam Calibration Targets (CCCT) by subtraction of the well characterized CCCT spectra. The CCCT include eight glasses and ceramics that have been generated to simulate Martian rocks of interest and two targets of a single element (graphite for carbon and an alloy of titanium). ChemCam passive spectroscopy also indicates varying deposition of the dust cover on the CCCT.Major elements are quantified and shown to be very similar to the fine soils encountered at Gale crater. The composition is also similar to the soils and fine dust measured by APXS for the elements common to both instruments. The minor elements quantified by ChemCam (Ba, Sr, Rb, Li, Mn, Cr) are within the range of soil surveys, but we see a higher concentration of Li than in other types of remotely characterized targets. Sulfur is possibly detected at the ChemCam limit of detection. Hydrogen is clearly identified, indicating that this fine dust is a contributor to the H content of the martian soils, as also detected by the SAM and CheMin instruments, and provides constraints as to which fraction of the Martian surface is hydrated and altered. In conclusion, the finest fraction of dust particles on the surface of Mars contains hydrated components mixed intimately within the fine aeolian dust fraction, suggesting that this dust likely

  18. Martian Atmospheric Dust Mitigation for ISRU Intakes via Electrostatic Precipitation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, James R., III; Pollard, Jacob R. S.; Johansen, Michael R.; Mackey, Paul J.; Clements, J. Sid; Calle, Carlos I.

    2016-01-01

    The Mars 2020 and Mars Sample Return missions expected to fly to Mars within the next ten years will each include an In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) system. They convert carbon dioxide in the Martian atmosphere into consumable oxygen at 1% and 20% of the rate required by a full scale human exploration Mars mission, respectively. The ISRU systems will need to draw in the surrounding atmosphere at a rate of 110L/min and 550L/min, respectively, in order to meet their oxygen production goals. Over the duration of each respective mission, a total atmospheric dust mass of 4.86g and 243g will be drawn into each system, respectively. Ingestion of large quantities of dust may interfere with ISRU operations, so a dust mitigation device will be required. The atmospheric volume and dust mass flow rates above will be utilized to simulate Martian environmental conditions in a laboratory electrostatic precipitator being developed to provide active dust mitigation support for atmospheric ISRU systems such as these.

  19. Martian Dust Devil Movie, Phoenix Sol 104

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    The Surface Stereo Imager on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander caught this dust devil in action west of the lander in four frames shot about 50 seconds apart from each other between 11:53 a.m. and 11:56 a.m. local Mars time on Sol 104, or the 104th Martian day of the mission, Sept. 9, 2008.

    Dust devils have not been detected in any Phoenix images from earlier in the mission, but at least six were observed in a dozen images taken on Sol 104.

    Dust devils are whirlwinds that often occur when the Sun heats the surface of Mars, or some areas on Earth. The warmed surface heats the layer of atmosphere closest to it, and the warm air rises in a whirling motion, stirring dust up from the surface like a miniature tornado.

    The dust devil visible in this sequence was about 1,000 meters (about 3,300 feet) from the lander when the first frame was taken, and had moved to about 1,700 meters (about 5,600 feet) away by the time the last frame was taken about two and a half minutes later. The dust devil was moving westward at an estimated speed of 5 meters per second (11 miles per hour), which is similar to typical late-morning wind speed and direction indicated by the telltale wind gauge on Phoenix.

    This dust devil is about 5 meters (16 feet) in diameter. This is much smaller than dust devils that have been observed by NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit much closer to the equator. It is closer in size to dust devils seen from orbit in the Phoenix landing region, though still smaller than those..

    The image has been enhanced to make the dust devil easier to see. Some of the frame-to-frame differences in the appearance of foreground rocks is because each frame was taken through a different color filter.

    The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  20. Bacteria under simulated Martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Young, R S; Deal, P H; Bell, J; Allen, J L

    1964-01-01

    The behavior of organisms in simulated Martian conditions is of great importance to exobiology for two reasons: (1) Because of the extreme environment of Mars, the likelihood of contamination of the planet by earth organisms is considered slight by some scientists. To date, there has been little evidence to contradict this supposition. Such evidence is presented. (2) The selection and adaptation of earth bacteria to Martian conditions is potentially significant in understanding Martian life, if it exists, and may be helpful in designing life-detection techniques and devices. Of course, simulation attempts, based on current knowledge of the Mars environment, may be far from the actual conditions, and extrapolations made from such situations of no real significance. However, generalizations can be made and cautious interpretation of the results of those experiments seems well worth reporting. A new technique for simulation of known parameters of the Martian environment is discussed along with possible biological implications. The response of bacteria to such simulation is demonstrated in terms of survival and growth, showing that certain bacteria will not only survive, but grow during simulated Martian freeze-thaw cycling if water is present. Ways are demonstrated in which water can be present on Mars although not detectable with current technology. Plans for future experimentation are discussed.

  1. Rocket dust storms and detached layers in the Martian atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiga, A.; Faure, J.; Madeleine, J.; Maattanen, A. E.; Forget, F.

    2012-12-01

    Airborne dust is the main climatic agent in the Martian environment. Local dust storms play a key role in the dust cycle; yet their life cycle is poorly known. Here we use mesoscale modeling with radiatively-active transported dust to predict the evolution of a local dust storm monitored by OMEGA onboard Mars Express. We show that the evolution of this dust storm is governed by deep convective motions. The supply of convective energy is provided by the absorption of incoming sunlight by dust particles, in lieu of latent heating in moist convection on Earth. We propose to use the terminology "rocket dust storm", or conio-cumulonimbus, to describe those storms in which rapid and efficient vertical transport takes place, injecting dust particles at high altitudes in the Martian troposphere (30 to 50 km). Combined to horizontal transport by large-scale winds, rocket dust storms form detached layers of dust reminiscent of those observed with instruments onboard Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Detached layers are stable over several days owing to nighttime sedimentation being unable to counteract daytime convective transport, and to the resupply of convective energy at sunrise. The peak activity of rocket dust storms is expected in low-latitude regions at clear season, which accounts for the high-altitude tropical dust maximum unveiled by Mars Climate Sounder. Our findings on dust-driven deep convection have strong implications for the Martian dust cycle, thermal structure, atmospheric dynamics, cloud microphysics, chemistry, and robotic and human exploration.ensity-scaled dust optical depth at local times 1400 1600 and 1800 (lat 2.5°S, Ls 135°) hortwave heating rate at local time 1500 and latitude 2.5°S.

  2. Chemistry and mineralogy of Martian dust: An explorer's primer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gooding, James L.

    1991-01-01

    A summary of chemical and mineralogical properties of Martian surface dust is offered for the benefit of engineers or mission planners who are designing hardware or strategies for Mars surface exploration. For technical details and specialized explanations, references should be made to literature cited. Four sources used for information about Martian dust composition: (1) Experiments performed on the Mars surface by the Viking Landers 1 and 2 and Earth-based lab experiments attempting to duplicate these results; (2) Infrared spectrophotometry remotely performed from Mars orbit, mostly by Mariner 9; (3) Visible and infrared spectrophotometry remotely performed from Earth; and (4) Lab studies of the shergottite nakhlite chassignite (SNC) clan of meteorites, for which compelling evidence suggests origin on Mars. Source 1 is limited to fine grained sediments at the surface whereas 2 and 3 contain mixed information about surface dust (and associated rock) and atmospheric dust. Source 4 has provided surprisingly detailed information but investigations are still incomplete.

  3. Active Dust Control and Mitigation Technology for Lunar and Martian Exploration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calle, C. I.; Buhler, C. R.; Johansen, M. R.; Hogue, M. D.; Immer, C. D.; Ferreira, J.; Snyder, S. J.

    2010-01-01

    Mars is covered with a layer of dust that has been homogenized by global dust storms. Dust, levitated by these storms as well as by the frequent dust devils, is the dominant weather phenomenon on Mars. NASA's Mars exploration rovers have shown that atmospheric dust falling on solar panels can decrease their efficiency to the point of rendering the rover unusable. Dust covering the surface of the moon is expected to be electrostatically charged due to the solar wind, cosmic rays, and the solar radiation itself through the photoelectric effect. Electrostatically charged dust has a large tendency to adhere to surfaces. The Apollo missions to the moon showed that lunar dust adhesion can hinder manned and unmanned exploration activities. In this paper, we report on our efforts to develop and electrodynamic dust shield to prevent the accumulation of dust on surfaces and to remove dust already adhering to those surfaces. The technology uses electrostatic and dielectrophoretic forces to carry dust particles off surfaces and to generate an electrodynamic shield that prevents further accumulation of dust. The concept of the electrodynamic dust shield was introduced by NASA in the late 1960s and later reduced to practice during the 1970s for terrestrial applications. In 2003, our laboratory, in collaboration with several universities, applied this technology to space applications, specifically to remove dust from solar panels on Mars. We show how, with an appropriate design, we can prevent the electrostatic breakdown at the low Martian atmospheric pressures. We are also able to show that uncharged dust can be lifted and removed from surfaces under simulated Martian environmental conditions. We have also been able to develop a version of the electrodynamic dust shield working under hard vacuum conditions that simulate the lunar environment. We have implemented the electrodynamic dust shield on solar arrays, optical systems, spectrometers, viewports, thermal radiators

  4. Development of a Charged Particle Detector for Windborne Martian Dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calle, C. I.; Mantovani, J. G.; Groop, E. E.; Buehler, M. G.; Buhler, C. R.; Nowicki, A. W.

    2002-01-01

    A prototype of an aerodynamic electrometer to measure the electrostatic properties of Martian atmospheric dust has been constructed. The instrument will enable a more thorough understanding of the potential for electrostatic discharge of different materials on Mars. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  5. Martian Atmospheric Dust Mitigation for ISRU Intakes via Electrostatic Precipitation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, James R., III; Pollard, Jacob R. S.; Johansen, Michael R.; Mackey, Paul J.; Clements, Sid; Calle, Carlos I.

    2016-01-01

    This document is the presentation to be given at the 2016 American Society of Civil Engineers Earth and Space Conference to examine the concept of using electrostatic precipitation for Martian atmospheric dust mitigation of the intakes of in-situ resource utilization reactors.

  6. Study of clouds and dust aerosols in the Martian atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen-Chen, H.; Pérez-Hoyos, S.; Sánchez-Lavega, A.

    2017-03-01

    Observation of Mars’ atmosphere has evolved to a state of permanent monitoring of its main components. In this work, we focus on the study of clouds and dust aerosols in the Martian atmosphere by means of spacecraft observations, particularly VMC on-board Mars Express, and surface vehicles, mainly cameras on the MSL rover. Orbiting instrument observations provide a general view of the planet, which allows covering a huge area in a short time. This is very interesting, for example, to study global dust events in Mars. On the other hand, ground-based instruments are better suited to analyse local properties of dust particles from in-situ acquired first hand data.

  7. Gaussian-based filters for detecting Martian dust devils

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Yang, F.; Mlsna, P.A.; Geissler, P.

    2006-01-01

    The ability to automatically detect dust devils in the Martian atmosphere from orbital imagery is becoming important both for scientific studies of the planet and for the planning of future robotic and manned missions. This paper describes our approach for the unsupervised detection of dust devils and the preliminary results achieved to date. The algorithm centers upon the use of a filter constructed from Gaussian profiles to match dust devil characteristics over a range of scale and orientation. The classification step is designed to reduce false positive errors caused by static surface features such as craters. A brief discussion of planned future work is included. ?? 2006 IEEE.

  8. Measurements of Martian dust devil winds with HiRISE

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Choi, D.S.; Dundas, C.M.

    2011-01-01

    We report wind measurements within Martian dust devils observed in plan view from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) orbiting Mars. The central color swath of the HiRISE instrument has three separate charge-coupled devices (CCDs) and color filters that observe the surface in rapid cadence. Active features, such as dust devils, appear in motion when observed by this region of the instrument. Our image animations reveal clear circulatory motion within dust devils that is separate from their translational motion across the Martian surface. Both manual and automated tracking of dust devil clouds reveal tangential winds that approach 20-30 m s -1 in some cases. These winds are sufficient to induce a ???1% decrease in atmospheric pressure within the dust devil core relative to ambient, facilitating dust lifting by reducing the threshold wind speed for particle elevation. Finally, radial velocity profiles constructed from our automated measurements test the Rankine vortex model for dust devil structure. Our profiles successfully reveal the solid body rotation component in the interior, but fail to conclusively illuminate the profile in the outer regions of the vortex. One profile provides evidence for a velocity decrease as a function of r -1/2, instead of r -1, suggestive of surface friction effects. However, other profiles do not support this observation, or do not contain enough measurements to produce meaningful insights. Copyright 2011 by the American Geophysical Union.

  9. Rocket dust storms and detached dust layers in the Martian atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiga, Aymeric; Faure, Julien; Madeleine, Jean-Baptiste; Määttänen, Anni; Forget, François

    2013-04-01

    Airborne dust is the main climatic agent in the Martian environment. Local dust storms play a key role in the dust cycle; yet their life cycle is poorly known. Here we use mesoscale modeling that includes the transport of radiatively active dust to predict the evolution of a local dust storm monitored by OMEGA on board Mars Express. We show that the evolution of this dust storm is governed by deep convective motions. The supply of convective energy is provided by the absorption of incoming sunlight by dust particles, rather than by latent heating as in moist convection on Earth. We propose to use the terminology "rocket dust storm," or conio-cumulonimbus, to describe those storms in which rapid and efficient vertical transport takes place, injecting dust particles at high altitudes in the Martian troposphere (30-50 km). Combined to horizontal transport by large-scale winds, rocket dust storms produce detached layers of dust reminiscent of those observed with Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Since nighttime sedimentation is less efficient than daytime convective transport, and the detached dust layers can convect during the daytime, these layers can be stable for several days. The peak activity of rocket dust storms is expected in low-latitude regions at clear seasons (late northern winter to late northern summer), which accounts for the high-altitude tropical dust maxima unveiled by Mars Climate Sounder. Dust-driven deep convection has strong implications for the Martian dust cycle, thermal structure, atmospheric dynamics, cloud microphysics, chemistry, and robotic and human exploration.

  10. Mimicking Martian dust: An in-vacuum dust deposition system for testing the ultraviolet sensors on the Curiosity rover

    SciTech Connect

    Sobrado, J. M. Martín-Soler, J.; Martín-Gago, J. A.

    2015-10-15

    We have designed and developed an in-vacuum dust deposition system specifically conceived to simulate and study the effect of accumulation of Martian dust on the electronic instruments of scientific planetary exploration missions. We have used this device to characterize the dust effect on the UV sensor of the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station in the Mars science Laboratory mission of NASA in similar conditions to those found on Mars surface. The UV sensor includes six photodiodes for measuring the radiation in all UV wavelengths (direct incidence and reflected); it is placed on the body of Curiosity rover and it is severely affected by the dust deposited on it. Our experimental setup can help to estimate the duration of reliable reading of this instrument during operation. We have used an analogous of the Martian dust in chemical composition (magnetic species), color, and density, which has been characterized by X-ray spectroscopy. To ensure a Brownian motion of the dust during its fall and a homogeneous coverage on the instrumentation, the operating conditions of the vacuum vessel, determined by partial pressures and temperature, have to be modified to account for the different gravities of Mars with respect to Earth. We propose that our designed device and operational protocol can be of interest to test optoelectronic instrumentation affected by the opacity of dust, as can be the degradation of UV photodiodes in planetary exploration.

  11. Mimicking Martian dust: An in-vacuum dust deposition system for testing the ultraviolet sensors on the Curiosity rover.

    PubMed

    Sobrado, J M; Martín-Soler, J; Martín-Gago, J A

    2015-10-01

    We have designed and developed an in-vacuum dust deposition system specifically conceived to simulate and study the effect of accumulation of Martian dust on the electronic instruments of scientific planetary exploration missions. We have used this device to characterize the dust effect on the UV sensor of the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station in the Mars science Laboratory mission of NASA in similar conditions to those found on Mars surface. The UV sensor includes six photodiodes for measuring the radiation in all UV wavelengths (direct incidence and reflected); it is placed on the body of Curiosity rover and it is severely affected by the dust deposited on it. Our experimental setup can help to estimate the duration of reliable reading of this instrument during operation. We have used an analogous of the Martian dust in chemical composition (magnetic species), color, and density, which has been characterized by X-ray spectroscopy. To ensure a Brownian motion of the dust during its fall and a homogeneous coverage on the instrumentation, the operating conditions of the vacuum vessel, determined by partial pressures and temperature, have to be modified to account for the different gravities of Mars with respect to Earth. We propose that our designed device and operational protocol can be of interest to test optoelectronic instrumentation affected by the opacity of dust, as can be the degradation of UV photodiodes in planetary exploration.

  12. Mimicking Martian dust: An in-vacuum dust deposition system for testing the ultraviolet sensors on the Curiosity rover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sobrado, J. M.; Martín-Soler, J.; Martín-Gago, J. A.

    2015-10-01

    We have designed and developed an in-vacuum dust deposition system specifically conceived to simulate and study the effect of accumulation of Martian dust on the electronic instruments of scientific planetary exploration missions. We have used this device to characterize the dust effect on the UV sensor of the Rover Environmental Monitoring Station in the Mars science Laboratory mission of NASA in similar conditions to those found on Mars surface. The UV sensor includes six photodiodes for measuring the radiation in all UV wavelengths (direct incidence and reflected); it is placed on the body of Curiosity rover and it is severely affected by the dust deposited on it. Our experimental setup can help to estimate the duration of reliable reading of this instrument during operation. We have used an analogous of the Martian dust in chemical composition (magnetic species), color, and density, which has been characterized by X-ray spectroscopy. To ensure a Brownian motion of the dust during its fall and a homogeneous coverage on the instrumentation, the operating conditions of the vacuum vessel, determined by partial pressures and temperature, have to be modified to account for the different gravities of Mars with respect to Earth. We propose that our designed device and operational protocol can be of interest to test optoelectronic instrumentation affected by the opacity of dust, as can be the degradation of UV photodiodes in planetary exploration.

  13. Applications of Electrified Dust and Dust Devil Electrodynamics to Martian Atmospheric Electricity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrison, R. G.; Barth, E.; Esposito, F.; Merrison, J.; Montmessin, F.; Aplin, K. L.; Borlina, C.; Berthelier, J. J.; Déprez, G.; Farrell, W. M.; Houghton, I. M. P.; Renno, N. O.; Nicoll, K. A.; Tripathi, S. N.; Zimmerman, M.

    2016-11-01

    Atmospheric transport and suspension of dust frequently brings electrification, which may be substantial. Electric fields of 10 kV m-1 to 100 kV m-1 have been observed at the surface beneath suspended dust in the terrestrial atmosphere, and some electrification has been observed to persist in dust at levels to 5 km, as well as in volcanic plumes. The interaction between individual particles which causes the electrification is incompletely understood, and multiple processes are thought to be acting. A variation in particle charge with particle size, and the effect of gravitational separation explains to, some extent, the charge structures observed in terrestrial dust storms. More extensive flow-based modelling demonstrates that bulk electric fields in excess of 10 kV m-1 can be obtained rapidly (in less than 10 s) from rotating dust systems (dust devils) and that terrestrial breakdown fields can be obtained. Modelled profiles of electrical conductivity in the Martian atmosphere suggest the possibility of dust electrification, and dust devils have been suggested as a mechanism of charge separation able to maintain current flow between one region of the atmosphere and another, through a global circuit. Fundamental new understanding of Martian atmospheric electricity will result from the ExoMars mission, which carries the DREAMS (Dust characterization, Risk Assessment, and Environment Analyser on the Martian Surface)—MicroARES ( Atmospheric Radiation and Electricity Sensor) instrumentation to Mars in 2016 for the first in situ electrical measurements.

  14. Reduced Baroclinicity During Martian Global Dust Storms

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Battalio, Joseph; Szunyogh, Istvan; Lemmon, Mark

    2015-11-01

    The eddy kinetic energy equation is applied to the Mars Analysis Correction Data Assimilation (MACDA) dataset during the pre-winter solstice period for the northern hemisphere of Mars. Traveling waves are triggered by geopotential flux convergence, grow baroclinically, and decay barotropically. Higher optical depth increases the static stability, which reduces vertical and meridional heat fluxes. Traveling waves during a global dust storm year develop a mixed baroclinic/barotropic growth phase before decaying barotropically. Baroclinic energy conversion is reduced during the global dust storm, but eddy intensity is undiminished. Instead, the frequency of storms is reduced due to a stabilized vertical profile.

  15. Effect of particle size of Martian dust on the degradation of photovoltaic cell performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Perez-Davis, Marla E.

    1991-01-01

    Glass coverglass and SiO2 covered and uncovered silicon photovoltaic (PV) cells were subjected to conditions simulating a Mars dust storm, using the Martian Surface Wind Tunnel, to assess the effect of particle size on the performance of PV cells in the Martian environment. The dust used was an artificial mineral of the approximate elemental composition of Martian soil, which was sorted into four different size ranges. Samples were tested both initially clean and initially dusted. The samples were exposed to clear and dust laden winds, wind velocities varying from 23 to 116 m/s, and attack angles from 0 to 90 deg. It was found that transmittance through the coverglass approximates the power produced by a dusty PV cell. Occultation by the dust was found to dominate the performance degradation for wind velocities below 50 m/s, whereas abrasion dominates the degradation at wind velocities above 85 m/s. Occultation is most severe at 0 deg (parallel to the wind), is less pronounced from 22.5 to 67.5 deg, and is somewhat larger at 90 deg (perpendicular to the wind). Abrasion is negligible at 0 deg, and increases to a maximum at 90 deg. Occultation is more of a problem with small particles, whereas large particles (unless they are agglomerates) cause more abrasion.

  16. Impact Produced and Mobilized Dust in the Martian Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nemtchinov, I. V.; Shuvalov, V. V.; Greeley, R.

    2001-12-01

    The objective of this work is to study possible mechanisms of new dust production and existing dust entrainment after impacts of meteoroids onto Mars and to assess the possible relationship to dust clouds. We use detailed numerical simulations based on the SOVA multi-dimensional multi-material hydrocode [1]. In the first run of simulations, partially described in [2], only the dust ejected from the crater was taken into account. In the process of ejection soil density decreases near the cavity boundary. At the moment when the density falls below some critical value the solid material is replaced by a set of discrete particles (dust, boulders) of equivalent mass [3]. The distribution of particles by sizes was taken according experimental data obtained in the course of large-scale TNT and nuclear explosions on the Earth's ground [4]. The radius of impactor was varied from 1 to 100 m. The lowest value corresponds to high strength meteoroids passing through the rarefied Martian atmosphere without substantial fragmentation and deceleration. The impact velocity was taken to be 11 and 20 km/s. In all the variants the mass of the dust ejected from the forming craters was about 10 M, where M is the impactor mass. It was suggested [5] that the dust may be mobilized even if the impactor does not reach the ground surface. To check this idea the code was modified to take into account blast produced impulsive winds blowing the preexisting dust from the surface by mechanism similarly to that of the stationary winds [6]. Turbulent viscosity and diffusion were taken into acount. Some portions of dust are deposited on the surface due to gravity. The particles striking the surface increase a flux of the suspended dust. The saltation thresholds were taken according [7-8]. For a 1 m radius stony asteroid releasing its energy (0.15 kt TNT) at an altitude of about 100 m above the surface after first two seconds the mass of the dust in the air was 3.5 M, and after 15 s it decreased to 2

  17. Transient Density Enhancements of the Martian Orbiting Dust Torus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Juhasz, A.; Horanyi, M.

    2014-12-01

    The moons Phobos and Deimos have been suggested to be responsible for sustaining a permanently present dust cloud around Mars. The equilibrium size and spatial distribution of this dust torus has been the subject of numerous theoretical studies. However, no observational evidence has been found as of yet. Because of the renewed interest in Phobos and Deimos as potential targets for human precursor mission to Mars, there is a new opportunity for the detection of the putative Martian dust clouds using in situ measurements. Both Phobos and Deimos, as all airless bodies in the solar system, are continually bombarded by interplanetary dust grains, generating secondary ejecta particles. The surface gravity escape of these objects are low, hence most secondary particles escapethem, but remain in orbit about Mars. Subsequent perturbations by solar radiation pressure, electromagnetic forces acting on charged grains, and collisions with the moons or Mars itself limit the lifetime of the produced particles. The size dependent production rates and lifetimes set the most abundant particle size range of 10 - 30 micron in radius. Large, but short-lived, dust density enhancements can be predicted during periods of meteor showers. Also, comet Siding Spring will flyby Mars in October, 2014. Its dust tail can 'sand-blast' both Phobos and Deimos, dramatically increasing their dust production for a few hours. We present the results of our numerical studies on the temporal and spatial evolution of the dust clouds raised during highly enhanced production rates that last only hours-to-days.

  18. Complex refractive index of Martian dust - Wavelength dependence and composition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pang, K.; Ajello, J. M.

    1977-01-01

    The size distribution and complex refractive index of Martian dust-cloud particles observed in 1971 with the Mariner 9 UV spectrometer are determined by matching the observed single-scattering albedo and phase function with Mie-scattering calculations for size distributions of spheres. Values of phase function times single-scattering albedo are presented for 12 wavelength intervals in the range from 190 to 350 nm, and best-fit values are obtained for the absorption index. It is found that the absorption index of the dust particles increases with decreasing wavelength from 350 to about 210 nm and then drops off shortward of 210 nm, with a structural shoulder occurring in the absorption spectrum between 240 and 250 nm. A search for a candidate material that can explain the strong UV absorption yields TiO2, whose anatase polymorph has an absorption spectrum matching that of the Martian dust. The TiO2 content of the dust particles is estimated to be a few percent or less.

  19. The wavelength dependence of Martian atmospheric dust radiative properties

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pollack, J. B.; Ockert-Bell, M. E.; Arvidson, R.; Shepard, M.

    1993-01-01

    One of the key radiative agents in the atmosphere of Mars is the suspended dust particles. A new analysis of two data sets of the Martian atmosphere is being carried out in order to better evaluate the radiative properties of the atmospheric dust particles. The properties of interest are the size distribution, optical constants, and other radiative properties, such as the single-scattering albedo and phase function. Of prime importance is the wavelength dependence of these radiative properties throughout the visible and near-infrared wavelengths. Understanding the wavelength dependence of absorption and scattering characteristics will provide a good definition of the influence that the atmospheric dust has on heating of the atmosphere.

  20. Light scattering by the Martian dust analog, palagonite, modeled with ellipsoids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Merikallio, Sini; Nousiainen, Timo; Kahnert, Michael; Harri, Ari-Matti

    2013-07-01

    We have investigated the suitability of the ellipsoidal model particles to mimic scattering by Martian dust particles by comparing simulations against laboratory data for palagonite, a Mars analog sample. By optimizing the shape distribution of ellipsoids, a very good match with a laboratory-measured scattering matrix was obtained. Even an equiprobable distribution of ellipsoids performed well. The asymmetry parameter and single-scattering albedo were found to depend on the assumed shape distribution as much as on the typical uncertainties associated with refractive indices and size, suggesting that shape is an important parameter that potentially influences remote retrievals of dust particle properties.

  1. Impact-Mobilized Dust in the Martian Atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nemtchinov, I. V.; Shuvalov, V. V.; Greeley, R.

    2002-01-01

    We consider dust production and entrainment into the atmosphere of Mars by impacts. Numerical simulations based on the multidimensional multimaterial hydrocode were conducted for impactors 1 to 100 m in size and velocities 11 and 20 kilometers per second. The size distribution of particles was based on experimentrr wing TNT explosions. Dust can be mobilized even when the impactor does not reach the ground through the release of energy in the atmosphere, We found that the blast produced winds entrained dust by a mechanism similar to boundary layer winds as determined from the wind-tunnel tests. For a l-m radius stony asteroid releasing its energy in the atmosphere the lifted mass of dust is larger than that in a typical dust devil and could trigger local dust storms, For a 100-m-radius meteoroid the amount of injected dust is comparable with the tota! mass of a global dust storm.

  2. Martian Arctic Dust Devil and Phoenix Meteorology Mast

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    The Surface Stereo Imager on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander caught this dust devil in action west-southwest of the lander at 11:16 a.m. local Mars time on Sol 104, or the 104th Martian day of the mission, Sept. 9, 2008.

    Dust devils have not been detected in any Phoenix images from earlier in the mission, but at least six were observed in a dozen images taken on Sol 104.

    Dust devils are whirlwinds that often occur when the Sun heats the surface of Mars, or some areas on Earth. The warmed surface heats the layer of atmosphere closest to it, and the warm air rises in a whirling motion, stirring dust up from the surface like a miniature tornado.

    The vertical post near the left edge of this image is the mast of the Meteorological Station on Phoenix. The dust devil visible at the horizon just to the right of the mast is estimated to be 600 to 700 meters (about 2,000 to 2,300 feet) from Phoenix, and 4 to 5 meters (10 to 13 feet) in diameter. It is much smaller than dust devils that have been observed by NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit much closer to the equator. It is closer in size to dust devils seen from orbit in the Phoenix landing region, though still smaller than those.

    The image has been enhanced to make the dust devil easier to see.

    The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  3. Parameters of Dust Particles in the Martian Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dlugach, Zh. M.; Morozhenko, A. V.

    2001-11-01

    A critical analysis of the methods and results of estimating the optical thickness of the dust component in the Martian atmosphere τ_0, the particle size r_0, and the imaginary part of the refractive index n_ihas shown the following. (1) Observational data on the brightness distribution over the Martian disk as well as the phase dependences of diffusely reflected light and the azimuthal dependences of diffusely transmitted light are most appropriate to use only for verifying the reliability of the aerosol parameters determined by other methods. (2) If the morning and evening fogs in the atmosphere are disregarded, the Bouguer-Lambert-Beer method used to analyze the solar-brightness attenuation measured on the planetary surface yields overestimated extraatmospheric solar intensity I_0and atmospheric optical depth τ_0. At the Viking 1landing site, I_0and τ_0could be overestimated by a factor of 1.7 and by 0.35, respectively. (3) The aerosol size determined by analyzing measurements of the azimuthal dependences for the Martian sky brightness at low elevations of the Sun most likely corresponds to the fog particles. (4) If overestimated values of I_0were used to standardize the observations of the solar radiation transmitted by the Martian atmosphere, then n_iwere also overestimated; using overestimated τ_0also affected the reliability of the latter. (5) The problem of reliability of the available τ_0and r_0estimates for periods of high atmospheric transparency is yet to be solved. For the highest activity of the dust storm in 1971, it was found that 4.5 <= r_0<= 7.5 μm for the lognormal particle size distribution with σ^2= 0.2 and the optical thickness of a dust cloud τ_0>= 15. (6) The spectral values of the apparent albedo of Mars measured in October 1971 at a phase angle of 42° in the spectral range 0.250 <= λ <= 0.717 allowed the imaginary part of the refractive index to be estimated in terms of a model of a dust cloud composed of spherical particles with

  4. The optical depth sensor (ODS) for column dust opacity measurements and cloud detection on martian atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Toledo, D.; Rannou, P.; Pommereau, J.-P.; Foujols, T.

    2016-08-01

    A lightweight and sophisticated optical depth sensor (ODS) able to measure alternatively scattered flux at zenith and the sum of the direct flux and the scattered flux in blue and red has been developed to work in martian environment. The principal goals of ODS are to perform measurements of the daily mean dust opacity and to retrieve the altitude and optical depth of high altitude clouds at twilight, crucial parameters in the understanding of martian meteorology. The retrieval procedure of dust opacity is based on the use of radiative transfer simulations reproducing observed changes in the solar flux during the day as a function of 4 free parameters: dust opacity in blue and red, and effective radius and effective width of dust size distribution. The detection of clouds is undertaken by looking at the time variation of the color index (CI), defined as the ratio between red and blue ODS channels, at twilight. The retrieval of altitude and optical depth of clouds is carried out using a radiative transfer model in spherical geometry to simulate the CI time variation at twilight. Here the different retrieval procedures to analyze ODS signals, as well as the results obtained in different sensitivity analysis are presented and discussed.

  5. Large-Eddy Simulations of Dust Devils and Convective Vortices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiga, Aymeric; Barth, Erika; Gu, Zhaolin; Hoffmann, Fabian; Ito, Junshi; Jemmett-Smith, Bradley; Klose, Martina; Nishizawa, Seiya; Raasch, Siegfried; Rafkin, Scot; Takemi, Tetsuya; Tyler, Daniel; Wei, Wei

    2016-11-01

    In this review, we address the use of numerical computations called Large-Eddy Simulations (LES) to study dust devils, and the more general class of atmospheric phenomena they belong to (convective vortices). We describe the main elements of the LES methodology. We review the properties, statistics, and variability of dust devils and convective vortices resolved by LES in both terrestrial and Martian environments. The current challenges faced by modelers using LES for dust devils are also discussed in detail.

  6. Amplification of dust loading in Martian dust devils by self-shadowing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuepper, M.; Wurm, G.

    2016-08-01

    Insolation of the Martian soil leads to a sub-surface overpressure due to thermal creep gas flow. This could support particle entrainment into the atmosphere. Short time shadowing e.g. by the traverse of a larger dust devil would enhance this effect. We find in microgravity experiments that mass ejection rates are increased by a factor of 10 for several seconds if a light source of 12.6 kW/m2 is turned off. Scaled to Mars this implies that self-shadowing of a partially opaque dust devil might lead to a strongly amplified flux of lifted material. We therefore suggest that self-shadowing might be a mechanism on Mars to increase the total dust loading of a dust devil and keep it self-sustained.

  7. The H 2O and CO 2 adsorption properties of phyllosilicate-poor palagonitic dust and smectites under martian environmental conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jänchen, Jochen; Morris, Richard V.; Bish, David L.; Janssen, Mareike; Hellwig, Udo

    2009-04-01

    The recent detection of up to ˜10 wt% water-equivalent H heterogeneously distributed in the upper meter of the equatorial regions of the martian surface and the presence of the 3-μm hydrations feature across the entire planet raises the question whether martian surficial dust can account for this water-equivalent H. We have investigated the H 2O and CO 2 adsorption properties of palagonitic dust (<5 μm size fraction of phyllosilicate-poor palagonitic tephra HWMK919) as a martian dust analog and two smectites under simulated martian equatorial surface conditions. Our results show that the palagonitic dust, which contains hydrated and hydroxylated volcanic glass of basaltic composition, accommodates significantly more H 2O under comparable humidity and temperature conditions than do the smectites nontronite and montmorillonite.

  8. Photo-induced free radicals on a simulated Martian surface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tseng, S.-S.; Chang, S.

    1974-01-01

    Results of an electron spin resonance study of free radicals in the ultraviolet irradiation of a simulated Martian surface suggest that the ultraviolet photolysis of CO or CO2, or a mixture of both, adsorbed on silica gel at minus 170 C involves the formation of OH radicals and possibly of H atoms as the primary process, followed by the formation of CO2H radicals. It is concluded that the photochemical synthesis of organic compounds could occur on Mars if the siliceous surface dust contains enough silanol groups and/or adsorbed H2O in the form of bound water.

  9. Martian dust devil electron avalanche process and associated electrochemistry

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jackson, Telana L.; Farrell, William M.; Delory, Gregory T.; Nithianandam, Jeyasingh

    2010-05-01

    Mars' dynamic atmosphere displays localized dust devils and larger, global dust storms. Based on terrestrial analog studies, electrostatic modeling, and laboratory work, these features will contain large electrostatic fields formed via triboelectric processes. In the low-pressure Martian atmosphere, these fields may create an electron avalanche and collisional plasma due to an increase in electron density driven by the internal electrical forces. To test the hypothesis that an electron avalanche is sustained under these conditions, a self-consistent atmospheric process model is created including electron impact ionization sources and electron losses via dust absorption, electron dissociation attachment, and electron/ion recombination. This new model is called the Dust Devil Electron Avalanche Model (DDEAM). This model solves simultaneously nine continuity equations describing the evolution of the primary gaseous chemical species involved in the electrochemistry. DDEAM monitors the evolution of the electrons and primary gas constituents, including electron/water interactions. We especially focus on electron dynamics and follow the electrons as they evolve in the E field driven collisional gas. When sources and losses are self-consistently included in the electron continuity equation, the electron density grows exponentially with increasing electric field, reaching an equilibrium that forms a sustained time-stable collisional plasma. However, the character of this plasma differs depending upon the assumed growth rate saturation process (chemical saturation versus space charge). DDEAM also shows the possibility of the loss of atmospheric methane as a function of electric field due to electron dissociative attachment of the hydrocarbon. The methane destruction rates are presented and can be included in other larger atmospheric models.

  10. Effect of atmospheric dust loading on martian albedo measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zinzi, Angelo; Palomba, Ernesto; Rinaldi, Giovanna; D'Amore, Mario

    2010-08-01

    This work is devoted to the analysis of the variation of albedo measured by orbiting instruments with atmospheric opacity on Mars. The study has been conduced by analysing Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer (MGS-TES) data from martian regions with different surface albedo. In support of these data, synthetic spectra with different surface albedo and atmospheric opacities have been computed, so that a comparison has been performed. The synthetic spectra have been retrieved by using two different grain sizes for suspended dust (0.5 and 1.2 μm), allowing a comparison between the two models and the observations. Using the DCI, a parameter describing the quantity of dust deposited on the surface, the effectiveness of the single scattering approximation has been tested for low atmospheric opacity by analysing the quality of the linear fit up to different atmospheric opacity. For more opaque conditions two kinds of fits have been applied to the data, linear and second-order degree polynomial. In this case, we found that the polynomial fit better describes the observations. The analysis of these data made it possible to notice a peculiar trend, already reported by Christensen (1988), of the albedo over Syrtis Major after the occurrence of dust storms, but, differently from that work, now the study of DCI together with atmospheric opacity and albedo allowed us to robustly confirm the hypothesis made by Christensen. Finally, the comparison between observations and synthetic spectra computed with models with different particles grain sizes indicates that dust particles of 0.5 μm diameter are the most effective to change the aerosol atmospheric opacity on Mars.

  11. Martian Dust Devil Electron Avalanche Process and Associated Electrochemistry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jackson, Telana L.; Farrell, William M.; Delory, Gregory T.; Nithianandam, Jeyasingh

    2010-01-01

    Mars' dynamic atmosphere displays localized dust devils and larger, global dust storms. Based on terrestrial analog studies, electrostatic modeling, and laboratory work these features will contain large electrostatic fields formed via triboelectric processes. In the low-pressure Martian atmosphere, these fields may create an electron avalanche and collisional plasma due to an increase in electron density driven by the internal electrical forces. To test the hypothesis that an electron avalanche is sustained under these conditions, a self-consistent atmospheric process model is created including electron impact ionization sources and electron losses via dust absorption, electron dissociation attachment, and electron/ion recombination. This new model is called the Dust Devil Electron Avalanche Model (DDEAM). This model solves simultaneously nine continuity equations describing the evolution of the primary gaseous chemical species involved in the electrochemistry. DDEAM monitors the evolution of the electrons and primary gas constituents, including electron/water interactions. We especially focus on electron dynamics and follow the electrons as they evolve in the E field driven collisional gas. When sources and losses are self-consistently included in the electron continuity equation, the electron density grows exponentially with increasing electric field, reaching an equilibrium that forms a sustained time-stable collisional plasma. However, the character of this plasma differs depending upon the assumed growth rate saturation process (chemical saturation versus space charge). DDEAM also shows the possibility of the loss of atmospheric methane as a function of electric field due to electron dissociative attachment of the hydrocarbon. The methane destruction rates are presented and can be included in other larger atmospheric models.

  12. Springtime Dust Storm Swirls at Martian North Pole

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1996-01-01

    Two Hubble Space Telescope images of Mars, taken about a month apart on September 18 and October 15, 1996, reveal a state-sized dust storm churning near the edge of the Martian north polar cap. The polar storm is probably a consequence of large temperature differences between the polar ice and the dark regions to the south, which are heated by the springtime sun. The increased sunlight also causes the dry ice in the polar cap to sublime and shrink.

    Mars is famous for large, planet-wide dust storms. Smaller storms resembling the one seen here were observed in other regions by Viking orbiters in the late 1970s. However, this is the first time that such an event has been caught near the receding north polar cap. The Hubble images provide valuable new insights into the behavior of localized dust storms on Mars, which are typically below the resolution of ground-based telescopes. This kind of advanced planetary 'weather report' will be invaluable for aiding preparation for the landing of NASA's Pathfinder spacecraft in July 1997 and the arrival of Mars Global Surveyor orbiter in September 1997.

    Top (September 18, 1996) - The salmon colored notch in the white north polar cap is a 600-mile (1,000 kilometer) long storm -- nearly the width of Texas. The bright dust can also be seen over the dark surface surrounding the cap, where it is caught up in the Martian jet stream and blown easterly. The white clouds at lower latitudes are mostly associated with major Martian volcanos such as Olympus Mons. This image was taken when Mars was more than 186 million miles (300 million kilometers) from Earth, and the planet was smaller in angular size than Jupiter's Great Red Spot!

    Bottom (October 15, 1996) - Though the storm has dissipated by October, a distinctive dust-colored comma-shaped feature can be seen curving across the ice cap. The shape is similar to cold fronts on Earth, which are associated with low pressure systems. Nothing quite like this feature has been seen

  13. Electrostatic Precipitation of Dust in the Martian Atmosphere: Implications for the Utilization of Resources During Future Manned Exploration Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calle, Carlos I.; Clements, Judson S.; Thompson, Samuel M.; Cox, Nathan D.; Hogue, Michael D.; Johansen, Michael R.; Williams, Blakeley S.

    2011-01-01

    Future human missions to Mars will require the utilization of local resources for oxygen, fuel. and water. The In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) project is an active research endeavor at NASA to develop technologies that can enable cost effective ways to live off the land. The extraction of oxygen from the Martian atmosphere. composed primarily of carbon dioxide, is one of the most important goals of the Mars ISRU project. The main obstacle is the relatively large amount of dust present in the Martian atmosphere. This dust must be efficiently removed from atmospheric gas intakes for ISRU processing chambers. A common technique to achieve this removal on earth is by electrostatic precipitation, where large electrostatic fields are established in a localized region to precipitate and collect previously charged dust particles. This technique is difficult to adapt to the Martian environment, with an atmospheric pressure of about one-hundredth of the terrestrial atmosphere. At these low pressures. the corona discharges required to implant an electrostatic charge to the particles to be collected is extremely difficult to sustain and the corona easily becomes biopolar. which is unsuitable for particle charging. In this paper, we report on our successful efforts to establish a stable corona under Martian simulated conditions. We also present results on dust collecting efficiencies with an electrostatic precipitator prototype that could be effectively used on a future mission to the red planet

  14. Electrostatic precipitation of dust in the Martian atmosphere: Implications for the utilization of resources during future manned exploration missions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Calle, C. I.; Thompson, S. M.; Cox, N. D.; Johansen, M. R.; Williams, B. S.; Hogue, M. D.; Clements, J. S.

    2011-12-01

    Future human missions to Mars will require the utilization of local resources for oxygen, fuel, and water. The In Situ Resource Utilization (ISRU) project is an active research endeavor at NASA to develop technologies that can enable cost effective ways to live off the land. The extraction of oxygen from the Martian atmosphere, composed primarily of carbon dioxide, is one of the most important goals of the Mars ISRU project. The main obstacle is the relatively large amount of dust present in the Martian atmosphere. This dust must be efficiently removed from atmospheric gas intakes for ISRU processing chambers. A common technique to achieve this removal on earth is by electrostatic precipitation, where large electrostatic fields are established in a localized region to charge, precipitate and collect dust particles. This technique is difficult to adapt to the Martian environment, with an atmospheric pressure of about one-hundredth of the terrestrial atmosphere. At these low pressures, the corona discharges required to implant an electrostatic charge to the particles to be collected is extremely difficult to sustain and the corona easily transitions to a glow/streamer discharge, which is unsuitable for particle charging. In this paper, we report on our successful efforts to establish a stable corona under Martian simulated conditions. We also present results on dust collecting efficiencies with an electrostatic precipitator prototype that could be effectively used on a future mission to the red planet.

  15. Summary of Martian Dust Filtering Challenges and Current Filter Development

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    O'Hara, William J., IV

    2017-01-01

    Traditional air particulate filtering in manned spaceflight (Apollo, Shuttle, ISS, etc.) has used cleanable or replaceable catch filters such as screens and High-Efficiency Particulate Arrestance (HEPA) filters. However, the human mission to Mars architecture will require a new approach. It is Martian dust that is the particulate of concern but the need also applies to particulates generated by crew. The Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG) high-lighted this concern in its Mars Science, Goals, Objectives, Investigations and Priorities document [7], by saying specifically that one high priority investigation will be to "Test ISRU atmospheric processing systems to measure resilience with respect to dust and other environmental challenge performance parameters that are critical to the design of a full-scale system." By stating this as high priority the MEPAG is acknowledging that developing and adequately verifying this capability is critical to success of a human mission to Mars. This architecture will require filtering capabilities that are highly reliable, will not restrict the flow path with clogging, and require little to no maintenance. This paper will summarize why this is the case, the general requirements for developing the technology, and the status of the progress made in this area.

  16. Prototype detector development for measurement of high altitude Martian dust using a future orbiter platform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pabari, Jayesh; Patel, Darshil; Chokhawala, Vimmi; Bogavelly, Anvesh

    2016-07-01

    Dust devils mostly occur during the mid of Southern hemisphere summer on Mars and play a key role in the background dust opacity. Due to continuous bombardment of micrometeorites, secondary ejecta come out from the Moons of the Mars and can easily escape. This phenomenon can contribute dust around the Moons and therefore, also around the Mars. Similar to the Moons of the Earth, the surfaces of the Martian Moons get charged and cause the dust levitation to occur, adding to the possible dust source. Also, interplanetary dust particles may be able to reach the Mars and contribute further. It is hypothesized that the high altitude Martian dust could be in the form of a ring or tori around the Mars. However, no such rings have been detected to the present day. Typically, width and height of the dust torus is ~5 Mars radii wide (~16950 km) in both the planes as reported in the literature. Recently, very high altitude dust at about 1000 km has been found by MAVEN mission and it is expected that the dust may be concentrated at about 150 to 500 km. However, a langmuir probe cannot explain the source of such dust particles. It is a puzzling question to the space scientist how dust has reached to such high altitudes. A dedicated dust instrument on future Mars orbiter may be helpful to address such issues. To study origin, abundance, distribution and seasonal variation of Martian dust, a Mars Orbit Dust Experiment (MODEX) is proposed. In order to measure the Martian dust from a future orbiter, design of a prototype of an impact ionization dust detector has been initiated at PRL. This paper presents developmental aspects of the prototype dust detector and initial results. The further work is underway.

  17. Martian global dust storm 2001A as observed by the Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elteto, Attila

    2009-06-01

    The purpose of this work is to study the general characteristics of Martian global dust storms, and their relation to the Martian dust cycle using infrared observations. I devised a parameter retrieval algorithm for Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer daytime data from global dust storm 2001A that extracts information about dust optical depth, effective radius, and surface temperature using Newtonian first-order sensitivity functions of the infrared spectrum in response to variations in these parameters. This algorithm is both relatively accurate and very fast, successfully retrieving parameters from 56878 spectra for global dust storm 2001A, as well as a subsequent Martian year in comparison. There are uncertainties introduced into the retrievals, especially by parameters that could not be constrained such as the optical constants of the Martian dust. Uncertainties in assumed vertical mixing of dust can lead to significant uncertainties in retrieved optical depth and dust effective radius. I discovered several aspects of the dust storm that have not previously been recognized. One of these is that the dust optical depth becomes correlated with surface pressure during the decay phase of the dust storm. Similar pressure optical depth correlations were found the following Martian year when no global dust storm occurred. Global correlation of dust optical depth and surface pressure, indicative of global dust mixing processes, also varies with the season. It is generally larger during southern hemisphere late spring and summer, and very low at all other seasons when there is no global dust storm. These pressure and optical depth data provide a tool to study atmospheric dynamics. I also found that the observed decay of optical depths at the later stages of the dust storm match, to first order, theoretical values of clearing from Stokes-Cunningham fallout of the dust. The unprecedented coverage of the retrieval of dust effective radii allowed me to

  18. Investigating the Use of Aerogel Collectors for the SCIM Martian-Dust Sample Return

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jurewicz, A. J. G.; Forney, L.; Bomba, J.; Vicker, D.; Jones, S.; Yen, A.; Clark, B.; Gamber, T.; Goreva, J.; Minitti, M.

    2002-01-01

    SCIM (sample collection for the investigation of Mars) proposes to return Martian dust and atmospheric samples to Earth. The collection will occur during a high-speed pass of Mars. We discuss the engineering challenges that the Martian atmosphere imposes on this type of experiment, and how we are proceeding to meet them. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  19. Detection of Polonium-210 on Spirit Dust Magnets and Implications for the Global Martian Dust Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, R.; Meslin, P.; Sabroux, J.; Madsen, M. B.; Pineau, J.; Richon, P.

    2013-12-01

    The radioactivity of airborne aerosols, which originates from the attachment of radionuclides produced by radon disintegration, Galactic Cosmic Rays (GCR) or anthropogenic activities, especially fallouts from nuclear weapons testing, can be used to measure the residence time of these aerosols in the atmosphere and their deposition rate. It is also used to characterize soils erosion rates (Matissof et al., 2002) or to investigate the origin of desert rock varnish (Hodge et al., 2005), to name only a few terrestrial applications. A translation of these nuclear methods to the Martian atmosphere, which is characterized by a very active dust cycle, is tempting, and has the potential to offer a unique insight into the present-day recycling of the Martian surface. This approach is made possible by two facts: 1) the presence of radon in the Martian atmosphere, which produces long-lived radioactive decay products, in particular polonium-210, and whose abundance can be indirectly inferred by gamma ray spectrometry from orbit using Mars Odyssey Gamma Ray Spectrometer (GRS) (Meslin et al., 2012); 2) the presence at the surface of Mars of two Alpha Particle X-Ray Spectrometers (APXS), onboard Opportunity and Spirit Mars Exploration Rovers, whose energy range (in the alpha mode) very fortuitously happens to include the energy of alpha particles emitted by the decay of polonium-210. The long half-life of this radionuclide is such that it is almost entirely attached to the particles that have been in suspension in the atmosphere, especially those characterized by a large specific surface area or by a long atmospheric residence time. It can therefore be used as a tracer of the dust cycle. An analysis of the alpha spectra acquired on the dust Capture and Filter magnets of the Spirit rover confirms results obtained by Meslin et al. (2006) that the Martian dust is radioactive w/r to polonium-210, thereby extending Opportunity's result to a global scale. This result enables us to

  20. Multiyear Simulations of the Martian Water Cycle with the Ames General Circulation Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Haberle, R. M.; Schaeffer, J. R.; Nelli, S. M.; Murphy, J. R.

    2003-01-01

    Mars atmosphere is carbon dioxide dominated with non-negligible amounts of water vapor and suspended dust particles. The atmospheric dust plays an important role in the heating and cooling of the planet through absorption and emission of radiation. Small dust particles can potentially be carried to great altitudes and affect the temperatures there. Water vapor condensing onto the dust grains can affect the radiative properties of both, as well as their vertical extent. The condensation of water onto a dust grain will change the grain s fall speed and diminish the possibility of dust obtaining high altitudes. In this capacity, water becomes a controlling agent with regard to the vertical distribution of dust. Similarly, the atmosphere s water vapor holding capacity is affected by the amount of dust in the atmosphere. Dust is an excellent green house catalyst; it raises the temperature of the atmosphere, and thus, its water vapor holding capacity. There is, therefore, a potentially significant interplay between the Martian dust and water cycles. Previous research done using global, 3-D computer modeling to better understand the Martian atmosphere treat the dust and the water cycles as two separate and independent processes. The existing Ames numerical model will be employed to simulate the relationship between the Martian dust and water cycles by actually coupling the two cycles. Water will condense onto the dust, allowing the particle's radiative characteristics, fall speeds, and as a result, their vertical distribution to change. Data obtained from the Viking, Mars Pathfinder, and especially the Mars Global Surveyor missions will be used to determine the accuracy of the model results.

  1. Development of an Electrostatic Precipitator to Remove Martian Atmospheric Dust from ISRU Gas Intakes During Planetary Exploration Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clements, J. Sidney; Thompson, Samuel M.; Cox, Nathan D.; Johansen, Michael R.; Williams, Blakeley S.; Hogue, Michael D.; Lowder, M. Loraine; Calle, Carlos I.

    2011-01-01

    Manned exploration missions to Mars will need dependable in situ resource utilization (ISRU) for the production of oxygen and other commodities. One of these resources is the Martian atmosphere itself, which is composed of carbon dioxide (95.3%), nitrogen (2.7%), argon (1.6%), oxygen (0.13%), carbon monoxide (0.07%), and water vapor (0.03%), as well as other trace gases. However, the Martian atmosphere also contains relatively large amounts of dust, uploaded by frequent dust devils and high Winds. To make this gas usable for oxygen extraction in specialized chambers requires the removal of most of the dust. An electrostatic precipitator (ESP) system is an obvious choice. But with an atmospheric pressure just one-hundredth of Earth's, electrical breakdown at low voltages makes the implementation of the electrostatic precipitator technology very challenging. Ion mobility, drag forces, dust particle charging, and migration velocity are also affected because the low gas pressure results in molecular mean free paths that are approximately one hundred times longer than those at Earth .atmospheric pressure. We report here on our efforts to develop this technology at the Kennedy Space Center, using gases with approximately the same composition as the Martian atmosphere in a vacuum chamber at 9 mbars, the atmospheric pressure on Mars. We also present I-V curves and large particle charging data for various versions of wire-cylinder and rod-cylinder geometry ESPs. Preliminary results suggest that use of an ESP for dust collection on Mars may be feasible, but further testing with Martian dust simulant is required.

  2. The H2O Sorption Properties of a Martian Dust Analog

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jänchen, J.; Morris, R. V.; Bish, D. L.; Hellwig, U.

    2009-03-01

    Palagonitic dust is a geologically reasonable hydrated phase on the surface of Mars. Its presence as dust may account for the presence of the 3 μm absorption band as seen by OMEGA and CRISM at the martian surface for the entire planet.

  3. An assessment of the impact of local processes on dust lifting in martian climate models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mulholland, David P.; Spiga, Aymeric; Listowski, Constantino; Read, Peter L.

    2015-05-01

    Simulation of the lifting of dust from the planetary surface is of substantially greater importance on Mars than on Earth, due to the fundamental role that atmospheric dust plays in the former's climate, yet the dust emission parameterisations used to date in martian global climate models (MGCMs) lag, understandably, behind their terrestrial counterparts in terms of sophistication. Recent developments in estimating surface roughness length over all martian terrains and in modelling atmospheric circulations at regional to local scales (less than O(100 km)) presents an opportunity to formulate an improved wind stress lifting parameterisation. We have upgraded the conventional scheme by including the spatially varying roughness length in the lifting parameterisation in a fully consistent manner (thereby correcting a possible underestimation of the true threshold level for wind stress lifting), and used a modification to account for deviations from neutral stability in the surface layer. Following these improvements, it is found that wind speeds at typical MGCM resolution never reach the lifting threshold at most gridpoints: winds fall particularly short in the southern midlatitudes, where mean roughness is large. Sub-grid scale variability, manifested in both the near-surface wind field and the surface roughness, is then considered, and is found to be a crucial means of bridging the gap between model winds and thresholds. Both forms of small-scale variability contribute to the formation of dust emission 'hotspots': areas within the model gridbox with particularly favourable conditions for lifting, namely a smooth surface combined with strong near-surface gusts. Such small-scale emission could in fact be particularly influential on Mars, due both to the intense positive radiative feedbacks that can drive storm growth and a strong hysteresis effect on saltation. By modelling this variability, dust lifting is predicted at the locations at which dust storms are frequently

  4. Microscopy of Analogs for Martian Dust and Soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Anderson, M. A.; Pike, W. T.; Weitz, C. M.

    1999-01-01

    The upcoming Mars 2001 lander will carry an atomic force microscope (AFM) as part of the Mars Environmental Compatibility Assessment (MECA) payload. By operating in a tapping mode, the AFM is capable of sub-nanometer resolution in three dimensions and can distinguish between substances of different compositions by employing phase-contrast imaging. Phase imaging is an extension of tapping-mode AFM that provides nanometer-scale information about surface composition not revealed in the topography. Phase imaging maps the phase of the cantilever oscillation during the tapping mode scan, hence detecting variations in composition, adhesion, friction, and viscoelasticity. Because phase imaging highlights edges and is not affected by large-scale height differences, it provides for clearer observation of fine features, such as grain edges, which can be obscured by rough topography. To prepare for the Mars 01 mission, we are testing the AFM on a lunar soil and terrestrial basaltic glasses to determine the AFMOs ability to define particle shapes and sizes and grain-surface textures. The test materials include the Apollo 17 soil 79221, which is a mixture of agglutinates, impact and volcanic beads, and mare and highland rock and mineral fragments. The majority of the lunar soil particles are less than 100 microns in size, comparable to the sizes estimated for Martian dust. The terrestrial samples are millimeter size basaltic glasses collected on Black Pointe at Mono Lake, just north of the Long Valley caldera in California. The basaltic glass formed by a phreatomagmatic eruption 13,000 years ago beneath a glacier that covered the Mono Lake region. Because basaltic glass formed by reworking of pyroclastic deposits may represent a likely source for Martian dunes, these basaltic glass samples represent plausible analogs to the types of particles that may be studied in sand dunes by the 01 lander and rover. We have used the AFM to examine several different soil particles at various

  5. Effects of Martian dust storms on ionization profiles and surface dose rates from cosmic rays

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Norman, R. B.; Gronoff, G.; Mertens, C. J.

    2012-12-01

    Global dust storms can engulf Mars and distribute dust throughout the atmosphere. The change in composition and density of the atmosphere due to dust storms affects the ionization rate due to cosmic rays impingent on Mars. To model the effect of dust storms on the Martian ionization profile, the Badhwar-O'Neill cosmic ray spectrum model has been adapted to Mars and used as an input in the NAIRAS model. NAIRAS is a cosmic ray irradiation model adapted for fast computations and has been applied to the Martian atmosphere. Full atmosphere ionization profiles for solar maximum and solar minimum conditions during both dust storms and quiet times are reported. The contribution of heavy ions and secondary particles to the ionization profile are also reported. Dose rates at the surface due to cosmic radiation are shown to not vary significantly due to the dust storms.

  6. Review of dust transport and mitigation technologies in lunar and Martian atmospheres

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Afshar-Mohajer, Nima; Wu, Chang-Yu; Curtis, Jennifer Sinclair; Gaier, James R.

    2015-09-01

    Dust resuspension and deposition is a ubiquitous phenomenon in all lunar and Martian missions. The near-term plans to return to the Moon as a stepping stone to further exploration of Mars and beyond bring scientists' attention to development and evaluation of lunar and Martian dust mitigation technologies. In this paper, different lunar and Martian dust transport mechanisms are presented, followed by a review of previously developed dust mitigation technologies including fluidal, mechanical, electrical and passive self-cleaning methods for lunar/Martian installed surfaces along with filtration for dust control inside cabins. Key factors in choosing the most effective dust mitigation technology are recognized to be the dust transport mechanism, energy consumption, environment, type of surface materials, area of the surface and surface functionality. While electrical methods operating at higher voltages are identified to be suitable for small but light sensitive surfaces, pre-treatment of the surface is effective for cleaning thermal control surfaces, and mechanical methods are appropriate for surfaces with no concerns of light blockage, surface abrasion and 100% cleaning efficiency. Findings from this paper can help choose proper surface protection/cleaning for future space explorations. Hybrid techniques combining the advantages of different methods are recommended.

  7. Scattering matrices of martian dust analogs at 488 nm and 647 nm

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dabrowska, Dominika D.; Muñoz, Olga; Moreno, Fernando; Ramos, José L.; Martínez-Frías, Jesús; Wurm, Gerhard

    2015-04-01

    We present measurements of the complete scattering matrix as a function of the scattering angle of five martian dust analogs, namely montmorillonite, two palagonite (JSC-1) samples, basalt, and calcite. The measurements are performed at 488 and 647 nm, covering the scattering angle range from 3° to 177°. The experimental scattering matrices are compared with results of Lorenz-Mie calculations performed for the same size distributions and refractive indices as our analog samples. As expected, we find that scattering matrices of realistic polydispersions of dust particles cannot be replaced by such calculated matrices. In contrast, the measured phase functions for our martian dust analogs may be considered a good approximation for martian dust at the studied wavelengths. Further, because of the sensitivity of polarimetry to particle microphysics, spectro-polarimetric observations from the martian surface appear to be a powerful diagnostic tool to infer the composition of the dust in the martian atmosphere. To facilitate the use of the experimental matrices for multiple-scattering calculations with polarization included, we compute the corresponding synthetic scattering matrices based on the measurements and defined in the full angle range from 0° to 180°.

  8. Thermal Tides During the 2001 Martian Global-Scale Dust Storm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Guzewich, Scott D.; Wilson, R. John; McConnochie, Timothy H.; Toigo, Anthony D.; Bandfield, Donald J.; Smith, Michael D.

    2014-01-01

    The 2001 (Mars Year 25) global dust storm radically altered the dynamics of the Martian atmosphere. Using observations from the Thermal Emission Spectrometer onboard the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft and Mars WRF general circulation model simulations, we examine the changes to thermal tides and planetary waves caused by the storm. We find that the extratropical diurnal migrating tide is dramatically enhanced during the storm, particularly in the southern hemisphere, reaching amplitudes of more than 20 K. The tropical diurnal migrating tide is weakened to almost undetectable levels. The diurnal Kelvin waves are also significantly weakened, particularly during the period of global expansion at Ls=200deg-210deg. In contrast, the westward propagating diurnal wavenumber 2 tide strengthens to 4-8 K at altitudes above 30km. The wavenumber 1 stationary wave reaches amplitudes of 10-12 K at 50deg-70degN, far larger than is typically seen during this time of year. The phase of this stationary wave and the enhancement of the diurnal wavenumber 2 tide appear to be responses to the high-altitude westward propagating equatorial wavenumber 1 structure in dust mixing ratio observed during the storm in previous works. This work provides a global picture of dust storm wave dynamics that reveals the coupling between the tropics and high-latitude wave responses. We conclude that the zonal distribution of thermotidal forcing from atmospheric aerosol concentration is as important to understanding the atmospheric wave response as the total global mean aerosol optical depth.

  9. Effects of Angular Shapes on Optical properties of Martian Dust and Ice grains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scarnato, B. V.; Colaprete, A.; Iraci, L. T.

    2012-12-01

    Dust, ice clouds and their interaction are now recognized as playing important roles in atmospheric thermal heating, in driving atmospheric dynamics and therefore in affecting martian climate and weather. However, simulation results depend strongly on dust and cloud optical properties, which depend on assumptions made on particle size, shape, number and composition (e.g. ice impurities). In radiative transfer calculations which are used to interpret space or ground-based observations of Mars, various assumptions are made regarding the aerosol optical properties; it is common to approximate aerosol shape to homogeneous spherical particles. The optical properties of spherical particles can, however, differ significantly from those of irregularly shaped particles, even if their composition and/or size distribution is the same. Therefore, assuming spherical instead of irregularly shaped angular particles in radiative transfer calculations can lead to significant errors in climate modeling and in retrieved atmospheric parameters, such as the aerosol type, optical thickness and particle size distributions. For irregularly shaped particles, which are very common in nature, the optical properties can be calculated with numerical methods such as the Discrete Dipole Approximation (DDA) method. We present a sensitivity study of the effect of angular shapes on optical properties of suspended dust aerosol and water ice particles (type 1 and 2) with and without a dust inclusion. We assess a plausible range of variability of the optical properties (e.g., mass extinction, scattering and absorption coefficients, single scattering albedo, phase function and polarization) over an extended spectral range, between 200 nm and 50 microns. Optical properties of dust and water ice grains with different angular shapes are also compared with more commonly used shapes like spheres, spheres with a concentric spherical inclusion (core-shell) and spheroids.

  10. Cooling the Martian atmosphere: The spectral overlap of the C02 15 micrometers band and dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindner, Bernhard Lee

    1994-01-01

    Careful consideration must be given to the simultaneous treatment of the radiative transfer of the CO2 15 micron band and dust calculations for the Martian winter polar region show that a simple sum of separately calculated CO2 cooling rates and dust cooling rates can easily result a 30 percent error in the net cooling particularly near the surface. CO2 and dust hinder each others ability to cool the atmosphere. Even during periods of low dust opacity, dust still reduces the efficacy of CO2 at cooling the atmosphere. At the other extreme, when dust storms occur, CO2 still significantly impedes the ability of dust to cool the atmosphere. Hence, both CO2 and dust must be considered in radiative transfer models.

  11. Determination of Net Martian Polar Dust Flux from MGS-TES Observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blackmon, M. A.; Murphy, J. R.

    2003-01-01

    Using atmospheric dust abundance and atmospheric temperature observation data from the Thermal Emission Spectrometer (TES) on board the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS), the net flux of dust into and out of the Martian polar regions will be examined. Mars polar regions possess layered terrain , believed to be comprised of a mixture of ice and dust, with the different layers possibly representing different past climate regimes. These changes in climate may reflect changes in the deposition of dust and volatiles through impacts, volcanism, changes in resources of ice and dust, and response to Milankovitch type cycles (changes in eccentricity of orbit, obliquity and precession of axis). Understanding how rapidly such layers can be generated is an important element to understanding Mars climate history. This study uses the observed vertical temperature data and dust content measurements from TES to analyze the sign (gain or loss) of dust at high latitudes.

  12. Chamber for Simulating Martian and Terrestrial Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schuerger, Andrew C.

    2009-01-01

    An apparatus for simulating the environment at the surface of Mars has been developed. Within the apparatus, the pressure, gas composition, and temperature of the atmosphere; the incident solar visible and ultraviolet (UV) light; and the attenuation of the light by dust in the atmosphere can be simulated accurately for any latitude, season, or obliquity cycle over the entire geological history of Mars. The apparatus also incorporates instrumentation for monitoring chemical reactions in the simulated atmosphere. The apparatus can be used for experiments in astrobiology, geochemistry, aerobiology, and aerochemistry related to envisioned robotic and human exploration of Mars. Moreover, the apparatus can be easily adapted to enable similar experimentation under environmental conditions of (1) the surfaces of moons, asteroids, and comets, and (2) the upper atmospheres of planets other than Mars: in particular, it can be made to simulate conditions anywhere in the terrestrial atmosphere at altitudes up to about 100 km.

  13. Organic degradation under simulated Martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Stoker, C R; Bullock, M A

    1997-05-25

    We report on laboratory experiments which simulate the breakdown of organic compounds under Martian surface conditions. Chambers containing Mars-analog soil mixed with the amino acid glycine were evacuated and filled to 100 mbar pressure with a Martian atmosphere gas mixture and then irradiated with a broad spectrum Xe lamp. Headspace gases were periodically withdrawn and analyzed via gas chromatography for the presence of organic gases expected to be decomposition products of the glycine. The quantum efficiency for the decomposition of glycine by light at wavelengths from 2000 to 2400 angstroms was measured to be 1.46 +/- 1.0 x 10(-6) molecules/photon. Scaled to Mars, this represents an organic destruction rate of 2.24 +/- 1.2 x 10(-4) g of C m-2 yr-1. We compare this degradation rate with the rate that organic compounds are brought to Mars as a result of meteoritic infall to show that organic compounds are destroyed on Mars at rates far exceeding the rate that they are deposited by meteorites. Thus the fact that no organic compounds were found on Mars by the Viking Lander Gas Chromatograph Mass Spectrometer experiment can be explained without invoking the presence of strong oxidants in the surface soils. The organic destruction rate may be considered as an upper bound for the globally averaged biomass production rate of extant organisms at the surface of Mars. This upper bound is comparable to the slow growing cryptoendolithic microbial communities found in dry Antarctica deserts. Finally, comparing these organic destruction rates to recently reported experiments on the stability of carbonate on the surface of Mars, we find that organic compounds may currently be more stable than calcite.

  14. Dust storms on Mars: Considerations and simulations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.; White, B. R.; Pollack, J. B.; Iverson, J. D.; Leach, R. N.

    1977-01-01

    Aeolian processes are important in modifying the surface of Mars at present, and appear to have been significant in the geological past. Aeolian activity includes local and global dust storms, the formation of erosional features such as yardangs and depositional features such as sand dunes, and the erosion of rock and soil. As a means of understanding aeolian processes on Mars, an investigation is in progress that includes laboratory simulations, field studies of earth analogs, and interpretation of spacecraft data. This report describes the Martian Surface Wind Tunnel, an experimental facility established at NASA-Ames Research Center, and presents some results of the general investigation. Experiments dealing with wind speeds and other conditions required for the initiation of particle movement on Mars are described and considerations are given to the resulting effectiveness of aeolian erosion.

  15. Mixing relationships in the Martian regolith and the composition of globally homogeneous dust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McSween, Harry Y.; Keil, Klaus

    2000-06-01

    Comparison of the chemical compositions of Martian soils reveals distinct mixing trends, resulting from admixture of variable amounts of sulfate/chloride cement at Viking landing sites and of the local andesitic rock fragments at the Mars Pathfinder site. These trends, most easily visualized in plots of oxides versus SO 3, intersect approximately at a common composition, thought to represent a global dust that has been homogenized by pervasive aeolian activity. The source rocks that were weathered to produce the global dust are inferred to have been basalts rather than felsic rocks, based on the observation that the dust lies along well-established chemical weathering trends for terrestrial basalts. The basaltic protolith was chemically similar (e.g., high Fe/Mg, low Al 2O 3) to basaltic shergottite meteorites. Chemical changes during the weathering of Martian basaltic rocks are apparently not as drastic as in terrestrial weathering, perhaps because of evaporation of hydrous fluids that leave soluble components behind in the residue. Comparison with chemical trends for previously proposed Martian soil-formation mechanisms suggests that palagonitization of basalts more readily explains the dust composition than do hydrothermal alteration at higher temperatures or reactions of rocks with an acid fog produced by volcanic exhalations. Local or temporal processing of dust into soil involves not only cementation by salts and mixing with rock fragments, but also chemical fractionations of Fe 2O 3/TiO 2 presumably resulting from aeolian sorting by grain size and density. If the global dust represents a broad average of the Martian surficial or upper crustal composition, the planet's surface geology is dominated by basaltic volcanic rocks and evaporitic salts.

  16. Water retention of selected microorganisms and Martian soil simulants under close to Martian environmental conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jänchen, J.; Bauermeister, A.; Feyh, N.; de Vera, J.-P.; Rettberg, P.; Flemming, H.-C.; Szewzyk, U.

    2014-08-01

    Based on the latest knowledge about microorganisms resistant towards extreme conditions on Earth and results of new complex models on the development of the Martian atmosphere we quantitatively examined the water-bearing properties of selected extremophiles and simulated Martian regolith components and their interaction with water vapor under close to Martian environmental conditions. Three different species of microorganisms have been chosen and prepared for our study: Deinococcus geothermalis, Leptothrix sp. OT_B_406, and Xanthoria elegans. Further, two mineral mixtures representing the early and the late Martian surface as well as montmorillonite as a single component of phyllosilicatic minerals, typical for the Noachian period on Mars, were selected. The thermal mass loss of the minerals and bacteria-samples was measured by thermoanalysis. The hydration and dehydration properties were determined under close to Martian environmental conditions by sorption isotherm measurements using a McBain-Bakr quartz spring balance. It was possible to determine the total water content of the materials as well as the reversibly bound water fraction as function of the atmospheres humidity by means of these methods. Our results are important for the evaluation of future space mission outcomes including astrobiological aspects and can support the modeling of the atmosphere/surface interaction by showing the influence on the water inventory of the upper most layer of the Martian surface.

  17. Wind tunnel simulation of Martian sand storms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, R.

    1980-01-01

    The physics and geological relationships of particles driven by the wind under near Martian conditions were examined in the Martian Surface Wind Tunnel. Emphasis was placed on aeolian activity as a planetary process. Threshold speeds, rates of erosion, trajectories of windblown particles, and flow fields over various landforms were among the factors considered. Results of experiments on particles thresholds, rates of erosion, and the effects of electrostatics on particles in the aeolian environment are presented.

  18. Thermal Emission Spectra of Altered Tephras and Constraints on the Composition of Martian Dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hamilton, Victoria E.; Morris, Richard V.

    2003-01-01

    We have begun to create a comprehensive set of thermal infrared (TIR, approx. 1650-200/cm, approx. 6-50 microns) spectra of palagonitic and hydrothermally altered soils that exhibit a range of mineralogical and chemical compositions for use in analyzing MGS TES data. Palagonite, a phyllosilicate-poor hydrolytically altered tephra, has been suggested as a possible component of the martian soil/dust based on visible and near infrared (VNIR) spectral similarities with martian dusty regions. The chemistry and crystallinity of altered tephras are highly variable depending on the parent material and local environmental conditions, and are important indicators of alteration processes.

  19. Variations of Martian surface albedo: Evidence for yearly dust deposition and removal

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Christensen, Philip R.

    1987-01-01

    The purpose is to determine the degree, spatial distribution and timing of the deposition and removal of dust storm fallout, and to relate the current patterns of dust deposition and removal to the long-term evolution of the Martian surface. Southern Hemisphere dark areas are found to quickly return to close to their pre-storm albedos, suggesting rapid removal of any dust that was deposited. Northern Hemisphere dark regions are brighter post-storm, but gradually darken to pre-storm levels over the Mars year. In doing so they act as local sources of dust during otherwise clear periods. Dust does not appear to be removed from bright regions, resulting in the 1 to 2 m thick deposits observed today.

  20. Nine martian years of dust optical depth observations: A reference dataset

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Montabone, Luca; Forget, Francois; Kleinboehl, Armin; Kass, David; Wilson, R. John; Millour, Ehouarn; Smith, Michael; Lewis, Stephen; Cantor, Bruce; Lemmon, Mark; Wolff, Michael

    2016-07-01

    We present a multi-annual reference dataset of the horizontal distribution of airborne dust from martian year 24 to 32 using observations of the martian atmosphere from April 1999 to June 2015 made by the Thermal Emission Spectrometer (TES) aboard Mars Global Surveyor, the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) aboard Mars Odyssey, and the Mars Climate Sounder (MCS) aboard Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO). Our methodology to build the dataset works by gridding the available retrievals of column dust optical depth (CDOD) from TES and THEMIS nadir observations, as well as the estimates of this quantity from MCS limb observations. The resulting (irregularly) gridded maps (one per sol) were validated with independent observations of CDOD by PanCam cameras and Mini-TES spectrometers aboard the Mars Exploration Rovers "Spirit" and "Opportunity", by the Surface Stereo Imager aboard the Phoenix lander, and by the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars aboard MRO. Finally, regular maps of CDOD are produced by spatially interpolating the irregularly gridded maps using a kriging method. These latter maps are used as dust scenarios in the Mars Climate Database (MCD) version 5, and are useful in many modelling applications. The two datasets (daily irregularly gridded maps and regularly kriged maps) for the nine available martian years are publicly available as NetCDF files and can be downloaded from the MCD website at the URL: http://www-mars.lmd.jussieu.fr/mars/dust_climatology/index.html

  1. Dust-Driven Halos on the Martian South Polar Residual CAP

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Becerra, P.; Byrne, S.; Brown, A. J.

    2013-12-01

    The CO2 ice South Polar Residual Cap (SPRC) on Mars may be a sensitive indicator of inter-annual planetary climate variability. Imaging by HiRISE [1], and CTX [2] found that many scarps and pits in the 'Swiss cheese terrain' [3] of the SPRC exhibited a bright 'halo' around their edges. These halos appeared during Martian southern summer in Mars Year 28 (MY28, [4]), and have been observed in only one of eight mars years for which observations at high enough resolution exist. We hypothesize that the formation of these features is linked to the late-summer global dust storm of MY28 and report on observations and formation models. We surveyed HiRISE, CTX, and CRISM [5] data to constrain the optical properties and composition of the halos, as well as their time of appearance and location within the SPRC. The halos appeared throughout most of the surface area of the SPRC between Ls 280° and 330° in MY28. The widest portions of the halos occurred adjacent to north-facing walls, and the brightest parts adjacent to sun-facing walls, which points to a connection between insolation and halo appearance. CRISM spectral products rule out the presence of water ice as a factor in the halos' appearance. These data also imply larger CO2 ice grain sizes where the bright halos were seen, which are normally associated with lower, rather than higher, albedos [6]. Thus, we also ruled out CO2 ice grain size differences as the main cause for the halos. The remaining possibility is that the halos appeared due to differences in dust content between the terrain adjacent to the pit walls and the surrounding ice. To investigate this we made a Hapke [7] surface reflectance model in which the CO2 ice grain size, dust volumetric content and dust particle size were free parameters. We used the HiRISE and CRISM bandpass coefficients to simulate HiRISE I/F values and CRISM spectra, and attempted to match the HiRISE RED I/F, HiRISE BG/RED color ratio, and the CRISM 1.43 μm band depths. A self

  2. Evidence of 210Po on Martian dust at Meridiani Planum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meslin, Pierre-Yves; Sabroux, Jean-Christophe; Berger, Lionel; Pineau, Jean-François; Chassefière, Eric

    2006-09-01

    Since the Surveyor and Apollo missions and up to the recent Lunar Prospector mission, 222Rn and 210Po have been key isotopes for understanding gas release events and their spatial and temporal variations on the Moon. Comparatively, these isotopes have drawn much less attention on Mars, if any, despite the wealth of information it could bring on the uppermost meters of the regolith, the exchange of volatiles at the surface, and the atmospheric aerosol cycle. Here we present a statistical analysis of the high-energy end of alpha spectra obtained by the alpha particle X-ray spectrometer onboard Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity and report evidence of 210Po, a decay product of 222Rn, attached to atmospheric dust. The 210Po surface activity on rocks and soils at the landing site is lower than 3.1 × 10-4 Bq cm-2, but analysis of spectra obtained on the dust capture magnet reveals a 210Po activity of (4.6 +/- 2.4) × 10-3 Bq cm-2 (+/-2σ). This difference is due to the very low dust cover index at the landing site. Owing to frequent dust devils, regional and global dust storms that mobilize substantial amounts of dust and homogenize the dust surface layer, we infer that the global average 222Rn exhalation rate is significantly greater on Mars than on the Moon. This comparison supports the hypothesis that on Mars, radon emanation could be comparatively enhanced by the presence of water in the surficial soil. Analysis of atmospheric spectra yields a radon activity upper limit of 16 +/- 5 Bq m-3 during nighttime at the landing site.

  3. Dust and Ice Deposition in the Martian Geologic Record

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Tanaka, K.L.

    2000-01-01

    The polar layered deposits of Mars demonstrate that thick accumulations of dust and ice deposits can develop on the planet if environmental conditions are favorable. These deposits appear to be hundreds of millions of years old, and other deposits of similar size but of greater age in nonpolar regions may have formed by similar processes. Possible relict dust deposits include, from oldest to youngest: Noachian intercrater materials, including Arabia mantle deposits, Noachian to Early Hesperian south polar pitted deposits, Early Hesperian Hellas and Argyre basin deposits, Late Hesperian Electris deposits, and the Amazonian Medusae Fossae Formation. These deposits typically are hundreds of meters to a couple kilometers thick and cover upward of a million or more square kilometers. The apparent persistence of dust sedimentation at the south pole back to the Early Hesperian or earlier and the early growth of Tharsis during the Late Noachian and perhaps earlier indicates that extensive polar wandering is unlikely following the Middle Noachian. A scenario for the overall history of dust and perhaps ice deposition on Mars includes widespread, voluminous accumulations perhaps planetwide during the Noachian as impacts, volcanism, and surface processes generated large amounts of dust; the Arabia deposits may have formed as ice availability and dust accumulation waned. During the Early Hesperian, thick dust sedimentation became restricted to the south pole and the deep Hellas and Argyre basins; the north polar sedimentary record prior to the Amazonian is largely obscured. Deposits at Electris and Medusae Fossae may have resulted from local sources of fine-grained material - perhaps volcanic eruptions.

  4. A Study of the Electrostatic Interaction Between Insulators and Martian/Lunar Soil Simulants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mantovani, James G.

    2001-01-01

    Using our previous experience with the Mars Environmental Compatibility Assessment (MECA) electrometer, we have designed a new type of aerodynamic electrometer. The goal of the research was to measure the buildup of electrostatic surface charge on a stationary cylindrical insulator after windborne granular particles have collided with the insulator surface in a simulated dust storm. The experiments are performed inside a vacuum chamber. This allows the atmospheric composition and pressure to be controlled in order to simulate the atmospheric conditions near the equator on the Martian surface. An impeller fan was used to propel the dust particles at a cylindrically shaped insulator under low vacuum conditions. We tested the new electrometer in a 10 mbar CO2 atmosphere by exposing two types of cylindrical insulators, Teflon (1.9 cm diameter) and Fiberglass (2.5 cm diameter), to a variety of windborne granular particulate materials. The granular materials tested were JSC Mars-1 simulant, which is a mixture of coarse and fine (<5microns diameter) particle sizes, and some of the major mineral constituents of the Martian soil. The minerals included Ottawa sand (SiO2), iron oxide (Fe2O3), aluminum oxide (Al2O3) and magnesium oxide (MgO). We also constructed a MECA-like electrometer that contained an insulator capped planar electrode for measuring the amount of electrostatic charge produced by rubbing an insulator surface over Martian and lunar soil simulants. The results of this study indicate that it is possible to detect triboelectric charging of insulator surfaces by windborne Martian soil simulant, and by individual mineral constituents of the soil simulant. We have also found that Teflon and Fiberglass insulator surfaces respond in different ways by developing opposite polarity surface charge, which decays at different rates after the particle impacts cease.

  5. Interannual perturbations of the Martian surface heat flow by atmospheric dust opacity variations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Plesa, A.-C.; Grott, M.; Lemmon, M. T.; Müller, N.; Piqueux, S.; Siegler, M. A.; Smrekar, S. E.; Spohn, T.

    2016-10-01

    The InSight (Interior Exploration using Seismic Investigations, Geodesy and Heat Transport) mission will perform the first Martian in situ heat flow measurement by deploying the Heat Flow and Physical Properties Package (HP3) onto the Martian surface. In order to estimate the heat flow coming from the planetary interior, HP3 will measure the local subsurface thermal gradient as well as the local thermal conductivity to a depth of up to 5 m. From these measurements, local heat flow can be determined, but this will in general differ from the heat flow emanating from the planetary interior due to atmosphere-induced perturbations. Here we quantify heat flow perturbation induced by dust loading of the Martian atmosphere using dust opacity data obtained by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity. Dust opacity data span the time period between Mars year (MY) 27 and MY 32, thus incorporating the global dust storm event of MY 28 as a signal. We consider two end-member cases for the regolith thermal conductivity and find that the background planetary heat flow is superposed by atmosphere-induced perturbations of less than 1.5 mW m-2 at depths below 2 m if regolith thermal conductivity is low and around 0.025 W m-1 K-1 on average. If thermal conductivity is high and around 0.05 W m-1 K-1 on average, perturbations are less than 2.5 mW m-2 at depths below 3 m. Overall, the influence of interannual variability on subsurface heat flow is found to be moderate following a global dust storm. Considerably smaller perturbations are introduced by regional dust storms, which are of shorter duration and smaller magnitude.

  6. Intercomparison of Martian Lower Atmosphere Simulated Using Different Planetary Boundary Layer Parameterization Schemes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Natarajan, Murali; Fairlie, T. Duncan; Dwyer Cianciolo, Alicia; Smith, Michael D.

    2015-01-01

    We use the mesoscale modeling capability of Mars Weather Research and Forecasting (MarsWRF) model to study the sensitivity of the simulated Martian lower atmosphere to differences in the parameterization of the planetary boundary layer (PBL). Characterization of the Martian atmosphere and realistic representation of processes such as mixing of tracers like dust depend on how well the model reproduces the evolution of the PBL structure. MarsWRF is based on the NCAR WRF model and it retains some of the PBL schemes available in the earth version. Published studies have examined the performance of different PBL schemes in NCAR WRF with the help of observations. Currently such assessments are not feasible for Martian atmospheric models due to lack of observations. It is of interest though to study the sensitivity of the model to PBL parameterization. Typically, for standard Martian atmospheric simulations, we have used the Medium Range Forecast (MRF) PBL scheme, which considers a correction term to the vertical gradients to incorporate nonlocal effects. For this study, we have also used two other parameterizations, a non-local closure scheme called Yonsei University (YSU) PBL scheme and a turbulent kinetic energy closure scheme called Mellor- Yamada-Janjic (MYJ) PBL scheme. We will present intercomparisons of the near surface temperature profiles, boundary layer heights, and wind obtained from the different simulations. We plan to use available temperature observations from Mini TES instrument onboard the rovers Spirit and Opportunity in evaluating the model results.

  7. Martian dust aerosols and clouds in the North Polar summer: size and sedimentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemmon, M. T.; Mason, E.

    2013-12-01

    Martian dust aerosols control an important part of the energy transport in the Martian atmosphere. Ice aerosols, especially in the North Polar summer, play an important role in energy transport, scavenge the atmosphere of dust, and play a role in the vertical and horizontal transport of water away from the sublimating polar cap. Their physical properties, such as size and shape, have not been directly measured, and are only measureable through remote sensing. We report two novel measurements of dust and ice aerosol physical properties with data from the Phoenix Lander's Surface Stereo Imager. First, the scoop on the Phoenix Robotic Arm was used as an occultation instrument, blocking the Sun and allowing images of the near-Sun sky without contamination from the much-brighter direct sunlight. This allows the use of diffraction scattering to measure the dust size distribution. The general technique has been used frequently, but the shading of the Sun allows much more precise and accurate probing, especially of the larger end of the size distribution. Second, direct solar images on many occasions show scattered sky light significantly above the instrument background during cloudy times. These measurements, corrected for the dust background, show light diffracted by cloud particles. Statistics of the magnitude and width of the diffraction peak demonstrate the common presence of 30-micron scale ice crystals above the Phoenix site, consistent with estimates made from the observation of fall streaks by the Lidar.

  8. Martian dust aerosols and clouds in the North Polar summer: size and sedimentation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lemmon, Mark T.; Mason, E.

    2013-10-01

    Martian dust aerosols control an important part of the energy transport in the Martian atmosphere. Ice aerosols, especially in the North Polar summer, play an important role in energy transport, scavenge the atmosphere of dust, and play a role in the vertical and horizontal transport of water away from the sublimating polar cap. Their physical properties, such as size and shape, have not been directly measured, and are only measureable through remote sensing. We report two novel measurements of dust and ice aerosol physical properties with data from the Phoenix Lander’s Surface Stereo Imager. First, the scoop on the Phoenix Robotic Arm was used as an occultation instrument, blocking the Sun and allowing images of the near-Sun sky without contamination from the much-brighter direct sunlight. This allows the use of diffraction scattering to measure the dust size distribution. The general technique has been used frequently, but the shading of the Sun allows much more precise and accurate probing, especially of the larger end of the size distribution. Second, direct solar images on many occasions show scattered sky light significantly above the instrument background during cloudy times. These measurements, corrected for the dust background, show light diffracted by cloud particles. Statistics of the magnitude and width of the diffraction peak demonstrate the common presence of 30-micron scale ice crystals above the Phoenix site, consistent with estimates made from the observation of fall streaks by the Lidar.

  9. THEMIS VIS and IR observations of a high-altitude Martian dust devil

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cushing, G.E.; Titus, T.N.; Christensen, P.R.

    2005-01-01

    The Mars Odyssey Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) imaged a Martian dust devil in both visible and thermal-infrared wavelengths on January 30, 2004. We believe this is the first documented infrared observation of an extraterrestrial dust devil, and the highest to be directly observed at more than 16 kilometers above the equatorial geoid of Mars. This dust devil measured over 700 meters in height and 375 meters across, and the strongest infrared signature was given by atmospheric dust absorption in the 9-micron range (THEMIS IR band 5). In addition to having formed in the extremely low-pressure environment of about 1 millibar, this dust devil is of particular interest because it was observed at 16:06 local time. This is an unusually late time of day to find dust devils on Mars, during a period when rapid surface cooling typically reduces the boundary-layer turbulence necessary to form these convective vortices. Understanding the mechanisms for dust-devil formation under such extreme circumstances will help to constrain theories of atmospheric dynamics, and of dust lifting and transport mechanisms on Mars. Copyright 2005 by the American Geophysical Union.

  10. Laboratory simulation of dust spectra

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Allamandola, L. J.; Sandford, S. A.

    1988-01-01

    Laboratory studies of the IR spectra of interstellar dust are reviewed. Studies of the absorption spectra of dense molecular clouds are discussed, including methods to produce interstellar ice analogues, simulations of astronomical spectra, and IR absorption features caused by ices. Comparisons are made between observational and experimental results of interstellar dust studies. Also, the interstellar emission features associated with dusty regions exposed to UV radiation are examined, including bands related to PAHs and PAH-related materials. It is shown that interstellar spectra are more consistant with emission from free PAHs than with emission from particles.

  11. Complex refractive index of Martian dust - Mariner 9 ultraviolet observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pang, K.; Ajello, J. M.; Hord, C. W.; Egan, W. G.

    1976-01-01

    Mariner 9 ultraviolet spectrometer observations of the 1971 dust clouds obscuring the surface of Mars have been analyzed by matching the observed dust phase function with Mie scattering calculations for size distributions of homogeneous and isotropic material. Preliminary results indicate an effective particle radius of not less than 0.2. The real component of the index of refraction is not less than 1.8 at both 268 and 305 nm; corresponding values for the imagery component are 0.02 and 0.01. These values are consistent with those found by Mead (1970) for the visible and near-visible wavelengths. The refractive index and the absorption coefficient increase rapidly with decreasing wavelength in going from the visible to the ultraviolet, indicating the presence of an ultraviolet absorption band which may shield organisms from ultraviolet irradiation.

  12. The apparatus "Photostat-I" for simulating Martian environmental conditions.

    PubMed

    Zaar, E I; Zelikson, V G; Kitaigorodsky, M G; Lozina-Lozinsky, L K; Koshelev, G V; Rybin, M A

    1970-01-01

    One of the main tasks of exobiology is to determine conditions required for life on different planets of our solar system. At present, experimental ecological methods permitting the study of responses of living systems to extreme influences and, in particular, to simulated environmental Martian conditions, are widely used. To study the reaction of Earth organisms, special chambers and mechanisms are used which allow the modelling of conditions different from ours, mainly Martian. Existing devices capable of simulating the Martian environment. Our apparatus "Photostat-I" permits the simulation of pressure and visible light illumination (up to 60,000 lux), the irradiation of biological objectives in UV light (220-400 nm) and the production of a daily temperature cycle typical of Mars with a high degree of accuracy.

  13. Automated width measurements of Martian dust devil tracks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Statella, Thiago; Pina, Pedro; da Silva, Erivaldo Antônio

    2016-03-01

    Studying dust devils is important to better understand Mars climate and resurfacing phenomena. This paper presents an automated approach to calculate the width of tracks in orbital images. The method is based on Mathematical Morphology and was applied to a set of 200 HiRISE and MOC images of five Mars quadrangles, which were Aeolis, Argyre, Noachis, Hellas and Eridania. Information obtained by our method was compared with results of manual analysis performed by other authors. In addition, we show that track widths do not follow a normal distribution.

  14. Preliminary Testing of a Pressurized Space Suit and Candidate Fabrics Under Simulated Mars Dust Storm and Dust Devil Conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; deLeon, Pablo G.; Lee, Pascal; McCue, Terry R.; Hodgson, Edward W.; Thrasher, Jeff

    2010-01-01

    In August 2009 YAP Films (Toronto) received permission from all entities involved to create a documentary film illustrating what it might be like to be on the surface of Mars in a space suit during a dust storm or in a dust devil. The science consultants on this project utilized this opportunity to collect data which could be helpful to assess the durability of current space suit construction to the Martian environment. The NDX?1 prototype planetary space suit developed at the University of North Dakota was used in this study. The suit features a hard upper torso garment, and a soft lower torso and boots assembly. On top of that, a nylon-cotton outer layer is used to protect the suit from dust. Unmanned tests were carried out in the Martian Surface Wind Tunnel (MARSWIT) at the NASA Ames Research Center, with the suit pressurized to 10 kPa gauge. These tests blasted the space suit upper torso and helmet, and a collection of nine candidate outer layer fabrics, with wind-borne simulant for five different 10 minute tests under both terrestrial and Martian surface pressures. The infiltration of the dust through the outer fabric of the space suit was photographically documented. The nine fabric samples were analyzed under light and electron microscopes for abrasion damage. Manned tests were carried out at Showbiz Studios (Van Nuys, CA) with the pressure maintained at 20?2 kPa gauge. A large fan-created vortex lifted Martian dust simulant (Fullers Earth or JSC Mars?1) off of the floor, and one of the authors (Lee) wearing the NDX?1 space suit walked through it to judge both subjectively and objectively how the suit performed under these conditions. Both the procedures to scale the tests to Martian conditions and the results of the infiltration and abrasion studies will be discussed.

  15. Preliminary Testing of a Pressurized Space Suit and Candidate Fabrics Under Simulated Mars Dust Storm and Dust Devil Conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; deLeon, Pablo G.; Lee, Pascal; McCue, Terry R.; Hodgson, Edward W.; Thrasher, Jeff

    2010-01-01

    In August 2009 YAP Films (Toronto) received permission from all entities involved to create a documentary film illustrating what it might be like to be on the surface of Mars in a space suit during a dust storm or in a dust devil. The science consultants on this project utilized this opportunity to collect data which could be helpful to assess the durability of current space suit construction to the Martian environment. The NDX-1 prototype planetary space suit developed at the University of North Dakota was used in this study. The suit features a hard upper torso garment, and a soft lower torso and boots assembly. On top of that, a nylon-cotton outer layer is used to protect the suit from dust. Unmanned tests were carried out in the Martian Surface Wind Tunnel (MARSWIT) at the NASA Ames Research Center, with the suit pressurized to 10 kPa gauge. These tests blasted the space suit upper torso and helmet, and a collection of nine candidate outer layer fabrics, with wind-borne simulant for five different 10 min tests under both terrestrial and Martian surface pressures. The infiltration of the dust through the outer fabric of the space suit was photographically documented. The nine fabric samples were analyzed under light and electron microscopes for abrasion damage. Manned tests were carried out at Showbiz Studios (Van Nuys, California) with the pressure maintained at 20 2 kPa gauge. A large fan-created vortex lifted Martian dust simulant (Fullers Earth or JSC Mars-1) off of the floor, and one of the authors (Lee) wearing the NDX-1 space suit walked through it to judge both subjectively and objectively how the suit performed under these conditions. Both the procedures to scale the tests to Martian conditions and the results of the infiltration and abrasion studies will be discussed.

  16. An Electrostatic Precipitator System for the Martian Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calle, C. I.; Mackey, P. J.; Hogue, M. D.; Johansen, M. R.; Phillips, J. R., III; Clements, J. S.

    2012-01-01

    Human exploration missions to Mars will require the development of technologies for the utilization of the planet's own resources for the production of commodities. However, the Martian atmosphere contains large amounts of dust. The extraction of commodities from this atmosphere requires prior removal of this dust. We report on our development of an electrostatic precipitator able to collect Martian simulated dust particles in atmospheric conditions approaching those of Mars. Extensive experiments with an initial prototype in a simulated Martian atmosphere showed efficiencies of 99%. The design of a second prototype with aerosolized Martian simulated dust in a flow-through is described. Keywords: Space applications, electrostatic precipitator, particle control, particle charging

  17. Martian airfall dust on smooth, inclined surfaces as observed on the Phoenix Mars Lander telltale mirror

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moores, John E.; Ha, Taesung; Lemmon, Mark T.; Gunnlaugsson, Haraldur Páll

    2015-10-01

    The telltale mirror, a smooth inclined surface raised over 1 m above the deck of the Phoenix Mars Lander, was observed by the Surface Stereo Imager (SSI) several times per sol during the Phoenix Mars Lander mission. These observations were combined with a radiative transfer model to determine the thickness of dust on the wind telltale mirror as a function of time. 239 telltale sequences were analyzed and dustiness was determined on a diurnal and seasonal basis. The thickness of accumulated dust did not follow any particular diurnal or seasonal trend. The dust thickness on the mirror over the mission was 0.82±0.39 μm, which suggests a similar thickness to the modal scattering particle diameter. This suggests that inclining a surface beyond the angle of repose and polishing it to remove surface imperfections is an effective way to mitigate the accumulation of dust to less than a micron over a wide range of meteorological conditions and could be beneficial for surfaces which can tolerate some dust but not thick accumulations, such as solar panels. However, such a surface will not remain completely dust free through this action alone and mechanical or electrical clearing must be employed to remove adhered dust if a pristine surface is required. The single-scattering phase function of the dust on the mirror was consistent with the single-scattering phase function of martian aerosol dust at 450 nm, suggesting that this result is inconsistent with models of the atmosphere which require vertically or horizontally separated components or broad size distributions to explain the scattering behavior of these aerosols in the blue. The single-scattering behavior of the dust on the mirror is also consistent with Hapke modeling of spherical particles. The presence of a monolayer of particles would tend to support the spherical conclusion: such particles would be most strongly adhered electrostatically.

  18. Simulating Meteor Shower Observations In The Martian Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McAuliffe, J. P.; Christou, A. A.

    2005-08-01

    It is known that fast meteoroids entering the martian atmosphere give rise to bright, detectable meteors (Adolfsson et al, Icarus 119, 144, 1996). Although single meteors have already been detected at Mars (Selsis et al., Nature 435, 581, 2005), the characterisation of the martian meteor year will require a large number of detections. Experience at the Earth suggests that data storage and bandwidth resources to conduct such surveys will be substantial, and may be prohibitive. In an attempt to quantify the problem in detail, we have simulated meteor shower detection in the martian and terrestrial atmospheres. For a given shower, we assume a meteoroid stream flux, size distribution and velocity based on current knowledge of Earth streams as well as the proximity of certain comets' orbits to that of Mars. A numerical code is used to simulate meteoroid ablation in a model martian and terrestrial atmosphere. Finally, using the same baseline detector characteristics (limiting magnitude, sky coverage) we generate detection statistics for the two planets. We will present results for different types of showers, including strong annual activity and episodic outbursts from Halley-type and Jupiter family comets. We will show how detection efficiency at Mars compares to the Earth for these showers and discuss optimum strategies for monitoring the martian atmosphere for meteor activity. Astronomy research at Armagh Observatory is funded by the Northern Ireland Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure (DCAL).

  19. Composition of Simulated Martian Brines and Implications for the Origin of Martian Salts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bullock, M. A.; Moore, J. M.; Mellon, M. T.

    2004-01-01

    We report on laboratory experiments that have produced dilute brines under controlled conditions meant to simulate past and present Mars. We allowed an SNC-derived mineral mix to react with pure water under a simulated present-Mars atmosphere for seven months. We then subjected the same mineral mix to a similar aqueous environment for one year, but with a simulated Mars atmosphere that contained the added gases SO2, HCl and NO2. The addition of acidic gases was designed to mimic the effects of volcanic gases that may have been present in the martian atmosphere during periods of increased volcanic activity. The experiments were performed at one bar and at two different temperatures in order to simulate subsurface conditions where liquid water and rock are likely to interact on Mars. The dominant cations dissolved in the solutions we produced were Ca(2+), Mg(2+), Al(3+) and Na(+), while the major anions are dissolved C, F(-), SO4(2-) and Cl(-). Typical solution pH was 4.2 to 6.0 for experiments run with a Mars analog atmosphere, and 3.6-5.0 for experiments with acidic gases added. Abundance patterns of elements in the synthetic sulfate-chloride brines produced under acidic conditions were distinctly unlike those of terrestrial ocean water, terrestrial continental waters, and those measured in the martian fines at the Mars Pathfinder and Viking 1 and 2 landing sites. In particular, the S/Cl ratio in these experiments was about 200, compared with an average value of approx. 5 in martian fines. In contrast, abundance patterns of elements in the brines produced under a present day Mars analog atmosphere were quite similar to those measured in the martian fines at the Mars Pathfinder and Viking 1 and 2 landing sites. This suggests that salts present in the martian regolith may have formed over time as a result of the interaction of surface or subsurface liquid water with basalts in the presence of a martian atmosphere similar in composition to that of today, rather than

  20. Experimental simulation of early Martian volcanic lightning.

    PubMed

    Segura, A; Navarro-Gonzalez, R

    2001-01-01

    A mixture of possible Martian volcanic gases were reproduced and irradiated by a high-energy infrared laser to reproduce the effects of lightning on the production of prebiotic molecules. The analysis of products were performed by a gas chromatograph interfaced in parallel with a FTIR-detector and a quadrupole mass spectrometer equipped with an electron impact and chemical ionization modes. The main products identified were hydrocarbons and an uncharacterized yellow film deposit. Preliminary results indicate the presence of hydrogen cyanide among the resultant compounds.

  1. The Effects of Thermal Tides and Dust on Traveling Waves in the Martian Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, H.; Toigo, A. D.; Richardson, M. I.

    2014-12-01

    Observations show that traveling waves with zonal wavenumber k = 3 correlate closely with the development of frontal / flushing dust storms which are important in the Martian dust cycle. Previous modeling work suggests that both the polar hood [Barnes et al., 2014] and the cap edge dust storms [Wang et al., 2013] have the potential to enhance these waves. In this presentation, we investigate the case of cap edge dust further, focusing on the following results. We will show that the relative strength of the traveling waves depends not only on the time, geolocation, height and variable under consideration, but also on the analysis method. For near surface temperature which is observable by spacecraft, the spectral and time averaged wave power can lead to a different answer than the monochromatic wave power. In particular, in the presence of cap edge dust, the modeled zonal wavenumber k = 3 can dominate the traveling wave spectra at times. In the presence of cap edge dust in the model, the enhancement of the k = 3 traveling waves is accompanied by pronounced increase of the diurnal tide. To test the effect of thermal tides on traveling waves, we have performed sensitivity runs where the insolation is replaced by the diurnally averaged value. We find that the amplitude of the k = 3 traveling waves are greatly reduced without thermal tides. Detailed analyses of the relationship between the waves will be presented.

  2. Response of microorganisms to a simulated Martian environment.

    PubMed

    Hawrylewicz, E J; Hagen, C A; Ehrlich, R

    1965-01-01

    A study was undertaken to determine whether terrestrial microorganisms can survive in a simulated Martian environment. The ultimate objective is to establish whether earth organisms can contaminate Mars. In addition, any demonstration of survival and growth in a simulated Martian environment will provide information relating to the biology of Mars. In the experimental design, exhaustive consideration was given to the duplication of the known and the theoretical environmental parameters of Mars. These included composition of the soil and the atmosphere, barometric pressure, moisture content, solar radiation, and diurnal temperature extremes. Based upon these considerations, a simulated Martian summer environment was defined and used in the experiments. One group of microorganisms was selected from culture collections on the basis of their known characteristics. The other group was made of microorganisms isolated from soils. The soil samples were obtained from the Antarctic, from New Mexico, and California deserts, and from the Colorado tundra. The studies showed that a number of microorganisms can survive the simulated Martian environment. However, no substantial growth under such conditions could be demonstrated. The ability of microorganisms to form spores as a mechanism for survival will be discussed. Also, experiments utilizing augmented environments to establish minimum environmental conditions which will permit growth will be described.

  3. Bacterial growth in a simulated Martian subsurface environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kronyak, R. E.; Pavlov, A.; House, C. H.

    2013-12-01

    The ability of microorganisms to grow under Martian conditions has implications in both the search for life and habitability of Mars as well as the potential contamination of Mars by landing spacecraft. Factors that inhibit the growth of organisms on Mars include UV radiation, low pressure and temperature, CO2 atmosphere, lack of liquid water, and extreme desiccation. Yet a possible biozone capable of supporting microbial life on Mars exists in the shallow subsurface where there is protection from harsh UV rays. In addition, the presence of widespread subsurface ice, confirmed by the Phoenix Lander, offers a water source as the ice sublimates through the upper soil. Here we will determine the ability of the organism Halomonas desiderata strain SP1 to grow in the simulated Martian subsurface environment. Halomonas was chosen as the bacteria of interest due to its tolerance to extreme environments, including carrying salt concentrations and pH. Experiments were carried out in the Mars Simulation Chamber, where temperatures, pressures, and atmospheric composition can be closely monitored to simulate Martian conditions. A series of stress experiments were conducted to observe Halomonas's ability to withstand exposure to a Mars analog soil, freezing temperatures, anoxic conditions, and low pressures. We have determined that Halomonas is able to survive exposures to low temperatures, pressures, and anoxic conditions. We will report on the survival and growth of Halomonas in the simulated Martian permafrost under low (6-10 mbar) atmospheric pressures.

  4. The Simulation of Transient Eddies and Frontal Systems in the Martian Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, J.; Wang, H.; Smith, M. D.; Hinson, D. P.

    2005-05-01

    The initiation and evolution of a number of regional scale dust storms has been documented in detail with MOC imagery and with TES temperature and dust opacity observations. These storms are evidently associated with traveling waves embedded in the strong westerly jet that is present in the northern hemisphere in the fall, winter and spring seasons. The most prominent storms occurred in the low topography regions (Acidalia, Arcadia and Utopia) within two seasonal windows (Ls=200-240 and Ls =305-340) before and after northern winter solstice. In particular, a large regional storm was observed in early December 2003 (Ls=309). This storm originated in the northern hemisphere and moved southward to the equator in the longitude sector east of Tharsis in the same fashion as storms in preceding years. Upon reaching low latitudes, this dust storm rapidly intensified and spread, yielding the highest dust optical depths at low to mid southern latitudes. It appears that these flushing storms are present in most Mars years and significantly contribute to the seasonally-varying envelope of background dust opacity and global mean temperature. We will present a study of the climatology of traveling baroclinic wave behavior present in annual cycle simulations of the martian atmosphere using the GFDL Mars general circulation model (MGCM). In general, we find that zonal waves 2 and 3 are favored in the NH fall and late winter seasons, as observed, and that these waves are modulated by topography to favor storm development in the low elevation regions. We will also show high-resolution simulations with surface stress dependent interactive dust lifting that provide insight into the storm intensification stage as dust is transported southward in these basins. The inclusion of predicted water ice clouds provides an additional means of comparing the simulated circulations with observed dust and water ice cloud morphologies.

  5. Germination and growth of wheat in simulated Martian atmospheres

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schwartzkopf, Steven H.; Mancinelli, Rocco L.

    1991-01-01

    One design for a manned Mars base incorporates a bioregenerative life support system based upon growing higher plants at a low atmospheric pressure in a greenhouse on the Martian surface. To determine the concept's feasibility, the germination and initial growth of wheat (Triticum aestivum) was evaluated at low atmospheric pressures in simulated Martian atmosphere (SMA) and in SMA supplemented with oxygen. Total atmospheric pressures ranged from 10 to 1013 mb. No seeds germinated in pure SMA, regardless of atmospheric pressure. In SMA plus oxygen at 60 mb total pressure, germination and growth occurred but were lower than in the earth atmosphere controls.

  6. Germination and growth of wheat in simulated Martian atmospheres.

    PubMed

    Schwartzkopf, S H; Mancinelli, R L

    1991-01-01

    One design for a manned Mars base incorporates a bioregenerative life support system based upon growing higher plants at a low atmospheric pressure in a greenhouse on the Martian surface. To determine the concept's feasibility, the germination and initial growth of wheat (Triticum aestivum) was evaluated at low atmospheric pressures in simulated Martian atmosphere (SMA) and in SMA supplemented with oxygen. Total atmospheric pressures ranged from 10 to 1013 mb. No seeds germinated in pure SMA, regardless of atmospheric pressure. In SMA plus oxygen at 60 mb total pressure, germination and growth occurred but were lower than in the Earth atmosphere controls.

  7. Retrieval of Martian dust properties by surface observations and radiative transfer models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kemppinen, O.; Merikallio, S.; Crisp, D.; Harri, A.

    2013-12-01

    We present the investigations of the properties of Martian dust based on observed changes in atmospheric opacity and surface temperature by using fast and accurate radiative transfer models. We utilize large amounts of atmospheric data, such as the data from Viking Landers recently re-processed by Finnish Meteorological Institute, and select periods of time when there are sudden changes in the observed atmospheric opacity. Then, we will automatically fine-tune the dust and other optical parameters in a radiative transfer model and other models to reproduce the observed effect in the atmospheric temperature. This will result in a large number of required computations, which dictates that the models need to be computationally fast, while also being accurate and flexible. Due to these restrictions, we will be using the SMART model developed by Dr. David Crisp. As is usual for inverse problems with several free parameters, there will likely be an infinite number of possible solutions. We hope to limit the valid solution space by using a large amount of separate instances of opacity changes. We will also utilize a priori information based on the current knowledge of Martian dust to achieve additional accuracy on top of the purely computational approach.

  8. Oxidant Enhancement in Martian Dust Devils and Storms: Implications for Life and Habitability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atreya, Sushil K.; Wong, Ah-San; Renno, Nilton O.; Farrell, William M.; Delory, Gregory T.; Sentman, David D.; Cummer, Steven A.; Marshall, John R.; Rafkin, Scot C. R.; Catling, David C.

    2006-06-01

    We investigate a new mechanism for producing oxidants, especially hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), on Mars. Large-scale electrostatic fields generated by charged sand and dust in the martian dust devils and storms, as well as during normal saltation, can induce chemical changes near and above the surface of Mars. The most dramatic effect is found in the production of H2O2 whose atmospheric abundance in the "vapor" phase can exceed 200 times that produced by photochemistry alone. With large electric fields, H2O2 abundance gets large enough for condensation to occur, followed by precipitation out of the atmosphere. Large quantities of H2O2 would then be adsorbed into the regolith, either as solid H2O2 "dust" or as re-evaporated vapor if the solid does not survive as it diffuses from its production region close to the surface. We suggest that this H2O2, or another superoxide processed from it in the surface, may be responsible for scavenging organic material from Mars. The presence of H2O2 in the surface could also accelerate the loss of methane from the atmosphere, thus requiring a larger source for maintaining a steady-state abundance of methane on Mars. The surface oxidants, together with storm electric fields and the harmful ultraviolet radiation that readily passes through the thin martian atmosphere, are likely to render the surface of Mars inhospitable to life as we know it.

  9. Oxidant enhancement in martian dust devils and storms: implications for life and habitability.

    PubMed

    Atreya, Sushil K; Wong, Ah-San; Renno, Nilton O; Farrell, William M; Delory, Gregory T; Sentman, Davis D; Cummer, Steven A; Marshall, John R; Rafkin, Scot C R; Catling, David C

    2006-06-01

    We investigate a new mechanism for producing oxidants, especially hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), on Mars. Large-scale electrostatic fields generated by charged sand and dust in the martian dust devils and storms, as well as during normal saltation, can induce chemical changes near and above the surface of Mars. The most dramatic effect is found in the production of H2O2 whose atmospheric abundance in the "vapor" phase can exceed 200 times that produced by photochemistry alone. With large electric fields, H2O2 abundance gets large enough for condensation to occur, followed by precipitation out of the atmosphere. Large quantities of H2O2 would then be adsorbed into the regolith, either as solid H2O2 "dust" or as re-evaporated vapor if the solid does not survive as it diffuses from its production region close to the surface. We suggest that this H2O2, or another superoxide processed from it in the surface, may be responsible for scavenging organic material from Mars. The presence of H2O2 in the surface could also accelerate the loss of methane from the atmosphere, thus requiring a larger source for maintaining a steady-state abundance of methane on Mars. The surface oxidants, together with storm electric fields and the harmful ultraviolet radiation that readily passes through the thin martian atmosphere, are likely to render the surface of Mars inhospitable to life as we know it.

  10. A Study of Mars Dust Environment Simulation at NASA Johnson Space Center Energy Systems Test Area Resource Conversion Test Facility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chen, Yuan-Liang Albert

    1999-01-01

    The dust environment on Mars is planned to be simulated in a 20 foot thermal-vacuum chamber at the Johnson Space Center, Energy Systems Test Area Resource Conversion Test Facility in Houston, Texas. This vacuum chamber will be used to perform tests and study the interactions between the dust in Martian air and ISPP hardware. This project is to research, theorize, quantify, and document the Mars dust/wind environment needed for the 20 foot simulation chamber. This simulation work is to support the safety, endurance, and cost reduction of the hardware for the future missions. The Martian dust environment conditions is discussed. Two issues of Martian dust, (1) Dust Contamination related hazards, and (2) Dust Charging caused electrical hazards, are of our interest. The different methods of dust particles measurement are given. The design trade off and feasibility were studied. A glass bell jar system is used to evaluate various concepts for the Mars dust/wind environment simulation. It was observed that the external dust source injection is the best method to introduce the dust into the simulation system. The dust concentration of 30 Mg/M3 should be employed for preparing for the worst possible Martian atmosphere condition in the future. Two approaches thermal-panel shroud for the hardware conditioning are discussed. It is suggested the wind tunnel approach be used to study the dust charging characteristics then to be apply to the close-system cyclone approach. For the operation cost reduction purpose, a dehumidified ambient air could be used to replace the expensive CO2 mixture for some tests.

  11. The Martian annual atmospheric pressure cycle - Years without great dust storms

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tillman, James E.; Johnson, Neal C.; Guttorp, Peter; Percival, Donald B.

    1993-01-01

    A model of the annual cycle of pressure on Mars for a 2-yr period, chosen to include one year at the Viking Lander 2 and to minimize the effect of great dust storms at the 22-deg N Lander 1 site, was developed by weighted least squares fitting of the Viking Lander pressure measurements to an annual mean, and fundamental and the first four harmonics of the annual cycle. Close agreement was obtained between the two years, suggesting that an accurate representation of the annual CO2 condensation-sublimation cycle can be established for such years. This model is proposed as the 'nominal' Martian annual pressure cycle, and applications are suggested.

  12. Numerical simulation of the radiation environment on Martian surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhao, L.

    2015-12-01

    The radiation environment on the Martian surface is significantly different from that on earth. Existing observation and studies reveal that the radiation environment on the Martian surface is highly variable regarding to both short- and long-term time scales. For example, its dose rate presents diurnal and seasonal variations associated with atmospheric pressure changes. Moreover, dose rate is also strongly influenced by the modulation from GCR flux. Numerical simulation and theoretical explanations are required to understand the mechanisms behind these features, and to predict the time variation of radiation environment on the Martian surface if aircraft is supposed to land on it in near future. The high energy galactic cosmic rays (GCRs) which are ubiquitous throughout the solar system are highly penetrating and extremely difficult to shield against beyond the Earth's protective atmosphere and magnetosphere. The goal of this article is to evaluate the long term radiation risk on the Martian surface. Therefore, we need to develop a realistic time-dependent GCR model, which will be integrated with Geant4 transport code subsequently to reproduce the observed variation of surface dose rate associated with the changing heliospheric conditions. In general, the propagation of cosmic rays in the interplanetary medium can be described by a Fokker-Planck equation (or Parker equation). In last decade,we witnessed a fast development of GCR transport models within the heliosphere based on accurate gas-dynamic and MHD backgrounds from global models of the heliosphere. The global MHD simulation produces a more realistic pattern of the 3-D heliospheric structure, as well as the interface between the solar system and the surrounding interstellar space. As a consequence, integrating plasma background obtained from global-dependent 3-D MHD simulation and stochastic Parker transport simulation, we expect to produce an accurate global physical-based GCR modulation model. Combined

  13. Absorption and scattering properties of the Martian dust in the solar wavelengths.

    PubMed

    Ockert-Bell, M E; Bell JF 3rd; Pollack, J B; McKay, C P; Forget, F

    1997-04-25

    A new wavelength-dependent model of the single-scattering properties of the Martian dust is presented. The model encompasses the solar wavelengths (0.3 to 4.3 micrometers at 0.02 micrometer resolution) and does not assume a particular mineralogical composition of the particles. We use the particle size distribution, shape, and single-scattering properties at Viking Lander wavelengths presented by Pollack et al. [1995]. We expand the wavelength range of the aerosol model by assuming that the atmospheric dust complex index of refraction is the same as that of dust particles in the bright surface geologic units. The new wavelength-dependent model is compared to observations taken by the Viking Orbiter Infrared Thermal Mapper solar channel instrument during two dust storms. The model accurately matches afternoon observations and some morning observations. Some of the early morning observations are much brighter than the model results. The increased reflectance can be ascribed to the formation of a water ice shell around the dust particles, thus creating the water ice clouds which Colburn et al. [1989], among others, have predicted.

  14. The Simulation of Transient Eddies and Frontal Systems in the Martian Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilson, J.

    2006-12-01

    The initiation and evolution of a number of regional scale dust storms has been documented in detail with MOC imagery and with TES temperature and dust opacity observations. These storms are evidently associated with traveling waves embedded in the strong westerly jet that is present in the northern hemisphere in the fall, winter and spring seasons. The most prominent storms occurred in the low topography regions (Acidalia, Arcadia and Utopia) within two seasonal windows (Ls=200-240 and Ls =305-340) before and after northern winter solstice. In a number of cases these storms move southward to the equator where they rapidly intensify and spread, yielding the highest dust optical depths at low to mid southern latitudes. These "flushing" storms are present in most Mars years and significantly contribute to the seasonally-varying envelope of background dust opacity and global mean temperature. We will present a study of the climatology of traveling baroclinic wave behavior present in annual cycle simulations of the martian atmosphere using the GFDL Mars general circulation model. In general, we find that zonal waves 2 and 3 are favored in the NH fall and late winter seasons, and that these waves are modulated by topography to favor storm development in the low elevation regions. The inclusion of predicted water ice clouds provides an additional means of comparing the simulated circulations with observed dust and water ice cloud morphologies. The radiative effects of polar hood clouds can have a significant effect on the traveling wave climatology by modifying the temperature gradient across the polar vortex. We will also show high- resolution simulations with surface stress-dependent interactive dust lifting that provide insight into the storm intensification stage as dust is transported southward in these basins.

  15. Thermal structure and dust loading of the Martian atmosphere during late southern summer - Mariner 9 revisited

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santee, M.; Crisp, D.

    1993-02-01

    Thermal emission spectra recorded by the Mariner 9 IR interferometer spectrometer (IRIS) are used to investigate the temperature structure and dust loading of the Martian atmosphere. The analysis is restricted to a subset of the IRIS data consisting of approximately 2400 spectra in a 12-day period extending from LS of 343 to 348 deg, corresponding to late southern summer on Mars. The largest column-integrated 9-micron dust optical depths (about 0.4) occur over the equatorial regions. The highest atmospheric temperatures (greater than 260 K) are found at low altitudes near the subsolar latitude (about 6 deg S), while the coldest temperatures (less than 150 K) are found at levels near 1.0 mbar over the winter pole. The existence of a net zonally averaged meridional circulation with rising motion at low latitudes, poleward flow at altitudes above 40 km, and subsidence over the poles is suggested.

  16. Techniques for carrying out radiative transfer calculations for the Martian atmospheric dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Aronson, J. R.; Emslie, A. G.; Strong, P. F.

    1974-01-01

    A description is given of the modification of a theory on the reflectance of particulate media so as to apply it to analysis of the infrared spectra obtained by the IRIS instrument on Mariner 9. With the aid of this theory and the optical constants of muscovite mica, quartz, andesite, anorthosite, diopside pyroxenite, and dunite, modeling calculations were made to refine previous estimates of the mineralogical composition of the Martian dust particles. These calculations suggest that a feldspar rich mixture is a very likely composition for the dust particles. The optical constants used for anorthosite and diopside pyroxenite were derived during this program from reflectance measurements. Those for the mica were derived from literature reflectance data. Finally, a computer program was written to invert the measured radiance data so as to obtain the absorption coefficient spectrum which should then be independent of the temperature profile and gaseous component effects.

  17. S.A.M., the Italian Martian simulation chamber.

    PubMed

    Galletta, G; Ferri, F; Fanti, G; D'Alessandro, M; Bertoloni, G; Pavarin, D; Bettanini, C; Cozza, P; Pretto, P; Bianchini, G; Debei, S

    2006-12-01

    The Martian Environment Simulator (SAM "Simulatore di Ambiente Marziano") is a interdisciplinary project of Astrobiology done at University of Padua. The research is aimed to the study of the survival of the microorganisms exposed to the "extreme" planetary environment. The facility has been designed in order to simulate Mars' environmental conditions in terms of atmospheric pressure, temperature cycles and UV radiation dose. The bacterial cells, contained into dedicated capsules, will be exposed to thermal cycles simulating diurnal and seasonal Martian cycles. The metabolism of the different biological samples will be analysed at different phases of the experiment, to study their survival and eventual activity of protein synthesis (mortality, mutations and capability of DNA repairing). We describe the experimental facility and provide the perspectives of the biological experiments we will perform in order to provide hints on the possibility of life on Mars either autochthonous or imported from Earth.

  18. A Physical Taxonomy of Martian Sand and Dust Grainsat the Phoenix Landing Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marshall, John; Stoker, Carol

    2014-11-01

    A quantitative taxonomy of martian sand and dust grains for soil samples at the Phoenix lander site has been developed from the mission’s optical microscope data with a resolution of 4 μm per pixel. Approx. 3-4000 grains were analyzed for color, hue, size, shape, surface texture, aspect ratio, and optical properties. At least 26 types of sand and dust grains have been identified. Grain colors include black, brown, orange, red, white, and clear. Most grains are opaque, but many are translucent or transparent. Grain shapes range from botryoidal, blackberry-like, bead-like and rounded, to subrounded, elongate, angular, and highly irregular forms. Surface textures range from knobbly, rough, and multifaceted to smooth and polished. Surface reflectivity varied from dull to shiny to specularly reflective. Materials may include augite, pyroxenes, olivine, volcanic glass, hematite, other iron oxides, and salts. Grain size of the sand has a modal value of ~90 μm, but there is no gradation into dust sizes, indicating a bimodal distribution of the samples. The dust was probably imported into the region from aeolian dust storms. This accords with a mineralogical dissimilarity between the sand and dust grain populations. The sand is dominated by black and brown grains; the dust is dominated by orange grains. The Phoenix site also has centimeter and larger stones in abundance that again have no apparent gradation into the sand size material. Thus, the Phoenix landing site soil appears multimodal. The soil appears to be magnetically susceptible, but it is unclear what the source of magnetism might be. Specific magnetic minerals were not identified in the samples with the possible exception of paramagnetic microbotryoidal hematite. The soil was nevertheless adhesive to the substrates and internally cohesive (forming spherical aggregates) owing to van der Waals forces and possibly salt/moisture bonding.

  19. Temperature and dust profiles in Martian dust storm conditions retrieved from Mars Climate Sounder measurements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kleinboehl, A.; Kass, D. M.; Schofield, J. T.; McCleese, D. J.

    2013-12-01

    Mars Climate Sounder (MCS) is a mid- and far-infrared thermal emission radiometer on board the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. It measures radiances in limb and nadir/on-planet geometry from which vertical profiles of atmospheric temperature, water vapor, dust and condensates can be retrieved in an altitude range from 0 to 80 km and with a vertical resolution of ~5 km. Due to the limb geometry used as the MCS primary observation mode, retrievals in conditions with high aerosol loading are challenging. We have developed several modifications to the MCS retrieval algorithm that will facilitate profile retrievals in high-dust conditions. Key modifications include a retrieval option that uses a surface pressure climatology if a pressure retrieval is not possible in high dust conditions, an extension of aerosol retrievals to higher altitudes, and a correction to the surface temperature climatology. In conditions of a global dust storm, surface temperatures tend to be lower compared to standard conditions. Taking this into account using an adaptive value based on atmospheric opacity leads to improved fits to the radiances measured by MCS and improves the retrieval success rate. We present first results of these improved retrievals during the global dust storm in 2007. Based on the limb opacities observed during the storm, retrievals are typically possible above ~30 km altitude. Temperatures around 240 K are observed in the middle atmosphere at mid- and high southern latitudes after the onset of the storm. Dust appears to be nearly homogeneously mixed at lower altitudes. Significant dust opacities are detected at least up to 70 km altitude. During much of the storm, in particular at higher altitudes, the retrieved dust profiles closely resemble a Conrath-profile.

  20. Sulfate Brine Stability Under a Simulated Martian Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chevrier, Vincent; Denson, J.; Sears, D.

    2006-09-01

    Brines have long been suggested to account for possible current liquid water activity on the surface of Mars. Recently obtained spectral data by Mars Express and Mars Exploration Rovers has added additional support to evidence that dates back to the Viking era of the presence of sulfates on the Martian surface. In order to investigate the stability of MgSO4 brines under simulated Martian conditions and elucidate their potential for serving as a possible source of subsurface water a series of evaporative experiments was performed in the Andromeda chamber, a vacuum chamber designed to simulate the martian surface environment. Brine concentrations ranged from 5 to 25 wt% MgSO4. The evaporation rates of the lesser concentrated brines (5-15 wt%) correlated well with the predicted rates for sulfate brines under the exact same conditions based on a modification of the classic Ingersol equation to account for the sulfates affect on the water activity. However the high wt% solutions (20-25 wt%) exhibited a dramatic decrease in evaporation rate. This decrease was greater than what was predicted by simply altering the Ingersol equation to account for the presence of the sulfates. In addition crystallization of the sulfates was observed within these highly concentrated brines. We hypothesize that the crystallization process itself affects the evaporation rate of the brine solutions. These results suggest that highly concentrated brines have a dramatic effect on the stability of water under Martian conditions. This study provides initial evidence that sulphate minerals could conceivably serve as a reservoir of subsurface water on the Martian surface. This program was funded by The W.M. Keck Foundation, NASA, and the University of Arkansas Center for Space and Planetary Sciences.

  1. Response of terrestrial microorganisms to a simulated Martian environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Foster, T. L.; Winans, L., Jr.; Casey, R. C.; Kirschner, L. E.

    1978-01-01

    Soil samples from Cape Canaveral were subjected to a simulated Martian environment and assayed periodically over 45 days to determine the effect of various environmental parameters on bacterial populations. The simulated environment was based on the most recent available data, prior to the Viking spacecraft, describing Martian conditions and consisted of a pressure of 7 millibars, an atmosphere of 99.9% CO2 and 0.1% O2, a freeze-thaw cycle of -65 C for 16 h and 24 C for 8 h, and variable moisture and nutrients. Reduced pressure had a significant effect, reducing growth under these conditions. Slight variations in gaseous composition of the simulated atmosphere had negligible effect on growth. The freeze-thaw cycle did not inhibit growth, but did result in a slower rate of decline after growth had occurred. Dry samples exhibited no change during the 45-day experiment, indicating that the simulated Martian environment was not toxic to bacterial populations. Psychrotrophic organisms responded more favorably to this environment than mesophiles, although both types exhibited increases of approximately 3 logs in 7 to 14 days when moisture and nutrients were available.

  2. Response of terrestrial microorganisms to a simulated Martian environment.

    PubMed

    Foster, T L; Winans, L; Casey, R C; Kirschner, L E

    1978-04-01

    Soil samples from Cape Canaveral were subjected to a simulated Martian environment and assayed periodically over 45 days to determine the effect of various environmental parameters on bacterial populations. The simulated environment was based on the most recent available data, prior to the Viking spacecraft, describing Martian conditions and consisted of a pressure of 7 millibars, an atmosphere of 99.9% CO2 and 0.1% O2, a freeze-thaw cycle of -65 degrees C for 16 h and 24 degrees C for 8 h, and variable moisture and nutrients. Reduced pressure had a significant effect, reducing growth under these conditions. Slight variations in gaseous composition of the simulated atmosphere had negligible effect on growth. The freeze-thaw cycle did not inhibit growth but did result in a slower rate of decline after growth had occurred. Dry samples exhibited no change during the 45-day experiment, indicating that the simulated Martian environment was not toxic to bacterial populations. Psychotrophic organisms responded more favorably to this environment than mesophiles, although both types exhibited increases of approximately 3 logs in 7 to 14 days when moisture and nutrients were available.

  3. Simulations of Mineral Dust Content With CHIMERE-Dust Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmechtig, C.; Marticorena, B.; Menut, L.; Bergametti, G.

    2006-12-01

    Simulations of the mineral dust cycle have been performed whith CHIMERE-Dust model over a domain that includes North Africa, the Mediterranean basin and the North Tropical Atlantic Ocean (10S-60N and 90W-90E) with a 1°x1° resolution using the ECMWF (European Center for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts) meteorological fields for two years, 2000 and 2001. As a validation, we compare the simulated dust concentration fields with photometric data from the AERONET network. From the comparisons between the simulated and measured aerosol optical depth for several stations of the Mediterranean basin, the model appears to reproduce correctly the intensity and occurrences of the dust events. Over Western Africa, the results are not as satisfying since some of the most intense dust events observed on the continent and downwind are not captured by the model. In addition, the simulated events are generally underestimated compared to the measured ones. It appears that these differences in the model performances are connected to the origin of the dust plumes. For example, dust plumes coming from Libya are well simulated while dust plumes originating from the Bodélé depression not as frequent as intense as the observations suggest. Soil properties in these two regions are comparable and typical of very erodible surfaces. We thus focused on the comparison between the ECMWF 10m wind speed fields and 10m wind speed measured at the meteorological stations located in both areas. We noticed that over Libya, the measured and ECMWF 10m wind speed are in very good agreement, while the meteorological model does not reproduce the extrema of the measured wind speed in the Bodélé depression. We found that a crude empirical correction of the 10m wind field in the Bodélé Depression significantly improve the simulations in terms of occurrence and of intensity.

  4. Mineralogic and compositional properties of Martian soil and dust: results from Mars Pathfinder

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Bell, J.F.; McSween, H.Y.; Crisp, J.A.; Morris, R.V.; Murchie, S.L.; Bridges, N.T.; Johnson, J. R.; Britt, D.T.; Golombek, M.P.; Moore, H.J.; Ghosh, A.; Bishop, J.L.; Anderson, R.C.; Brückner, J.; Economou, T.; Greenwood, J.P.; Gunnlaugsson, H.P.; Hargraves, R.M.; Hviid, S.; Knudsen, J.M.; Madsen, M.B.; Reid, R.; Rieder, R.; Soderblom, L.

    2000-01-01

    Mars Pathfinder obtained multispectral, elemental, magnetic, and physical measurements of soil and dust at the Sagan Memorial Station during the course of its 83 sol mission. We describe initial results from these measurements, concentrating on multispectral and elemental data, and use these data, along with previous Viking, SNC meteorite, and telescopic results, to help constrain the origin and evolution of Martian soil and dust. We find that soils and dust can be divided into at least eight distinct spectral units, based on parameterization of Imager for Mars Pathfinder (IMP) 400 to 1000 nm multispectral images. The most distinctive spectral parameters for soils and dust are the reflectivity in the red, the red/blue reflectivity ratio, the near-IR spectral slope, and the strength of the 800 to 1000 nm absorption feature. Most of the Pathfinder spectra are consistent with the presence of poorly crystalline or nanophase ferric oxide(s), sometimes mixed with small but varying degrees of well-crystalline ferric and ferrous phases. Darker soil units appear to be coarser-grained, compacted, and/or mixed with a larger amount of dark ferrous materials relative to bright soils. Nanophase goethite, akaganeite, schwertmannite, and maghemite are leading candidates for the origin of the absorption centered near 900 nm in IMP spectra. The ferrous component in the soil cannot be well-constrained based on IMP data. Alpha proton X-ray spectrometer (APXS) measurements of six soil units show little variability within the landing site and show remarkable overall similarity to the average Viking-derived soil elemental composition. Differences exist between Viking and Pathfinder soils, however, including significantly higher S and Cl abundances and lower Si abundances in Viking soils and the lack of a correlation between Ti and Fe in Pathfinder soils. No significant linear correlations were observed between IMP spectral properties and APXS elemental chemistry. Attempts at constraining

  5. Human locomotion and workload for simulated lunar and Martian environments.

    PubMed

    Newman, D J; Alexander, H L

    1993-08-01

    Human locomotion in simulated lunar and Martian environments is investigated. A unique human-rated underwater treadmill and an adjustable ballasting harness simulate partial gravity in order to better understand how gravity determines the biomechanics and energetics of human locomotion. This study has two research aspects, biomechanics and energetics. The fundamental biomechanics measurements are continuously recorded vertical forces as exerted by subjects of the treadmill which is instrumented with a force platform. Experimental results indicate that peak vertical force and stride frequency decrease as the gravity level is reduced. Foot contact time is independent of gravity level. Oxygen uptake measurements, VO2, constitute the energetics, or workload, data for this study. As theory predicts, locomotion energy requirements for lunar (1/6-g) and Martian (3/8-g) gravity levels are significantly less than at 1-g. The observed variation in workload with gravity level is nonmonotonic, however, in over half the subject population. The hypothesis is offered that energy expenditure increases for lunar, as compared with Martian, locomotion due to the subject "wasting energy" for stability and posture control in simulated lunar gravity. Biomechanics data could influence advanced spacesuit design and planetary habitat design, while workload data will help define oxygen requirements for planetary life support systems.

  6. Properties of Dust in the Martian Atmosphere from the Imager on Mars Pathfinder

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wegryn, E.; Tomasko, M. G.; Doose, L.; Lemmon, M. T.; Smith, P. H.

    1998-09-01

    than 0.2 to 0.5 or more. A real refractive index of 1.5 was assumed throughout our calculations. Overall, the results are in remarkably good argreement with those obtained by Pollack et al. (J.G.R. 100, 5235, 1995) for the observations made by Viking 20 years earlier. This suggests that stable mechanisms exist to control the size of the Martian dust particles suspended in the atmosphere.

  7. Toward an Understanding of the Time Dependent Responses of the Martian Upper Atmosphere to Dust Storm Events

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bougher, S. W.; Pawlowski, D. J.; Murphy, J. R.

    2011-12-01

    Mars spacecraft datasets reveal that its thermosphere-ionosphere (~100-200 km) is significantly impacted by the passage of regional or global dust storm events (e.g. Kliore et al., 1972; Zhang et al., 1990; Keating et al., 1998; Bougher et al, 1999; 2011; Baird et al., 2007). The time evolving responses correspond to the rapid onset phase (~2-10 sols) of a dust event, and its gradual decay (~50 sols or more). Thermospheric responses during the regional Noachis storm (1997) during its onset include: (a) a factor of 3 enhancement of MGS Accelerometer mass densities (~5-15 kg/km3) at 130 km at ~38 N latitude, (b) a factor of 2.5 enhancement of corresponding zonal winds (~100-250 m/s) near ~120-130 km, and (c) the associated ~8 km rise in the height of the 1.26-nbar reference pressure level. These features correspond to a rapidly warming (and expanding) lower atmosphere due to "dust-lifting latitude" aerosol heating, the resulting acceleration of global winds and amplification of tidal amplitudes throughout the atmosphere, and adiabatic warming arising from downwelling winds. In addition, many years of monitoring the F1-ionospheric peak confirms that this atmospheric inflation is consistently manifested in rising ionosphere peak heights. These upper atmosphere responses to dust events, and the associated feedbacks in atmospheric energetics, dynamics, and chemistry, provide excellent constraints for the further validation and testing of Mars whole atmosphere general circulation models. This paper utilizes the recently developed and initially validated 3-D Mars Global Ionosphere-Thermosphere Model (M-GITM) (e.g. Bougher et al., 2008; 2011; Pawlowski et al., 2010) to investigate these feedbacks and the responses of the Mars thermosphere-ionosphere for a sample dust storm event. The M-GITM code simulates the conditions of the Martian atmosphere from the surface to the exosphere (~0-250 km). Physical processes (e.g. radiative transfer), formulations and subroutines required

  8. Filter Media Tests Under Simulated Martian Atmospheric Conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Agui, Juan H.

    2016-01-01

    Human exploration of Mars will require the optimal utilization of planetary resources. One of its abundant resources is the Martian atmosphere that can be harvested through filtration and chemical processes that purify and separate it into its gaseous and elemental constituents. Effective filtration needs to be part of the suite of resource utilization technologies. A unique testing platform is being used which provides the relevant operational and instrumental capabilities to test articles under the proper simulated Martian conditions. A series of tests were conducted to assess the performance of filter media. Light sheet imaging of the particle flow provided a means of detecting and quantifying particle concentrations to determine capturing efficiencies. The media's efficiency was also evaluated by gravimetric means through a by-layer filter media configuration. These tests will help to establish techniques and methods for measuring capturing efficiency and arrestance of conventional fibrous filter media. This paper will describe initial test results on different filter media.

  9. Rocket Cratering in Simulated Lunar and Martian Environments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Immer, Christopher; Metzger, Phillip

    2010-01-01

    With NASA's planned return to the moon and possibly with lunar outposts being formed, repeated landings at the same site will be necessary. Understanding rocket plume interaction with lunar and Martian surfaces is of paramount importance in order to safely land and protect hardware surrounding the landing site. This work will report on results of three small experiments intended to explore plume impingement onto lunar and Martian surfaces: Handheld Observation of Scour Holes (HOOSH), Handheld Angle of Repose Measurements of Lunar Simulants (HARMLuS), and Mars Architecture Team study (MATS). The first two experiments were performed during two sorties of reduced gravity flights. HOOSH was designed to investigate crater formation as a function of gravitational level (lunar and Martian gravity). HARMLuS was designed to measure the Angle of Failure (related to the angle of repose) at lunar and Martian gravity. Both experiments have complex findings indicative of the hysteretic behavior of granular materials, especially resulting from reduced gravity. The MATS experiment was designed to investigate the effects of regolith compaction on the granular mechanics of crater formation . In general, the granular mechanics is a much stronger function of compaction than gravitation acceleration. Crater formation is greatly enhanced at reduced gravity (resulting in much larger craters). The angle of failure of the lunar simulants increases with decreasing gravitational acceleration, and occasionally becomes infinite for some compactions at lunar gravity. The angle of failure also increases with increasing compaction. While compaction does play a role in the time development of crater formation, the asymptotic behavior is largely unaffected.

  10. Is the Electron Avalanche Process in a Martian Dust Devil Self-Quenching?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Farrell, William M.; McLain, Jason L.; Collier, M. R.; Keller, J. W.; Jackson, T. J.; Delory, G. T.

    2015-01-01

    Viking era laboratory experiments show that mixing tribocharged grains in a low pressure CO2 gas can form a discharge that glows, indicating the presence of an excited electron population that persists over many seconds. Based on these early experiments, it has been predicted that martian dust devils and storms may also contain a plasma and new plasma chemical species as a result of dust grain tribo-charging. However, recent results from modeling suggest a contrasting result: that a sustained electron discharge may not be easily established since the increase in gas conductivity would act to short-out the local E-fields and quickly dissipate the charged grains driving the process. In essence, the system was thought to be self-quenching (i.e., turn itself off). In this work, we attempt to reconcile the difference between observation and model via new laboratory measurements. We conclude that in a Mars-like low pressure CO2 atmosphere and expected E-fields, the electron current remains (for the most part) below the expected driving tribo-electric dust currents (approx. 10 microA/m(exp. 2)), thereby making quenching unlikely.

  11. JSC Mars-1 - Martian regolith simulant

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Allen, C. C.; Morris, R. V.; Lindstrom, D. J.; Lindstrom, M. M.; Lockwood, J. P.

    1997-03-01

    We have developed a simulant to the regolith of Mars for support of scientific research, engineering studies, and education. JSC Mars-1 is the less than 1-mm size fraction of a palagonitic tephra (glassy volcanic ash altered at low temperatures). The material was collected from the Pu'u Nene cinder cone, located in the saddle between Mauna Loa and Mauna Kea volcanoes on the Island of Hawaii. Palagonitic tephra from this cone has been repeatedly cited as a close spectral analog to the bright regions of Mars.

  12. Experimental demonstration of Martian soil simulant removal from a surface using a pulsed plasma jet

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ticoş, C. M.; Scurtu, A.; Toader, D.; Banu, N.

    2015-03-01

    A plasma jet produced in a small coaxial plasma gun operated at voltages up to 2 kV and working in pure carbon dioxide (CO2) at a few Torr is used to remove Martian soil simulant from a surface. A capacitor with 0.5 mF is charged up from a high voltage source and supplies the power to the coaxial electrodes. The muzzle of the coaxial plasma gun is placed at a few millimeters near the dusty surface and the jet is fired parallel with the surface. Removal of dust is imaged in real time with a high speed camera. Mars regolith simulant JSC-Mars-1A with particle sizes up to 5 mm is used on different types of surfaces made of aluminium, cotton fabric, polyethylene, cardboard, and phenolic.

  13. Experimental demonstration of Martian soil simulant removal from a surface using a pulsed plasma jet.

    PubMed

    Ticoş, C M; Scurtu, A; Toader, D; Banu, N

    2015-03-01

    A plasma jet produced in a small coaxial plasma gun operated at voltages up to 2 kV and working in pure carbon dioxide (CO2) at a few Torr is used to remove Martian soil simulant from a surface. A capacitor with 0.5 mF is charged up from a high voltage source and supplies the power to the coaxial electrodes. The muzzle of the coaxial plasma gun is placed at a few millimeters near the dusty surface and the jet is fired parallel with the surface. Removal of dust is imaged in real time with a high speed camera. Mars regolith simulant JSC-Mars-1A with particle sizes up to 5 mm is used on different types of surfaces made of aluminium, cotton fabric, polyethylene, cardboard, and phenolic.

  14. SURVIVAL OF MICROORGANISMS IN A SIMULATED MARTIAN ENVIRONMENT. I. BACILLUS SUBTILIS VAR. GLOBIGII.

    PubMed

    HAGEN, C A; HAWRYLEWICZ, E J; EHRLICH, R

    1964-05-01

    Survival of Bacillus subtilis var. globigii in a simulated Martian environment was demonstrated. Previous contact with the simulated Martian soil or atmosphere reduced germination or outgrowth of unheated spores, or both. Inoculation into simulated Martian soil and then flushing with a simulated Martian atmosphere were lethal to both vegetative cells and spores. After one diurnal temperature cycle (26 to -60 C), the majority of of cells present were spores. No further effect of the diurnal cycle on survival was noted in any of the experimental samples.

  15. Magnetic levitation-based Martian and Lunar gravity simulator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Valles, J. M. Jr; Maris, H. J.; Seidel, G. M.; Tang, J.; Yao, W.

    2005-01-01

    Missions to Mars will subject living specimens to a range of low gravity environments. Deleterious biological effects of prolonged exposure to Martian gravity (0.38 g), Lunar gravity (0.17 g), and microgravity are expected, but the mechanisms involved and potential for remedies are unknown. We are proposing the development of a facility that provides a simulated Martian and Lunar gravity environment for experiments on biological systems in a well controlled laboratory setting. The magnetic adjustable gravity simulator will employ intense, inhomogeneous magnetic fields to exert magnetic body forces on a specimen that oppose the body force of gravity. By adjusting the magnetic field, it is possible to continuously adjust the total body force acting on a specimen. The simulator system considered consists of a superconducting solenoid with a room temperature bore sufficiently large to accommodate small whole organisms, cell cultures, and gravity sensitive bio-molecular solutions. It will have good optical access so that the organisms can be viewed in situ. This facility will be valuable for experimental observations and public demonstrations of systems in simulated reduced gravity. c2005 Published by Elsevier Ltd on behalf of COSPAR.

  16. Magnetic levitation-based Martian and Lunar gravity simulator.

    PubMed

    Valles, J M; Maris, H J; Seidel, G M; Tang, J; Yao, W

    2005-01-01

    Missions to Mars will subject living specimens to a range of low gravity environments. Deleterious biological effects of prolonged exposure to Martian gravity (0.38 g), Lunar gravity (0.17 g), and microgravity are expected, but the mechanisms involved and potential for remedies are unknown. We are proposing the development of a facility that provides a simulated Martian and Lunar gravity environment for experiments on biological systems in a well controlled laboratory setting. The magnetic adjustable gravity simulator will employ intense, inhomogeneous magnetic fields to exert magnetic body forces on a specimen that oppose the body force of gravity. By adjusting the magnetic field, it is possible to continuously adjust the total body force acting on a specimen. The simulator system considered consists of a superconducting solenoid with a room temperature bore sufficiently large to accommodate small whole organisms, cell cultures, and gravity sensitive bio-molecular solutions. It will have good optical access so that the organisms can be viewed in situ. This facility will be valuable for experimental observations and public demonstrations of systems in simulated reduced gravity.

  17. Galaxy simulation with dust formation and destruction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Aoyama, Shohei; Hou, Kuan-Chou; Shimizu, Ikkoh; Hirashita, Hiroyuki; Todoroki, Keita; Choi, Jun-Hwan; Nagamine, Kentaro

    2017-04-01

    We perform smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) simulations of an isolated galaxy with a new treatment for dust formation and destruction. To this aim, we treat dust and metal production self-consistently with star formation and supernova (SN) feedback. For dust, we consider a simplified model of grain size distribution by representing the entire range of grain sizes with large and small grains. We include dust production in stellar ejecta, dust destruction by SN shocks, grain growth by accretion and coagulation and grain disruption by shattering. We find that the assumption of fixed dust-to-metal mass ratio becomes no longer valid when the galaxy is older than 0.2 Gyr, at which point the grain growth by accretion starts to contribute to the non-linear rise of dust-to-gas ratio. As expected in our previous one-zone model, shattering triggers grain growth by accretion since it increases the total surface area of grains. Coagulation becomes significant when the galaxy age is greater than ∼ 1 Gyr; at this epoch, the abundance of small grains becomes high enough to raise the coagulation rate of small grains. We further compare the radial profiles of dust-to-gas ratio (D) and dust-to-metal ratio (D/Z, i.e. depletion) at various ages with observational data. We find that our simulations broadly reproduce the radial gradients of dust-to-gas ratio and depletion. In the early epoch (≲ 0.3 Gyr), the radial gradient of D follows the metallicity gradient with D/Z determined by the dust condensation efficiency in stellar ejecta, while the D gradient is steeper than the Z gradient at the later epochs because of grain growth by accretion. The framework developed in this paper is applicable to any SPH-based galaxy evolution simulations including cosmological ones.

  18. Simulating Mars' Dust Cycle with a Mars General Circulation Model: Effects of Water Ice Cloud Formation on Dust Lifting Strength and Seasonality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kahre, Melinda A.; Haberle, Robert; Hollingsworth, Jeffery L.

    2012-01-01

    The dust cycle is critically important for the current climate of Mars. The radiative effects of dust impact the thermal and dynamical state of the atmosphere [1,2,3]. Although dust is present in the Martian atmosphere throughout the year, the level of dustiness varies with season. The atmosphere is generally the dustiest during northern fall and winter and the least dusty during northern spring and summer [4]. Dust particles are lifted into the atmosphere by dust storms that range in size from meters to thousands of kilometers across [5]. Regional storm activity is enhanced before northern winter solstice (Ls200 degrees - 240 degrees), and after northern solstice (Ls305 degrees - 340 degrees ), which produces elevated atmospheric dust loadings during these periods [5,6,7]. These pre- and post- solstice increases in dust loading are thought to be associated with transient eddy activity in the northern hemisphere with cross-equatorial transport of dust leading to enhanced dust lifting in the southern hemisphere [6]. Interactive dust cycle studies with Mars General Circulation Models (MGCMs) have included the lifting, transport, and sedimentation of radiatively active dust. Although the predicted global dust loadings from these simulations capture some aspects of the observed dust cycle, there are marked differences between the simulated and observed dust cycles [8,9,10]. Most notably, the maximum dust loading is robustly predicted by models to occur near northern winter solstice and is due to dust lifting associated with down slope flows on the flanks of the Hellas basin. Thus far, models have had difficulty simulating the observed pre- and post- solstice peaks in dust loading.

  19. Simulation and Comparison of Martian Surface Ionization Radiation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kim, Myung-Hee Y.; Zeitlin, Cary; Hassler, Donald M.; Cucinotta, Francis A.

    2013-01-01

    The spectrum of energetic particle radiation and corresponding doses at the surface of Mars is being characterized by the Radiation Assessment Detector (RAD), one of ten science instruments on the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) Curiosity Rover. The time series of dose rate for the first 300 Sols after landing on Mars on August 6, 2012 is presented here. For the comparison to RAD measurements of dose rate, Martian surface ionization radiation is simulated by utilizing observed space quantities. The GCR primary radiation spectrum is calculated by using the Badhwar-O'Neill 2011 (BO11) galactic cosmic ray (GCR) model, which has been developed by utilizing all balloon and satellite GCR measurements since 1955 and the newer 1997-2012 Advanced Composition Explorer (ACE) measurements. In the BO11 model, solar modulation of the GCR primary radiation spectrum is described in terms of the international smoothed sunspot number and a time delay function. For the transport of the impingent GCR primary radiation through Mars atmosphere, a vertical distribution of atmospheric thickness at each elevation is calculated using the vertical profiles of atmospheric temperature and pressure made by Mars Global Surveyor measurements. At Gale Crater in the southern hemisphere, the seasonal variation of atmospheric thickness is accounted for the daily atmospheric pressure measurements of the MSL Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) by using low- and high-density models for cool- and warm-season, respectively. The spherically distributed atmospheric distance is traced along the slant path, and the resultant directional shielding by Martian atmosphere is coupled with Curiosity vehicle for dose estimates. We present predictions of dose rate and comparison to the RAD measurements. The simulation agrees to within +/- 20% with the RAD measurements showing clearly the variation of dose rate by heliospheric conditions, and presenting the sensitivity of dose rate by atmospheric pressure

  20. Biological space experiments for the simulation of Martian conditions: UV radiation and Martian soil analogues.

    PubMed

    Rettberg, P; Rabbow, E; Panitz, C; Horneck, G

    2004-01-01

    The survivability of resistant terrestrial microbes, bacterial spores of Bacillus subtilis, was investigated in the BIOPAN facility of the European Space Agency onboard of Russian Earth-orbiting FOTON satellites (BIOPAN I -III missions). The spores were exposed to different subsets of the extreme environmental parameters in space (vacuum, extraterrestrial solar UV, shielding by protecting materials like artificial meteorites). The results of the three space experiments confirmed the deleterious effects of extraterrestrial solar UV radiation which, in contrast to the UV radiation reaching the surface of the Earth, also contains the very energy-rich, short wavelength UVB and UVC radiation. Thin layers of clay, rock or meteorite material were shown to be only successful in UV-shielding, if they are in direct contact with the spores. On Mars the UV radiation climate is similar to that of the early Earth before the development of a protective ozone layer in the atmosphere by the appearance of the first aerobic photosynthetic bacteria. The interference of Martian soil components and the intense and nearly unfiltered Martian solar UV radiation with spores of B. subtilis will be tested with a new BIOPAN experiment, MARSTOX. Different types of Mars soil analogues will be used to determine on one hand their potential toxicity alone or in combination with solar UV (phototoxicity) and on the other hand their UV protection capability. Two sets of samples will be placed under different cut-off filters used to simulate the UV radiation climate of Mars and Earth. After exposure in space the survival of and mutation induction in the spores will be analyzed at the DLR, together with parallel samples from the corresponding ground control experiment performed in the laboratory. This experiment will provide new insights into the principal limits of life and its adaptation to environmental extremes on Earth or other planets which and will also have implications for the potential for the

  1. Derivation of the VNIR (0.4-4.0 µm) Optical Constants of Nontronite and an Application to Mars: Modeling Single Scattering Albedo of Candidate Martian Dust Grains

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roush, T. L.; Brown, A. J.

    2008-03-01

    We derive optical constants of nontronite using two scattering theories. Mie scattering models compare palagonite and nontronite as putative martian atmospheric dust and show the importance of knowing these optical contants for quantitative interpretation of CRISM spectra.

  2. Experimental Study of the Angle of Repose of Surrogate Martian Dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moeller, L. E.; Tuller, M.; Baker, L.; Marshall, J.; Castiglione, P.; Kuhlman, K.

    2003-01-01

    Accumulation of wind-blown dust particles on solar cells and instruments will be a great challenge in the exploration of Mars, significantly reducing their lifetime, durability, and power output. For future Mars Lander missions it is crucial to gain information about the ideal angle at which solar panels can be positioned to minimize dust deposition and thus, maximize the power output and lifetime of the solar cells. The major determinant for the optimal panel angle is the angle of repose of the dust particles that is dependent on a variety of physical and chemical properties of the particles, the panel surface, and the environmental conditions on the Mars surface. To gain a basic understanding of the physical and chemical processes that govern dust deposition and to get feedback for the design of an experiment suitable for one of the future Mars Lander missions we simulate atmospheric conditions expected on the Mars surface in a controlled chamber, and observe the angle of repose of Mars dust surrogates. Dust deposition and angle of repose were observed on different sized spheres. To cover a range of potential materials we will use spheres made of 7075 aluminum (10 mm, and 15 mm), alumina oxide ceramic (10 mm), and Teflon(trademark) (10 mm) and wafers of gallium arsenide, silicon.

  3. Effective mie-scattering and CO2 absorption in the dust-laden Martian atmosphere and its impact on radiative-convective temperature changes in the lower scale heights

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pallmann, A. J.

    1976-01-01

    A time dependent computer model of radiative-convective-conductive heat transfer in the Martian ground-atmosphere system was refined by incorporating an intermediate line strength CO2 band absorption which together with the strong-and weak-line approximation closely simulated the radiative transmission through a vertically inhomogeneous stratification. About 33,000 CO2 lines were processed to cover the spectral range of solar and planetary radiation. Absorption by silicate dust particulates, was taken into consideration to study its impact on the ground-atmosphere temperature field as a function of time. This model was subsequently attuned to IRIS, IR-radiometric and S-band occultation data. Satisfactory simulations of the measured IRIS spectra were accomplished for the dust-free condition. In the case of variable dust loads, the simulations were sufficiently fair so that some inferences into the effect of dust on temperature were justified.

  4. UV resistance of a halophilic archaeon in simulated martian conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    ten Kate, Il; van Sluis, Ca; Selch, F.; Garry, Jrc; Stan-Lotter, H.; van Loosdrecht, M.; Ehrenfreund, P.

    Mars is thought to have had liquid water at its surface for geologically long periods. The progressive desiccation of the surface would have led to an increase in the salt content of remaining bodies of water. If life had developed on Mars, then some of the mechanisms evolved in terrestrial halophilic bacteria to cope with high salt content may have been similar to those existing in martian organisms. We have exposed samples of the halophilic Natronorubrum sp. strain HG-1 (Nr. strain HG-1) to conditions of ultraviolet radiation (UV) similar to those of the present-day martian environment. Furthermore, the effects of low temperature and low pressure on Nr. strain HG-1 have been investigated. To simulate a more Mars-like environment and investigate the effect of water in the atmosphere Nr. strain HG-1 has been irradiated when placed in a low pressure CO2 environment, static as well as flowing. The results, obtained by monitoring growth curves, indicate that the present UV radiation at the surface of Mars is a significant hazard for this organism. Exposure of the cells to high vacuum inactivates ~50 % of the cells. Freezing to -20 ° C and -80 ° C kills ~80 % of the cells. When desiccated and embedded in a salt crust, cells are somewhat more resistant to UV radiation than when suspended in an aqueous solution. The cell inactivation by UV is wavelength dependent. It cannot be excluded that they can survive when embedded in the soil or buried underneath rocks.

  5. Dust storm simulation over Iran using HYSPLIT

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Particulate matters have detrimental effects on human health, environment and economic. This pollutant may emit from anthropogenic or natural sources. On global scale, main proportion of natural particulate matter release to the atmosphere because of wind erosion from arid and semi-arid regions. Recently, the amount of dust coming from Arabian countries has dramatically increased, especially dust storms that are affecting western and even central parts of Iran. This phenomenon has caused a lot of environmental problems. Dust source identification and trajectory simulation using numerical techniques are the main aims of this study. HYSPLIT (Hybrid Single Particle Lagrangian Integrated Trajectory) model dust module and trajectory simulation are utilized in this research and two case studies are investigated (in May and June 2010). The base of the HYSPLIT dust module is the PM10 dust storm emission algorithm for desert land use. This methodology is applied to estimate hotspots and trajectories. Due to the results, dust storms started on May 17th and June 7th because of high wind shear (>8.5 m/s) from the western Syrian Desert. The source region limited to 32.50 °N to 33.80 °N and 38.00 °E to 38.80 °E coordinates. Dust plumes lifted and dispersed towards the east and southeast of the sources and reached Ahvaz on May 18th and June 8th. The average of PM10 concentration in these dates reached 625 and 494 μgm3 on Ahvaz monitoring stations, respectively. Moreover, the results gained from the model for dust motion simulation are similar to the MODIS satellite images. PMID:24397928

  6. MLAM Simulation of Martian Atmosphere around Curiosity Landing Site

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Atlaskin, Evgeny; Harri, Ari-Matti; Kauhanen, Janne; Määttänen, Anni; Paton, Mark; Savijärvi, Hannu; Schmidt, Walter; Siili, Tero

    2013-04-01

    The NASA Mars Science Laboratory 'Curiosity' landed successfully in the Martian Gale crater close to the equator on 6 Aug 2012. As part of the environment monitoring instrument package REMS [1] the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) provided the pressure and humidity sensors. A similar pressure sensor was successfully flown earlier on the Phoenix lander mission in 2008 and on the Cassini / Huygens probe to Titan in 2005. The behaviour of the Martian atmosphere inside the Gale crater is dominated by its location close to the equator, the steep outer rims and the slopes of the central mountain. These complex topographical features make it ideally suited for a mesoscale atmospheric model like the Mars Limited Area Model (MLAM), developed jointly by the University of Helsinki (UH) and FMI to study mesoscale phenomena in the Martian Atmosphere [2]. MLAM is based on the hydro-static dynamical core of the HIgh Resolution Limited Area Model (HIRLAM), an operational weather prediction model-analysis system used by several European countries. Using the simulation tools already published observational data from the first three months of Curiosity's operations and detailed topographical feature information we will show the observations in the context of the atmospheric conditions in the wider Gale crater region. In preparation of the simulation also the UH 1-dimensional model [3] is being used to study the boundary layer behaviour in that area. The expected long operation time of the rover will additionally provide insight in the seasonal change of atmospheric conditions at the equator. Some aspects might already become visible by the time of the conference. Newest Curiosity/REMS data will be shown in session PS2.5 "Curiosity on Mars: First results". Reference: [1] Gómez-Elvira J. et al. (2012), Space Sci. Rev. 170, 583-640. [2] Kauhanen, J., Siili T., Järvenoja, S. and Savijärvi, H. (2008) , The Mars Limited Area Model (MLAM) and simulations of atmospheric circulations

  7. Polar Layered Terrains: Links Between the Martian Volatile and Dust Cycles

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zurek, R. W.

    1999-01-01

    The nature, origin and evolution of the polar layered terrains are a major mystery of Martian climate. Almost every aspect of these enigmatic terrains surrounding, and probably underlying, the polar residual ice caps is in contention. Are the polar laminae forming today? Are they inactive or even eroding, being mere relics of the past? Are the north and south polar layered terrains fundamentally different in composition, age or process? Are they a physical record of past, possibly cyclic, climate change and, if so, can we learn to read that record? We know from past Mariner 9 and Viking orbital observations that there are layered terrains at high latitudes, defined by alternating bands of visually lighter and darker material appearing in stacks hundreds of meters thick with individual bands as thin as could then be resolved (tens of meters). In this talk, aspects of the polar layered terrains will be reviewed with emphasis on issues likely to be addressed with data from ongoing and near-term flight missions to Mars. Particular attention will be given to what might be learned from observing the present seasonal cycles of dust, water and carbon dioxide on Mars, in conjunction with in situ data from one site on the south polar layered terrain.

  8. Estimating Dust and Water Ice Content of the Martian Atmosphere From THEMIS Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bandfield, Joshua

    2007-01-01

    Researchers at JPL and Arizona State University conducted a comparative study of three candidate algorithms for estimating components of the Martian atmosphere, using raw (uncalibrated) data collected by the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS). THEMIS is an instrument onboard the Mars Odyssey spacecraft that acquires image data in five visible and nine infrared (IR) wavelength bands. The algorithms under study used data collected from eight of the nine IR bands to estimate the dust and water ice content of the atmosphere. Such an algorithm could be used in onboard data processing to trigger other algorithms that search for features of scientific interest and to reduce the volume of data transmitted to Earth. The algorithms studied were based on regression models. In the study, the optical depths estimated by these algorithms were compared with optical depths estimated in ground-based processing using fully calibrated data from both THEMIS and the Thermal Emission Spectrometer (TES). TES is an instrument onboard the Mars Global Surveyor spacecraft that also observes the planet at infrared wavelengths, but at a lower spatial resolution than THEMIS does. Of the algorithms studied, the one that performed best was based on a Gaussian Support Vector Machine regression model. The test results indicated that this algorithm, operating on the raw data, had error rates that were within the uncertainty associated with the estimates obtained by the groundbased analysis of the fully calibrated data. This level of fidelity demonstrates that these algorithms are sufficiently accurate for use in an onboard setting.

  9. Survivability of Psychrobacter cryohalolentis K5 under simulated martian surface conditions.

    PubMed

    Smith, David J; Schuerger, Andrew C; Davidson, Mark M; Pacala, Stephen W; Bakermans, Corien; Onstott, Tullis C

    2009-03-01

    Spacecraft launched to Mars can retain viable terrestrial microorganisms on board that may survive the interplanetary transit. Such biota might compromise the search for life beyond Earth if capable of propagating on Mars. The current study explored the survivability of Psychrobacter cryohalolentis K5, a psychrotolerant microorganism obtained from a Siberian permafrost cryopeg, under simulated martian surface conditions of high ultraviolet irradiation, high desiccation, low temperature, and low atmospheric pressure. First, a desiccation experiment compared the survival of P. cryohalolentis cells embedded, or not embedded, within a medium/salt matrix (MSM) maintained at 25 degrees C for 24 h within a laminar flow hood. Results indicate that the presence of the MSM enhanced survival of the bacterial cells by 1 to 3 orders of magnitude. Second, tests were conducted in a Mars Simulation Chamber to determine the UV tolerance of the microorganism. No viable vegetative cells of P. cryohalolentis were detected after 8 h of exposure to Mars-normal conditions of 4.55 W/m(2) UVC irradiation (200-280 nm), -12.5 degrees C, 7.1 mbar, and a Mars gas mix composed of CO(2) (95.3%), N(2) (2.7%), Ar (1.6%), O(2) (0.2%), and H(2)O (0.03%). Third, an experiment was conducted within the Mars chamber in which total atmospheric opacities were simulated at tau = 0.1 (dust-free CO(2) atmosphere at 7.1 mbar), 0.5 (normal clear sky with 0.4 = dust opacity and 0.1 = CO(2)-only opacity), and 3.5 (global dust storm) to determine the survivability of P. cryohalolentis to partially shielded UVC radiation. The survivability of the bacterium increased with the level of UVC attenuation, though population levels still declined several orders of magnitude compared to UVC-absent controls over an 8 h exposure period.

  10. Survivability of Psychrobacter cryohalolentis K5 Under Simulated Martian Surface Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, David J.; Schuerger, Andrew C.; Davidson, Mark M.; Pacala, Stephen W.; Bakermans, Corien; Onstott, Tullis C.

    2009-03-01

    Spacecraft launched to Mars can retain viable terrestrial microorganisms on board that may survive the interplanetary transit. Such biota might compromise the search for life beyond Earth if capable of propagating on Mars. The current study explored the survivability of Psychrobacter cryohalolentis K5, a psychrotolerant microorganism obtained from a Siberian permafrost cryopeg, under simulated martian surface conditions of high ultraviolet irradiation, high desiccation, low temperature, and low atmospheric pressure. First, a desiccation experiment compared the survival of P. cryohalolentis cells embedded, or not embedded, within a medium/salt matrix (MSM) maintained at 25°C for 24 h within a laminar flow hood. Results indicate that the presence of the MSM enhanced survival of the bacterial cells by 1 to 3 orders of magnitude. Second, tests were conducted in a Mars Simulation Chamber to determine the UV tolerance of the microorganism. No viable vegetative cells of P. cryohalolentis were detected after 8 h of exposure to Mars-normal conditions of 4.55 W/m2 UVC irradiation (200-280 nm), -12.5°C, 7.1 mbar, and a Mars gas mix composed of CO2 (95.3%), N2 (2.7%), Ar (1.6%), O2 (0.2%), and H2O (0.03%). Third, an experiment was conducted within the Mars chamber in which total atmospheric opacities were simulated at τ = 0.1 (dust-free CO2 atmosphere at 7.1 mbar), 0.5 (normal clear sky with 0.4 = dust opacity and 0.1 = CO2-only opacity), and 3.5 (global dust storm) to determine the survivability of P. cryohalolentis to partially shielded UVC radiation. The survivability of the bacterium increased with the level of UVC attenuation, though population levels still declined several orders of magnitude compared to UVC-absent controls over an 8 h exposure period.

  11. Survivability of Psychrobacter cryohalolentis K5 Under Simulated Martian Surface Conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, David J.; Schuerger, Andrew C.; Davidson, Mark M.; Pacala, Stephen W.; Bakermans, Corien; Onstott, Tullis

    2008-01-01

    Spacecraft launched to Mars can retain viable terrestrial microorganisms on board that may survive the interplanetary transit. Such biota might compromise the search for life beyond Earth if capable of propagating on Mars. The current study explored the survivability of Psychrobacter cryohalolentis K5, a psychrotolerant microorganism obtained from a Siberian permafrost cryopeg, under simulated martian surface conditions of high ultraviolet irradiation, high desiccation, low temperature, and low atmospheric pressure. First, a desiccation experiment compared the survival of P. cryohalolentis cells embedded, or not embedded, within a medium/salt matrix (MSM) maintained at 25 degrees C for 24 hr within a laminar flow hood. Results indicate that the presence of the MSM enhanced survival of the bacterial cells by 1 to 3 orders of magnitude. Second, tests were conducted in a Mars Simulation Chamber to determine the UV tolerance of the microorganism. No viable vegetative cells of P. cryohalolentis were detected after 8 hr of exposure to Mars-normal conditions of 4.55 W/m(2) UVC irradiation (200-280 nm), -12.5 degrees C, 7.1 mbar, and a Mars gas mix composed of CO2 (95.3%), N2 (2.7%), Ar (1.6%), O2 (0.2%), and H(2)O (0.03%). Third, an experiment was conducted within the Mars chamber in which total atmospheric opacities were simulated at tau = 0.1 (dust-free CO2 atmosphere at 7.1 mbar), 0.5 (normal clear sky with 0.4 = dust opacity and 0.1 = CO2-only opacity), and 3.5 (global dust storm) to determine the survivability of P. cryohalolentis to partially shielded UVC radiation. The survivability of the bacterium increased with the level of UVC attenuation, though population levels still declined several orders of magnitude compared to UVC-absent controls over an 8 hr exposure period.

  12. Martian environmental simulation for a deployable lattice mast

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Warden, Robert M.

    1994-01-01

    The Mars Pathfinder mission (formerly Mars Environmental Survey or MESUR) is scheduled for launch in December 1996 and is designed to place a small lander on the surface of Mars. After impact, the lander unfolds to expose its solar panels and release a miniature rover. Also on board is the Imager for Mars Pathfinder (IMP) binocular camera which is elevated by a deployable mast to obtain a panoramic view of the landing area. The design of this deployable mast is based on similar designs which have a long and successful flight history. In the past when this type of self-deployable mast has been used, a rate limiter has been incorporated to control the speed of deployment. In this application, to reduce weight and complexity, it was proposed to eliminate the rate limiter so that the mast would deploy without restraint. Preliminary tests showed that this type of deployment was possible especially if the deployed length was relatively short, as in this application. Compounding the problem, however, was the requirement to deploy the mast at an angle of up to 30 degrees from vertical. The deployment process was difficult to completely analyze due to the effects of gravitational and inertial loads on the mast and camera during rapid extension. Testing in a realistic manner was imperative to verify the system performance. A deployment test was therefore performed to determine the maximum tilt angle at which the mast could reliably extend and support the camera on Mars. The testing of the deployable mast requires partial gravity compensation to simulate the smaller force of Martian gravity. During the test, mass properties were maintained while weight properties were reduced. This paper describes the testing of a deployable mast in a simulated Martian environment as well as the results of the tests.

  13. Inter-Annual Repeatability of Regional Dust Storms During the Martian Dusty Season (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kass, D. M.; Kleinboehl, A.; McCleese, D. J.; Schofield, J. T.; Smith, M. D.

    2013-12-01

    We investigate the annual pattern of large (regional) dust storms during the martian dusty season--southern spring and summer (Ls 180° to 360°)--and find a repeatable pattern of three distinct storms each Mars year without a global dust storm. We use a 200 K contour in the zonal mean climatology at 50 Pa from TES/MGS and MCS/MRO to identify the regional and global dust storms and then to characterize their extent and evolution. Observations from the two instruments cover the dusty season of five mars years without a global storm: MY24, MY26, MY29, MY30 and MY31. The exact timing, duration and peak temperatures vary somewhat from year to year, but each of the three storms has distinct characteristics and behavior, and overall the years follow a very similar pattern. Each year starts with an 'A' storm pre-perihelion (between Ls 210° and 240°) in the southern mid-latitudes. It lasts for 15° to 40° of Ls and ends no later than the solstice. The storm takes 2° to 12° of Ls to reach its peak zonal mean temperatures between 210 K and 230 K. The second storm ('B' storm) each year occurs as the 'A' storm is decaying. It starts around the perihelion along the southern seasonal polar cap edge and lasts until between Ls 285° and 295°. While the storm often has the strongest warming for the year (with zonal mean peak temperatures between 210 K and 225 K), the storm's impact remains south of the tropics. The final storm each year ('C' storm) starts between Ls 305° and 320°. It lasts a relatively short 3° to 15° of Ls. However, the later the storm starts seasonally, the longer it tends to last. The peak temperatures are quite variable for the 'C' storm, ranging from 200 K to 225 K. In MY26, the 'C' storm has the highest zonal mean temperatures for the season.

  14. A new model to simulate the Martian mesoscale and microscale atmospheric circulation: Validation and first results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Spiga, Aymeric; Forget, François

    2009-02-01

    The Laboratoire de Météorologie Dynamique (LMD) Mesoscale Model is a new versatile simulator of the Martian atmosphere and environment at horizontal scales ranging from hundreds of kilometers to tens of meters. The model combines the National Centers for Environmental Prediction(NCEP)-National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) fully compressible nonhydrostatic Advanced Research Weather Research and Forecasting (ARW-WRF) dynamical core, adapted to Mars, with the LMD-general circulation model (GCM) comprehensive set of physical parameterizations for the Martian dust, CO2, water, and photochemistry cycles. Since LMD-GCM large-scale simulations are also used to drive the mesoscale model at the boundaries of the chosen domain of interest, a high level of downscaling consistency is reached. To define the initial state and the atmosphere at the domain boundaries, a specific ``hybrid'' vertical interpolation from the coarse-resolution GCM fields to the high-resolution mesoscale domain is used to ensure the stability and the physical relevancy of the simulations. Used in synoptic-scale mode with a cyclic domain wrapped around the planet, the mesoscale model correctly replicates the main large-scale thermal structure and the zonally propagating waves. The model diagnostics of the near-surface pressure, wind, and temperature daily cycles in Chryse Planitia are in accordance with the Viking and Pathfinder measurements. Afternoon gustiness at the respective landing sites is adequately accounted for on the condition that convective adjustment is turned off in the mesoscale simulations. On the rims of Valles Marineris, intense daytime anabatic (~30 m s-1) and nighttime katabatic (~40 m s-1) winds are predicted. Within the canyon corridors, topographical channeling can amplify the wind a few kilometers above the ground, especially during the night. Through large-eddy simulations in Gusev Crater, the model describes the mixing layer growth during the afternoon, and the

  15. Water ice nucleation characteristics of JSC Mars-1 regolith simulant under simulated Martian atmospheric conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Phebus, Bruce D.; Johnson, Alexandria V.; Mar, Brendan; Stone, Bradley M.; Colaprete, Anthony; Iraci, Laura T.

    2011-04-01

    Water ice clouds in the Martian atmosphere are governed by parameters such as number density and particle size distribution that in turn affect how they influence the climate. With some of the underlying properties of cloud formation well known only for Earth, extrapolations to Mars are potentially misleading. We report here continued laboratory experiments to identify critical onset conditions for water ice formation under Martian cloud forming temperatures and water partial pressures (155-182 K, 7.6 × 10-5 to 7.7 × 10-3 Pa H2O). By observing the 3 μm infrared band to monitor nucleation and growth, we observe significant temperature dependence in the nucleation of ice on JSC Mars-1 regolith simulant, with critical saturation ratios, Scrit, as high as 3.8 at 155 K. At temperatures below ˜180 K, ice nucleation on JSC Mars-1 requires significant supersaturation, potentially impacting the Martian hydrological cycle.

  16. Dust devil height and spacing with relation to the martian planetary boundary layer thickness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fenton, Lori K.; Lorenz, Ralph

    2015-11-01

    In most remote and unmonitored places, little is known about the characteristics of daytime turbulent activity. Few processes render the optically transparent atmospheres of Earth and Mars visible; put more plainly, without clever instruments it is difficult to "see the unseen". To address this, we present a pilot study of images of martian dust devils (DDs) testing the hypothesis that DD height and spacing correlates with the thickness of the planetary boundary layer (PBL), h. The survey includes Context Camera (CTX) images from a 580 × 590 km2 area (196-208°E, 30-40°N) in northern Amazonis Planitia, spanning ∼3.6 Mars Years (MY) from Ls = 134.55°, MY 28 (13 November 2006) to Ls = 358.5°, MY 31 (28 July 2013). DD activity follows a repeatable seasonal pattern similar to that found in previous surveys, with a distinct "on" season during local summer, beginning shortly before the northern spring equinox (Ls = 0°) and lasting until just after the northern fall equinox (Ls = 180°). DD heights measured from shadow lengths varied considerably, with median values peaking at local midsummer. Modeled PBL heights, constrained by those measured from radio occultation data, follow a similar seasonal trend, and correlation of the two suggests that the martian PBL thickness is approximately 5 times the median DD height. These results compare favorably to the limited terrestrial data available. DD spacing was measured using nearest neighbor statistics, following the assumption that because convection cell widths have been measured to be ∼1.2 ± 0.2h (Willis, G.E., Deardorff, J.W. [1979]. J. Geophys. Res. 84(C1), 295-302), a preference for DD formation at vertices of convection cells intersections could be used to estimate the PBL height. During local spring and summer, the DD average nearest neighbor (ANN) ranged from ∼1 to 2h, indicating that DD spacing does indeed correlate with PBL height. However, this result is complicated by two factors: (1) convection cell

  17. Assessment of the turbulence parameterization schemes for the Martian mesoscale simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Temel, Orkun; Karatekin, Ozgur; Van Beeck, Jeroen

    2016-07-01

    Turbulent transport within the Martian atmospheric boundary layer (ABL) is one of the most important physical processes in the Martian atmosphere due to the very thin structure of Martian atmosphere and super-adiabatic conditions during the diurnal cycle [1]. The realistic modeling of turbulent fluxes within the Martian ABL has a crucial effect on the many physical phenomena including dust devils [2], methane dispersion [3] and nocturnal jets [4]. Moreover, the surface heat and mass fluxes, which are related with the mass transport within the sub-surface of Mars, are being computed by the turbulence parameterization schemes. Therefore, in addition to the possible applications within the Martian boundary layer, parameterization of turbulence has an important effect on the biological research on Mars including the investigation of water cycle or sub-surface modeling. In terms of the turbulence modeling approaches being employed for the Martian ABL, the "planetary boundary layer (PBL) schemes" have been applied not only for the global circulation modeling but also for the mesoscale simulations [5]. The PBL schemes being used for Mars are the variants of the PBL schemes which had been developed for the Earth and these schemes are either based on the empirical determination of turbulent fluxes [6] or based on solving a one dimensional turbulent kinetic energy equation [7]. Even though, the Large Eddy Simulation techniques had also been applied with the regional models for Mars, it must be noted that these advanced models also use the features of these traditional PBL schemes for sub-grid modeling [8]. Therefore, assessment of these PBL schemes is vital for a better understanding the atmospheric processes of Mars. In this framework, this present study is devoted to the validation of different turbulence modeling approaches for the Martian ABL in comparison to Viking Lander [9] and MSL [10] datasets. The GCM/Mesoscale code being used is the PlanetWRF, the extended version

  18. Workshop on Evolution of Martian Volatiles. Part 1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jakosky, B. (Editor); Treiman, A. (Editor)

    1996-01-01

    This volume contains papers that were presented on February 12-14, 1996 at the Evolution for Martian Volatiles Workshop. Topics in this volume include: returned Martian samples; acidic volatiles and the Mars soil; solar EUV Radiation; the ancient Mars Thermosphere; primitive methane atmospheres on Earth and Mars; the evolution of Martian water; the role of SO2 for the climate history of Mars; impact crater morphology; the formation of the Martian drainage system; atmospheric dust-water ice Interactions; volatiles and volcanos; accretion of interplanetary dust particles; Mars' ionosphere; simulations with the NASA Ames Mars General Circulation Model; modeling the Martian water cycle; the evolution of Martian atmosphere; isotopic composition; solar occultation; magnetic fields; photochemical weathering; NASA's Mars Surveyor Program; iron formations; measurements of Martian atmospheric water vapor; and the thermal evolution Models of Mars.

  19. JSC Mars-1 Martian Soil Simulant: Melting Experiments and Electron Microprobe Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Carpenter, P.; Sebille, L.; Boles, W.; Chadwell, M.; Schwarz, L.

    2003-01-01

    JSC Mars-1 has been developed as a Martian regolith simulant, and is the <1 mm size fraction of a palagonitic tephra (a glassy volcanic ash altered at low temperatures) from Pu'u Nene cinder cone on the Island of Hawaii. The Mars-1 simulant forms the basis for numerous terrestrial studies which aim to evaluate the suitability of Martian soil for materials processing. Martian soil may be sintered to form building materials for construction, and also melted or reacted to extract metals for various uses, as well as oxygen for life support.

  20. Non-Ohmic Discharge Characteristics of JSC Mars-1 Martian Regolith Simulant

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Buhler, C. R.; Calle, C. I.; Hirschmann, A.; Denning, D.; Nowicki, A. W.

    2002-01-01

    The charge decay characteristics of Martian soil simulant are presented. The decay is non-ohmic as seen from experimental measurements of the current-voltage curves. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  1. Investigating the Effects of Simulated Martian Ultraviolet Radiation on Halococcus dombrowskii and Other Extremely Halophilic Archaebacteria

    PubMed Central

    Fendrihan, Sergiu; Bérces, Attila; Lammer, Helmut; Musso, Maurizio; Rontó, György; Polacsek, Tatjana K.; Holzinger, Anita; Kolb, Christoph; Stan-Lotter, Helga

    2011-01-01

    The isolation of viable extremely halophilic archaea from 250-million-year-old rock salt suggests the possibility of their long-term survival under desiccation. Since halite has been found on Mars and in meteorites, haloarchaeal survival of martian surface conditions is being explored. Halococcus dombrowskii H4 DSM 14522T was exposed to UV doses over a wavelength range of 200–400 nm to simulate martian UV flux. Cells embedded in a thin layer of laboratory-grown halite were found to accumulate preferentially within fluid inclusions. Survival was assessed by staining with the LIVE/DEAD kit dyes, determining colony-forming units, and using growth tests. Halite-embedded cells showed no loss of viability after exposure to about 21 kJ/m2, and they resumed growth in liquid medium with lag phases of 12 days or more after exposure up to 148 kJ/m2. The estimated D37 (dose of 37 % survival) for Hcc. dombrowskii was ≥ 400 kJ/m2. However, exposure of cells to UV flux while in liquid culture reduced D37 by 2 orders of magnitude (to about 1 kJ/m2); similar results were obtained with Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1 and Haloarcula japonica. The absorption of incoming light of shorter wavelength by color centers resulting from defects in the halite crystal structure likely contributed to these results. Under natural conditions, haloarchaeal cells become embedded in salt upon evaporation; therefore, dispersal of potential microscopic life within small crystals, perhaps in dust, on the surface of Mars could resist damage by UV radiation. PMID:19215203

  2. Investigating the effects of simulated martian ultraviolet radiation on Halococcus dombrowskii and other extremely halophilic archaebacteria.

    PubMed

    Fendrihan, Sergiu; Bérces, Attila; Lammer, Helmut; Musso, Maurizio; Rontó, György; Polacsek, Tatjana K; Holzinger, Anita; Kolb, Christoph; Stan-Lotter, Helga

    2009-01-01

    The isolation of viable extremely halophilic archaea from 250-million-year-old rock salt suggests the possibility of their long-term survival under desiccation. Since halite has been found on Mars and in meteorites, haloarchaeal survival of martian surface conditions is being explored. Halococcus dombrowskii H4 DSM 14522(T) was exposed to UV doses over a wavelength range of 200-400 nm to simulate martian UV flux. Cells embedded in a thin layer of laboratory-grown halite were found to accumulate preferentially within fluid inclusions. Survival was assessed by staining with the LIVE/DEAD kit dyes, determining colony-forming units, and using growth tests. Halite-embedded cells showed no loss of viability after exposure to about 21 kJ/m(2), and they resumed growth in liquid medium with lag phases of 12 days or more after exposure up to 148 kJ/m(2). The estimated D(37) (dose of 37 % survival) for Hcc. dombrowskii was > or = 400 kJ/m(2). However, exposure of cells to UV flux while in liquid culture reduced D(37) by 2 orders of magnitude (to about 1 kJ/m(2)); similar results were obtained with Halobacterium salinarum NRC-1 and Haloarcula japonica. The absorption of incoming light of shorter wavelength by color centers resulting from defects in the halite crystal structure likely contributed to these results. Under natural conditions, haloarchaeal cells become embedded in salt upon evaporation; therefore, dispersal of potential microscopic life within small crystals, perhaps in dust, on the surface of Mars could resist damage by UV radiation.

  3. Influence of planetary-scale topography on the diurnal thermal tide during the 1971 Martian dust storm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Conrath, B. J.

    1976-01-01

    Data obtained with the Mariner 9 infrared spectroscopy experiment during the Martian Dust Storm of 1971 to 1972 are examined for evidence of topographic influence on the atmospheric thermal structure. Temperature perturbations which are well correlated with the planetary scale topography are found superposed on the large amplitude diurnal thermal tide. Applications of tidal theory to the data indicate that the observed perturbations result from the kinematic interaction of the westward traveling diurnal wave with the large scale components of topography. The dominant mode is excited by the wave-number two topography component and is a vertically evanescent eastward traveling wave with an equivalent depth comparable to the atmospheric scale height. The principle dynamic effect of this mode is the enhancement of the amplitude of the near-surface diurnal wind to over 40m/sec in limited areas near 30 deg south latitude. It appears likely that dust was injected into the atmosphere in these regions during the storm.

  4. Comparing wind directions inferred from Martian dust devil tracks analysis with those predicted by the Mars Climate Database

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Statella, T.; Pina, P.; Silva, E. A.; Nervis Frigeri, Ary Vinicius; Neto, Frederico Gallon

    2016-10-01

    We have calculated the prevailing dust devil tracks direction as a means of verifying the Mars Climate Database (MCD) predicted wind directions accuracy. For that purpose we have applied an automatic method based on morphological openings for inferring the prevailing tracks direction in a dataset comprising 200 Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) Narrow Angle (NA) and High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) images of the Martian surface, depicting regions in the Aeolis, Eridania, Noachis, Argyre and Hellas quadrangles. The prevailing local wind directions were calculated from the MCD predicted speeds for the WE and SN wind components. The results showed that the MCD may not be able to predict accurately the locally dominant wind direction near the surface. In adittion, we confirm that the surface wind stress alone cannot produce dust lifting in the studied sites, since it never exceeds the threshold value of 0.0225 Nm-2 in the MCD.

  5. Simulation of Martian surface-atmosphere interaction in a space-simulator: Technical considerations and feasibility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moehlmann, D.; Kochan, H.

    1992-01-01

    The Space Simulator of the German Aerospace Research Establishment at Cologne, formerly used for testing satellites, is now, since 1987, the central unit within the research sub-program 'Comet-Simulation' (KOSI). The KOSI team has investigated physical processes relevant to comets and their surfaces. As a byproduct we gained experience in sample-handling under simulated space conditions. In broadening the scope of the research activities of the DLR Institute of Space Simulation an extension to 'Laboratory-Planetology' is planned. Following the KOSI-experiments a Mars Surface-Simulation with realistic minerals and surface soil in a suited environment (temperature, pressure, and CO2-atmosphere) is foreseen as the next step. Here, our main interest is centered on thermophysical properties of the Martian surface and energy transport (and related gas transport) through the surface. These laboratory simulation activities can be related to space missions as typical pre-mission and during-the-mission support of the experiments design and operations (simulation in parallel). Post mission experiments for confirmation and interpretation of results are of great value. The physical dimensions of the Space Simulator (cylinder of about 2.5 m diameter and 5 m length) allows for testing and qualification of experimental hardware under realistic Martian conditions.

  6. Martian and Asteroid Dusts as Toxicological Risks for Human Exploration Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    James, John T.

    2012-01-01

    As the lunar dust toxicity project winds down, our attention is drawn to the potential toxicity of dust present at the surface of more distant celestial objects. Lunar dust has proven to be surprisingly toxic to the respiratory systems of test animals, so one might expect dust from other celestial bodies to hold toxicological surprises for us. At this point all one can do is consider what should be known about these dusts to characterize their toxicity, and then ask to what extent that information is known. In an ideal world it might be possible to suggest an exposure standard based on the known properties of a celestial dust without direct testing of the dust in laboratory animals. Factors known to affect the toxicity of mineral dusts under some conditions include the following: particle size distribution, particle shape/porosity, mineralogical properties (crystalline vs. amorphous), chemical properties and composition, and surface reactivity. Data from a recent Japanese mission to the S-type asteroid Itokawa revealed some surprises about the dust found there, given that there is only a very week gravitational field to hold the dust on the surface. On Mars the reddish-brown dust is widely distributed by global dust storms and by local clusters of dust devils. Past surface probes have revealed some of the properties of dust found there. Contemporary data from Curiosity and other surface probes will be weighed against the data needed to set a defensible safe exposure limit. Gaps will emerge.

  7. Development of a Martian regolith simulant for in-situ resource utilization testing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott, A. N.; Oze, C.; Tang, Y.; O'Loughlin, A.

    2017-02-01

    Long-term human habitation of Mars will require in situ resources for construction and infrastructure development. In order to determine how to utilize in situ resources, such as Martian regolith, these materials need to be synthesized on Earth for testing and development. Here we address the process of synthesizing a targeted Martian simulant (i.e., Gusev Crater regolith near the Columbia Hills region on Mars) in sufficient quantities required for infrastructure development studies using volcanic material obtained from Banks Peninsula, New Zealand. Martian simulant produced via crushing, sieving, washing and blending of basalts and volcanic glass resulted in accurately reproducing material similar in particle size, chemistry and mineralogy to Gusev Crater regolith. Overall, our applied approach to synthesizing Martian regolith will aid in creating suitable quantities of material that can be used for a variety of research applications such as assessing aggregates for use in the production of construction materials.

  8. A survey of Martian dust devil activity using Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera images

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fisher, Jenny A.; Richardson, Mark I.; Newman, Claire E.; Szwast, Mark A.; Graf, Chelsea; Basu, Shabari; Ewald, Shawn P.; Toigo, Anthony D.; Wilson, R. John

    2005-03-01

    A survey of dust devils using the Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) wide- and narrow-angle (WA and NA) images has been undertaken. The survey comprises two parts: (1) sampling of nine broad regions from September 1997 to July 2001 and (2) a focused seasonal monitoring of variability in the Amazonis region, an active dust devil site, from March 2001 to April 2004. For part 1, dust devils were identified in NA and WA images, and dust devil tracks were identified in NA images. Great spatial variability in dust devil occurrence is highlighted, with Amazonis Planitia being the most active region examined. Other active regions included Cimmerium, Sinai, and Solis. Numerous dust devil tracks, but very few dust devils, were observed in Casius. This may suggest dust devils here occur at local times other than that of the MGS orbit (~2 pm). Alternatively, variations in surface properties may affect the ability of dust devils to leave visible tracks. The seasonal campaign within Amazonis shows a relatively smooth variation of dust devil activity with season, peaking in mid northern summer and falling to zero in southern spring and summer. This pattern of activity correlates well with the boundary layer maximum depth and hence the vigor of convection. Global maps of boundary layer depth and surface temperature do not predict that Amazonis should be especially active, potentially suggesting a role for mesoscale circulations. Measurement of observed dust devils yields heights of up to 8 km and widths in excess of 0.5 km.

  9. Performance evaluation of CESM in simulating the dust cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parajuli, S. P.; Yang, Z. L.; Kocurek, G.; Lawrence, D. M.

    2014-12-01

    Mineral dust in the atmosphere has implications for Earth's radiation budget, biogeochemical cycles, hydrological cycles, human health and visibility. Mineral dust is injected into the atmosphere during dust storms when the surface winds are sufficiently strong and the land surface conditions are favorable. Dust storms are very common in specific regions of the world including the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region, which contains more than 50% of the global dust sources. In this work, we present simulation of the dust cycle under the framework of CESM1.2.2 and evaluate how well the model captures the spatio-temporal characteristics of dust sources, transport and deposition at global scale, especially in dust source regions. We conducted our simulations using two existing erodibility maps (geomorphic and topographic) and a new erodibility map, which is based on the correlation between observed wind and dust. We compare the simulated results with MODIS satellite data, MACC reanalysis data, and AERONET station data. Comparison with MODIS satellite data and MACC reanalysis data shows that all three erodibility maps generally reproduce the spatio-temporal characteristics of dust optical depth globally. However, comparison with AERONET station data shows that the simulated dust optical depth is generally overestimated for all erodibility maps. Results vary greatly by region and scale of observational data. Our results also show that the simulations forced by reanalysis meteorology capture the overall dust cycle more realistically compared to the simulations done using online meteorology.

  10. Dust properties of Lyman-break galaxies in cosmological simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yajima, Hidenobu; Nagamine, Kentaro; Thompson, Robert; Choi, Jun-Hwan

    2014-04-01

    Recent observations have indicated the existence of dust in high-redshift galaxies, however, the dust properties in them are still unknown. Here we present theoretical constraints on dust properties in Lyman-break galaxies (LBGs) at z = 3 by post-processing a cosmological smoothed particle hydrodynamics simulation with radiative transfer calculations. We calculate the dust extinction in 2800 dark matter haloes using the metallicity information of individual gas particles in our simulation. We use only bright galaxies with rest-frame ultraviolet (UV) magnitude M1700 < -20 mag, and study the dust size, dust-to-metal mass ratio, and dust composition. From the comparison of calculated colour excess between B and V band [i.e. E(B - V)] and the observations, we constrain the typical dust size, and show that the best-fitting dust grain size is ˜ 0.05 μm, which is consistent with the results of theoretical dust models for Type II supernova. Our simulation with the dust extinction effect can naturally reproduce the observed rest-frame UV luminosity function of LBGs at z = 3 without assuming an ad hoc constant extinction value. In addition, in order to reproduce the observed mean E(B - V), we find that the dust-to-metal mass ratio needs to be similar to that of the local galaxies, and that the graphite dust is dominant or at least occupy half of dust mass.

  11. Lunar Simulation in the Lunar Dust Adhesion Bell Jar

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Sechkar, Edward A.

    2007-01-01

    The Lunar Dust Adhesion Bell Jar has been assembled at the NASA Glenn Research Center to provide a high fidelity lunar simulation facility to test the interactions of lunar dust and lunar dust simulant with candidate aerospace materials and coatings. It has a sophisticated design which enables it to treat dust in a way that will remove adsorbed gases and create a chemically reactive surface. It can simulate the vacuum, thermal, and radiation environments of the Moon, including proximate areas of illuminated heat and extremely cold shadow. It is expected to be a valuable tool in the development of dust repellant and cleaning technologies for lunar surface systems.

  12. Ultraviolet complex refractive index of Martian dust Laboratory measurements of terrestrial analogs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Egan, W. G.; Hilgeman, T.; Pang, K.

    1975-01-01

    The optical complex index of refraction of four candidate Martian surface materials has been determined between 0.185 and 0.4 microns using a modified Kubelka-Munk scattering theory. The cadidate materials were limonite, andesite, montmorillonite, and basalt. The effect of scattering has been removed from the results. Also presented are diffuse reflection and transmission data on these samples.

  13. The effects of atmospheric dust on observations of Martian surface albedo

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, S. W.; Clancy, R. T.

    1991-01-01

    The Mariner 9 and Viking missions provided abundant evidence that aeolian processes are active over much of surface of Mars. A radiative transfer model was developed which allows the effects of atmospheric dust loading and variable surface albedo to be investigated. This model incorporated atmospheric dust opacity, the single scattering albedo, and particle phase function of atmospheric dust, the bidirectional; reflectance of the surface, and variable lighting and viewing geometry. The Cerberus albedo feature was examined in detail using this technique.

  14. Plasma and wave properties downstream of Martian bow shock: Hybrid simulations and MAVEN observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dong, Chuanfei; Winske, Dan; Cowee, Misa; Bougher, Stephen W.; Andersson, Laila; Connerney, Jack; Epley, Jared; Ergun, Robert; McFadden, James P.; Ma, Yingjuan; Toth, Gabor; Curry, Shannon; Nagy, Andrew; Jakosky, Bruce

    2015-04-01

    Two-dimensional hybrid simulation codes are employed to investigate the kinetic properties of plasmas and waves downstream of the Martian bow shock. The simulations are two-dimensional in space but three dimensional in field and velocity components. Simulations show that ion cyclotron waves are generated by temperature anisotropy resulting from the reflected protons around the Martian bow shock. These proton cyclotron waves could propagate downward into the Martian ionosphere and are expected to heat the O+ layer peaked from 250 to 300 km due to the wave-particle interaction. The proton cyclotron wave heating is anticipated to be a significant source of energy into the thermosphere, which impacts atmospheric escape rates. The simulation results show that the specific dayside heating altitude depends on the Martian crustal field orientations, solar cycles and seasonal variations since both the cyclotron resonance condition and the non/sub-resonant stochastic heating threshold depend on the ambient magnetic field strength. The dayside magnetic field profiles for different crustal field orientation, solar cycle and seasonal variations are adopted from the BATS-R-US Mars multi-fluid MHD model. The simulation results, however, show that the heating of O+ via proton cyclotron wave resonant interaction is not likely in the relatively weak crustal field region, based on our simplified model. This indicates that either the drift motion resulted from the transport of ionospheric O+, or the non/sub-resonant stochastic heating mechanism are important to explain the heating of Martian O+ layer. We will investigate this further by comparing the simulation results with the available MAVEN data. These simulated ion cyclotron waves are important to explain the heating of Martian O+ layer and have significant implications for future observations.

  15. Operations Strategies for the Mars Exploration Rovers During the 2007 Martian Global Dust Storm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Seibert, Michael; Herman, Jennifer; ElDeeb, Dina

    2009-01-01

    In June and July 2007 Mars experienced a dust storm that grew to envelop all but the polar latitudes of the planet. This dust storm was the first global dust storm to occur while the twin Mars Exploration Rovers (MER) began surface operations. It is estimated that the dust in the atmosphere prevented over 99.6% of direct sunlight from reaching the surface at the peak of the storm. Data collected indicated that solar array energy output was reduced to approximately 15% of maximum. The reduction in insolation and energy output posed the greatest risk of ending the mission for both rovers at that time.

  16. Desert Cyanobacteria under simulated space and Martian conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Billi, D.; Ghelardini, P.; Onofri, S.; Cockell, C. S.; Rabbow, E.; Horneck, G.

    2008-09-01

    The environment in space and on planets such as Mars, can be lethal to living organisms and high levels of tolerance to desiccation, cold and radiation are needed for survival: rock-inhabiting cyanobacteria belonging to the genus Chroococcidiopsis can fulfil these requirements [1]. These cyanobacteria constantly appear in the most extreme and dry habitats on Earth, including the McMurdo Dry Valleys (Antarctica) and the Atacama Desert (Chile), which are considered the closest terrestrial analogs of two Mars environmental extremes: cold and aridity. In their natural environment, these cyanobacteria occupy the last refuges for life inside porous rocks or at the stone-soil interfaces, where they survive in a dry, dormant state for prolonged periods. How desert strains of Chroococcidiopsis can dry without dying is only partially understood, even though experimental evidences support the existence of an interplay between mechanisms to avoid (or limit) DNA damage and repair it: i) desert strains of Chroococcidiopsis mend genome fragmentation induced by ionizing radiation [2]; ii) desiccation-survivors protect their genome from complete fragmentation; iii) in the dry state they show a survival to an unattenuated Martian UV flux greater than that of Bacillus subtilis spores [3], and even though they die following atmospheric entry after having orbited the Earth for 16 days [4], they survive to simulated shock pressures up to 10 GPa [5]. Recently additional experiments were carried out at the German Aerospace Center (DLR) of Cologne (Germany) in order to identify suitable biomarkers to investigate the survival of Chroococcidiopsis cells present in lichen-dominated communities, in view of their direct and long term space exposition on the International Space Station (ISS) in the framework of the LIchens and Fungi Experiments (LIFE, EXPOSEEuTEF, ESA). Multilayers of dried cells of strains CCMEE 134 (Beacon Valley, Antarctica), and CCMEE 123 (costal desert, Chile ), shielded by

  17. The Martian polar cap - Radiative effects of ozone, clouds, and airborne dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindner, Bernhard Lee

    1990-01-01

    The solar and thermal flux striking the polar cap of Mars is computed for various ozone, dust, and cloud abundances and for three solar zenith angles. Ozone does not significantly affect the total energy budget of the polar cap. Hence the observed hemispherical asymmetry in ozone abundance causes only an insignificant hemispherical asymmetry in the polar caps. Vertical optical depths of dust and cloud ranging from zero to 1 cause little change in the total flux absorbed by the polar cap near its edge but increase the absorbed flux significantly as one travels poleward. Hemispherical asymmetries in dust abundance, cloud cover, and surface pressure combine to cause a significant hemispherical asymmetry in the total flux absorbed by the residual polar caps, which helps to explain the dichotomy in the residual polar caps on Mars. Other processes which affect the energy budget of the polar cap are proposed and reviewed, particularly with respect to their interaction with the radiative effects of clouds and dust.

  18. The chemical composition of the dust-free Martian atmosphere - Preliminary results of a two-dimensional model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moreau, D.; Esposito, L. W.; Brasseur, G.

    1991-01-01

    This paper describes a two-dimensional model of the Martian atmosphere, in which chemical, radiative and dynamical processes are treated interactively. The model is developed for a carbon dioxide-hydrogen-oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere and provides estimates of concentrations for 19 chemical species. The dynamical equations are expressed in the transformed Eulerian coordinates. The wave driving and eddy mixing coefficients resulting from gravity and Rossby wave absorption are computed consistently with the evolving distribution of the mean zonal wind. The net diabatic heating/cooling rate is derived from a detailed radiative scheme including the contributions of CO2, O3, H2O and O2, and is computed consistently with the calculated distribution of temperature and trace species quantities. The computed temperature field as well as the meridional and seasonal variations of ozone column abundance are in good agreement with the distributions observed by Mariner 9 and Viking spacecrafts and the results obtained by previous studies. The present version of the model does not include the effects of dust, clouds and polar hood and only the chemistry in a dust-free atmosphere is considered.

  19. Lunar Dust Simulant in Mechanical Component Testing - Paradigm and Practicality

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jett, T.; Street, K.; Abel, P.; Richmond, R.

    2008-01-01

    Due to the uniquely harsh lunar surface environment, terrestrial test activities may not adequately represent abrasive wear by lunar dust likely to be experienced in mechanical systems used in lunar exploration. Testing to identify potential moving mechanism problems has recently begun within the NASA Engineering and Safety Center Mechanical Systems Lunar Dust Assessment activity in coordination with the Exploration Technology and Development Program Dust Management Project, and these complimentary efforts will be described. Specific concerns about differences between simulant and lunar dust, and procedures for mechanical component testing with lunar simulant will be considered. In preparing for long term operations within a dusty lunar environment, the three fundamental approaches to keeping mechanical equipment functioning are dust avoidance, dust removal, and dust tolerance, with some combination of the three likely to be found in most engineering designs. Methods to exclude dust from contact with mechanical components would constitute mitigation by dust avoidance, so testing seals for dust exclusion efficacy as a function of particle size provides useful information for mechanism design. Dust of particle size less than a micron is not well documented for impact on lunar mechanical components. Therefore, creating a standardized lunar dust simulant in the particulate size range of ca. 0.1 to 1.0 micrometer is useful for testing effects on mechanical components such as bearings, gears, seals, bushings, and other moving mechanical assemblies. Approaching actual wear testing of mechanical components, it is beneficial to first establish relative wear rates caused by dust on commonly used mechanical component materials. The wear mode due to dust within mechanical components, such as abrasion caused by dust in grease(s), needs to be considered, as well as the effects of vacuum, lunar thermal cycle, and electrostatics on wear rate.

  20. Mars Orbiter Camera observations of Martian dust devils and their tracks (September 1997 to January 2006) and evaluation of theoretical vortex models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cantor, Bruce A.; Kanak, Katharine M.; Edgett, Kenneth S.

    2006-12-01

    A multiyear, planet-wide survey of Martian dust devils was conducted using observations from Mars Global Surveyor Mars Orbiter Camera, acquired through 21 January 2006. A total of 223,350 images were surveyed and 11,456 dust devils were seen in 0.4% of the images, 11.5% in the Southern and 88.5% in the Northern Hemisphere. Dust devils were observed at latitudes from 71.9°S to 62.2°N, over a range of surface albedos (Am~0.11-0.22) and elevations from Hellas (-8750 m) to Arsia Mons (+17,250 m). The light- and dark-toned streaks created by dust devils were observed from 80°S to 80°N and changed on timescales as short as 1 month. At mid-to-high latitudes, seasonal changes in streak patterns contribute to the seasonal ``wave of darkening'' observed telescopically from Earth. Dust devils were observed in all seasons in both hemispheres with the exception of Ls = 202.8°-281.5° in the north. Peak activity occurred during midsummer in each hemisphere. Five regions in Amazonis, Syria-Claritas, Meridiani, and Gusev were monitored regularly. Amazonis had the largest dust devils and was the most active planet-wide, with annual activity occurring from Ls~8.5°-197°. Interannual variability resulted from dust storms and planet-encircling dust hazes, which were observed to initiate and abate dust devil activity. There was no evidence suggesting dust devils cause or lead to initiation of dust storms. Model-derived tangential wind speeds of large vortices were >20 m s-1 at 20 m above the surface. Dust flux calculations suggest that dust devils are a contributor to the background dust opacity observed through northern spring and summer.

  1. Effect of shadowing on survival of bacteria under conditions simulating the Martian atmosphere and UV radiation.

    PubMed

    Osman, Shariff; Peeters, Zan; La Duc, Myron T; Mancinelli, Rocco; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2008-02-01

    Spacecraft-associated spores and four non-spore-forming bacterial isolates were prepared in Atacama Desert soil suspensions and tested both in solution and in a desiccated state to elucidate the shadowing effect of soil particulates on bacterial survival under simulated Martian atmospheric and UV irradiation conditions. All non-spore-forming cells that were prepared in nutrient-depleted, 0.2-microm-filtered desert soil (DSE) microcosms and desiccated for 75 days on aluminum died, whereas cells prepared similarly in 60-microm-filtered desert soil (DS) microcosms survived such conditions. Among the bacterial cells tested, Microbacterium schleiferi and Arthrobacter sp. exhibited elevated resistance to 254-nm UV irradiation (low-pressure Hg lamp), and their survival indices were comparable to those of DS- and DSE-associated Bacillus pumilus spores. Desiccated DSE-associated spores survived exposure to full Martian UV irradiation (200 to 400 nm) for 5 min and were only slightly affected by Martian atmospheric conditions in the absence of UV irradiation. Although prolonged UV irradiation (5 min to 12 h) killed substantial portions of the spores in DSE microcosms (approximately 5- to 6-log reduction with Martian UV irradiation), dramatic survival of spores was apparent in DS-spore microcosms. The survival of soil-associated wild-type spores under Martian conditions could have repercussions for forward contamination of extraterrestrial environments, especially Mars.

  2. Survival of methanogenic archaea from Siberian permafrost under simulated Martian thermal conditions.

    PubMed

    Morozova, Daria; Möhlmann, Diedrich; Wagner, Dirk

    2007-04-01

    Methanogenic archaea from Siberian permafrost complementary to the already well-studied methanogens from non-permafrost habitats were exposed to simulated Martian conditions. After 22 days of exposure to thermo-physical conditions at Martian low- and mid-latitudes up to 90% of methanogenic archaea from Siberian permafrost survived in pure cultures as well as in environmental samples. In contrast, only 0.3%-5.8% of reference organisms from non-permafrost habitats survived at these conditions. This suggests that methanogens from terrestrial permafrost seem to be remarkably resistant to Martian conditions. Our data also suggest that in scenario of subsurface lithoautotrophic life on Mars, methanogenic archaea from Siberian permafrost could be used as appropriate candidates for the microbial life on Mars.

  3. Effects of long-term simulated martian conditions on a freeze-dried and homogenized bacterial permafrost community.

    PubMed

    Hansen, Aviaja A; Jensen, Lars L; Kristoffersen, Tommy; Mikkelsen, Karina; Merrison, Jonathan; Finster, Kai W; Lomstein, Bente Aa

    2009-03-01

    Indigenous bacteria and biomolecules (DNA and proteins) in a freeze-dried and homogenized Arctic permafrost were exposed to simulated martian conditions that correspond to about 80 days on the surface of Mars with respect to the accumulated UV dose. The simulation conditions included UV radiation, freeze-thaw cycles, the atmospheric gas composition, and pressure. The homogenized permafrost cores were subjected to repeated cycles of UV radiation for 3 h followed by 27 h without irradiation. The effects of the simulation conditions on the concentrations of biomolecules; numbers of viable, dead, and cultured bacteria; as well as the community structure were determined. Simulated martian conditions resulted in a significant reduction of the concentrations of DNA and amino acids in the uppermost 1.5 mm of the soil core. The total number of bacterial cells was reduced in the upper 9 mm of the soil core, while the number of viable cells was reduced in the upper 15 mm. The number of cultured aerobic bacteria was reduced in the upper 6 mm of the soil core, whereas the community structure of cultured anaerobic bacteria was relatively unaffected by the exposure conditions. As explanations for the observed changes, we propose three causes that might have been working on the biological material either individually or synergistically: (i) UV radiation, (ii) UV-generated reactive oxygen species, and (iii) freeze-thaw cycles. Currently, the production and action of reactive gases is only hypothetical and will be a central subject in future investigations. Overall, we conclude that in a stable environment (no wind-/pressure-induced mixing) biological material is efficiently shielded by a 2 cm thick layer of dust, while it is relatively rapidly destroyed in the surface layer, and that biomolecules like proteins and polynucleotides are more resistant to destruction than living biota.

  4. Extended survival of several organisms and amino acids under simulated martian surface conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Johnson, A. P.; Pratt, L. M.; Vishnivetskaya, T.; Pfiffner, S.; Bryan, R. A.; Dadachova, E.; Whyte, L.; Radtke, K.; Chan, E.; Tronick, S.; Borgonie, G.; Mancinelli, R. L.; Rothschild, L. J.; Rogoff, D. A.; Horikawa, D. D.; Onstott, T. C.

    2011-02-01

    Recent orbital and landed missions have provided substantial evidence for ancient liquid water on the martian surface as well as evidence of more recent sedimentary deposits formed by water and/or ice. These observations raise serious questions regarding an independent origin and evolution of life on Mars. Future missions seek to identify signs of extinct martian biota in the form of biomarkers or morphological characteristics, but the inherent danger of spacecraft-borne terrestrial life makes the possibility of forward contamination a serious threat not only to the life detection experiments, but also to any extant martian ecosystem. A variety of cold and desiccation-tolerant organisms were exposed to 40 days of simulated martian surface conditions while embedded within several centimeters of regolith simulant in order to ascertain the plausibility of such organisms' survival as a function of environmental parameters and burial depth. Relevant amino acid biomarkers associated with terrestrial life were also analyzed in order to understand the feasibility of detecting chemical evidence for previous biological activity. Results indicate that stresses due to desiccation and oxidation were the primary deterrent to organism survival, and that the effects of UV-associated damage, diurnal temperature variations, and reactive atmospheric species were minimal. Organisms with resistance to desiccation and radiation environments showed increased levels of survival after the experiment compared to organisms characterized as psychrotolerant. Amino acid analysis indicated the presence of an oxidation mechanism that migrated downward through the samples during the course of the experiment and likely represents the formation of various oxidizing species at mineral surfaces as water vapor diffused through the regolith. Current sterilization protocols may specifically select for organisms best adapted to survival at the martian surface, namely species that show tolerance to radical

  5. Interannual similarity in the Martian atmosphere during the dust storm season

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kass, D. M.; Kleinböhl, A.; McCleese, D. J.; Schofield, J. T.; Smith, M. D.

    2016-06-01

    We find that during the dusty season on Mars (southern spring and summer) of years without a global dust storm there are three large regional-scale dust storms. The storms are labeled A, B, and C in seasonal order. This classification is based on examining the zonal mean 50 Pa (˜25 km) daytime temperature retrievals from TES/MGS and MCS/MRO over 6 Mars Years. Regional-scale storms are defined as events where the temperature exceeds 200 K. Examining the MCS dust field at 50 Pa indicates that warming in the Southern Hemisphere is dominated by direct heating, while northern high latitude warming is a dynamical response. A storms are springtime planet encircling Southern Hemisphere events. B storms are southern polar events that begin near perihelion and last through the solstice. C storms are southern summertime events starting well after the end of the B storm. C storms show the most interannual variability.

  6. A lunar dust simulant: CLDS-i

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tang, Hong; Li, Xiongyao; Zhang, Sensen; Wang, Shijie; Liu, Jianzhong; Li, Shijie; Li, Yang; Wu, Yanxue

    2017-02-01

    Lunar dust can make serious damage to the spacecrafts, space suits, and health of astronauts, which is one of the most important problems faced in lunar exploration. In the case of rare lunar dust sample, CLDS-i with high similarity to the real lunar dust is an important objective for studying dust protection and dust toxicity. The CLDS-i developed by the Institute of Geochemistry Chinese Academy Sciences contains ∼75 vol% glass and a little nanophase metal iron (np-Fe0), and with a median particle size about 500 nm. The CLDS-i particles also have complicated shape and sharp edges. These properties are similar to those of lunar dust, and make the CLDS-i can be applied to many fields such as the scientific researches, the treatment technology and toxicological study of lunar dust.

  7. Multiplication of certain soil micro-organisms under simulated Martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Imshenetsky, A A; Kusjurina, L A; Jakshina, V M

    1970-01-01

    According to earlier observations, severe UV irradiation kills all micro-organisms in a chamber with simulated Martian conditions. However, even a thin soil layer protects buried micro-organisms from UV irradiation. The chief limiting factor for microbial multiplication under simulated Martian conditions seems to be soil humidity. Several micro-organisms were isolated from harsh environments (e.g., from Arctic, Antarctic desert and high-mountain soil samples). A strain of an oligonitrophilic mycococcus, isolated from Dixon Island, proved to be most resistant to low humidity. It multiplied in a mixture of limonite (maximal hygroscopical humidity 3.8%) + 2% (w/w) garden soil kept in a chamber simulating Martian conditions. Total cell count increased 7.6-fold and, in some experiments, 26-fold in 14 days. The oligonitrophilic mycococcus was able to grow even at a humidity level of 2.5%, that is less than maximal hygroscopical (3.8%). Under these conditions cell count increased 10-fold in 36 days. Thus, it was shown that even in Earth soils there are xerophytic micro-organisms which are able to multiply in limonite of low humidity. These data might correct our current concepts concerning microbial water requirements. One might speculate that Martian micro-organisms belong to xerophytic species.

  8. Thermophoresis and dust devils on the planet Mars.

    PubMed

    Gheynani, Babak T; Emami-Razavi, Mohsen; Taylor, Peter A

    2011-11-01

    In the Martian atmosphere dust is abundant and is continuously replenished by the entrainment of materials and sediments from the surface of the planet. The sediment concentrations are particularly high and noticeable in whirlwinds, also known as dust devils. Assuming the thermophoresis force as the main driver of dust particles lifting from the surface, the dust process of the Martian atmosphere and its naturally formed dust devils are investigated for the northern polar region of the planet. Our simulated convective boundary layer shows that it may be unlikely that visible dust devils are formed only due to thermophoresis effects and some other lifting mechanisms are required.

  9. Thermophoresis and dust devils on the planet Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gheynani, Babak T.; Emami-Razavi, Mohsen; Taylor, Peter A.

    2011-11-01

    In the Martian atmosphere dust is abundant and is continuously replenished by the entrainment of materials and sediments from the surface of the planet. The sediment concentrations are particularly high and noticeable in whirlwinds, also known as dust devils. Assuming the thermophoresis force as the main driver of dust particles lifting from the surface, the dust process of the Martian atmosphere and its naturally formed dust devils are investigated for the northern polar region of the planet. Our simulated convective boundary layer shows that it may be unlikely that visible dust devils are formed only due to thermophoresis effects and some other lifting mechanisms are required.

  10. Some potentialities of living organisms under simulated Martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Lozina-Lozinsky, L K; Bychenkova, V N; Zaar, E I; Levin, V L; Rumyantseva, V M

    1971-01-01

    Temperature, humidity, pressure, composition of the atmosphere and radiation are the main factors conditioning life on the surface of Mars. When studying the Martian ecology, one must know the total effect of these factors. One may expect that, as a result of adaptation to low temperatures, there is a corresponding shift in the temperature optimum of enzymatic activity. Dryness is the main obstacle to active life. We suggest the presence of some soil moisture and water vapour. Moreover, there can be areas of permafrost. This minimum supply of water and periodic fluctuations of humidity may create conditions for the existence of drought-resistant organisms. Decreased atmospheric pressure alone does not affect micro-organisms, plants, protozoa and even insects. Ciliates reproduce in a flowing atmosphere of pure nitrogen containing 0.0002-0.0005% oxygen as an impurity. Protozoa may also develop in an atmosphere of 98-99% carbon dioxide mixed with 1% O2. Therefore, even traces of oxygen in the Martian atmosphere would be sufficient for aerobic unicellular organisms. Cells and organisms on earth have acquired various ways of protection from uv light, and therefore may increase their resistance further by adaptation or selection. The resistance of some organisms to ionizing radiation is high enough to enable them to endure hard ionizing radiation of the sun. Experiments with unicellular [correction of unicellar] organisms show that the effect of short wave uv radiation depends on the intensity of visible light, long-wave solar uv radiation, temperatures, cell repair processes, and the state of cell components, i.e. whether the cell was frozen, dried or hydrated.

  11. Physical Properties of Dust in the Martian Atmosphere: Analysis of Contradictions and Possible Ways of Their Resolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dlugach, Zh. M.; Korablev, O. I.; Morozhenko, A. V.; Moroz, V. I.; Petrova, E. V.; Rodin, A. V.

    2003-01-01

    Atmospheric aerosols play an important role in forming the Martian climate. However, the basic physical properties of the Martian aerosols are still poorly known; there are many contradictions in their estimates. We present an analytical overview of the published results and potentialities of various methods. We consider mineral dust. Zonally averaged data obtained from mapping IR instruments (TES and IRTM) give the optical thickness of mineral aerosols τ9 = 0.05-0.1 in the 9-μm band for quite atmospheric conditions. There is a problem of comparing these estimates with those obtained in the visible spectral range. We suggest that the commonly used ratio τvis/τ9 >2 depends on the interpretation and it may actually be smaller. The ratio τvis/τ9 ~ 1 is in better agreement with the IRIS data (materials like montmorillonite). If we assume that τvis/τ9 = 1 and take into account the nonspherical particle shape, then the interpretation of ground-based integrated polarimetric observations (τ < 0.04) can be reconciled with IR measurements from the orbit. However, for thin layers, the sensitivity of both methods to the optical thickness is poorly understood: on the one hand, polarimetry depends on the cloud cover and, on the other hand, the interpretation of IR measurements requires that the atmospheric temperature profile and the surface temperature and emissivity be precisely known. For quite atmospheric conditions, the local optical-thickness estimates obtained by the Bouguer-Lambert-Beer method and from the sky brightness measured from Viking 1 and 2 and Mars Pathfinder landers are much larger: τ = 0.3-0.6. Estimates of the contrasts in images from the Viking orbiters yield the same values. Thus, there is still a factor of 3 to 10 difference between different groups of optical-thickness estimates for the quiet atmosphere. This difference is probably explained by the contribution of condensation clouds and/or by local/time variations.

  12. Stability of Water Ice Beneath Porous Dust Layers of the Martian South Polar Terrain

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Keller, H. U.; Skorov, Yu. V.; Markiewicz, W. J.; Basilevsky, A. T.

    2000-08-01

    The analysis of the Viking Infrared Thermal Mapper (IRTM) data show that the surface layers of the Mars south polar layered deposits have very low thermal inertia between 75 and 125 J/(sq m)(s-1/2)(K-1). This is consistent with the assumption that the surface is covered by a porous layer of fine dust. Paige and Keegan determined a slightly higher value based on a thermal model similar to that of Kieffer et al. In this model the heat transfer equation is used to estimate the thickness of the layer that protects the ground ice from seasonal and diurnal temperature variations. The physical properties of the layer are unimportant as long as it has a low thermal inertia and conductivity and keeps the temperature at the ice boundary low enough to prevent sublimation. A thickness between 20 and 4 cm was estimated. This result can be considered to be an upper limit. We assume the surface to be covered by a porous dust layer and consider the gas diffusion through it, from the ground ice and from the atmosphere. Then the depth of the layer is determined by the mass flux balance of subliming and condensing water and not by the temperature condition. The dust particles in the atmosphere are of the order 1 gm. On the surface we can expect larger grains (up to sand size). Therefore assuming an average pore size of 10 gm, a volume porosity of 0.5, a heat capacity of 1300 J/(kg-1)(K-1) leads to a thermal inertia of approx. 80 J/(sq m)(s-1/2)(K-1). With these parameters a dust layer of only 5 mm thickness is found to establish the flux balance at the ice-dust interface during spring season in the southern hemisphere at high latitudes (where Mars Polar Lander arrived). The diurnal temperature variation at the ice-dust surface is shown. The maximum of 205 K well exceeds the sublimation temperature of water ice at 198 K under the atmospheric conditions. The corresponding vapour flux during the last day is shown together with the flux condensing from the atmosphere. The calculations

  13. Neurotoxic potential of lunar and martian dust: influence on em, proton gradient, active transport, and binding of glutamate in rat brain nerve terminals.

    PubMed

    Krisanova, Natalia; Kasatkina, Ludmila; Sivko, Roman; Borysov, Arseniy; Nazarova, Anastasiya; Slenzka, Klaus; Borisova, Tatiana

    2013-08-01

    The harmful effects of lunar dust (LD) on directly exposed tissues are documented in the literature, whereas researchers are only recently beginning to consider its effects on indirectly exposed tissues. During inhalation, nano-/microsized particles are efficiently deposited in nasal, tracheobronchial, and alveolar regions and transported to the central nervous system. The neurotoxic potential of LD and martian dust (MD) has not yet been assessed. Glutamate is the main excitatory neurotransmitter involved in most aspects of normal brain function, whereas disturbances in glutamate homeostasis contribute to the pathogenesis of major neurological disorders. The research was focused on the analysis of the effects of LD/MD simulants (JSC-1a/JSC, derived from volcanic ash) on the key characteristics of glutamatergic neurotransmission. The average size of LD and MD particles (even minor fractions) before and after sonication was determined by dynamic light scattering. With the use of radiolabeled l-[(14)C]glutamate, it was shown that there is an increase in l-[(14)C]glutamate binding to isolated rat brain nerve terminals (synaptosomes) in low [Na(+)] media and at low temperature in the presence of LD. MD caused significantly lesser changes under the same conditions, whereas nanoparticles of magnetite had no effect at all. Fluorimetric experiments with potential-sensitive dye rhodamine 6G and pH-sensitive dye acridine orange showed that the potential of the plasma membrane of the nerve terminals and acidification of synaptic vesicles were not altered by LD/MD (and nanoparticles of magnetite). Thus, the unique effect of LD to increase glutamate binding to the nerve terminals was shown. This can have deleterious effects on extracellular glutamate homeostasis in the central nervous system and cause alterations in the ambient level of glutamate, which is extremely important for proper synaptic transmission. During a long-term mission, a combination of constant irritation due

  14. Hybrid Simulations of Plasma-Neutral-Dust Interactions at Enceladus

    SciTech Connect

    Omidi, N.; Russell, C. T.; Jia, Y. D.; Tokar, R. L.; Farrell, W. M.

    2010-12-30

    Through ejection from its southern hemisphere, Enceladus is a dominant source of neutral gas and dust in Saturn's inner magnetosphere. The interaction of the corotating plasma with the gas and dust modifies the plasma environment around Enceladus. We use 3-D hybrid (kinetic ions, fluid electrons) simulations to examine the effects of gas and dust on the nature of the interaction region and use Cassini observations to constrain their properties.

  15. Water Ice Clouds and Dust in the Martian Atmosphere Observed by Mars Climate Sounder

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Benson, Jennifer L.; Kass, David; Heavens, Nicholas; Kleinbohl, Armin

    2011-01-01

    The water ice clouds are primarily controlled by the temperature structure and form at the water condensation level. Clouds in all regions presented show day/night differences. Cloud altitude varies between night and day in the SPH and tropics: (1) NPH water ice opacity is greater at night than day at some seasons (2) The diurnal thermal tide controls the daily variability. (3) Strong day/night changes indicate that the amount of gas in the atmosphere varies significantly. See significant mixtures of dust and ice at the same altitude planet-wide (1) Points to a complex radiative and thermal balance between dust heating (in the visible) and ice heating or cooling in the infrared. Aerosol layering: (1) Early seasons reveal a zonally banded spatial distribution (2) Some localized longitudinal structure of aerosol layers (3) Later seasons show no consistent large scale organization

  16. Weather and Large-Scale Dust Activity during Martian Northern Spring and Summer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kass, David M.; Kleinboehl, Armin; McCleese, Daniel J.; Schofield, John Tim; Smith, Michael D.; Heavens, Nicholas

    2016-10-01

    Observations from MCS, TES and THEMIS now span the northern spring and summer seasons (Ls 0° to 180°) of 10 consecutive Mars Years (MY 24 through MY 33). These observations show very similar behavior each year. However, there are also noticeable differences and clear signs of inter-annual variability. To best study the three datasets, we examine zonal mean observations of the lower atmosphere (50 Pa, or ~25 km). This region was selected to provide the best quality from all three instruments. We separate the daytime (afternoon) and nighttime (early morning) data in the analysis.The climate at these seasons is dominated by the aphelion cloud belt, and 50 Pa is often close to the peak opacities in the clouds. There is also a strong diurnal thermal tide signature throughout the season at this altitude. The overall behavior is a rapid cooling at the start of the year (as the dust from the dusty season sediments out of the atmosphere) over the the first ~30° of Ls. The coldest temperatures then last until about the solstice and are followed by a slow warming trend through most of the rest of the season. The last ~30° prior to the fall equinox show a more rapid warming trend and significant inter-annual variability. In about half of the years, there is a warming event of the 50 Pa temperatures in the second half of northern summer. The warming is the signature of dust being lofted above the boundary layer, into the lower atmosphere. Due to the relatively clear atmosphere overall, even modest amounts of dust will create noticeable temperature changes. The temperature signature of the dust is more pronounced in the northern hemisphere.

  17. Simulating Dust Cycling during the Late Paleozoic Ice Age

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Heavens, N. G.; Mahowald, N. M.; Soreghan, G. S.; Soreghan, M. J.; Shields, C. A.; Albani, S.

    2012-12-01

    Upper Carboniferous and Lower Permian strata preserve evidence for significant deposition of mineral dust, an aerosol with strong potential influence on the climate. Some equatorial marine carbonate records from this interval appear to record massive influxes of fine dust (diameter < 10 μm) after rapid sea level fall, suggesting that the pacing of dust deposition was connected to the expansion and contraction of ice sheets during the important icehouse climate interval of Carboniferous and Permian time. Nearby continental strata record high accumulations of coarse dust (loess) during periods of increasing aridity (apparent glacial intervals) and of fine dust (paleosols) during periods of increasing humidity (apparent interglacial intervals), though the pacing of this deposition may be more strongly associated with orbital forcing than ice sheet dynamics. Significant dust deposition continued in many of these areas during the emergence of the Earth's climate from icehouse conditions during Middle Permian time. Understanding the dynamics of dust cycling during the depths of the icehouse is the first step to investigating dust records from the most recent icehouse termination of Earth's history. Here, we attempt to reconstruct the cycling and some of the potential climate impacts of mineral dust during this interval, using version 3 of the Community Climate System Model (CCSM3) and the best available records of dust deposition. Modeled sensitivity simulations suggest that climatic controls on dust cycling that act on relatively short timescales (primarily meteorological and vegetation-related) cannot explain the large variability in dust deposition rates inferred from marine carbonate records. Processes acting on longer timescales, particularly those that control the availability of wind-erodible sediment, likely are more important. We also consider whether exposure of sedimentary basins during sea level fall and glaciogenic dust production could modulate dust

  18. Simulation of Viking biology experiments suggests smectites not palagonites, as martian soil analogues

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Banin, A.; Margulies, L.

    1983-01-01

    An experimental comparison of palagonites and a smectite (montmorillonite) was performed in a simulation of the Viking Biology Labelled Release (LR) experiment in order to judge which mineral is a better Mars soil analog material (MarSAM). Samples of palagonite were obtained from cold weathering environments and volcanic soil, and the smectite was extracted from Wyoming Bentonite and converted to H or Fe types. Decomposition reaction kinetics were examined in the LR simulation, which on the Lander involved interaction of the martian soil with organic compounds. Reflectance spectroscopy indicated that smectites bearing Fe(III) in well-crystallized sites are not good MarSAMS. The palagonites did not cause the formate decomposition and C-14 emission detected in the LR, indicating that palagonites are also not good MarSAMS. Smectites, however, may be responsible for ion exchange, molecular adsorption, and catalysis in martian soil.

  19. Laser spectroscopic real time measurements of methanogenic activity under simulated Martian subsurface analog conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schirmack, Janosch; Böhm, Michael; Brauer, Chris; Löhmannsröben, Hans-Gerd; de Vera, Jean-Pierre; Möhlmann, Diedrich; Wagner, Dirk

    2014-08-01

    On Earth, chemolithoautothrophic and anaerobic microorganisms such as methanogenic archaea are regarded as model organisms for possible subsurface life on Mars. For this reason, the methanogenic strain Methanosarcina soligelidi (formerly called Methanosarcina spec. SMA-21), isolated from permafrost-affected soil in northeast Siberia, has been tested under Martian thermo-physical conditions. In previous studies under simulated Martian conditions, high survival rates of these microorganisms were observed. In our study we present a method to measure methane production as a first attempt to study metabolic activity of methanogenic archaea during simulated conditions approaching conditions of Mars-like environments. To determine methanogenic activity, a measurement technique which is capable to measure the produced methane concentration with high precision and with high temporal resolution is needed. Although there are several methods to detect methane, only a few fulfill all the needed requirements to work within simulated extraterrestrial environments. We have chosen laser spectroscopy, which is a non-destructive technique that measures the methane concentration without sample taking and also can be run continuously. In our simulation, we detected methane production at temperatures down to -5 °C, which would be found on Mars either temporarily in the shallow subsurface or continually in the deep subsurface. The pressure of 50 kPa which we used in our experiments, corresponds to the expected pressure in the Martian near subsurface. Our new device proved to be fully functional and the results indicate that the possible existence of methanogenic archaea in Martian subsurface habitats cannot be ruled out.

  20. Martian atmospheric gravity waves simulated by a high-resolution general circulation model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuroda, Takeshi; Yiǧit, Erdal; Medvedev, Alexander S.; Hartogh, Paul

    2016-07-01

    Gravity waves (GWs) significantly affect temperature and wind fields in the Martian middle and upper atmosphere. They are also one of the observational targets of the MAVEN mission. We report on the first simulations with a high-resolution general circulation model (GCM) and present a global distributions of small-scale GWs in the Martian atmosphere. The simulated GW-induced temperature variances are in a good agreement with available radio occultation data in the lower atmosphere between 10 and 30 km. For the northern winter solstice, the model reveals a latitudinal asymmetry with stronger wave generation in the winter hemisphere and two distinctive sources of GWs: mountainous regions and the meandering winter polar jet. Orographic GWs are filtered upon propagating upward, and the mesosphere is primarily dominated by harmonics with faster horizontal phase velocities. Wave fluxes are directed mainly against the local wind. GW dissipation in the upper mesosphere generates a body force per unit mass of tens of m s^{-1} per Martian solar day (sol^{-1}), which tends to close the simulated jets. The results represent a realistic surrogate for missing observations, which can be used for constraining GW parameterizations and validating GCMs.

  1. Path selection system simulation and evaluation for a Martian roving vehicle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boheim, S. L.; Prudon, W. C.

    1972-01-01

    The simulation and evaluation of proposed path selection systems for an autonomous Martian roving vehicle was developed. The package incorporates a number of realistic features, such as the simulation of random effects due to vehicle bounce and sensor-reading uncertainty, to increase the reliability of the results. Qualitative and quantitative evaluation criteria were established. The performance of three different path selection systems was evaluated to determine the effectiveness of the simulation package, and to form some preliminary conclusions regarding the tradeoffs involved in a path selection system design.

  2. Simulating Snowfall: Modeling Water Deposition on the Martian Northern Polar Ice Cap

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Durbin, Allyn J.; Brown, A.; Hollingsworth, J. L.; Kahre, M. A.

    2013-01-01

    Every spring on the Martian northern ice cap, a retreat of the carbon dioxide ice reveals the permanent layer of water ice below. Data obtain by the Thermal Emission Spectrometer (TES) on the Mars Global Surveyor during this retreat detected the presence of both carbon dioxide and water ice. However, the Compact Reconnaissance Imaging Spectrometer for Mars (CRISM) aboard the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter detected only water ice in the same location. It is theorized this discrepancy can be explained by the Houben process, first described in Houben, et al. (1997), which is a mechanism that provides the northward transfer of water ice onto the retreating carbon dioxide ice cap. In this project, we attempted to simulate Houben events using the NASA Ames Mars Climate Model. We have been able to replicate and verify some events indicative of the Houben process, providing a basis for the obscuration of carbon dioxide ice by water ice on Martian northern polar ice cap.

  3. Abrasion of windblown particles on Mars - Erosion of quartz and basaltic sand under simulated Martian conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Krinsley, D.; Greeley, R.; Pollack, J. B.

    1979-01-01

    The results of a series of laboratory experiments initiated to simulate Martian eolian erosion are presented. Experiments were conducted under Martian atmospheric pressure and compared to natural eolian sand produced on earth. It is reported that the less dense atmosphere on Mars resulted in more energetic eolian erosion manifested by an slightly higher rate of grain rounding and surface textures that included semicircular depressions termed 'popouts'. It is suggested that physical and chemical weathering may proceed more rapidly on Mars than on earth, given a sufficient supply of water vapor. In addition, clay mineral formations should be facilitated by the presence of large amounts of disrupted material. Finally, it is noted that the disrupted material could increase the ability of the soil to act as a reservoir for water thereby provisionally explaining the large amount of bound water on the surface soil material over much of Mars.

  4. The simulation of cosmic dust collection process with little damage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Danming; Li, Yali; Wu, Qingxiao; Dai, Peng

    2016-07-01

    To built a cosmic dust collector according to a predetermined concept, mateirals that can be used to buffer the poential high speed collision of the cosmic dust have been studied. In this study, aerogel was chosen as an ideal buffer material and analyzed with SPH modeling method which is embedded in ABAQUS FE code. This report presents the interactions of cosmic dust, varing composition, shape and velocity, with the buffer material. The results show that cosmic dust that moves at 6 Km/s or less can be captured with minor damage to the buffer material of certain length. The simulation provides favorable technical support for the structural design of the cosmic dust collector.

  5. Effects of a simulated martian UV flux on the cyanobacterium, Chroococcidiopsis sp. 029.

    PubMed

    Cockell, Charles S; Schuerger, Andrew C; Billi, Daniela; Friedmann, E Imre; Panitz, Corinna

    2005-04-01

    Dried monolayers of Chroococcidiopsis sp. 029, a desiccation-tolerant, endolithic cyanobacterium, were exposed to a simulated martian-surface UV and visible light flux, which may also approximate to the worst-case scenario for the Archean Earth. After 5 min, there was a 99% loss of cell viability, and there were no survivors after 30 min. However, this survival was approximately 10 times higher than that previously reported for Bacillus subtilis. We show that under 1 mm of rock, Chroococcidiopsis sp. could survive (and potentially grow) under the high martian UV flux if water and nutrient requirements for growth were met. In isolated cells, phycobilisomes and esterases remained intact hours after viability was lost. Esterase activity was reduced by 99% after a 1-h exposure, while 99% loss of autofluorescence required a 4-h exposure. However, cell morphology was not changed, and DNA was still detectable by 4',6-diamidino-2-phenylindole staining after an 8-h exposure (equivalent to approximately 1 day on Mars at the equator). Under 1 mm of simulant martian soil or gneiss, the effect of UV radiation could not be detected on esterase activity or autofluorescence after 4 h. These results show that under the intense martian UV flux the morphological signatures of life can persist even after viability, enzymatic activity, and pigmentation have been destroyed. Finally, the global dispersal of viable, isolated cells of even this desiccation-tolerant, ionizing-radiation-resistant microorganism on Mars is unlikely as they are killed quickly by unattenuated UV radiation when in a desiccated state. These findings have implications for the survival of diverse microbial contaminants dispersed during the course of human exploratory class missions on the surface of Mars.

  6. Laboratory simulations of Martian gullies on sand dunes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Védie, E.; Costard, F.; Font, M.; Lagarde, J. L.

    2008-11-01

    Small gullies, observed on Mars, could be formed by groundwater seepage from an underground aquifer or may result from the melting of near-surface ground ice at high obliquity. To test these different hypotheses, a cold room-based laboratory simulation has been performed. The experimental slope was designed to simulate debris flows on sand dune slopes at a range of angles, different granulometry and permafrost characteristics. Preliminary results suggest that the typical morphology of gullies observed on Mars can best be reproduced by the formation of linear debris flows related to the melting of a near-surface ground ice with silty materials. This physical modelling highlights the role of the periglacial conditions, especially the active-layer thickness during debris-flow formation.

  7. Three-Dimensional Simulations of the Martian Ion Foreshock : Reflected Solar Wind Protons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chanteur, G. M.; Richer, E.; Modolo, R.; Dubinin, E.

    2012-12-01

    A recent comparison of observations of the ion foreshocks of Mars and Venus [Yamauchi et al. 2011] emphasizes the importance of the curvature of the Martian bow-shock for explaining peculiarities of the ion Martian foreshock. More recently the reflection of solar wind protons on the Martian bow shock (BS) has been investigated by means of three-dimensional simulation models [Richer et al. 2012]. A two steps approach combining three-dimensional self-consistent hybrid and test particles simulations is adopted to allow a detailed analysis of the reflected population. This study demonstrates some effects of the large curvature of a planetary BS on the structure of the foreshock. Reflected protons encounter the BS in a region encompassing parts of the quasi-perpendicular and quasi-parallel shocks, and exit the shock mainly from the quasi-parallel region. The energy spectrum of all reflected protons extends from 0 to almost 15keV. A virtual omni-directional detector (VOD) is used to compute the local omni-directional flux of reflected protons at various locations upstream of the BS. Spatial variations of this omni-directional flux indicate the location and spatial extent of the proton foreshock. Figure 1 is a cut of the foreshock parallel to and below the orbital plane, it demonstrates a shift, increasing with the distance downstream, in the direction opposite to the motional electric field of the SW. Local energy spectra computed from the VOD observations demonstrate the existence of an energy gradient along the direction of the convection electric field. References Yamauchi, M., et al. (2011), Comparison of accelerated ion populations observed upstream of the bow shocks at Venus and Mars, Annales Geophysicae, 29, 511-528, doi:10.5194/angeo-29-511-2011. Richer, E., G. M. Chanteur, R. Modolo, and E. Dubinin, Reflection of Solar Wind Protons on the Martian Bow Shock: Investigations by Means of 3-Dimensional Simulations, accepted for publication by Geophys. Res. Lett

  8. Simulation of the Radiative Impact of High Dust Loading during a Dust Storm in March 2012

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Puthan Purakkal, J.; Kalenderski, S.; Stenchikov, G. L.

    2013-12-01

    We investigated a severe dust storm that developed over vast areas of the Middle East on 18-19 March 2012 and affected Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Egypt, Jordan, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait, Iraq, Iran, Israel, and Pakistan. The visible aerosol optical depth recorded by the AERONET station on the KAUST campus (22.30o N 39.10o E) during the storm reached 4.5, exceeding the average level by an order of magnitude. To quantify the effects of the dust on atmospheric radiation and dynamics, we analyzed available ground-based and satellite observations and conducted numerical simulations using a fully coupled meteorology-chemistry-aerosol model (WRF-Chem). The model was able to reproduce the spatial and temporal patterns of the aerosol optical depths (AOD) observed by airborne and ground-based instruments. The major dust sources included river valleys of lower Tigris and Euphrates in Iraq, desert areas in Kuwait, Iran, United Arab Emirates, central Arabia including Rub' al Khali, An Nafud, and Ad Dahna, as well as the Red Sea coast of the Arabian Peninsula. The total amount of dust generated across the entire domain during the period of the simulation reached 93.76 Mt; 73.04 Mt of dust was deposited within the domain; 6.56 Mt of dust sunk in the adjacent sea waters, including 1.20 Mt that sedimented into the Red Sea. The model predicted a well-mixed boundary layer expanding up to 3.5 km in the afternoon. Some dust plumes were seen above the Planetary Boundary layer. In our simulations, mineral dust heated the lower atmosphere with a maximum heating rate of 9 K/day. The dust storm reduced the downwelling shortwave radiation at the surface to a maximum daily average value of -134 Wm-2 and the daily averaged long-wave forcing at the surface increased to 43 Wm-2. The combined short-wave cooling and long-wave warming effects of dust aerosols caused significant reduction in the surface air temperature -6.7 K at 1200 UTC on 19 March 2013.

  9. Laboratory Simulations of Martian and Venusian Aeolian Processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Ronald

    1999-01-01

    places constraints on results from numerical models and laboratory simulations.

  10. Preservation of Biomarkers from Cyanobacteria Mixed with Mars-Like Regolith Under Simulated Martian Atmosphere and UV Flux.

    PubMed

    Baqué, Mickael; Verseux, Cyprien; Böttger, Ute; Rabbow, Elke; de Vera, Jean-Pierre Paul; Billi, Daniela

    2016-06-01

    The space mission EXPOSE-R2 launched on the 24th of July 2014 to the International Space Station is carrying the BIOMEX (BIOlogy and Mars EXperiment) experiment aimed at investigating the endurance of extremophiles and stability of biomolecules under space and Mars-like conditions. In order to prepare the analyses of the returned samples, ground-based simulations were carried out in Planetary and Space Simulation facilities. During the ground-based simulations, Chroococcidiopsis cells mixed with two Martian mineral analogues (phyllosilicatic and sulfatic Mars regolith simulants) were exposed to a Martian simulated atmosphere combined or not with UV irradiation corresponding to the dose received during a 1-year-exposure in low Earth orbit (or half a Martian year on Mars). Cell survival and preservation of potential biomarkers such as photosynthetic and photoprotective pigments or DNA were assessed by colony forming ability assays, confocal laser scanning microscopy, Raman spectroscopy and PCR-based assays. DNA and photoprotective pigments (carotenoids) were detectable after simulations of the space mission (570 MJ/m(2) of UV 200-400 nm irradiation and Martian simulated atmosphere), even though signals were attenuated by the treatment. The fluorescence signal from photosynthetic pigments was differently preserved after UV irradiation, depending on the thickness of the samples. UV irradiation caused a high background fluorescence of the Martian mineral analogues, as revealed by Raman spectroscopy. Further investigation will be needed to ensure unambiguous identification and operations of future Mars missions. However, a 3-month exposure to a Martian simulated atmosphere showed no significant damaging effect on the tested cyanobacterial biosignatures, pointing out the relevance of the latter for future investigations after the EXPOSE-R2 mission. Data gathered during the ground-based simulations will contribute to interpret results from space experiments and guide our

  11. Preservation of Biomarkers from Cyanobacteria Mixed with Mars­Like Regolith Under Simulated Martian Atmosphere and UV Flux

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baqué, Mickael; Verseux, Cyprien; Böttger, Ute; Rabbow, Elke; de Vera, Jean-Pierre Paul; Billi, Daniela

    2016-06-01

    The space mission EXPOSE-R2 launched on the 24th of July 2014 to the International Space Station is carrying the BIOMEX (BIOlogy and Mars EXperiment) experiment aimed at investigating the endurance of extremophiles and stability of biomolecules under space and Mars-like conditions. In order to prepare the analyses of the returned samples, ground-based simulations were carried out in Planetary and Space Simulation facilities. During the ground-based simulations, Chroococcidiopsis cells mixed with two Martian mineral analogues (phyllosilicatic and sulfatic Mars regolith simulants) were exposed to a Martian simulated atmosphere combined or not with UV irradiation corresponding to the dose received during a 1-year-exposure in low Earth orbit (or half a Martian year on Mars). Cell survival and preservation of potential biomarkers such as photosynthetic and photoprotective pigments or DNA were assessed by colony forming ability assays, confocal laser scanning microscopy, Raman spectroscopy and PCR-based assays. DNA and photoprotective pigments (carotenoids) were detectable after simulations of the space mission (570 MJ/m2 of UV 200-400 nm irradiation and Martian simulated atmosphere), even though signals were attenuated by the treatment. The fluorescence signal from photosynthetic pigments was differently preserved after UV irradiation, depending on the thickness of the samples. UV irradiation caused a high background fluorescence of the Martian mineral analogues, as revealed by Raman spectroscopy. Further investigation will be needed to ensure unambiguous identification and operations of future Mars missions. However, a 3-month exposure to a Martian simulated atmosphere showed no significant damaging effect on the tested cyanobacterial biosignatures, pointing out the relevance of the latter for future investigations after the EXPOSE-R2 mission. Data gathered during the ground-based simulations will contribute to interpret results from space experiments and guide our

  12. Biological contamination of Mars. I. Survival of terrestrial microorganisms in simulated Martian environments.

    PubMed

    Scher, S; Packer, E; Sagan, C

    1964-01-01

    It has been postulated that the accidental introduction of terrestrial microorganisms to other planets during the course of space exploration might impede or bias the detection of organic matter and possible indigenous organisms, and thereby confuse subsequent studies of extraterrestrial life. To assess the likelihood of biological contamination of Mars, we have applied the principle of natural selection on a laboratory scale. Terrestrial microorganisms were collected from a variety of environments, including regions of high alkalinity, low mean daily temperature, and low annual rainfall. The air-dried soils were then subjected to a simulated Martian environment involving 12-hour freeze-thaw cycles from about -60 degrees C to about +20 degrees C; atmospheres of 95 per cent nitrogen, 5 percent carbon dioxide and low moisture content: < or = 0.1 atm pressure; and a total ultraviolet dose at 2537 angstrom of 10(9) erg cm-2. In some experiments, organic supplements were provided. Survivors were scored on supplemented agar. Preliminary results indicate a wide variety of survivors, even when no organic supplements were introduced. Survivors included obligate and facultative anaerobic spore-formers and non-spore-forming facultative anaerobic bacteria. Diurnal freezing and thawing was continued for six months. There was no significant loss of viability after the first freeze-thaw cycle. An extensive literature survey shows that survival of terrestrial microorganisms under individual simulated Martian conditions has been known for decades. The present investigation shows the absence of pronounced synergistic effects inhibiting survival. The probable existence of organic matter and moisture on Mars, at least in restricted locales and times, makes it especially likely that terrestrial microorganisms can also reproduce on Mars. The demonstration that all samples of terrestrial soil tested contain a population of microorganisms which survive in simulated Martian environments

  13. Simulation of Martian EVA at the Mars Society Arctic Research Station

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pletser, V.; Zubrin, R.; Quinn, K.

    The Mars Society has established a Mars Arctic Research Station (M.A.R.S.) on Devon Island, North of Canada, in the middle of the Haughton crater formed by the impact of a large meteorite several million years ago. The site was selected for its similarities with the surface of the Mars planet. During the Summer 2001, the MARS Flashline Research Station supported an extended international simulation campaign of human Mars exploration operations. Six rotations of six person crews spent up to ten days each at the MARS Flashline Research Station. International crews, of mixed gender and professional qualifications, conducted various tasks as a Martian crew would do and performed scientific experiments in several fields (Geophysics, Biology, Psychology). One of the goals of this simulation campaign was to assess the operational and technical feasibility of sustaining a crew in an autonomous habitat, conducting a field scientific research program. Operations were conducted as they would be during a Martian mission, including Extra-Vehicular Activities (EVA) with specially designed unpressurized suits. The second rotation crew conducted seven simulated EVAs for a total of 17 hours, including motorized EVAs with All Terrain Vehicles, to perform field scientific experiments in Biology and Geophysics. Some EVAs were highly successful. For some others, several problems were encountered related to hardware technical failures and to bad weather conditions. The paper will present the experiment programme conducted at the Mars Flashline Research Station, the problems encountered and the lessons learned from an EVA operational point of view. Suggestions to improve foreseen Martian EVA operations will be discussed.

  14. Models of high velocity impacts into dust-covered ice: Application to Martian northern lowlands

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reufer, A.; Thomas, N.; Benz, W.; Byrne, S.; Bray, V.; Dundas, C.; Searls, M.

    2010-08-01

    The detection of fresh impact craters with bright floors and ejecta (arising from fresh clean water ice) in the northern lowlands of Mars ( Byrne et al., 2009b, Science 325, 1674), together with observations of polygonal structures and evidence from the Phoenix probe, suggests that there are substantial water ice deposits just below the surface over large areas. Specifically in cases of the larger craters observed, the impacts themselves may have raised the temperature and the pressure of the water ice deposits locally to values which allow phase changes. In this paper, we use smoothed particle hydrodynamics to model hyper-velocity impacts. We estimate peak shock pressures in a solid water ice target covered by a layer of loose material, modeled by pre-damaged dunite. In addition, we account for the possibility of a thin layer of sub-surface water ice by using a three-layer model where the ice is surrounded by dunite. We find that the peak shock pressures reached in the simulated events are high enough to produce several 100-1000 kg of liquid water depending upon the impact parameters and the exact shock pressure needed for the phase change. A difficulty remains however in determining whether liquid is generated or whether a type of fluidized ice is produced (or indeed some combination of the two). We also note that the process can become rather complex as the number of layers increases because of reflections of the shock at sub-surface boundaries - a process which should lead to increased fluidization.

  15. Measuring Water Content and Desorption Isotherms in Soil Simulants Under Martian Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hudson, T.; Aharonson, O.; Schorghofer, N.; Hecht, M. H.; Bridges, N.; Green, J. R.

    2003-12-01

    Theoretical predictions as well as recent spacecraft observations indicate that large quantities of ice is present in the high latitudes upper decimeters to meters of the Martian regolith. At shallower depths and warmer locations small amounts of H2O, either adsorbed or free, may be present transiently. We seek to simulate Mars surface conditions and to observe the effects of temperature cycling (diurnal and seasonal scale) on the water content profiles of several soil simulants. To model the upper Martian regolith, we begin by using crushed JSC Mars-1 palagonite with particles in the 50 micron to sub-micron size range. Spheres of pure silica in the 10 to 40 mm range may also be used to study the effects of grain surface morphology and composition. Simulants with various water contents are brought to Mars pressures and monitored. A line source heat-pulse probe is being prepared to monitor water content profiles in real-time and to be calibrated against water content samples measured with thermogravimetric (TG) analysis. Initial experiments will allow us to monitor water content; more refined investigations will permit the determination of desorption isotherms.

  16. Computational Tools for Simulating Thermal-hydrological-chemical Conditions in the Martian Subsurface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Painter, S.; Boice, D.; Browning, L.; Dinwiddie, C.; Pickett, D.

    2002-09-01

    Methods for simulating non-isothermal, multiphase flow and geochemical transport in unsaturated porous media have matured in recent years, and are now used in a range of advanced terrestrial applications. Similar computational tools have a range of potential applications in Mars research. They may be used, for example, to support data analysis, to test hypotheses regarding the evolution and current state of subsurface hydrological systems, and to understand the potential for undesirable perturbations during future drilling or sample collection activities. We describe ongoing efforts to adapt computational hydrology tools to the conditions of the Martian subsurface in a new simulation code MARSFLO. Initial versions of MARSFLO will simulate heat transport, the dynamics of multiple fluid phases (ice, water, water vapor, and CO2), and the evolution of solute concentration in the absence of geochemical reactions. The general modeling strategy is to use equilibrium constraints to reduce the system to four highly non-linear coupled conservation equations, which are then solved using an integral-finite-difference method and fully implicit time stepping. The required constitutive relationships are developed from the theory of freezing terrestrial soils and modified for Martian conditions. Data needs, potential applications, and plans to include multi-component reactive transport are also discussed. This work was funded by the Southwest Research Initiative on Mars (SwIM).

  17. Modeling and simulation of dust behaviors behind a moving vehicle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Jingfang

    Simulation of physically realistic complex dust behaviors is a difficult and attractive problem in computer graphics. A fast, interactive and visually convincing model of dust behaviors behind moving vehicles is very useful in computer simulation, training, education, art, advertising, and entertainment. In my dissertation, an experimental interactive system has been implemented for the simulation of dust behaviors behind moving vehicles. The system includes physically-based models, particle systems, rendering engines and graphical user interface (GUI). I have employed several vehicle models including tanks, cars, and jeeps to test and simulate in different scenarios and conditions. Calm weather, winding condition, vehicle turning left or right, and vehicle simulation controlled by users from the GUI are all included. I have also tested the factors which play against the physical behaviors and graphics appearances of the dust particles through GUI or off-line scripts. The simulations are done on a Silicon Graphics Octane station. The animation of dust behaviors is achieved by physically-based modeling and simulation. The flow around a moving vehicle is modeled using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) techniques. I implement a primitive variable and pressure-correction approach to solve the three dimensional incompressible Navier Stokes equations in a volume covering the moving vehicle. An alternating- direction implicit (ADI) method is used for the solution of the momentum equations, with a successive-over- relaxation (SOR) method for the solution of the Poisson pressure equation. Boundary conditions are defined and simplified according to their dynamic properties. The dust particle dynamics is modeled using particle systems, statistics, and procedure modeling techniques. Graphics and real-time simulation techniques, such as dynamics synchronization, motion blur, blending, and clipping have been employed in the rendering to achieve realistic appearing dust

  18. Shock Effects on Cometary-Dust Simulants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lederer, Susan M.; Jensen, Elizabeth; Wooden, Diane H.; Lindsay, Sean S.; Smith, Douglas H.; Nakamura-Messenger, Keiko; Keller, Lindsay P.; Cardenas, Francisco; Cintala, Mark J.; Montes, Roland

    2014-01-01

    While comets are perhaps best known for their ability to put on spectacular celestial light shows, they are much more than that. Composed of an assortment of frozen gases mixed with a collection of dust and minerals, comets are considered to be very primitive bodies and, as such, they are thought to hold key information about the earliest chapters in the history of the solar system. (The dust and mineral grains are usually called the "refractory" component, indicating that they can survive much higher temperatures than the ices.) It has long been thought, and spacecraft photography has confirmed, that comets suffer the effects of impacts along with every other solar system body. Comets spend most of their lifetimes in the Kuiper Belt, a region of the solar system between 30 and 50 times the average distance of the Earth from the Sun, or the Oort Cloud, which extends to approximately 1 light year from the Sun. Those distances are so far from the Sun that water ice is the equivalent of rock, melting or vaporizing only through the action of strong, impact-generated shock waves.

  19. Walking in simulated Martian gravity: Influence of added weight on sagittal dynamic stability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scott-Pandorf, Melissa M.; O'Connor, Daniel P.; Layne, Charles S.; Josić, Krešimir; Kurz, Max J.

    2010-05-01

    With human exploration of the Moon and Mars on the horizon, research considerations for space suit redesign have surfaced. Review of Apollo mission videos revealed repeated instance of falling during extravehicular activities. A better understanding of how suit weight influences the sagittal dynamic stability of the gait pattern may provide insight for new suit design such that space missions may have more productive extravehicular activities and smaller risk of falls that may cause injuries and damage equipment. Participants walked for 4 min in simulated Martian gravity with additional loads of 0%, 15%, 30% and 45% of their body weight. Floquet and Lyapunov analysis techniques were used to quantify the dynamic stability of the sagittal plane gait pattern. Additionally, sagittal plane joint kinematics were evaluated to determine if any modification occurred. Results indicated that weight (i.e., added load) had little effect on the sagittal dynamic stability or joint kinematics while in simulated Martian gravity. Potentially, suit weight may not be a priority for space suit redesign.

  20. Chaotic Oscillations of the Martian Atmospheric Circulation.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pankine, A. A.; Ingersoll, A. P.

    1998-09-01

    We present a simplified model of the global circulation-dust interaction aimed at explaining the interannual variability of martian global dust storms. The model is described by the system of the Lorenz equations (Lorenz, 1963) with an additional term that represents seasonal forcing.The results of the Mars GCM simulations (Pollack et al., 1990) are used to define the values of the model parameters. For some parameter values the model exhibits rapid oscillations in atmospheric circulation and dust loading during early summer in both hemispheres. The oscillations are non periodic and may represent the observed global dust storms. The solutions are consistent with the time of occurrence and the duration of the observed global dust storms, but contradict the occurrence of global storms only in the southern hemisphere. We suggest that physical processes not related to the global circulation are responsible for these discrepancies. These processes may include redistribution of the dust on the surface (Haberle, 1986) or water ice condensation on the dust particles (Clancy et al., 1996). The duration of the dust storms in our model is independent of the dust settling time, suggesting that the global circulation plays important role in the dust storm decay. We think that the results of our simulations may help in distinguishing between processes that are crucial for the Martian dust cycle and can provide guidance for the Mars GCM simulations. References: Lorenz, E. N., 1963. Deterministic non periodic flow, J. Atmos. Sci., 20, 130-141. Pollack, J. B., R. M. Haberle, J. Schaeffer, H. Lee, 1990. Simulation of the general circulation of the martian atmosphere. 1. Polar process. J. Geophys. Res., 95(B2), 1473- 1447. Clancy, R. T., A. W. Grossman, M. J. Wolff, P. B. James, D. J. Rudy, Y. N. Billawala, B. J. Sandor, S. W. Lee, and D. O. Muhleman, 1996. Water vapor saturation at low altitudes around Mars aphelion: a key to Mars climate? Icarus, 122, 36 62. Haberle, R. M., 1986

  1. Thermal Optical Properties of Lunar Dust Simulants and Their Constituents

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Ellis, Shaneise; Hanks, Nichole

    2011-01-01

    The total reflectance spectra of lunar simulant dusts (less than 20 micrometer particles) were measured in order to determine their integrated solar absorptance (alpha) and their thermal emittance (e) for the purpose of analyzing the effect of dust on the performance of thermal control surfaces. All of the simulants except one had a wavelength-dependant reflectivity (p(lambda)) near 0.10 over the wavelength range of 8 to 25 micrometers, and so are highly emitting at room temperature and lower. The 300 K emittance (epsilon) of all the lunar simulants except one ranged from 0.78 to 0.92. The exception was Minnesota Lunar Simulant 1 (MLS-1), which has little or no glassy component. In all cases the epsilon was lower for the less 20 micrometer particles than for larger particles reported earlier. There was considerably more variation in the lunar simulant reflectance in the solar spectral range (250 to 2500 nanometers) than in the thermal infrared. As expected, the lunar highlands simulants were more reflective in this wavelength range than the lunar mare simulants. The integrated solar absorptance (alpha) of the simulants ranged from 0.39 to 0.75. This is lower than values reported earlier for larger particles of the same simulants (0.41 to 0.82), and for representative mare and highlands lunar soils (0.74 to 0.91). Since the alpha of some mare simulants more closely matched that of highlands lunar soils, it is recommended that and values be the criteria for choosing a simulant for assessing the effects of dust on thermal control surfaces, rather than whether a simulant has been formulated as a highlands or a mare simulant.

  2. Thermal Optical Properties of Lunar Dust Simulants and Their Constituents

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Ellis, Shaneise; Hanks, Nichole

    2011-01-01

    The total reflectance spectra of lunar simulant dusts (< 20 mm particles) were measured in order to determine their integrated solar absorptance (alpha) and their thermal emittance (epsilon) for the purpose of analyzing the effect of dust on the performance of thermal control surfaces. All of the simulants except one had a wavelength-dependent reflectivity (p (lambda)) near 0.10 over the wavelength range of 8 to 25 microns and so are highly emitting at room temperature and lower. The 300 K emittance (epsilon) of all the lunar simulants except one ranged from 0.78 to 0.92. The exception was Minnesota Lunar Simulant 1 (MLS-1), which has little or no glassy component. In all cases the epsilon was lower for the < 20 micron particles than for larger particles reported earlier. There was considerably more variation in the lunar simulant reflectance in the solar spectral range (250 to 2500 nm) than in the thermal infrared. As expected, the lunar highlands simulants were more reflective in this wavelength range than the lunar mare simulants. The integrated solar absorptance (alpha) of the simulants ranged from 0.39 to 0.75. This is lower than values reported earlier for larger particles of the same simulants (0.41 to 0.82), and for representative mare and highlands lunar soils (0.74 to 0.91). Since the of some mare simulants more closely matched that of highlands lunar soils, it is recommended that and values be the criteria for choosing a simulant for assessing the effects of dust on thermal control surfaces, rather than whether a simulant has been formulated as a highlands or a mare simulant.

  3. High-resolution multifluid simulations of flux ropes in the Martian magnetosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harnett, E. M.

    2009-01-01

    Three-dimensional multifluid simulations of the Martian magnetosphere show the development and dynamics of flux ropes. One flux rope, which is analyzed in detail, initiates at a reconnection region near the dusk terminator and travels tailward with a speed on the order of 40 km s-1. The reconnection region forms close to the planet at an altitude of 700 km. Both the location of the reconnection and energy spectra of the plasma in the reconnection region agree with Mars Global Surveyor observations of reconnection. The largest flux ropes have a spatial extent on the order of 2000 km. Energy spectra taken through the flux ropes show an inverted-V type structure similar to those measured by Mars Express, suggesting that some inverted-V observations may be transits through flux ropes. The simulations indicate that the formation of flux ropes can lead to enhanced loss of heavy ions from the atmosphere.

  4. Three-dimensional numerical simulation of near-surface flows over the Martian north polar cap

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Parish, Thomas R.; Howard, A. D.

    1993-01-01

    Measurements made by Viking Lander VL-2 (48 N) have shown that the near-surface wind and temperature regime on Mars displays striking similarities to terrestrial counterparts. The diurnal radiative cycle is responsible for establishment of a well-defined thermal circulation in which downslope (Katabatic) flows prevail during the nighttime hours and weak upslope (anabatic) conditions prevail during the daytime. Previous work has indicated that the slope flows are much like those found on Earth, particularly the Katabatic winds, which show striking similarities to drainage flows observed over Antarctica. The low-level wind regime appears to be an important factor in the scouring of the martian landscape. The north polar cap shows evidence of eolian features such as dunes, frost streaks, and grooves from Viking imagery. The direction of the prevailing wind can in cases be inferred from the eolian features. We examine the thermally induced flows that result from the radiative heating and cooling of the martian north polar region using a comprehensive three-dimensional atmospheric mesoscale numerical model. The same model has been used previously for simulation of Antarctic Katabatic winds. The model equations are written in terrain-following coordinates to allow for irregular terrain; prognostic equations include the flux forms of the horizontal momentum equations, temperature, continuity. A surface energy budget equation is also incorporated in which the surface temperature is determined. Explicit parameterization of both terrestrial (longwave) and solar (shortwave) radiation is included. Turbulent transfer of heat and momentum in the martian atmosphere is assumed to follow the similarity expressions in the surface boundary layer on Earth. The terrain heights for the martian north polar region have been obtained from the U.S. Geological Survey map and digitized onto a 57x57 grid with a spacing of 75 km. The resulting terrain map is shown in Fig. 1. The vertical grid

  5. Process to Produce Iron Nanoparticle Lunar Dust Simulant Composite

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hung, Ching-cheh; McNatt, Jeremiah

    2010-01-01

    A document discusses a method for producing nanophase iron lunar dust composite simulant by heating a mixture of carbon black and current lunar simulant types (mixed oxide including iron oxide) at a high temperature to reduce ionic iron into elemental iron. The product is a chemically modified lunar simulant that can be attracted by a magnet, and has a surface layer with an iron concentration that is increased during the reaction. The iron was found to be -iron and Fe3O4 nanoparticles. The simulant produced with this method contains iron nanoparticles not available previously, and they are stable in ambient air. These nanoparticles can be mass-produced simply.

  6. A 20-year simulated climatology of global dust aerosol deposition.

    PubMed

    Zheng, Yu; Zhao, Tianliang; Che, Huizheng; Liu, Yu; Han, Yongxiang; Liu, Chong; Xiong, Jie; Liu, Jianhui; Zhou, Yike

    2016-07-01

    Based on a 20-year (1991-2010) simulation of dust aerosol deposition with the global climate model CAM5.1 (Community Atmosphere Model, version 5.1), the spatial and temporal variations of dust aerosol deposition were analyzed using climate statistical methods. The results indicated that the annual amount of global dust aerosol deposition was approximately 1161±31Mt, with a decreasing trend, and its interannual variation range of 2.70% over 1991-2010. The 20-year average ratio of global dust dry to wet depositions was 1.12, with interannual variation of 2.24%, showing the quantity of dry deposition of dust aerosol was greater than dust wet deposition. High dry deposition was centered over continental deserts and surrounding regions, while wet deposition was a dominant deposition process over the North Atlantic, North Pacific and northern Indian Ocean. Furthermore, both dry and wet deposition presented a zonal distribution. To examine the regional changes of dust aerosol deposition on land and sea areas, we chose the North Atlantic, Eurasia, northern Indian Ocean, North Pacific and Australia to analyze the interannual and seasonal variations of dust deposition and dry-to-wet deposition ratio. The deposition amounts of each region showed interannual fluctuations with the largest variation range at around 26.96% in the northern Indian Ocean area, followed by the North Pacific (16.47%), Australia (9.76%), North Atlantic (9.43%) and Eurasia (6.03%). The northern Indian Ocean also had the greatest amplitude of interannual variation in dry-to-wet deposition ratio, at 22.41%, followed by the North Atlantic (9.69%), Australia (6.82%), North Pacific (6.31%) and Eurasia (4.36%). Dust aerosol presented a seasonal cycle, with typically strong deposition in spring and summer and weak deposition in autumn and winter. The dust deposition over the northern Indian Ocean exhibited the greatest seasonal change range at about 118.00%, while the North Atlantic showed the lowest seasonal

  7. The photolytic degradation and oxidation of organic compounds under simulated Martian conditions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oro, J.; Holzer, G.

    1979-01-01

    Cosmochemical considerations suggest various potential sources for the accumulation of organic matter on Mars. However the Viking Molecular Analysis did not indicate any indigenous organic compounds on the surface of Mars. Their disappearance from the top layer is most likely caused by the combined action of the high solar radiation flux and various oxidizing species in the Martian atmosphere and regolith. In this study the stability of several organic substances and a sample of the Murchison meteorite was tested under simulated Martian conditions. After adsorption on powdered quartz, samples of adenine, glycine and naphthalene were irradiated with UV light at various oxygen concentrations and exposure times. In the absence of oxygen, adenine and glycine appeared stable over the given irradiation period, whereas a definite loss was observed in the case of naphthalene, as well as in the volatilizable and pyrolizable content of the Murchison meteorite. The presence of oxygen during UV exposure caused a significant increase in the degradation rate of all samples. It is likely that similar processes have led to the destruction of organic materials on the surface of Mars.

  8. Dust devil sediment flux on Earth and Mars: Laboratory simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Neakrase, Lynn D. V.; Greeley, Ronald

    2010-03-01

    Laboratory simulations using the Arizona State University Vortex Generator (ASUVG) were run to simulate sediment flux in dust devils in terrestrial ambient and Mars-analog conditions. The objective of this study was to measure vortex sediment flux in the laboratory to yield estimations of natural dust devils on Earth and Mars, where all parameters may not be measured. These tests used particles ranging from 2 to 2000 μm in diameter and 1300 to 4800 kg m -3 in density, and the results were compared with data from natural dust devils on Earth and Mars. Typically, the cores of dust devils (regardless of planetary environment) have a pressure decrease of ˜0.1-1.5% of ambient atmospheric pressure, which enhances the lifting of particles from the surface. Core pressure decreases in our experiments ranged from ˜0.01% to 5.00% of ambient pressure (10 mbar Mars cases and 1000 mbar for Earth cases) corresponding to a few tenths of a millibar for Mars cases and a few millibars for Earth cases. Sediment flux experiments were run at vortex tangential wind velocities of 1-45 m s -1, which typically correspond to ˜30-70% above vortex threshold values for the test particle sizes and densities. Sediment flux was determined by time-averaged measurements of mass loss for a given vortex size. Sediment fluxes of ˜10 -6-10 0 kg m -2 s -1 were obtained, similar to estimates and measurements for fluxes in dust devils on Earth and Mars. Sediment flux is closely related to the vortex intensity, which depends on the strength of the pressure decrease in the core (Δ P). This study found vortex size is less important for lifting materials because many different diameters can have the same Δ P. This finding is critical in scaling the laboratory results to natural dust devils that can be several orders of magnitude larger than the laboratory counterparts.

  9. Survival of Bacillus subtilis endospores on ultraviolet-irradiated rover wheels and Mars regolith under simulated Martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Kerney, Krystal R; Schuerger, Andrew C

    2011-06-01

    Endospores of Bacillus subtilis HA101 were applied to a simulated Mars Exploration Rover (MER) wheel and exposed to Mars-normal UV irradiation for 1, 3, or 6 h. The experiment was designed to simulate a contaminated rover wheel sitting on its landing platform before rolling off onto the martian terrain, as was encountered during the Spirit and Opportunity missions. When exposed to 1 h of Mars UV, a reduction of 81% of viable endospores was observed compared to the non-UV irradiated controls. When exposed for 3 or 6 h, reductions of 94.6% and 96.6%, respectively, were observed compared to controls. In a second experiment, the contaminated rover wheel was rolled over a bed of heat-sterilized Mars analog soil; then the analog soil was exposed to full martian conditions of UV irradiation, low pressure (6.9 mbar), low temperature (-10°C), and an anaerobic CO(2) martian atmosphere for 24 h to determine whether endospores of B. subtilis on the contaminated rover wheel could be transferred to the surface of the analog soil and survive martian conditions. The experiment simulated conditions in which a rover wheel might come into contact with martian regolith immediately after landing, such as is designed for the upcoming Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) rover. The contaminated rover wheel transferred viable endospores of B. subtilis to the Mars analog soil, as demonstrated by 31.7% of samples showing positive growth. However, when contaminated soil samples were exposed to full martian conditions for 24 h, only 16.7% of samples exhibited positive growth-a 50% reduction in the number of soil samples positive for the transferred viable endospores.

  10. Effect of Shadowing on Survival of Bacteria under Conditions Simulating the Martian Atmosphere and UV Radiation▿ †

    PubMed Central

    Osman, Shariff; Peeters, Zan; La Duc, Myron T.; Mancinelli, Rocco; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2008-01-01

    Spacecraft-associated spores and four non-spore-forming bacterial isolates were prepared in Atacama Desert soil suspensions and tested both in solution and in a desiccated state to elucidate the shadowing effect of soil particulates on bacterial survival under simulated Martian atmospheric and UV irradiation conditions. All non-spore-forming cells that were prepared in nutrient-depleted, 0.2-μm-filtered desert soil (DSE) microcosms and desiccated for 75 days on aluminum died, whereas cells prepared similarly in 60-μm-filtered desert soil (DS) microcosms survived such conditions. Among the bacterial cells tested, Microbacterium schleiferi and Arthrobacter sp. exhibited elevated resistance to 254-nm UV irradiation (low-pressure Hg lamp), and their survival indices were comparable to those of DS- and DSE-associated Bacillus pumilus spores. Desiccated DSE-associated spores survived exposure to full Martian UV irradiation (200 to 400 nm) for 5 min and were only slightly affected by Martian atmospheric conditions in the absence of UV irradiation. Although prolonged UV irradiation (5 min to 12 h) killed substantial portions of the spores in DSE microcosms (∼5- to 6-log reduction with Martian UV irradiation), dramatic survival of spores was apparent in DS-spore microcosms. The survival of soil-associated wild-type spores under Martian conditions could have repercussions for forward contamination of extraterrestrial environments, especially Mars. PMID:18083857

  11. Testing of Icy-Soil Sample Delivery in Simulated Martian Conditions (Animation)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    [figure removed for brevity, see original site] Click on image for animation

    This movie clip shows testing under simulated Mars conditions on Earth in preparation for NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander using its robotic arm for delivering a sample to the doors of a laboratory oven.

    The icy soil used in the testing flowed easily from the scoop during all tests at Martian temperatures. On Mars, icy soil has stuck to the scoop, a surprise that may be related to composition of the soil at the landing site.

    This testing was done at Honeybee Robotics Spacecraft Mechanisms Corp., New York, which supplied the Phoenix scoop.

    The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASAaE(TM)s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  12. Dust effects on LGRB host galaxies in cosmological simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bignone, L. A.; Pellizza, L. J.; Tissera, P. B.

    2016-08-01

    The very energetic long gamma-ray bursts (LGRBs) constitute an extremely important tool to study the cosmological evolution of the Universe up to very high redshift. In this work we study the properties of LGRB host galaxies using numerical simulations of galaxy formation. We combine the galaxy catalogue of a hydrodynamical cosmological simulation with a model for LGRBs, which includes constrains for the mass and metallicity of their progenitors. This allows us to analyse the chemical and physical properties of both LGRBs and their hosts. A current problem is to disentangle the bias introduced on the observed host properties by a possible metallicity dependence of the progenitors, from the selection effects produced by dust obscuration in the hosts. We explore this issue by modelling the effect of dust in host galaxies, using radiative transfer codes. In this work we present preliminary results of this research line.

  13. Characterization and Glass Formation of JSC-1 Lunar and Martian Soil Simulants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sen, Subhayu

    2008-01-01

    The space exploration mission of NASA requires long duration presence of human being beyond the low earth orbit (LEO), especially on Moon and Mars. Developing a human habitat or colony on these planets would require a diverse range of materials, whose applications would range from structural foundations, (human) life support, (electric) power generation to components for scientific instrumentation. A reasonable and cost-effective approach for fabricating the materials needed for establishing a self-sufficient human outpost would be to primarily use local (in situ) resources on these planets. Since ancient times, glass and ceramics have been playing a vital role on human civilization. A long term project on studying the feasibility of developing glass and ceramic materials using Lunar and Martian soil simulants (JSC-1) as developed by Johnson Space Center has been undertaken. The first step in this on-going project requires developing a data base on results that fully characterize the simulants to be used for further investigations. The present paper reports characterization data of both JSC-1 Lunar and JSC Mars-1 simulants obtained up to this time via x-ray diffraction analysis, scanning electron microscopy, thermal analysis (DTA, TGA) and chemical analysis. The critical cooling rate for glass formation for the melts of the simulants was also measured in order to quantitatively assess the glass forming tendency of these melts. The importance of the glasses and ceramics developed using in-situ resources for constructing human habitats on Moon or Mars is discussed.

  14. Characterization and Glass Formation of JSC-1 Lunar and Martian Soil Simulants

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ray, Chandra S.; Reis, Signo T.; Sen, Subhayu

    2008-01-01

    The space exploration mission of NASA requires human and robotic presence for long duration beyond the low earth orbit (LEO), especially on Moon and Mars. Developing a human habitat or colony on these planets would require a diverse range of materials, whose applications would range from structural foundations, (human) life support, (electric) power generation to components for scientific instrumentations. A reasonable and cost-effective approach for fabricating the materials needed for establishing a self-sufficient human outpost would be to primarily use local (in situ) resources on these planets. Since ancient times, glass and ceramics have been playing a vital role on human civilization. A long term project on studying the feasibility of developing glass and ceramic materials has been undertaken using Lunar and Martian soil simulants (JSC-1) as developed by Johnson Space Center. The first step in this on-going project requires developing a data base on results that fully characterize the simulants to be used for further investigations. The present paper reports characterization data of both JSC-1 Lunar and JSC Mars-1 simulants obtained up to this time via x-ray diffraction analysis, scanning electron microscopy, thermal analysis (DTA, TGA) and chemical analysis. The critical cooling rate for glass formation for the melts of the simulants was also measured in order to quantitatively assess the glass forming tendency of these melts. The importance of the glasses and ceramics developed using in-situ resources for constructing human habitats on Moon or Mars is discussed.

  15. Investigation on Accelerating Dust Storm Simulation via Domain Decomposition Methods

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yu, M.; Gui, Z.; Yang, C. P.; Xia, J.; Chen, S.

    2014-12-01

    Dust storm simulation is a data and computing intensive process, which requires high efficiency and adequate computing resources. To speed up the process, high performance computing is widely adopted. By partitioning a large study area into small subdomains according to their geographic location and executing them on different computing nodes in a parallel fashion, the computing performance can be significantly improved. However, it is still a question worthy of consideration that how to allocate these subdomain processes into computing nodes without introducing imbalanced task loads and unnecessary communications among computing nodes. Here we propose a domain decomposition and allocation framework that can carefully leverage the computing cost and communication cost for each computing node to minimize total execution time and reduce overall communication cost for the entire system. The framework is tested in the NMM (Nonhydrostatic Mesoscale Model)-dust model, where a 72-hour processes of the dust load are simulated. Performance result using the proposed scheduling method is compared with the one using default scheduling methods of MPI. Results demonstrate that the system improves the performance of simulation by 20% up to 80%.

  16. Gas and dust hydrodynamical simulations of massive lopsided transition discs - II. Dust concentration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baruteau, Clément; Zhu, Zhaohuan

    2016-06-01

    We investigate the dynamics of large dust grains in massive lopsided transition discs via 2D hydrodynamical simulations including both gas and dust. Our simulations adopt a ring-like gas density profile that becomes unstable against the Rossby-wave instability and forms a large crescent-shaped vortex. When gas self-gravity is discarded, but the indirect force from the displacement of the star by the vortex is included, we confirm that dust grains with stopping times of order the orbital time, which should be typically a few centimetres in size, are trapped ahead of the vortex in the azimuthal direction, while the smallest and largest grains concentrate towards the vortex centre. We obtain maximum shift angles of about 25°. Gas self-gravity accentuates the concentration differences between small and large grains. At low to moderate disc masses, the larger the grains, the farther they are trapped ahead of the vortex. Shift angles up to 90° are reached for 10 cm-sized grains, and we show that such large offsets can produce a double-peaked continuum emission observable at mm/cm wavelengths. This behaviour comes about because the large grains undergo horseshoe U-turns relative to the vortex due to the vortex's gravity. At large disc masses, since the vortex's pattern frequency becomes increasingly slower than Keplerian, small grains concentrate slightly beyond the vortex and large grains form generally non-axisymmetric ring-like structures around the vortex's radial location. Gas self-gravity therefore imparts distinct trapping locations for small and large dust grains, which may be probed by current and future observations.

  17. Airborne Dust in Space Vehicles and Habitats

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    James, John

    2006-01-01

    Airborne dust, suspended inside a space vehicle or in future celestial habitats, can present a serious threat to crew health if it is not controlled. During the Apollo missions to the moon, lunar dust brought inside the capsule caused eye irritation and breathing difficulty to the crew when they launched from the moon and re-acquired "microgravity." During Shuttle flights reactive and toxic dusts such as lithium hydroxide have created a risk to crew health, and fine particles from combustion events can be especially worrisome. Under nominal spaceflight conditions, airborne dusts and particles tend to be larger than on earth because of the absence of gravity settling. Aboard the ISS, dusts are effectively managed by HEPA filters, although floating dust in newly-arrived modules can be a nuisance. Future missions to the moon and to Mars will present additional challenges because of the possibility that external dust will enter the breathing atmosphere of the habitat and reach the crew's respiratory system. Testing with simulated lunar and Martian dust has shown that these materials are toxic when placed into the lungs of test animals. Defining and evaluating the physical and chemical properties of Martian dusts through robotic missions will challenge our ability to prepare better dust simulants and to determine the risk to crew health from exposure to such dusts.

  18. Simulating STARDUST: Reproducing Impacts of Interstellar Dust in the Laboratory

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Postberg, F.; Srama, R.; Hillier, J. K.; Sestak, S.; Green, S. F.; Trieloff, M.; Grün, E.

    2008-09-01

    Our experiments are carried out to support the analysis of interstellar dust grains, ISDGs, brought to earth by the STARDUST mission. Since the very first investigations, it has turned out that the major problem of STARDUST particle analysis is the modification (partly even the destruction) during capture when particles impact the spacecraft collectors with a velocity of up to 20 km/s. While it is possible to identify, extract, and analyse cometary grains larger than a few microns in aerogel and on metal collector plates, the STARDUST team is not yet ready for the identification, extraction, and analysis of sub-micron sized ISDGs with impact speeds of up to 20 km/s. Reconstructing the original particle properties requires a simulation of this impact capture process. Moreover, due to the lack of laboratory studies of high speed impacts of micron scale dust into interstellar STARDUST flight spares, the selection of criteria for the identification of track candidates is entirely subjective. Simulation of such impact processes is attempted with funds of the FRONTIER program within the framework of the Heidelberg University initiative of excellence. The dust accelerator at the MPI Kernphysik is a facility unique in the world to perform such experiments. A critical point is the production of cometary and interstellar dust analogue material and its acceleration to very high speeds of 20 km/s, which has never before been performed in laboratory experiments. Up to now only conductive material was successfully accelerated by the 2 MV Van de Graaf generator of the dust accelerator facility. Typical projectile materials are Iron, Aluminium, Carbon, Copper, Silver, and the conducting hydrocarbon Latex. Ongoing research now enables the acceleration of any kind of rocky planetary and interstellar dust analogues (Hillier et al. 2008, in prep.). The first batch of dust samples produced with the new method consists of micron and submicron SiO2 grains. Those were successfully

  19. Inferring the interplanetary dust properties. from remote observations and simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lasue, J.; Levasseur-Regourd, A. C.; Fray, N.; Cottin, H.

    2007-10-01

    Context: Since in situ studies and interplanetary dust collections only provide a spatially limited amount of information about the interplanetary dust properties, it is of major importance to complete these studies with properties inferred from remote observations of scattered and emitted light, with interpretation through simulations. Aims: Physical properties of the interplanetary dust in the near-ecliptic symmetry surface, such as the local polarization, temperature, and composition, together with their heliocentric variations, may be derived from scattered and emitted light observations, giving clues to the respective contribution of the particle sources. Methods: A model of light scattering by a cloud of solid particles constituted by spheroidal grains and aggregates thereof is used to interpret the local light-scattering data. Equilibrium temperature of the same particles allows us to interpret the temperature heliocentric variations. Results: A good fit of the local polarization phase curve, Pα, near 1.5 AU from the Sun is obtained for a mixture of silicates and more absorbing organic material (≈40% in mass) and for a realistic size distribution typical of the interplanetary dust in the 0.2 μm to 200 μm size range. The contribution of dust particles of cometary origin is at least 20% in mass. The same size distribution of particles gives a dependence of the temperature with the solar distance, R, in R-0.45 that is different than the typical black body behavior. The heliocentric dependence of Pα=90° is interpreted as a progressive disappearance of solid organic (such as HCN polymers or amorphous carbon) towards the Sun.

  20. Variability of the Martian thermospheric temperatures during the last 7 Martian Years

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gonzalez-Galindo, Francisco; Lopez-Valverde, Miguel Angel; Millour, Ehouarn; Forget, François

    2014-05-01

    The temperatures and densities in the Martian upper atmosphere have a significant influence over the different processes producing atmospheric escape. A good knowledge of the thermosphere and its variability is thus necessary in order to better understand and quantify the atmospheric loss to space and the evolution of the planet. Different global models have been used to study the seasonal and interannual variability of the Martian thermosphere, usually considering three solar scenarios (solar minimum, solar medium and solar maximum conditions) to take into account the solar cycle variability. However, the variability of the solar activity within the simulated period of time is not usually considered in these models. We have improved the description of the UV solar flux included on the General Circulation Model for Mars developed at the Laboratoire de Météorologie Dynamique (LMD-MGCM) in order to include its observed day-to-day variability. We have used the model to simulate the thermospheric variability during Martian Years 24 to 30, using realistic UV solar fluxes and dust opacities. The model predicts and interannual variability of the temperatures in the upper thermosphere that ranges from about 50 K during the aphelion to up to 150 K during perihelion. The seasonal variability of temperatures due to the eccentricity of the Martian orbit is modified by the variability of the solar flux within a given Martian year. The solar rotation cycle produces temperature oscillations of up to 30 K. We have also studied the response of the modeled thermosphere to the global dust storms in Martian Year 25 and Martian Year 28. The atmospheric dynamics are significantly modified by the global dust storms, which induces significant changes in the thermospheric temperatures. The response of the model to the presence of both global dust storms is in good agreement with previous modeling results (Medvedev et al., Journal of Geophysical Research, 2013). As expected, the simulated

  1. Martian Gullies: H2O or CO2 snow?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yolanda, C.; Durand-Manterola, H. J.

    2007-05-01

    The theories proposed to try to explain the origin of the Martian gullies involve either liquid water, liquid carbon dioxide or flows of dry granular material. We propose another processes that can be favorable for the origin of the Martian gullies, with our model by gaseous fluidification of CO2. We propose that on the Martian slopes, CO2 snow and dust transported by winds, are accumulate. During the Martian spring, sublimation of carbonic snow starts because of heat and weigth of the frezze layer, causing that the material mixed its fluidifized and slide downslope by gravity. By experimental work with dry granular material, we simulated the development of the Martian gullies injecting air inside the granular material. We also present the characteristics of some terrestrial gullies forms at cold environment, sited at Nevado de Toluca Volcano near Toluca City, México. We compared them with some Martian gullies, to identify possible processes evolved in its formation. We measured the lengths of those Martian gullies and the range was from 24 meters to 1775 meters. Finally, we present results of our experimental work at laboratory with dry granular material and our field trip to Nevado de Toluca Volcano.

  2. Biological responses to the simulated Martian UV radiation of bacteriophages and isolated DNA.

    PubMed

    Fekete, Andrea; Kovács, Gáspár; Hegedüs, Márton; Módos, Károly; Lammer, Helmut

    2008-08-21

    Mars is considered as a main target for astrobiologically relevant exploration programmes. In this work the effect of simulated Martian solar UV radiation was examined on bacteriophage T7 and on isolated T7 DNA. A decrease of the biological activity of phages, characteristic changes in the absorption spectrum and in the electrophoretic pattern of isolated DNA/phage and the decrease of the amount of PCR products were detected indicating damage of isolated and intraphage T7 DNA by UV radiation. Further mechanistic insights into the UV-induced formation of intraphage/isolated T7 DNA photoproducts were gained from the application of appropriate enzymatic digestion and neutral/alkaline agarose gel electrophoresis. Our results showed that intraphage DNA was about ten times more sensitive to simulated Martian UV radiation than isolated T7 DNA indicating the role of phage proteins in the DNA damage. Compared to solar UV radiation the total amount of DNA damage determined by QPCR was about ten times larger in isolated DNA and phage T7 as well, and the types of the DNA photoproducts were different, besides cyclobutane pyrimidine dimers (CPD), double-strand breaks (dsb), and single-strand breaks (ssb), DNA-protein cross-links were produced as well. Surprisingly, energy deposition as low as 4-6 eV corresponding to 200-400 nm range could induce significant amount of ssb and dsb in phage/isolated DNA (in phage the ratio of ssb/dsb was approximately 23%/12% and approximately 32%/19% in isolated DNA). 5-8% of the CPD, 3-5% of the AP (apurinic/apyrimidinic) sites were located in clusters in DNA/phage, suggesting that clustering of damage occur in the form of multiple damaged sites and these can have a high probability to produce strand breaks. The amount of total DNA damage in samples which were irradiated in Tris buffer was reduced by a factor approximately 2, compared to samples in phosphate buffer, suggesting that some of the photoproducts were produced via radicals.

  3. Polarization of cosmic dust simulated with the rough spheroid model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kolokolova, Ludmilla; Das, Himadri Sekhar; Dubovik, Oleg; Lapyonok, Tatyana; Yang, Ping

    2015-10-01

    Cosmic dust is a polydisperse mixture of irregular, often aggregated, particles. Previous attempts have tried to simulate polarimetric properties of this dust using aggregate dust models, but it has not been possible to consider particle sizes larger than a couple of microns due to limitations of computer memory and processing power. Attempts have also been made to replace aggregates by polydisperse regular particles (spheres, spheroids, cylinders), but those models could not consistently reproduce the observed photopolarimetric characteristics. In this study, we introduce to the astronomical community the software package developed by Dubovik et al. (2006) for modeling light scattering by a polydisperse mixture of randomly oriented smooth and rough spheroids of a variety of aspect ratios. The roughness of spheroids is defined by a normal distribution of the surface slopes, and its degree depends on the standard deviation of the distribution (which is zero for smooth surface and greater than zero for rough surface). The pre-calculated kernels in the software package allow for fast, accurate, and flexible modeling of different size and shape distributions. We present our results of a systematic investigation of polarization obtained with the rough and smooth spheroid models; we study differences in their phase angle dependence and how those differences change with the particle size distribution. We found that the difference between smooth and rough particles increases with increasing effective size parameter and affects mainly the value and position of the maximum polarization. Negative polarization was found to be typical only for silicate-like refractive indexes and only when the particles have size parameters within 2.5-25. As an example of an application of the rough spheroid model, we made computations for rough spheroids that have a size distribution and composition typical for cometary dust. We found that a mixture of porous rough spheroids made of absorbing

  4. Simulating US agriculture in a modern Dust Bowl drought.

    PubMed

    Glotter, Michael; Elliott, Joshua

    2016-12-12

    Drought-induced agricultural loss is one of the most costly impacts of extreme weather(1-3), and without mitigation, climate change is likely to increase the severity and frequency of future droughts(4,5). The Dust Bowl of the 1930s was the driest and hottest for agriculture in modern US history. Improvements in farming practices have increased productivity, but yields today are still tightly linked to climate variation(6) and the impacts of a 1930s-type drought on current and future agricultural systems remain unclear. Simulations of biophysical process and empirical models suggest that Dust-Bowl-type droughts today would have unprecedented consequences, with yield losses ∼50% larger than the severe drought of 2012. Damages at these extremes are highly sensitive to temperature, worsening by ∼25% with each degree centigrade of warming. We find that high temperatures can be more damaging than rainfall deficit, and, without adaptation, warmer mid-century temperatures with even average precipitation could lead to maize losses equivalent to the Dust Bowl drought. Warmer temperatures alongside consecutive droughts could make up to 85% of rain-fed maize at risk of changes that may persist for decades. Understanding the interactions of weather extremes and a changing agricultural system is therefore critical to effectively respond to, and minimize, the impacts of the next extreme drought event.

  5. Simulating US Agriculture in a Modern Dust Bowl Drought

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Glotter, Michael; Elliott, Joshua

    2016-01-01

    Drought-induced agricultural loss is one of the most costly impacts of extreme weather, and without mitigation, climate change is likely to increase the severity and frequency of future droughts. The Dust Bowl of the 1930s was the driest and hottest for agriculture in modern US history. Improvements in farming practices have increased productivity, but yields today are still tightly linked to climate variation and the impacts of a 1930s-type drought on current and future agricultural systems remain unclear. Simulations of biophysical process and empirical models suggest that Dust-Bowl-type droughts today would have unprecedented consequences, with yield losses approx.50% larger than the severe drought of 2012. Damages at these extremes are highly sensitive to temperature, worsening by approx.25% with each degree centigrade of warming. We find that high temperatures can be more damaging than rainfall deficit, and, without adaptation, warmer mid-century temperatures with even average precipitation could lead to maize losses equivalent to the Dust Bowl drought. Warmer temperatures alongside consecutive droughts could make up to 85% of rain-fed maize at risk of changes that may persist for decades. Understanding the interactions of weather extremes and a changing agricultural system is therefore critical to effectively respond to, and minimize, the impacts of the next extreme drought event.

  6. A treecode to simulate dust-plasma interactions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Thomas, D. M.; Holgate, J. T.

    2017-02-01

    The interaction of a small object with surrounding plasma is an area of plasma-physics research with a multitude of applications. This paper introduces the plasma octree code pot, a microscopic simulator of a spheroidal dust grain in a plasma. pot uses the Barnes-Hut treecode algorithm to perform N-body simulations of electrons and ions in the vicinity of a chargeable spheroid, employing also the Boris particle-motion integrator and Hutchinson’s reinjection algorithm from SCEPTIC; a description of the implementation of all three algorithms is provided. We present results from pot simulations of the charging of spheres in magnetised plasmas, and of spheroids in unmagnetized plasmas. The results call into question the validity of using the Boltzmann relation in hybrid PIC codes. Substantial portions of this paper are adapted from chapters 4 and 5 of the first author’s recent PhD dissertation.

  7. Analytic and Simulation Studies of Dust Grain Interaction and Structuring

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lampe, Martin; Joyce, Glenn; Ganguli, Gurudas

    For dust grains in stationary plasma, a quantitative assessment is made of the effect of centrifugal potential barriers on ion trajectories near a grain. It is shown that in most situations of interest the barriers are weak and only marginally affect the validity of the orbital-motion-limited (OML) theory. The OML theory is then used to show that the electrostatic interaction between grains is always repulsive. The ion-shadowing force is calculated, and it is shown that this force can lead to a weak net attraction between grains at long range, under certain conditions with large grains, dense plasma, and/or low gas pressure. For grains in streaming plasma at or near the sheath, it is shown that nonlinear effects are weak and the grains can be represented as dressed particles interacting via the dynamically shielded Coulomb interaction, which includes wakefields, Landau damping, and collisional damping. The Dynamically Shielded Dust (DSD) simulation code, which is based on this model, is described and a simulation is shown for strongly coupled grains in flowing plasma. The simulation shows ordering of the grains into rigid strings aligned with the ion flow, and looser glass-like organization of the strings in the transverse plane. The presence of strings with odd and even numbers of grains results in stratification of the grains into planes with an alternating structure.

  8. Simulation of dust streaming in toroidal traps: Stationary flows

    SciTech Connect

    Reichstein, Torben; Piel, Alexander

    2011-08-15

    Molecular-dynamic simulations were performed to study dust motion in a toroidal trap under the influence of the ion drag force driven by a Hall motion of the ions in E x B direction, gravity, inter-particle forces, and friction with the neutral gas. This article is focused on the inhomogeneous stationary streaming motion. Depending on the strength of friction, the spontaneous formation of a stationary shock or a spatial bifurcation into a fast flow and a slow vortex flow is observed. In the quiescent streaming region, the particle flow features a shell structure which undergoes a structural phase transition along the flow direction.

  9. Dust and the Mars Polar Vortices

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Guzewich, S.; Waugh, D.; Toigo, A. D.

    2015-12-01

    Dust is a highly variable forcing mechanism altering martian atmospheric dynamics. The greatest variability in atmospheric dust opacity occurs during Mars' northern hemisphere fall and winter, the canonical "dust storm season". The northern polar vortex develops during this season and can be stretched, weakened, or strengthened by variations in atmospheric dust. Additionally, Mars' north polar vortex manifests as an annulus of high potential vorticity around the geographic pole, which is distinctly different than Earth's stratospheric polar vortices where potential vorticity peaks at the pole. We examine the role of dust in shaping and altering the martian polar vortices in a series of idealized MarsWRF general circulation model simulations. Increasing dust loading disrupts the northern polar vortex near the winter solstice leading to a "mid-winter warming", and this is also seen in observations from the Mars Climate Sounder and Thermal Emission Spectrometer during large dust events. These appear loosely analogous with terrestrial "sudden stratospheric warming" events, where the strong westerly jet around the pole weakens and air inside the vortex quickly warms. The southern hemisphere winter polar vortex is distinctly different from that of the northern hemisphere, and we show that the fundamental "handedness" of the current martian climactic regime makes the southern hemisphere vortex less sensitive to dust forcing.

  10. The Martian Atmospheric Boundary Layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Petrosyan, A.; Galperin, B.; Larsen, S. E.; Lewis, S. R.; Määttänen, A.; Read, P. L.; Renno, N.; Rogberg, L. P. H. T.; Savijärvi, H.; Siili, T.; Spiga, A.; Toigo, A.; Vázquez, L.

    2011-09-01

    The planetary boundary layer (PBL) represents the part of the atmosphere that is strongly influenced by the presence of the underlying surface and mediates the key interactions between the atmosphere and the surface. On Mars, this represents the lowest 10 km of the atmosphere during the daytime. This portion of the atmosphere is extremely important, both scientifically and operationally, because it is the region within which surface lander spacecraft must operate and also determines exchanges of heat, momentum, dust, water, and other tracers between surface and subsurface reservoirs and the free atmosphere. To date, this region of the atmosphere has been studied directly, by instrumented lander spacecraft, and from orbital remote sensing, though not to the extent that is necessary to fully constrain its character and behavior. Current data strongly suggest that as for the Earth's PBL, classical Monin-Obukhov similarity theory applies reasonably well to the Martian PBL under most conditions, though with some intriguing differences relating to the lower atmospheric density at the Martian surface and the likely greater role of direct radiative heating of the atmosphere within the PBL itself. Most of the modeling techniques used for the PBL on Earth are also being applied to the Martian PBL, including novel uses of very high resolution large eddy simulation methods. We conclude with those aspects of the PBL that require new measurements in order to constrain models and discuss the extent to which anticipated missions to Mars in the near future will fulfill these requirements.

  11. DREAMS: a payload on-board the ExoMars EDM Schiaparelli for the characterization of Martian environment during the statistical dust storm season

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Molfese, Cesare; Esposito, Francesca; Debei, Stefano; Bettanini, Carlo; Arruego Rodríguez, Ignacio; Colombatti, Giacomo; Harri, Ari-Matty.; Montmessin, Franck; Wilson, Colin; Aboudan, Alessio; Mugnuolo, Raffaele; Pirrotta, Simone; Marchetti, Ernesto; Witasse, Olivier

    2015-04-01

    F. Esposito1, S. Debei2, C. Bettanini2, C. Molfese1, I. Arruego Rodríguez3, G. Colombatti2, A-M. Harri4, F. Montmessin5, C. Wilson6, A. Aboudan2, S. Abbaki5, V. Apestigue3, G. Bellucci7, J-J. Berthelier5, J. R. Brucato8, S. B. Calcutt6, F. Cortecchia1, F. Cucciarrè2, G. Di Achille1, F. Ferri2, F. Forget9, E. Friso2, M. Genzer4, P. Gilbert5, H. Haukka4, J. J. Jiménez3, S. Jiménez10, J-L. Josset11, O. Karatekin12, G. Landis13, R. Lorenz14, J. Martinez3, L. Marty1, V. Mennella1, D. Möhlmann15, D. Moirin5, R. Molinaro1, E. Palomba7, M. Patel16, J-P. Pommereau5, C.I. Popa1, S. Rafkin17, P. Rannou18, N.O. Renno19, P. Schipani1, W. Schmidt4, E. Segato2, S. Silvestro1, F. Simoes20, A. Spiga9, F. Valero21, L. Vázquez21, F. Vivat5, O. Witasse22, R. Mugnuolo23, S. Pirrotta23, E.Marchetti23 1INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Capodimonte, Napoli, Italy, 2CISAS - Università degli Studi di Padova, Padova, Italy, 3INTA, Spain, 4Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI),Helsinki, Finland, 5LATMOS - CNRS/UVSQ/IPSL, France, 6Oxford University, Oxford, United Kingdom, 7INAF - Istituto di Fisica dello Spazio Interplanetario (IFSI), 8INAF-Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri, 9CNRS, LMD, France, 10Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Spain, 11Space Exploration Institute, Switzerland, 12Royal Observatory of Belgium,Belgium, 13NASA, GRC, USA, 14JHU Applied Physics Lab (JHU-APL), USA, 15DLR PF Leitungsbereich, Berlin, Germany, 16Open University, UK, 17SwRL, Switzerland, 18GSMA, France, 19University of Michigan, USA, 20NASA, GSFC, USA, 21Universidad Complutense de Madrid (UCM), Spain, 22ESA-ESTEC, Noordwijk, The Netherlands, 23Italian Space Agency, Italy DREAMS (Dust characterization, Risk assessment and Environment Analyzer on the Martian Surface) package is an integrated multi-sensor scientific payload dedicated to characterizing the landing site environment in dusty conditions. It will measure pressure, wind speed and direction, relative humidity, temperature, the solar irradiance

  12. A Model for Formation of Dust, Soil and Rock Coatings on Mars: Physical and Chemical Processes on the Martian Surface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bishop, Janice; Murchie, Scott L.; Pieters, Carle M.; Zent, Aaron P.

    2001-01-01

    This model is one of many possible scenarios to explain the generation of the current surface material on Mars using chemical, magnetic and spectroscopic data From Mars and geologic analogs from terrestrial sites. One basic premise of this model is that the dust/soil units are not derived exclusively from local rocks, but are rather a product of global, and possibly remote, weathering processes. Another assumption in this model is that there are physical and chemical interactions of the atmospheric dust particles and that these two processes create distinctly different results on the surface. Physical processes distribute dust particles on rocks and drift units, forming physically-aggregated layers; these are reversible processes. Chemical reactions of the dust/soil particles create alteration rinds on rock surfaces and cohesive, crusted surface units between rocks, both of which are relatively permanent materials. According to this model the dominant components of the dust/soil particles are derived from alteration of volcanic ash and tephra, and contain primarily nanophase and poorly crystalline ferric oxides/oxyhydroxide phases as well as silicates. These phases are the alteration products that formed in a low moisture environment. These dust/soil particles also contain a smaller amount of material that was exposed to more water and contains crystalline ferric oxides/oxyhydroxides, sulfates and clay silicates. These components could have formed through hydrothermal alteration at steam vents or fumeroles, thermal fluids, or through evaporite deposits. Wet/dry cycling experiments are presented here on mixtures containing poorly crystalline and crystalline ferric oxides/oxyhydroxides, sulfates and silicates that range in size from nanophase to 1-2 pm diameter particles. Cemented products of these soil mixtures are formed in these experiments and variation in the surface texture was observed for samples containing smectites, non-hydrated silicates or sulfates

  13. Evidence for Martian electrostatic charging and abrasive wheel wear from the Wheel Abrasion Experiment on the Pathfinder Sojourner rover

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ferguson, Dale C.; Kolecki, Joseph C.; Siebert, Mark W.; Wilt, David M.; Matijevic, Jacob R.

    1999-04-01

    The Wheel Abrasion Experiment (WAE) on the Mars Pathfinder rover was designed to find out how abrasive the Martian dust would be on strips of pure metals attached to one of the wheels. A specially modified wheel, with 15 thin film samples (five each of three different metals), specularly reflected sunlight to a photovoltaic sensor. When the wheel was rotated to present the different sample surfaces to the sensor, the resulting signal was interpreted in terms of dust adhesion and abrasive wear. Many data sequences were obtained. Ground tests of similar wheels in a simulated Martian environment showed that static charging levels of 100-300 V could be expected. To prevent the possibility of Paschen discharge in the low-pressure Martian atmosphere, charge dissipation points were added to the Sojourner rover and were shown in ground tests to keep charging levels at 80 V or less. Nevertheless, significant dust accumulations on Sojourner's wheels may be interpreted as evidence for electrostatic charging. Simple considerations of the expected maximum level of charging and electrostatic dust adhesion lead to an estimate for the size of the adhering dust grains. From the WAE data, it is hypothesized that the photoelectric effect is the most important mechanism for slow discharge in Martian daylight. Sensor signals obtained late in the Pathfinder mission show that significant wheel wear was seen on the metal wheel strips, with the most wear on the thinnest aluminum samples and the least on the thickest nickel and platinum samples. An estimate is made of the reflectance of the adhering Martian dust. The depth of dig of the WAE wheel shows that the dust is in some places very loose and in others tightly packed. Finally, comparison of the WAE results with ground test results makes possible a comparison of the Martian soil with mineral grain types and sizes found on Earth and show that the Martian dust is fine-grained and of limited hardness.

  14. Performance of a 16.6 Meter Diameter Modified Ringsail Parachute in a Simulated Martian Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1968-01-01

    Performance of a 16.6 Meter Diameter Modified Ringsail Parachute in a Simulated Martian Environment. Inflation, drag, and stability characteristics of a 54.5 -foot nominal-diameter (16.6-meter) modified ringsail parachute deployed in the wake of a 15-foot-diameter (4.6-meter) spacecraft traveling at a Mach number of 1.6 and a dynamic pressure equal to 11.6 psf (555 N/m(exp 2)) were obtained from the third balloon-launched flight test of the Planetary Entry Parachute Program. After deployment, the parachute inflated rapidly to a full condition, partially collapsed, and reinflated to a stable configuration. After reinflation, an average drag coefficient near 0.6 based on nominal surface area was obtained. During descent, an aerodynamic trim angle was observed in a plane near several torn sails. Amplitude of the trim was approximately 15 degrees and oscillation about trim was less than 11 degrees. [Entire movie available on DVD from CASI as Doc ID 20070030996. Contact help@sti.nasa.gov

  15. Performance of 26 Meter Diameter Ringsail Parachute in a Simulated Martian Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1967-01-01

    Performance of 26 Meter Diameter Ringsail Parachute in a Simulated Martian Environment. Inflation, drag, and stability characteristics of an 85.3-foot (26-meter) nominal diameter ringsail parachute deployed at a Mach number of 1.15 and at an altitude of 132,600 feet (40.42 kilometers) were obtained from the first flight test of the Planetary Entry Parachute Program. After deployment, the parachute inflated to the reefed condition. However, the canopy was unstable and produced low drag in the reefed condition. Upon disreefing and opening to full inflation, a slight instability in the canopy mouth was observed initially. After a short time, the fluctuations diminished and a stable configuration was attained. Results indicate a loss in drag during the fluctuation period prior to stable inflation. During descent, stability characteristics of the system were such that the average pitch-yaw angle from the local vertical was less than 10 degrees. Rolling motion between the payload and parachute canopy quickly damped to small amplitude. [Entire movie available on DVD from CASI as Doc ID 20070031003. Contact help@sti.nasa.gov

  16. Performance of a 16.6 Meter Diameter Cross Parachute in a Simulated Martian Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1968-01-01

    Performance of a 16.6 Meter Diameter Cross Parachute in a Simulated Martian Environment. Inflation and drag characteristics of a 54.4-foot (16.6 meter) nominal-diameter cross parachute, deployed at a Mach number of 1.65 and a dynamic pressure of 12.68 lb/sq f t (607.1 N/m(exp2)), were obtained from the fourth balloon-launched flight test of the Planetary Entry Parachute Program (PEPP). After deployment, the parachute quickly inflated to a full condition, partially collapsed, and then gradually reinflated while undergoing rapid oscillations between over-inflation and under-inflation. The oscillations began while the parachute was still at supersonic speeds and continued to low subsonic speeds well below an altitude of 90,000 feet (27.4 km). These canopy instabilities produced large cyclic variations in the parachute's drag coefficient. The average value of drag coefficient was about 0.8 to 0.9 at subsonic speeds and slightly lower at supersonic speeds. These drag coefficient values were based on the actual fabric surface area of the parachute canopy. The parachute sustained minor damage consisting of two canopy tears and abrasions and tears on the riser line. It is believed that this damage did not produce a significant change in the performance of the parachute. [Entire movie available on DVD from CASI as Doc ID 20070030995. Contact help@sti.nasa.gov

  17. Resistance of Antarctic black fungi and cryptoendolithic communities to simulated space and Martian conditions

    PubMed Central

    Onofri, S.; Barreca, D.; Selbmann, L.; Isola, D.; Rabbow, E.; Horneck, G.; de Vera, J.P.P.; Hatton, J.; Zucconi, L.

    2008-01-01

    Dried colonies of the Antarctic rock-inhabiting meristematic fungi Cryomyces antarcticus CCFEE 515, CCFEE 534 and C. minteri CCFEE 5187, as well as fragments of rocks colonized by the Antarctic cryptoendolithic community, were exposed to a set of ground-based experiment verification tests (EVTs) at the German Aerospace Center (DLR, Köln, Germany). These were carried out to test the tolerance of these organisms in view of their possible exposure to space conditions outside of the International Space Station (ISS). Tests included single or combined simulated space and Martian conditions. Responses were analysed both by cultural and microscopic methods. Thereby, colony formation capacities were measured and the cellular viability was assessed using live/dead dyes FUN 1 and SYTOX Green. The results clearly suggest a general good resistance of all the samples investigated. C. minteri CCFEE 5187, C. antarcticus CCFEE 515 and colonized rocks were selected as suitable candidates to withstand space flight and long-term permanence in space on the ISS in the framework of the LIchens and Fungi Experiments (LIFE programme, European Space Agency). PMID:19287532

  18. Resistance of Antarctic black fungi and cryptoendolithic communities to simulated space and Martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Onofri, S; Barreca, D; Selbmann, L; Isola, D; Rabbow, E; Horneck, G; de Vera, J P P; Hatton, J; Zucconi, L

    2008-01-01

    Dried colonies of the Antarctic rock-inhabiting meristematic fungi Cryomyces antarcticus CCFEE 515, CCFEE 534 and C. minteri CCFEE 5187, as well as fragments of rocks colonized by the Antarctic cryptoendolithic community, were exposed to a set of ground-based experiment verification tests (EVTs) at the German Aerospace Center (DLR, Köln, Germany). These were carried out to test the tolerance of these organisms in view of their possible exposure to space conditions outside of the International Space Station (ISS). Tests included single or combined simulated space and Martian conditions. Responses were analysed both by cultural and microscopic methods. Thereby, colony formation capacities were measured and the cellular viability was assessed using live/dead dyes FUN 1 and SYTOX Green. The results clearly suggest a general good resistance of all the samples investigated. C. minteri CCFEE 5187, C. antarcticus CCFEE 515 and colonized rocks were selected as suitable candidates to withstand space flight and long-term permanence in space on the ISS in the framework of the LIchens and Fungi Experiments (LIFE programme, European Space Agency).

  19. The photolytic degradation and oxidation of organic compounds under simulated Martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Oró, J; Holzer, G

    1979-12-01

    Cosmochemical considerations suggest various potential sources for the accumulation of organic matter on Mars. However the Viking Molecular Analysis did not indicate any indigenous organic compounds on the surface of Mars. Their disappearance from the top layer is most likely caused by the combined action of the high solar radiation flux and various oxidizing species in the substances and a sample of the Murchison meteorite was tested under simulated Martian conditions. After adsorption on powdered quartz, samples of adenine, glycine and naphthalene were irradiated with UV light at various oxygen concentrations and exposure times. In the absence of oxygen, adenine and glycine appeared stable over the given irradiation period, whereas a definite loss was observed in the case of naphthalene, as well as in the volatilizable and pyrozable content of the Murchison meteroite. The presence of oxygen during UV exposure caused a significant increase in the degradation rate of all samples. It is likely that similar processes have led to the destruction of organic materials on the surface of Mars.

  20. Insights into Interactions of Water Ice with Regolith under Simulated Martian Conditions.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chittenden, Julie; Chevrier, V.; Sears, D. W.; Roe, L. A.; Bryson, K.; Billingsly, L.; Hanley, J.

    2006-09-01

    In order to understand the diffusion process of water vapor through regolith, we have investigated the sublimation process of subsurface ice under varying depths of JSC Mars-1 soil simulant under martian conditions. Measurements were made at 0oC and 5.25 Torr in a CO2 atmosphere. We corrected for variations in temperature of the ice and the difference in gravity of Mars in relation to the Earth. Our results show that for depths up to 40 mm the process is mainly diffusion controlled and that for thicker regolith layers, desorption becomes the main process. After correction for the effect of desorption, we observed a decrease in sublimation rate from 0.625 ± 0.073 mm.h-1 at 5 mm of soil to 0.187 ± 0.093 mm.h-1 for 200 mm of soil. To characterize the diffusion process, we use the Farmer model (1976), which hypothesizes that the sublimation rate is equal to the diffusion coefficient divided by the soil depth. The derived diffusion coefficient from this data is 2.52 ± 0.55 mm2.h-1, or 7.0 ± 1.5 x 10-10 m2.s-1. Knowing the diffusion coefficient in the regolith, we can calculate the survival time, κ, of a layer of ice under a regolith layer which is given by τ = liceL/D, where lice is the thickness of the ice layer. Using this equation, we find that a 10 cm-thick layer of ice buried under 1 m of regolith would last for more than 4 years at 0oC. Therefore, our study indicates that the transport of water through a regolith layer is a complex multi-faceted process that is readily quantified by laboratory investigations. This is especially important in interpreting previous theoretical models and in understanding in situ observations to be performed by martian landers such as Phoenix. The W.M. Keck Foundation funded this research.

  1. Electrical Characteristics of Simulated Tornadoes and Dust Devils

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zimmerman, Michael I.; Farrell, William M.; Barth, E. L.; Lewellen, W. S.; Perlongo, N. J.; Jackson, T. L.

    2012-01-01

    It is well known that tornadoes and dust devils have the ability to accumulate significant, visible clouds of debris. Collisions between sand-like debris species produce different electric charges on different types of grains, which convect along different trajectories around the vortex. Thus, significant charge separations and electric currents are possible, which as the vortex fluctuates over time are thought to produce ULF radiation signatures that have been measured in the field. These electric and magnetic fields may contain valuable information about tornado structure and genesis, and may be critical in driving electrochemical processes within dust devils on Mars. In the present work, existing large eddy simulations of debris-laden tornadoes performed at West Virginia University are coupled with a new debris-charging and advection code developed at Goddard Space Flight Center to investigate the detailed (meter-resolution) fluid-dynamic origins of electromagnetic fields within terrestrial vortices. First results are presented, including simulations of the electric and magnetic fields that would be observed by a near-surface, instrument-laden probe during a direct encounter with a tornado.

  2. Dust emission in simulated dwarf galaxies using GRASIL-3D

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santos-Santos, I. M.; Domínguez-Tenreiro, R.; Granato, G. L.; Brook, C. B.; Obreja, A.

    2017-03-01

    Recent Herschel observations of dwarf galaxies have shown a wide diversity in the shapes of their IR-submm spectral energy distributions as compared to more massive galaxies, presenting features that cannot be explained with the current models. In order to understand the physics driving these differences, we have computed the emission of a sample of simulated dwarf galaxies using the radiative transfer code GRASIL-3D. This code separately treats the radiative transfer in dust grains from molecular clouds and cirri. The simulated galaxies have masses ranging from 10^6-10^9 M_⊙ and have evolved within a Local Group environment by using CLUES initial conditions. We show that their IR band luminosities are in agreement with observations, with their SEDs reproducing naturally the particular spectral features observed. We conclude that the GRASIL-3D two-component model gives a physical interpretation to the emission of dwarf galaxies, with molecular clouds (cirri) as the warm (cold) dust components needed to recover observational data.

  3. Spatial and temporal distributions of Martian north polar cold spots before, during, and after the global dust storm of 2001

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Cornwall, C.; Titus, T.N.

    2009-01-01

    In the 1970s, Mariner and Viking observed features in the Mars northern polar region that were a few hundred kilometers in diameter with 20 fj,m brightness temperatures as low as 130 K (considerably below C02 ice sublimation temperatures). Over the past decade, studies have shown that these areas (commonly called "cold spots") are usually due to emissivity effects of frost deposits and occasionally to active C02 snowstorms. Three Mars years of Mars Global Surveyor Thermal Emission Spectrometer data were used to observe autumn and wintertime cold spot activity within the polar regions. Many cold spots formed on or near scarps of the perennial cap, probably induced by adiabatic cooling due to orographic lifting. These topographically associated cold spots were often smaller than those that were not associated with topography. We determined that initial grain sizes within the cold spots were on the order of a few millimeters, assuming the snow was uncontaminated by dust or water ice. On average, the half-life of the cold spots was 5 Julian days. The Mars global dust storm in 2001 significantly affected cold spot activity in the north polar region. Though overall perennial cap cold spot activity seemed unaffected, the distribution of cold spots did change by a decrease in the number of topographically associated cold spots and an increase in those not associated with topography. We propose that the global dust storm affected the processes that form cold spots and discuss how the global dust storm may have affected these processes. ?? 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.

  4. Survival of Spacecraft-Associated Microorganisms under Simulated Martian UV Irradiation

    PubMed Central

    Newcombe, David A.; Schuerger, Andrew C.; Benardini, James N.; Dickinson, Danielle; Tanner, Roger; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2005-01-01

    Spore-forming microbes recovered from spacecraft surfaces and assembly facilities were exposed to simulated Martian UV irradiation. The effects of UVA (315 to 400 nm), UVA+B (280 to 400 nm), and the full UV spectrum (200 to 400 nm) on the survival of microorganisms were studied at UV intensities expected to strike the surfaces of Mars. Microbial species isolated from the surfaces of several spacecraft, including Mars Odyssey, X-2000 (avionics), and the International Space Station, and their assembly facilities were identified using 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Forty-three Bacillus spore lines were screened, and 19 isolates showed resistance to UVC irradiation (200 to 280 nm) after exposure to 1,000 J m−2 of UVC irradiation at 254 nm using a low-pressure mercury lamp. Spores of Bacillus species isolated from spacecraft-associated surfaces were more resistant than a standard dosimetric strain, Bacillus subtilis 168. In addition, the exposure time required for UVA+B irradiation to reduce the viable spore numbers by 90% was 35-fold longer than the exposure time required for the full UV spectrum to do this, confirming that UVC is the primary biocidal bandwidth. Among the Bacillus species tested, spores of a Bacillus pumilus strain showed the greatest resistance to all three UV bandwidths, as well as the total spectrum. The resistance to simulated Mars UV irradiation was strain specific; B. pumilus SAFR-032 exhibited greater resistance than all other strains tested. The isolation of organisms like B. pumilus SAFR-032 and the greater survival of this organism (sixfold) than of the standard dosimetric strains should be considered when the sanitation capabilities of UV irradiation are determined. PMID:16332797

  5. Survival of spacecraft-associated microorganisms under simulated martian UV irradiation.

    PubMed

    Newcombe, David A; Schuerger, Andrew C; Benardini, James N; Dickinson, Danielle; Tanner, Roger; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri

    2005-12-01

    Spore-forming microbes recovered from spacecraft surfaces and assembly facilities were exposed to simulated Martian UV irradiation. The effects of UVA (315 to 400 nm), UVA+B (280 to 400 nm), and the full UV spectrum (200 to 400 nm) on the survival of microorganisms were studied at UV intensities expected to strike the surfaces of Mars. Microbial species isolated from the surfaces of several spacecraft, including Mars Odyssey, X-2000 (avionics), and the International Space Station, and their assembly facilities were identified using 16S rRNA gene sequencing. Forty-three Bacillus spore lines were screened, and 19 isolates showed resistance to UVC irradiation (200 to 280 nm) after exposure to 1,000 J m(-2) of UVC irradiation at 254 nm using a low-pressure mercury lamp. Spores of Bacillus species isolated from spacecraft-associated surfaces were more resistant than a standard dosimetric strain, Bacillus subtilis 168. In addition, the exposure time required for UVA+B irradiation to reduce the viable spore numbers by 90% was 35-fold longer than the exposure time required for the full UV spectrum to do this, confirming that UVC is the primary biocidal bandwidth. Among the Bacillus species tested, spores of a Bacillus pumilus strain showed the greatest resistance to all three UV bandwidths, as well as the total spectrum. The resistance to simulated Mars UV irradiation was strain specific; B. pumilus SAFR-032 exhibited greater resistance than all other strains tested. The isolation of organisms like B. pumilus SAFR-032 and the greater survival of this organism (sixfold) than of the standard dosimetric strains should be considered when the sanitation capabilities of UV irradiation are determined.

  6. The viability of photovoltaics on the Martian surface

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Perez-Davis, Marla E.

    1994-01-01

    The viability of photovoltaics (PV) on the Martian surface may be determined by their ability to withstand significant degradation in the Martian environment. Probably the greatest threat is posed by fine dust particles which are continually blown about the surface of the planet. In an effort to determine the extent of the threat, and to investigate some abatement strategies, a series of experiments were conducted in the Martian Surface Wind Tunnel (MARSWIT) at NASA Ames Research Center. The effects of dust composition, particle size, wind velocity, angle of attack, and protective coatings on the transmittance of light through PV coverglass were determined. Both initially clear and initially dusted samples were subjected both to clear winds and simulated dust storms in the MARSWIT. It was found that wind velocity, particle size, and angle of attack are important parameters affecting occlusion of PV surfaces, while dust composition and protective coatings were not. Neither induced turbulence nor direct current biasing up to 200 volts were effective abatement techniques. Abrasion diffused the light impinging on the PV cells, but did not reduce total coverglass transmittance by more than a few percent.

  7. Aeolian removal of dust from photovoltaic surfaces on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Perez-Davis, Marla E.; Marabito, Mark

    1990-01-01

    It is well documented that Mars is totally engulfed in huge dust storms nearly each Martian year. Dust elevated in these global dust storms, or in any of the numerous local dust storms could settle on photovoltaic surfaces and seriously hamper photovoltaic power system performance. Using a recently developed technique to uniformly dust simulated photovoltaic surfaces, samples were subjected to Martian-like winds in an attempt to determine whether natural aeolian processes on Mars would sweep off the settled dust. The effects of wind velocity, angle of attack, height off the Martian surface, and surface coating material were investigated. Principles which can help to guide the design of photovoltaic arrays bound for the Martian surface were uncovered. Most importantly, arrays mounted with an angle of attack approaching 45 deg show the most efficient clearing. Although the angular dependence is not sharp, horizontally mounted arrays required significantly higher wind velocities to clear off the dust. From the perspective of dust-clearing it appears that the arrays may be erected quite near the ground, but previous studies have suggested that saltation effects can be expected to cause such arrays to be covered by sand if they are set up less than about a meter from the ground. Providing that the surface chemistry of Martian dusts is comparable to our test dust, the materials used for protective coating may be optimized for other considerations such as transparency, and chemical or abrasion resistance. The static threshold velocity is low enough that there are regions on Mars which experience winds strong enough to clear off a photovoltaic array if it is properly oriented. Turbulence fences proved to be an ineffective strategy to keep dust cleared from the photovoltaic surfaces.

  8. Effect of Simulant Type on the Absorptance and Emittance of Dusted Thermal Control Surfaces in a Simulated Lunar Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.

    2010-01-01

    During the Apollo program the effects of lunar dust on thermal control surfaces was found to be more significant than anticipated, with several systems overheating due to deposition of dust on them. In an effort to reduce risk to future missions, a series of tests has been initiated to characterize the effects of dust on these surfaces, and then to develop technologies to mitigate that risk. Given the variations in albedo across the lunar surface, one variable that may be important is the darkness of the lunar dust, and this study was undertaken to address that concern. Three thermal control surfaces, AZ-93 white paint and AgFEP and AlFEP second surface mirrors were dusted with three different lunar dust simulants in a simulated lunar environment, and their integrated solar absorptance ( ) and thermal emittance ( ) values determined experimentally. The three simulants included JSC-1AF, a darker mare simulant, NU-LHT-1D, a light highlands simulant, and 1:1 mixture of the two. The response of AZ-93 was found to be slightly more pronounced than that of AgFEP. The increased with fractional dust coverage in both types of samples by a factor of 1.7 to 3.3, depending on the type of thermal control surface and the type of dust. The of the AZ-93 decreased by about 10 percent when fully covered by dust, while that of AgFEP increased by about 10 percent. It was found that / varied by more than a factor of two depending on the thermal control surface and the darkness of the dust. Given that the darkest simulant used in this study may be lighter than the darkest dust that could be encountered on the lunar surface, it becomes apparent that the performance degradation of thermal control surfaces due to dust on the Moon will be strongly dependent on the and of the dust in the specific locality

  9. Effect of Simulant Type on the Absorptance and Emittance of Dusted Thermal Control Surfaces in a Simulated Lunar Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.

    2010-01-01

    During the Apollo program the effects of lunar dust on thermal control surfaces was found to be more significant than anticipated, with several systems overheating due to deposition of dust on them. In an effort to reduce risk to future missions, a series of tests has been initiated to characterize the effects of dust on these surfaces, and then to develop technologies to mitigate that risk. Given the variations in albedo across the lunar surface, one variable that may be important is the darkness of the lunar dust, and this study was undertaken to address that concern. Three thermal control surfaces, AZ-93 white paint and AgFEP and AlFEP second surface mirrors were dusted with three different lunar dust simulants in a simulated lunar environment, and their solar absorptivity and thermal emissivity values determined experimentally. The three simulants included JSC 1AF, a darker mare simulant, NU-LHT-1D, a light highlands simulant, and 1:1 mixture of the two. The response of AZ-93 was found to be slightly more pronounced than that of AgFEP. The increased with fractional dust coverage in both types of samples by a factor of 1.7 to 3.3, depending on the type of thermal control surface and the type of dust. The of the AZ-93 decreased by about 10 percent when fully covered by dust, while that of AgFEP increased by about 10 percent. It was found that alpha/epsilon varied by more than a factor of two depending on the thermal control surface and the darkness of the dust. Given that the darkest simulant used in this study may be significantly lighter than the darkest dust that could be encountered on the lunar surface, it becomes apparent that the performance degradation of thermal control surfaces due to dust on the moon will be strongly dependent on the and of the dust in the specific locality.

  10. A detailed framework to incorporate dust in hydrodynamical simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grassi, T.; Bovino, S.; Haugbølle, T.; Schleicher, D. R. G.

    2017-04-01

    Dust plays a key role in the evolution of the interstellar medium and its correct modelling in numerical simulations is therefore fundamental. We present a new and self-consistent model that treats grain thermal coupling with the gas, radiation balance, and surface chemistry for molecular hydrogen self-consistently. This method can be applied to any dust distribution with an arbitrary number of grain types without affecting the overall computational cost. In this paper, we describe in detail the physics and the algorithm behind our approach, and in order to test the methodology, we present some examples of astrophysical interest, namely (i) a one-zone collapse with complete gas chemistry and thermochemical processes, (ii) a 3D model of a low-metallicity collapse of a minihalo starting from cosmological initial conditions, and (iii) a turbulent molecular cloud with H-C-O chemistry (277 reactions), together with self-consistent cooling and heating solved on the fly. Although these examples employ the publicly available code KROME, our approach can easily be integrated into any computational framework.

  11. Sensitivity simulations with direct shortwave radiative forcing by aeolian dust during glacial cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, E.; Ganopolski, A.

    2014-07-01

    Possible feedback effects between aeolian dust, climate and ice sheets are studied for the first time with an Earth system model of intermediate complexity over the late Pleistocene period. Correlations between climate and dust deposition records suggest that aeolian dust potentially plays an important role for the evolution of glacial cycles. Here climatic effects from the dust direct radiative forcing (DRF) caused by absorption and scattering of solar radiation are investigated. Key elements controlling the dust DRF are the atmospheric dust distribution and the absorption-scattering efficiency of dust aerosols. Effective physical parameters in the description of these elements are varied within uncertainty ranges known from available data and detailed model studies. Although the parameters can be reasonably constrained, the simulated dust DRF spans a~wide uncertainty range related to the strong nonlinearity of the Earth system. In our simulations, the dust DRF is highly localized. Medium-range parameters result in negative DRF of several watts per square metre in regions close to major dust sources and negligible values elsewhere. In the case of high absorption efficiency, the local dust DRF can reach positive values and the global mean DRF can be insignificantly small. In the case of low absorption efficiency, the dust DRF can produce a significant global cooling in glacial periods, which leads to a doubling of the maximum glacial ice volume relative to the case with small dust DRF. DRF-induced temperature and precipitation changes can either be attenuated or amplified through a feedback loop involving the dust cycle. The sensitivity experiments suggest that depending on dust optical parameters, dust DRF has the potential to either damp or reinforce glacial-interglacial climate changes.

  12. Numerical simulation of a dust event in northeastern Germany with a new dust emission scheme in COSMO-ART

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Deetz, K.; Klose, M.; Kirchner, I.; Cubasch, U.

    2016-02-01

    The dust emission scheme of Shao (2004) has been implemented into the regional atmospheric model COSMO-ART and has been applied to a severe dust event in northeastern Germany on 8th April 2011. The model sensitivity to soil moisture and vegetation cover has been studied. Soil moisture has been found to be relatively high in the model during the investigation period and has been reduced by different degree to investigate the resulting changes in dust emissions. Two different vegetation datasets have been tested as model input: the climatological vegetation cover data of COSMO-ART (ECOCLIMAP) and the SPOT5 remote sensing vegetation cover data for the time of the event. By varying soil moisture, vegetation cover and by restricting the potential emission area, a set of eleven simulations was generated. Vegetation cover during the event was about 24% lower on average compared to the climatological mean. Thus, dust emissions modeled with SPOT5 vegetation exceeded that modeled with climatological data by a factor of about 5. The modeled dust concentrations were compared with in-situ measurements of aerosol concentration. The temporal evolutions of simulations and observations have significant correlations (0.42-0.85) especially in rural backgrounds. The lower correlations at urban sites are attributed to anthropogenic PM10 sources, which are not included in the model. However, a verification of the magnitude of modeled dust concentrations is not possible due to the uncertainty in soil moisture and emission area.

  13. On the multiplication of xerophilic micro-organisms under simulated Martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Imshenetsky, A A; Kouzyurina, L A; Jakshina, V M

    1973-01-01

    The environmental conditions prevailing on Mars would supposedly favour the existence there of micro-organisms belonging to xerophiles, anaerobes, or micro-aerophiles, oligonitrophiles, which are able to grow in wide temperature intervals. From soil samples taken in deserts and tundra, antarctic halophilic bacteria, able to grow in liquid media containing 20-25% of sodium chloride, were isolated. Some of these cultures appeared to be also osmophilic (growth on media with 50% glucose); they grew at temperatures from 5 degrees C to 50 degrees C, and developed on media without a nitrogen source (oligonitrophiles). Of special interest was the halophilic and osmophilic form of Bacillus megaterium isolated from the Nubian desert. In experiments with this bacterium the following technique was used. A thin film of potato extract agar was prepared on a glass slide and dried over a saturated K2SO4 solution in a closed container up to the level of maximal hygroscopic moisture. The cell suspension was then sprayed on to the agar surface, the film dried again at 45 degrees C, and the glass slide put in the test tube over the saturated solution of K2SO4. The test tube was evacuated, flushed three times with a gas mixture containing 80% CO2 plus 20% Ar, and sealed. Under these conditions the water content of the agar film was equal to the maximal hygroscopic moisture; only the xerophilic form of bacteria are able to develop at this moisture level. This halophilic strain of Bac. megaterium grew satisfactorily under these conditions, as did a halophilic and osmophilic strain of Mycococcus ruber isolated in Antarctica. Both the halophilic strain of Bac. megaterium and that of M. ruber were able to grow under simulated Martian conditions. Xerophily and halophily may be linked. This assumption was supported by relatively high incidence of xerophilic forms among halophilic bacteria isolated from different soils of both high and low salt content as well as from salty muds.

  14. Martian Surface Beneath Phoenix

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2008-01-01

    This is an image of the Martian surface beneath NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander. The image was taken by Phoenix's Robotic Arm Camera (RAC) on the eighth Martian day of the mission, or Sol 8 (June 2, 2008). The light feature in the middle of the image below the leg is informally called 'Holy Cow.' The dust, shown in the dark foreground, has been blown off of 'Holy Cow' by Phoenix's thruster engines.

    The Phoenix Mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf of NASA. Project management of the mission is by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. Spacecraft development is by Lockheed Martin Space Systems, Denver.

  15. Simulant Materials of Lunar Dust: Requirements and feasibility

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sibille, L.

    2005-01-01

    As NASA turns its exploration ambitions towards the Moon once again, the research and development of new technologies for lunar operations face the challenge of meeting the milestones of a fast-pace schedule, reminiscent of the 1960 s Apollo program. While the lunar samples returned by the Apollo and Luna missions have revealed much about the Moon, these priceless materials exist in too scarce quantities to be used for technology development and testing. The need for mineral materials chosen to simulate the characteristics of lunar regoliths is a pressing issue that must be addressed today through the collaboration of scientists, engineers and program managers. While the larger size fraction of the lunar regolith has been reproduced in several simulants in the past, little attention has been paid to the fines fraction, commonly refered to as lunar dust. As reported by McKay, this fraction of the lunar regolith below 20 microns can represent upto 30% by mass of the total regolith mass. The issue of reproducing the properties of these fines for research and technology development purposes was addressed by the recently held Workshop on Lunar Regolith Simulant Materials at Marshall Space Flight Center. Preliminary conclusions from the workshop and con- side-rations concerning the feasibility of producing such materials will be presented here.

  16. Sensitivity simulations with direct radiative forcing by aeolian dust during glacial cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bauer, E.; Ganopolski, A.

    2014-01-01

    Possible feedback effects between aeolian dust, climate and ice sheets are studied for the first time with an Earth system model of intermediate complexity over the late Pleistocene period. Correlations between climate variables and dust deposits suggest that aeolian dust potentially plays an important role for the evolution of glacial cycles. Here climatic effects from the dust direct radiative forcing (DRF) caused by absorption and scattering of solar radiation are investigated. Key factors controlling the dust DRF are the atmospheric dust distribution and the absorption-scattering efficiency of dust aerosols. Effective physical parameters in the description of these factors are varied within uncertainty ranges known from available data and detailed model studies. Although the parameters are reasonably constrained by use of these studies, the simulated dust DRF spans a wide uncertainty range related to nonlinear dependencies. In our simulations, the dust DRF is highly localized. Medium-range parameters result in negative DRF of several W m-2 in regions close to major dust sources and negligible values elsewhere. In case of high absorption efficiency, the local dust DRF can reach positive values and the global mean DRF can be insignificantly small. In case of low absorption efficiency, the dust DRF can produce a significant global cooling in glacial periods which leads to a doubling of the maximum glacial ice volume relative to the case with small dust DRF. DRF-induced temperature and precipitation changes can either be attenuated or amplified through a feedback loop involving the dust cycle. The sensitivity experiments suggest that depending on dust optical parameters the DRF has the potential to either damp or reinforce glacial-interglacial climate changes.

  17. Sensitivity of surface characteristics on the simulation of wind-blown-dust source in North America

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, S. H.; Gong, S. L.; Gong, W.; Makar, P. A.; Moran, M. D.; Stroud, C. A.; Zhang, J.

    Recently, a wind-blown-dust-emission module has been built based on a state-of-the-art wind erosion theory and evaluated in a regional air-quality model to simulate a North American dust storm episode in April 2001 (see Park, S.H., Gong, S.L., Zhao, T.L., Vet, R.J., Bouchet, V.S., Gong, W., Makar, P.A., Moran, M.D., Stroud, C., Zhang, J. 2007. Simulation of entrainment and transport of dust particles within North America in April 2001 ("Red Dust episode"). J. Geophys. Res. 112, D20209, doi:10.1029/2007JD008443). A satisfactorily detailed assessment of that module, however, was not possible because of a lack of information on some module inputs, especially soil moisture content. In this paper, the wind-blown-dust emission was evaluated for two additional dust storms using improved soil moisture inputs. The surface characteristics of the wind-blown-dust source areas in southwestern North America were also investigated, focusing on their implications for wind-blown-dust emissions. The improved soil moisture inputs enabled the sensitivity of other important surface characteristics, the soil grain size distribution and the land-cover, to dust emission to be investigated with more confidence. Simulations of the two 2003 dust storm episodes suggested that wind-blown-dust emissions from the desert areas in southwestern North America are dominated by emissions from dry playas covered with accumulated alluvial deposits whose particle size is much smaller than usual desert sands. As well, the source areas in the northwestern Texas region were indicated to be not desert but rather agricultural lands that were "activated" as a wind-blown-dust sources after harvest. This finding calls for revisions to the current wind-blown-dust-emission module, in which "desert" is designated to be the only land-cover category that can emit wind-blown dust.

  18. Evaluation of a Mineral Dust Simulation in the Atmospheric-Chemistry General Circulation Model-EMAC

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abdel Kader, M.; Astitha, M.; Lelieveld, J.

    2012-04-01

    This study presents an evaluation of the atmospheric mineral dust cycle in the Atmospheric Chemistry General Circulation Model (AC-GCM) using new developed dust emissions scheme. The dust cycle, as an integral part of the Earth System, plays an important role in the Earth's energy balance by both direct and indirect ways. As an aerosol, it significantly impacts the absorption and scattering of radiation in the atmosphere and can modify the optical properties of clouds and snow/ice surfaces. In addition, dust contributes to a range of physical, chemical and bio-geological processes that interact with the cycles of carbon and water. While our knowledge of the dust cycle, its impacts and interactions with the other global-scale bio-geochemical cycles has greatly advanced in the last decades, large uncertainties and knowledge gaps still exist. Improving the dust simulation in global models is essential to minimize the uncertainties in the model results related to dust. In this study, the results are based on the ECHAM5 Modular Earth Submodel System (MESSy) AC-GCM simulations using T106L31 spectral resolution (about 120km ) with 31 vertical levels. The GMXe aerosol submodel is used to simulate the phase changes of the dust particles between soluble and insoluble modes. Dust emission, transport and deposition (wet and dry) are calculated on-line along with the meteorological parameters in every model time step. The preliminary evaluation of the dust concentration and deposition are presented based on ground observations from various campaigns as well as the evaluation of the optical properties of dust using AERONET and satellite (MODIS and MISR) observations. Preliminarily results show good agreement with observations for dust deposition and optical properties. In addition, the global dust emissions, load, deposition and lifetime is in good agreement with the published results. Also, the uncertainties in the dust cycle that contribute to the overall model performance

  19. Effects of Subsurface Sampling & Processing on Martian Simulant Containing Varying Quantities of Water

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Menard, J.; Sangillo, J.; Savain, A.; McNamara, K. M.

    2004-01-01

    The presence of water-ice in the Martian subsurface is a subject of much debate and excited speculation. Recent results from the gammaray spectrometer (GRS) on board NASA's Mars Odyssey spacecraft indicate the presence of large amounts of hydrogen in regions of predicted ice stability. The combination of chemistry, low gravitational field (3.71 m/s(exp 2)) and a surface pressure of about 6.36 mbar at the mean radius, place limits on the stability of H2O on the surface, however, results from the GRS indicate that the hydrogen rich phase may be present at a depth as shallow as one meter in some locations on Mars. The potential for water on Mars leads directly to the speculation that life may once have existed there, since liquid water is the unifying factor for environments known to support life on Earth. Lubricant-free drilling has been considered as a means of obtaining water-rich subsurface samples on Mars, and two recent white papers sponsored by the Mars Program have attempted to identify the problems associated with this goal. The two major issues identified were: the engineering challenges of drilling into a water-soil mixture where phase changes may occur; and the potential to compromise the integrity of in-situ scientific analysis due to contamination, volatilization, and mineralogical or chemical changes as a result of processing. This study is a first attempt to simulate lubricantfree drilling into JSC Mars-1 simulant containing up to 50% water by weight. The goal is to address the following: 1) Does sample processing cause reactions or changes in mineralogy which will compromise the interpretation of scientific measurements conducted on the surface? 2) Does the presence of water-ice in the sample complicate (1)? 3) Do lubricant-free drilling and processing leave trace contaminants which may compromise our understanding of sample composition? 4) How does the torque/power required for drilling change as a function of water content and does this lead to

  20. Impact of two DNA repair pathways, homologous recombination and non-homologous end joining, on bacterial spore inactivation under simulated martian environmental conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Moeller, Ralf; Schuerger, Andrew C.; Reitz, Günther; Nicholson, Wayne L.

    2011-09-01

    Spores of Bacillus subtilis were used as a model system to study the impact of the two major DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair mechanisms [homologous recombination (HR) and non-homologous end-joining (NHEJ)] on the survivability of air-dried mono- and multilayers of bacterial spores under a simulated martian environment; i.e., an environment with low temperature (-10 °C), pure CO 2 atmosphere (99.99% CO 2), 200-1100 nm UV-VIS-NIR radiation, and 0.69 kPa pressure. Spores in multilayers exhibited low inactivation rates compared to monolayers, mainly due to shadowing effects of overlying spores. Simulated martian UV irradiation reduced dramatically spore viability, whereas when shielded from martian UV radiation, spores deficient in NHEJ- and HR-mediated DNA repair were significantly more sensitive to simulated martian environmental conditions than were wild-type spores. In addition, NHEJ-deficient spores were consistently more sensitive than HR-deficient spores to simulated Mars environmental conditions, suggesting that DSBs were an important type of DNA damage. The results indicated that both HR and NHEJ provide an efficient set of DNA repair pathways ensuring spore survival after exposure to simulated martian environmental conditions.

  1. Polluted Dust Classification and Its Optical Properties Analysis Using CALIPSO Data and Simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ding, J.; Yang, P.; Holz, R.; Vaughan, M. A.; Hu, Y.

    2015-12-01

    In CALIPSO Level 2 aerosol data, dust particles are classified into two subtypes, namely, pure dust and polluted dust based on lidar backscatter, depolarization ratio and surface types. In this research, the polluted dust subtype is found to have two distinct modes in terms of integrated depolarization ratio (IDR) and integrated total color ratio (ICR). Dust with smaller IDR and ICR occurs mainly over areas with strong smoke emissions such as industrial cities. This kind of polluted dust originating from East Asia is also found over the Pacific Ocean. In contrast, the other type originating from the Saharan desert with larger IDR and ICR occurs mainly over the Atlantic Ocean. The disparities of IDR and ICR may result from different pollutants. The polluted dust with smaller ICR and IDR should have stronger absorption of light and may contain black carbon. Other chemical compounds such as sea salts may account for polluted dust with larger ICR and IDR. To further separate the types of polluted dust, cluster analysis is applied to determine the centroid of each type in terms of IDR and ICR. Furthermore, scattering models of dust mixed with various pollutants are constructed to be included in a CALIPSO simulator. The simulated IDR and ICR values are compared with data to retrieve the chemical compositions of polluted dust. The difference of polluted dust over the Pacific and Atlantic Ocean provides new evidence about long-range transport of Asian dust to North America. The distribution of dust polluted by black carbon is determined, which can improve knowledge about the effect of black carbon on the earth's radiation budget.

  2. Mutagenesis in bacterial spores exposed to space and simulated martian conditions: data from the EXPOSE-E spaceflight experiment PROTECT.

    PubMed

    Moeller, Ralf; Reitz, Günther; Nicholson The Protect Team, Wayne L; Horneck, Gerda

    2012-05-01

    As part of the PROTECT experiment of the EXPOSE-E mission on board the International Space Station (ISS), the mutagenic efficiency of space was studied in spores of Bacillus subtilis 168. After 1.5 years' exposure to selected parameters of outer space or simulated martian conditions, the rates of induced mutations to rifampicin resistance (Rif(R)) and sporulation deficiency (Spo(-)) were quantified. In all flight samples, both mutations, Rif(R) and Spo(-), were induced and their rates increased by several orders of magnitude. Extraterrestrial solar UV radiation (>110 nm) as well as simulated martian UV radiation (>200 nm) led to the most pronounced increase (up to nearly 4 orders of magnitude); however, mutations were also induced in flight samples shielded from insolation, which were exposed to the same conditions except solar irradiation. Nucleotide sequencing located the Rif(R) mutations in the rpoB gene encoding the β-subunit of RNA polymerase. Mutations isolated from flight and parallel mission ground reference (MGR) samples were exclusively localized to Cluster I. The 21 Rif(R) mutations isolated from the flight experiment showed all a C to T transition and were all localized to one hotspot: H482Y. In mutants isolated from the MGR, the spectrum was wider with predicted amino acid changes at residues Q469K/L/R, H482D/P/R/Y, and S487L. The data show the unique mutagenic power of space and martian surface conditions as a consequence of DNA injuries induced by solar UV radiation and space vacuum or the low pressure of Mars.

  3. Martian atmospheric radiation budget

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lindner, Bernhard Lee

    1994-01-01

    A computer model is used to study the radiative transfer of the martian winter-polar atmosphere. Solar heating at winter-polar latitudes is provided predominately by dust. For normal, low-dust conditions, CO2 provides almost as much heating as dust. Most heating by CO2 in the winter polar atmosphere is provided by the 2.7 micron band between 10 km and 30 km altitude, and by the 2.0 micron band below 10 km. The weak 1.3 micron band provides some significant heating near the surface. The minor CO2 bands at 1.4, 1.6, 4.8 and 5.2 micron are all optically thin, and produce negligible heating. O3 provides less than 10 percent of the total heating. Atmospheric cooling is predominantly thermal emission by dust, although CO2 15 micron band emission is important above 20 km altitude.

  4. Damage escape and repair in dried Chroococcidiopsis spp. from hot and cold deserts exposed to simulated space and martian conditions.

    PubMed

    Billi, Daniela; Viaggiu, Emanuela; Cockell, Charles S; Rabbow, Elke; Horneck, Gerda; Onofri, Silvano

    2011-01-01

    The cyanobacterium Chroococcidiopsis, overlain by 3 mm of Antarctic sandstone, was exposed as dried multilayers to simulated space and martian conditions. Ground-based experiments were conducted in the context of Lichens and Fungi Experiments (EXPOSE-E mission, European Space Agency), which were performed to evaluate, after 1.5 years on the International Space Station, the survival of cyanobacteria (Chroococcidiopsis), lichens, and fungi colonized on Antarctic rock. The survival potential and the role played by protection and repair mechanisms in the response of dried Chroococcidiopsis cells to ground-based experiments were both investigated. Different methods were employed, including evaluation of the colony-forming ability, single-cell analysis of subcellular integrities based on membrane integrity molecular and redox probes, evaluation of the photosynthetic pigment autofluorescence, and assessment of the genomic DNA integrity with a PCR-based assay. Desiccation survivors of strain CCMEE 123 (coastal desert, Chile) were better suited than CCMEE 134 (Beacon Valley, Antarctica) to withstand cellular damage imposed by simulated space and martian conditions. Exposed dried cells of strain CCMEE 123 formed colonies, maintained subcellular integrities, and, depending on the exposure conditions, also escaped DNA damage or repaired the induced damage upon rewetting.

  5. Biofilm and planktonic lifestyles differently support the resistance of the desert cyanobacterium Chroococcidiopsis under space and Martian simulations.

    PubMed

    Baqué, Mickael; Scalzi, Giuliano; Rabbow, Elke; Rettberg, Petra; Billi, Daniela

    2013-10-01

    When Chroococcidiopsis sp. strain CCMEE 057 from the Sinai Desert and strain CCMEE 029 from the Negev Desert were exposed to space and Martian simulations in the dried status as biofilms or multilayered planktonic samples, the biofilms exhibited an enhanced rate of survival. Compared to strain CCMEE 029, biofilms of strain CCME 057 better tolerated UV polychromatic radiation (5 × 10(5) kJ/m(2) attenuated with a 0.1% neutral density filter) combined with space vacuum or Martian atmosphere of 780 Pa. CCMEE 029, on the other hand, failed to survive UV polychromatic doses higher than 1.5 × 10(3) kJ/m(2). The induced damage to genomic DNA, plasma membranes and photosynthetic apparatus was quantified and visualized by means of PCR-based assays and CLSM imaging. Planktonic samples of both strains accumulated a higher amount of damage than did the biofilms after exposure to each simulation; CLSM imaging showed that photosynthetic pigment bleaching, DNA fragmentation and damaged plasma membranes occurred in the top 3-4 cell layers of both biofilms and of multilayered planktonic samples. Differences in the EPS composition were revealed by molecular probe staining as contributing to the enhanced endurance of biofilms compared to that of planktonic samples. Our results suggest that compared to strain CCMEE 029, biofilms of strain CCMEE 057 might better tolerate 1 year's exposure in space during the next EXPOSE-R2 mission.

  6. Biofilm and Planktonic Lifestyles Differently Support the Resistance of the Desert Cyanobacterium Chroococcidiopsis Under Space and Martian Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Baqué, Mickael; Scalzi, Giuliano; Rabbow, Elke; Rettberg, Petra; Billi, Daniela

    2013-10-01

    When Chroococcidiopsis sp. strain CCMEE 057 from the Sinai Desert and strain CCMEE 029 from the Negev Desert were exposed to space and Martian simulations in the dried status as biofilms or multilayered planktonic samples, the biofilms exhibited an enhanced rate of survival. Compared to strain CCMEE 029, biofilms of strain CCME 057 better tolerated UV polychromatic radiation (5 × 105 kJ/m2 attenuated with a 0.1 % neutral density filter) combined with space vacuum or Martian atmosphere of 780 Pa. CCMEE 029, on the other hand, failed to survive UV polychromatic doses higher than 1.5 × 103 kJ/m2. The induced damage to genomic DNA, plasma membranes and photosynthetic apparatus was quantified and visualized by means of PCR-based assays and CLSM imaging. Planktonic samples of both strains accumulated a higher amount of damage than did the biofilms after exposure to each simulation; CLSM imaging showed that photosynthetic pigment bleaching, DNA fragmentation and damaged plasma membranes occurred in the top 3-4 cell layers of both biofilms and of multilayered planktonic samples. Differences in the EPS composition were revealed by molecular probe staining as contributing to the enhanced endurance of biofilms compared to that of planktonic samples. Our results suggest that compared to strain CCMEE 029, biofilms of strain CCMEE 057 might better tolerate 1 year's exposure in space during the next EXPOSE-R2 mission.

  7. Damage Escape and Repair in Dried Chroococcidiopsis spp. from Hot and Cold Deserts Exposed to Simulated Space and Martian Conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Billi, Daniela; Viaggiu, Emanuela; Cockell, Charles S.; Rabbow, Elke; Horneck, Gerda; Onofri, Silvano

    2011-01-01

    The cyanobacterium Chroococcidiopsis, overlain by 3mm of Antarctic sandstone, was exposed as dried multilayers to simulated space and martian conditions. Ground-based experiments were conducted in the context of Lichens and Fungi Experiments (EXPOSE-E mission, European Space Agency), which were performed to evaluate, after 1.5 years on the International Space Station, the survival of cyanobacteria (Chroococcidiopsis), lichens, and fungi colonized on Antarctic rock. The survival potential and the role played by protection and repair mechanisms in the response of dried Chroococcidiopsis cells to ground-based experiments were both investigated. Different methods were employed, including evaluation of the colony-forming ability, single-cell analysis of subcellular integrities based on membrane integrity molecular and redox probes, evaluation of the photosynthetic pigment autofluorescence, and assessment of the genomic DNA integrity with a PCR-based assay. Desiccation survivors of strain CCMEE 123 (coastal desert, Chile) were better suited than CCMEE 134 (Beacon Valley, Antarctica) to withstand cellular damage imposed by simulated space and martian conditions. Exposed dried cells of strain CCMEE 123 formed colonies, maintained subcellular integrities, and, depending on the exposure conditions, also escaped DNA damage or repaired the induced damage upon rewetting.

  8. Simulation study of spheroidal dust gains charging: Applicable to dust grain alignment

    SciTech Connect

    Zahed, H.; Sobhanian, S.; Mahmoodi, J.; Khorram, S.

    2006-09-15

    The charging process of nonspherical dust grains in an unmagnetized plasma as well as in the presence of a magnetic field is studied. It is shown that unlike the spherical dust grain, due to nonhomogeneity of charge distribution on the spheroidal dust surface, the resultant electric forces on electrons and ions are different. This process produces some surface charge density gradient on the nonspherical grain surface. Effects of a magnetic field and other plasma parameters on the properties of the dust particulate are studied. It has been shown that the alignment direction could be changed or even reversed with the magnetic field and plasma parameters. Finally, the charge distribution on the spheroidal grain surface is studied for different ambient parameters including plasma temperature, neutral collision frequency, and the magnitude of the magnetic field.

  9. Lunar dust simulant containing nanophase iron and method for making the same

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hung, Chin-cheh (Inventor); McNatt, Jeremiah (Inventor)

    2012-01-01

    A lunar dust simulant containing nanophase iron and a method for making the same. Process (1) comprises a mixture of ferric chloride, fluorinated carbon powder, and glass beads, treating the mixture to produce nanophase iron, wherein the resulting lunar dust simulant contains .alpha.-iron nanoparticles, Fe.sub.2O.sub.3, and Fe.sub.3O.sub.4. Process (2) comprises a mixture of a material of mixed-metal oxides that contain iron and carbon black, treating the mixture to produce nanophase iron, wherein the resulting lunar dust simulant contains .alpha.-iron nanoparticles and Fe.sub.3O.sub.4.

  10. Lunar Dust Chemical, Electrical, and Mechanical Reactivity: Simulation and Characterization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    VanderWal, Randy L.

    2008-01-01

    Lunar dust is recognized to be a highly reactive material in its native state. Many, if not all Constellation systems will be affected by its adhesion, abrasion, and reactivity. A critical requirement to develop successful strategies for dealing with lunar dust and designing tolerant systems will be to produce similar material for ground-based testing.

  11. Comparison of horizontal dust fluxes simulated with two dust emission schemes based on field experiments in Xinjiang, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yang, Xinghua; Yang, Fan; Liu, Xinchun; Huo, Wen; He, Qing; Mamtimin, Ali; Zhang, Qingyu

    2016-10-01

    Horizontal dust fluxes were simulated with two different dust emission schemes developed by Marticorena and Shao (hereinafter referred to as the M scheme, S scheme, and S scheme corrections), based on field experiments over a bare desert surface and a vegetated desert surface from May 19 to June 18, 2010 in Xinjiang, China. The M scheme produced a much higher dust emission than the S schemes over different surface conditions, with the emission being about 4 times larger than that produced by the S schemes over the bare desert, and 3 to 200 times larger over the vegetated surface. Compared to observations, the missing report rate of wind erosion events was about 30 % for the S schemes and about 10 % for the M scheme over the bare desert surface, while all schemes had a false alarm rate of wind erosion events over the vegetated desert surface. The total dust emission from the bare desert surface during the study period was 674.4, 551.5, 595.2, and 2995.8 kg/m for observation, the S scheme, S scheme correction 2, and M scheme, respectively. Total dust emission from the vegetated desert surface was 1.6, 0, 55.5, 0.9, and 227.7 kg/m for observation, the S scheme, S scheme correction 1, S scheme correction 2, and M scheme, respectively.

  12. The Dust Management Project: Characterizing Lunar Environments and Dust, Developing Regolith Mitigation Technology and Simulants

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hyatt, Mark J.; Straka, Sharon A.

    2010-01-01

    A return to the Moon to extend human presence, pursue scientific activities, use the Moon to prepare for future human missions to Mars, and expand Earth?s economic sphere, will require investment in developing new technologies and capabilities to achieve affordable and sustainable human exploration. From the operational experience gained and lessons learned during the Apollo missions, conducting long-term operations in the lunar environment will be a particular challenge, given the difficulties presented by the unique physical properties and other characteristics of lunar regolith, including dust. The Apollo missions and other lunar explorations have identified significant lunar dust-related problems that will challenge future mission success. Comprised of regolith particles ranging in size from tens of nanometers to microns, lunar dust is a manifestation of the complex interaction of the lunar soil with multiple mechanical, electrical, and gravitational effects. The environmental and anthropogenic factors effecting the perturbation, transport, and deposition of lunar dust must be studied in order to mitigate it?s potentially harmful effects on exploration systems and human explorers. The Dust Management Project (DMP) is tasked with the evaluation of lunar dust effects, assessment of the resulting risks, and development of mitigation and management strategies and technologies related to Exploration Systems architectures. To this end, the DMP supports the overall goal of the Exploration Technology Development Program (ETDP) of addressing the relevant high priority technology needs of multiple elements within the Constellation Program (CxP) and sister ETDP projects. Project scope, plans, and accomplishments will be presented.

  13. Equations and simulations for multiphase compressible gas-dust flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Oran, Elaine; Houim, Ryan

    2014-11-01

    Dust-gas multiphase flows are important in physical scenarios such as dust explosions in coal mines, asteroid impact disturbing lunar regolith, and soft aircraft landings dispersing desert or beach sand. In these cases, the gas flow regime can range from highly subsonic and nearly incompressible to supersonic and shock-laden flow, the grain packing can range from fully packed to completely dispersed, and both the gas and the dust can range from chemically inert to highly exothermic. To cover the necessary parameter range in a single model, we solve coupled sets of Navier-Stokes equations describing the background gas and the dust. As an example, a reactive-dust explosion that results in a type of shock-flame complex is described and discussed. Sponsored by the University of Maryland through Minta Martin Endowment Funds in the Department of Aerospace Engineering, and through the Glenn L. Martin Institute Chaired Professorship at the A. James Clark School of Engineering.

  14. Adsorption of Water on Simulated Moon Dust Samples

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Goering, John P.; Sah, Shweta; Burghaus, Uwe; Street, Kenneth W., Jr.

    2008-01-01

    A lunar regolith simulant dust sample (JSC-1a) supported on a silica wafer (SiO2/Si(111)) has been characterized by scanning electron microscopy (SEM), energy dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDX), and Auger electron spectroscopy (AES). The adsorption kinetics of water has been studied primarily by thermal desorption spectroscopy (TDS) and also by collecting isothermal adsorption transients. The support has been characterized by water TDS. JSC-1a consists mostly of aluminosilicate glass and other minerals containing Fe, Na, Ca, and Mg. The particle sizes span the range from a few microns up to 100 microns. At small exposures, H2O TDS is characterized by broad (100 to 450 K) structures; at large exposures distinct TDS peaks emerge that are assigned to amorphous solid water (145 K) and crystalline ice (165 K). Water dissociates on JSC-1a at small exposures but not on the bare silica support. It appears that rather porous condensed ice layers form at large exposures. At thermal impact energies, the initial adsorption probability amounts to 0.92+/-0.05.

  15. Utilizing Model Interoperability and High Performance Computing to Enhance Dust Storm Simulation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Huang, Q.; Yang, C.; Xie, J.; Wu, H.; Li, J.

    2009-12-01

    The simulations of dust storm and potential forecasting are of significant interest to public health, environment sciences, and global Earth observation system of systems (GEOSS). To support improved decision making of public health with higher resolution of dust storm forecasting. Model interoperability and high performance computing need to be leveraged to increase the resolution to the zip code level. This poses significant computational challenge for dust storm simulations. This presentation reports our research in utilizing interoperability technologies and high performance computing to enhance dust storm forecasting by facilitating model integration, data discovery, data access, and data utilization in a HPC (High performance computing) environment for a) reducing the computing time, b)lengthening the period of forecast, and c) ingesting large amount of geospatial datasets.DREAM-eta-8p and NMM-dust dust storm simulation models are utilized for the exploration of utilizing Model Interoperability and High Performance Computing to Enhance Dust Storm Forecasting. In our approach, the coarse model (DREAM-eta 8p) is used to identify hotspots of higher predicted dust concentration, and the output results are served as the input for the fine-grain model (NMM-dust) on the hotspot areas. After ingesting the DREAM-eta output the NMM-dust can start simulation. Experimental results demonstrates promising towards a forecasting system of dust storm forecasting. Acknowledgements: We would like to thank Drs. Karl Benedict, Bill Hudspeth of Univ. from New Mexico, Drs. William Sprigg, Goran Pejanovic, Slobodan Nickovic from UofArizona, and Dr. John D. Evans, and Ms. Myra J. Bambacus from NASA GSFC for the collaboration

  16. The Shape And Charge Of Lunar Dust Simulant (LHT) Under Electron Bombardment

    SciTech Connect

    Pavlu, J.; Beranek, M.; Richterova, I.; Safrankova, J.; Nemecek, Z.

    2011-11-29

    Since the processes in dusty plasmas are rather complex, the study of charging individual dust grains within simplified conditions becomes very important. Detailed investigations and characterization of charging processes taking place not only in dusty plasmas but also in dust-rich space plasmas are possible for example in traps where a single dust grain can be captured for a long time and its temporal evolution with respect to surrounding conditions can be continuously recorded. The specific charge, surface potential, and mass of the observed grain can be determined. The paper shows partial results on secondary emission from lunar dust LHT simulant.

  17. A Study of the Attraction Forces of Lunar Dust Simulant

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bradley, Robert Kelley; Jeevarajan, Antony; Thomas, Valor

    2007-01-01

    In previous manned lunar missions little work was done on countermeasures to combat the spread of lunar dust onto equipment and into the habitat because the astronauts were not scheduled to stay on the lunar surface for extended periods of time. However, as NASA prepares to return to the moon for longer durations than before developing materials that can help in the fight against lunar dust is important. The purpose of this project is to examine the attraction forces between lunar dust and various materials in an effort to discover materials which have a low affinity for lunar dust. The adhesion forces present between individual grains of dust and various materials were analyzed using an atomic force microscope (AFM). The AFM probes were calibrated by the added-mass technique to find the spring constant of the cantilever. The probes were modified by attaching a particle of lunar dust stimulant to the cantilever arm. The adhesion force between the dust particle and various materials were determined by analysis of AFM force spectra.

  18. A parallel direct numerical simulation of dust particles in a turbulent flow

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nguyen, H. V.; Yokota, R.; Stenchikov, G.; Kocurek, G.

    2012-04-01

    Due to their effects on radiation transport, aerosols play an important role in the global climate. Mineral dust aerosol is a predominant natural aerosol in the desert and semi-desert regions of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). The Arabian Peninsula is one of the three predominant source regions on the planet "exporting" dust to almost the entire world. Mineral dust aerosols make up about 50% of the tropospheric aerosol mass and therefore produces a significant impact on the Earth's climate and the atmospheric environment, especially in the MENA region that is characterized by frequent dust storms and large aerosol generation. Understanding the mechanisms of dust emission, transport and deposition is therefore essential for correctly representing dust in numerical climate prediction. In this study we present results of numerical simulations of dust particles in a turbulent flow to study the interaction between dust and the atmosphere. Homogenous and passive dust particles in the boundary layers are entrained and advected under the influence of a turbulent flow. Currently no interactions between particles are included. Turbulence is resolved through direct numerical simulation using a parallel incompressible Navier-Stokes flow solver. Model output provides information on particle trajectories, turbulent transport of dust and effects of gravity on dust motion, which will be used to compare with the wind tunnel experiments at University of Texas at Austin. Results of testing of parallel efficiency and scalability is provided. Future versions of the model will include air-particle momentum exchanges, varying particle sizes and saltation effect. The results will be used for interpreting wind tunnel and field experiments and for improvement of dust generation parameterizations in meteorological models.

  19. Formation of iron nanoparticles and increase in iron reactivity in mineral dust during simulated cloud processing.

    PubMed

    Shi, Zongbo; Krom, Michael D; Bonneville, Steeve; Baker, Alex R; Jickells, Timothy D; Benning, Liane G

    2009-09-01

    The formation of iron (Fe) nanoperticles and increase in Fe reactivity in mineral dust during simulated cloud processing was investigated using high-resolution microscopy and chemical extraction methods. Cloud processing of dust was experimentally simulated via an alternation of acidic (pH 2) and circumneutral conditions (pH 5-6) over periods of 24 h each on presieved (<20 microm) Saharan soil and goethite suspensions. Microscopic analyses of the processed soil and goethite samples reveal the neo-formation of Fe-rich nanoparticle aggregates, which were not found initially. Similar Fe-rich nanoparticles were also observed in wet-deposited Saharen dusts from the western Mediterranean but not in dry-deposited dust from the eastern Mediterranean. Sequential Fe extraction of the soil samples indicated an increase in the proportion of chemically reactive Fe extractable by an ascorbate solution after simulated cloud processing. In addition, the sequential extractions on the Mediterranean dust samples revealed a higher content of reactive Fe in the wet-deposited dust compared to that of the dry-deposited dust These results suggestthat large variations of pH commonly reported in aerosol and cloud waters can trigger neo-formation of nanosize Fe particles and an increase in Fe reactivity in the dust

  20. Dust Emissions, Transport, and Deposition Simulated with the NASA Finite-Volume General Circulation Model

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Colarco, Peter; daSilva, Arlindo; Ginoux, Paul; Chin, Mian; Lin, S.-J.

    2003-01-01

    Mineral dust aerosols have radiative impacts on Earth's atmosphere, have been implicated in local and regional air quality issues, and have been identified as vectors for transporting disease pathogens and bringing mineral nutrients to terrestrial and oceanic ecosystems. We present for the first time dust simulations using online transport and meteorological analysis in the NASA Finite-Volume General Circulation Model (FVGCM). Our dust formulation follows the formulation in the offline Georgia Institute of Technology-Goddard Global Ozone Chemistry Aerosol Radiation and Transport Model (GOCART) using a topographical source for dust emissions. We compare results of the FVGCM simulations with GOCART, as well as with in situ and remotely sensed observations. Additionally, we estimate budgets of dust emission and transport into various regions.

  1. Dust Removal Technolgy for a Mars In Situ Resource Utilization System

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calle, C. I.; Johansen, M. R.; Williams, B. S.; Hogue, M. D.; Mackey, P. J.; Clements, J. S.

    2011-01-01

    Several In Situ Resource Utilization (lSRU) systems being considered to enable future manned exploration of Mars require capture of Martian atmospheric gas to extract oxygen and other commodities. However, the Martian atmosphere contains relatively large amounts of dust which must be removed in tbe collection systems of the ISRU chambers. The amount of atmospheric dust varies largely with the presence of daily dust devils and the less frequent but much more powerful global dust storms. A common and mature dust removal technology for terrestrial systems is the electrostatic precipitator. With this technology, dust particles being captured are imparted an electrostatic charge by means of a corona discharge. Charged dust particles are then driven to a region of high electric field which forces the particles onto a collector for capture. Several difficulties appear when this technology is adapted to the Martian atmospheric environment At the low atmospheric pressure of Mars, electrical breakdown occurs at much lower voltages than on Earth and corona discharge is difficult to sustain. In this paper, we report on our efforts to obtain a steady corona/glow discharge in a simulated Martian atmosphere of carbon dioxide at 9 millibars of pressure. We also present results on the design of a dust capture system under these atmospheric conditions.

  2. Glass and Glass-Ceramic Materials from Simulated Composition of Lunar and Martian Soils: Selected Properties and Potential Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ray, C. S.; Sen, S.; Reis, S. T.; Kim, C. W.

    2005-01-01

    In-situ resource processing and utilization on planetary bodies is an important and integral part of NASA's space exploration program. Within this scope and context, our general effort is primarily aimed at developing glass and glass-ceramic type materials using lunar and martian soils, and exploring various applications of these materials for planetary surface operations. Our preliminary work to date have demonstrated that glasses can be successfully prepared from melts of the simulated composition of both lunar and martian soils, and the melts have a viscosity-temperature window appropriate for drawing continuous glass fibers. The glasses are shown to have the potential for immobilizing certain types of nuclear wastes without deteriorating their chemical durability and thermal stability. This has a direct impact on successfully and economically disposing nuclear waste generated from a nuclear power plant on a planetary surface. In addition, these materials display characteristics that can be manipulated using appropriate processing protocols to develop glassy or glass-ceramic magnets. Also discussed in this presentation are other potential applications along with a few selected thermal, chemical, and structural properties as evaluated up to this time for these materials.

  3. Effect of Lunar Dust Simulant on Human Epithelial Cell Lines

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Myers, Nicholas J.; Wallace, William T.; Jeevarajan, Antony S.

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this project is to assess the potential toxicity of lunar dust to cause the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines by human lung cells. Some of this dust is on the scale of 1-2 micrometers and could enter the lungs when astronauts track dust into the habitat and inhale it. This could be a serious problem as NASA plans on going back to the moon for an extended period of time. Literature shows that quartz, which has a known cytoxicity, can cause acute cases of silicosis within 6 months, and in most cases cause silicosis after 3 years. The activation of lunar dust through impacts creates surface based radicals which, upon contact with water create hydroxl radicals and peroxyl radicals which are very reactive and potentially might even be as cytotoxic as quartz. These radicals could then react with lung cells to produce pro-inflammatory mediators such as interleukin-6 and interleukin-8, and TNF-alpha.

  4. Aeolian Removal of Dust Types from Photovoltaic Surfaces on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Perez-Davis, Marla E.; Marabito, Mark

    1990-01-01

    Dust elevated in local or global dust storms on the Martian surface could settle on photovoltaic (PV) surfaces and seriously hamper their performance. Using a recently developed technique to apply a uniform dust layer, PV surface materials were subjected to simulated Martian winds in an attempt to determine whether natural Aeolian processes on Mars would sweep off the settled dust. Three different types of dust were used; an optical polishing powder, basaltic "trap rock", and iron (III) oxide crystals. The effects of wind velocity, angle of attack, height above the Martian surface, and surface coating material were investigated. It was found that arrays mounted with an angle of attack approaching 45 degrees show the most efficient clearing. Although the angular dependence is not sharp, horizontally mounted arrays required significantly higher wind velocities to clear off the dust. From this test it appears that the arrays may be erected quite near the ground, but previous studies have suggested that saltation effects can be expected to cause such arrays to be covered by soil if they are set up less than about a meter from the ground. Particle size effects appear to dominate over surface chemistry in these experiments, but additional tests are required to confirm this. Providing that the surface chemistry of Martian dusts is not drastically different from simulated dust and that gravity differences have only minor effects, the materials used for protective coatings for photovoltaic arrays may be optimized for other considerations such as transparency, and chemical or abrasion resistance. The static threshold velocity is low enough that there are regions on Mars which experience winds strong enough to clear off a photovoltaic array if it is properly oriented. Turbulence fences proved to be an ineffective strategy to keep dust cleared from the photovoltaic surfaces.

  5. Numerical Simulation of Aluminum Dust Detonations with Different Product Phases

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Teng, H. H.; Jiang, Z. L.

    Detonation waves are waves of supersonic combustion induced by strong coupling shock and heat release. Detonation research has attracted much attention in recent years owing to its potential applications in hypersonic propulsion. Aluminum (Al) particle detonation is a type of dust detonation, and its research is important in the prevention of industrial explosions. Al dust detonations for flake and spherical particles have been studied , which is found to be very sensitive to the specific area[1].

  6. Martian Feeling: An Analogue Study to Simulate a Round-Trip to Mars using the International Space Station

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Felix, C. V.; Gini, A.

    When talking about human space exploration, Mars missions are always present. It is clear that sooner or later, humanity will take this adventure. Arguably the most important aspect to consider for the success of such an endeavour is the human element. The safety of the crew throughout a Martian mission is a top priority for all space agencies. Therefore, such a mission should not take place until all the risks have been fully understood and mitigated. A mission to Mars presents unique human and technological challenges in terms of isolation, confinement, autonomy, reliance on mission control, communication delays and adaptation to different gravity levels. Analogue environments provide the safest way to simulate these conditions, mitigate the risks and evaluate the effects of long-term space travel on the crew. Martian Feeling is one of nine analogue studies, from the Mars Analogue Path (MAP) report [1], proposed by the TP Analogue group of ISU Masters class 2010. It is an integrated analogue study which simulates the psychological, physiological and operational conditions that an international, six-person, mixed gender crew would experience on a mission to Mars. Set both onboard the International Space Station (ISS) and on Earth, the Martian Feeling study will perform a ``dress rehearsal'' of a mission to Mars. The study proposes to test both human performance and operational procedures in a cost-effective manner. Since Low Earth Orbit (LEO) is more accessible than other space-based locations, an analogue studies in LEO would provide the required level of realism to a simulated transit mission to Mars. The sustained presence of microgravity and other elements of true spaceflight are features of LEO that are neither currently feasible nor possible to study in terrestrial analogue sites. International collaboration, economics, legal and ethical issues were considered when the study was proposed. As an example of international collaboration, the ISS would

  7. Isolation of rpoB mutations causing rifampicin resistance in Bacillus subtilis spores exposed to simulated Martian surface conditions.

    PubMed

    Perkins, Amy E; Schuerger, Andrew C; Nicholson, Wayne L

    2008-12-01

    ABSTRACT Bacterial spores are considered prime candidates for Earth-to-Mars transport by natural processes and human spaceflight activities. Previous studies have shown that exposure of Bacillus subtilis spores to ultrahigh vacuum (UHV) characteristic of space both increased the spontaneous mutation rate and altered the spectrum of mutation in various marker genes; but, to date, mutagenesis studies have not been performed on spores exposed to milder low pressures encountered in the martian environment. Mutations to rifampicin-resistance (Rif(R)) were isolated in B. subtilis spores exposed to simulated martian atmosphere (99.9% CO(2), 710 Pa) for 21 days in a Mars Simulation Chamber (MSC) and compared to parallel Earth controls. Exposure in the MSC reduced spore viability by approximately 67% compared to Earth controls, but this decrease was not statistically significant (P = 0.3321). The frequency of mutation to Rif(R) was also not significantly increased in the MSC compared to Earth-exposed spores (P = 0.479). Forty-two and 51 Rif(R) mutant spores were isolated from the MSC- and Earth-exposed controls, respectively. Nucleotide sequencing located the Rif(R) mutations in the rpoB gene encoding the beta subunit of RNA polymerase at residue V135F of the N-cluster and at residues Q469K/L, H482D/P/R/Y, and S487L in Cluster I. No mutations were found in rpoB Clusters II or III. Two new alleles, Q469L and H482D, previously unreported in B. subtilis rpoB, were isolated from spores exposed in the MSC; otherwise, only slight differences were observed in the spectra of spontaneous Rif(R) mutations from spores exposed to Earth vs. the MSC. However, both spectra are distinctly different from Rif(R) mutations previously reported arising from B. subtilis spores exposed to simulated space vacuum.

  8. Determining the necessary conditions for Martian cloud formation: Ice nucleation in an electrodynamic balance (EDB)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Berlin, S.; Bauer, A. J.; Cziczo, D. J.

    2013-12-01

    The Martian atmosphere contains water ice clouds similar to Earth's cirrus clouds. These clouds influence the atmospheric temperature profile, alter the balance of incoming and outgoing radiation, and vertically redistribute water and mineral dust. Extrapolations of classical heterogeneous nucleation theory from Earth-like conditions to colder temperature and lower pressure regimes present in extraterrestrial atmospheres may be inaccurate, and thus hydrological models describing these regimes could lack physical meaning. In this project, we use an electrodynamic balance (EDB) to levitate individual aerosol particles and study their freezing properties. We test previously characterized aerosols such as Arizona Test Dust (ATD) and sodium chloride (NaCl). Then, we examine the less well-studied Mojave Mars Simulant (MMS) dust, which mimics the composition and size of dust particles found in the Martian atmosphere. A relative humidity, temperature, and inert atmosphere are utilized to emulate conditions found in the Martian atmosphere. We will discuss the supersaturations under which heterogeneous ice nucleation occurs on surrogate Martian ice nuclei at various temperatures.

  9. Persistence of biomarker ATP and ATP-generating capability in bacterial cells and spores contaminating spacecraft materials under earth conditions and in a simulated martian environment.

    PubMed

    Fajardo-Cavazos, Patricia; Schuerger, Andrew C; Nicholson, Wayne L

    2008-08-01

    Most planetary protection research has concentrated on characterizing viable bioloads on spacecraft surfaces, developing techniques for bioload reduction prior to launch, and studying the effects of simulated martian environments on microbial survival. Little research has examined the persistence of biogenic signature molecules on spacecraft materials under simulated martian surface conditions. This study examined how endogenous adenosine-5'-triphosphate (ATP) would persist on aluminum coupons under simulated martian conditions of 7.1 mbar, full-spectrum simulated martian radiation calibrated to 4 W m(-2) of UV-C (200 to 280 nm), -10 degrees C, and a Mars gas mix of CO(2) (95.54%), N(2) (2.7%), Ar (1.6%), O(2) (0.13%), and H(2)O (0.03%). Cell or spore viabilities of Acinetobacter radioresistens, Bacillus pumilus, and B. subtilis were measured in minutes to hours, while high levels of endogenous ATP were recovered after exposures of up to 21 days. The dominant factor responsible for temporal reductions in viability and loss of ATP was the simulated Mars surface radiation; low pressure, low temperature, and the Mars gas composition exhibited only slight effects. The normal burst of endogenous ATP detected during spore germination in B. pumilus and B. subtilis was reduced by 1 or 2 orders of magnitude following, respectively, 8- or 30-min exposures to simulated martian conditions. The results support the conclusion that endogenous ATP will persist for time periods that are likely to extend beyond the nominal lengths of most surface missions on Mars, and planetary protection protocols prior to launch may require additional rigor to further reduce the presence and abundance of biosignature molecules on spacecraft surfaces.

  10. Persistence of Biomarker ATP and ATP-Generating Capability in Bacterial Cells and Spores Contaminating Spacecraft Materials under Earth Conditions and in a Simulated Martian Environment▿

    PubMed Central

    Fajardo-Cavazos, Patricia; Schuerger, Andrew C.; Nicholson, Wayne L.

    2008-01-01

    Most planetary protection research has concentrated on characterizing viable bioloads on spacecraft surfaces, developing techniques for bioload reduction prior to launch, and studying the effects of simulated martian environments on microbial survival. Little research has examined the persistence of biogenic signature molecules on spacecraft materials under simulated martian surface conditions. This study examined how endogenous adenosine-5′-triphosphate (ATP) would persist on aluminum coupons under simulated martian conditions of 7.1 mbar, full-spectrum simulated martian radiation calibrated to 4 W m−2 of UV-C (200 to 280 nm), −10°C, and a Mars gas mix of CO2 (95.54%), N2 (2.7%), Ar (1.6%), O2 (0.13%), and H2O (0.03%). Cell or spore viabilities of Acinetobacter radioresistens, Bacillus pumilus, and B. subtilis were measured in minutes to hours, while high levels of endogenous ATP were recovered after exposures of up to 21 days. The dominant factor responsible for temporal reductions in viability and loss of ATP was the simulated Mars surface radiation; low pressure, low temperature, and the Mars gas composition exhibited only slight effects. The normal burst of endogenous ATP detected during spore germination in B. pumilus and B. subtilis was reduced by 1 or 2 orders of magnitude following, respectively, 8- or 30-min exposures to simulated martian conditions. The results support the conclusion that endogenous ATP will persist for time periods that are likely to extend beyond the nominal lengths of most surface missions on Mars, and planetary protection protocols prior to launch may require additional rigor to further reduce the presence and abundance of biosignature molecules on spacecraft surfaces. PMID:18567687

  11. A process-oriented evaluation of dust emission parameterizations in CESM: Simulation of a typical severe dust storm in East Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wu, Chenglai; Lin, Zhaohui; He, Juanxiong; Zhang, Minghua; Liu, Xiaohong; Zhang, Renjian; Brown, Hunter

    2016-09-01

    Dust emissions in climate and earth system models are associated with large uncertainties. These models often use the source erodibility (S) to constrain dust emissions and also lack explicit representations of the impact of surface roughness elements (SREs) on the threshold friction velocity (u*t). This study presents a process-oriented evaluation of dust emission parameterizations in the Community Earth System Model (CESM) by applying the model to simulate a severe dust storm during 19-22 March 2010 in East Asia. Through numerical experiments, we assess the applicability of S and investigate the impact of SREs on dust emissions by implementing the roughness correction factor (fλ) to u*t. Simulation results are compared against the surface synoptic observations and station observations of dust concentrations. We found that the model can capture the main dust emission regions and reproduce the temporal-spatial evolution of surface dust concentrations in Mongolia and northern China. With a geomorphic S (Sg), the model tends to produce excessive dust emissions over the low-lying basins. Moreover, the high-resolution Sg performs worse with "point sources" of strong dust emissions than the low-resolution one. With the inclusion of fλ, total dust emissions are reduced by 24-34%, and the model reduces the overestimation of surface dust concentrations and improves their temporal variations over the vegetated regions. These results suggest that Sg may not be necessary when meteorology and land surface state are well simulated by the model and that fλ provides an important constraint on dust emissions through SREs.

  12. The feasibility of TEA CO2 laser-induced plasma for spectrochemical analysis of geological samples in simulated Martian conditions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Savovic, Jelena; Stoiljkovic, Milovan; Kuzmanovic, Miroslav; Momcilovic, Milos; Ciganovic, Jovan; Rankovic, Dragan; Zivkovic, Sanja; Trtica, Milan

    2016-04-01

    The present work studies the possibility of using pulsed Transversely Excited Atmospheric (TEA) carbon dioxide laser as an energy source for laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) analysis of rocks under simulated Martian atmospheric conditions. Irradiation of a basaltic rock sample with the laser intensity of 56 MW cm- 2, in carbon-dioxide gas at a pressure of 9 mbar, created target plasma with favorable conditions for excitation of all elements usually found in geological samples. Detection limits of minor constituents (Ba, Cr, Cu, Mn, Ni, Sr, V, and Zr) were in the 3 ppm-30 ppm range depending on the element. The precision varied between 5% and 25% for concentration levels of 1% to 10 ppm, respectively. Generally, the proposed relatively simple TEA CO2 laser-LIBS system provides good sensitivity for geological studies under reduced CO2 pressure.

  13. Slow degradation of ATP in simulated martian environments suggests long residence times for the biosignature molecule on spacecraft surfaces on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schuerger, Andrew C.; Fajardo-Cavazos, Patricia; Clausen, Christopher A.; Moores, John E.; Smith, Peter H.; Nicholson, Wayne L.

    2008-03-01

    Prelaunch planetary protection protocols on spacecraft are designed to reduce the numbers and diversity of viable bioloads on surfaces in order to mitigate the forward contamination of planetary surfaces. In addition, there is a growing appreciation that prelaunch spacecraft cleaning protocols will be required to reduce the levels of biogenic signature molecules on spacecraft to levels that will not compromise life-detection experiments on landers. The biogenic molecule, adenosine triphosphate (ATP) was tested for long-term stability under simulated Mars surface conditions of high UV flux, low temperature, low pressure, Mars atmosphere, and clear-sky dust loading conditions. Data on UV-induced ATP degradation rates were then extrapolated to a diversity of global conditions using a radiative transfer model for UV on Mars. The UV-induced degradation of ATP tested at 4.1 W m -2 UVC (200-280 nm), -10 °C, 7.1 mb, 95% CO 2 gas composition, and an atmospheric opacity of τ=0.1 yielded a half-life for ATP of 1342 kJ m -2; or extrapolated to approximately 22 sols on equatorial Mars with an atmospheric opacity of τ=0.5. Temperature was found to moderately affect ATP degradation rates under martian conditions; tests at -80 or 20 °C yielded ATP half-lives of 2594 or 1183 kJ m -2, respectively. The ATP degradation rates reported here are over 10 orders of magnitude slower than the UV-induced biocidal rates reported in the literature on the inactivation of strongly UV-resistant bacterial spores from Bacillus pumilus SAFR-032 [Schuerger, A.C., Richards, J.T., Newcombe, D.A., Venkateswaran, K.J., 2006. Icarus 181, 52-62]. Extrapolating results to global Mars conditions, residence times for a 99% reduction of ATP on spacecraft surfaces ranged from 158 sols on Sun-exposed surfaces to approximately 32,000 sols for the undersides of landers similar to Viking. However, spacecraft materials greatly affected the survival times of ATP under martian conditions. Stainless steel was found

  14. Lunar and Martian soil stimulants have different effects on L-[14C]glutamate binding to brain nerve terminals

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borisova, Tatiana; Krisanova, Natalia; Nazarova, Anastasiya; Borysov, Arseniy; Chunihin, Olexander

    Nano-sized particles can be deleterious to human physiology because they may be internalized by lung epithelium and overcome the blood-brain barrier. The health effects from exposure to Lunar and Martian dust are almost completely unknown, whereas they can be deleterious to human physiology. The effects of Lunar and Martian Soil Simulants (Orbital Technologies Corporation, Madison, USA) on the conductance of planar lipid membrane, membrane potential, acidification of synaptic vesicles, glutamate uptake, and ambient level of glutamate in isolated rat brain nerve terminals (synaptosomes) were studied using photon correlation spectroscopy, Planar Lipid Bilayer technique, spectrofluorimetry, radiolabeled assay, respectively. Lunar and Martian Soil Simulants did not influence the conductance of planar lipid membrane. It was revealed that nerve terminals were not indifferent to the exposure to inorganic particles of Lunar and Martian Soil Simulants. Using Zetasizer Nanosystem (Malvern Instruments) with helium-neon laser for dynamic light scattering (DLS), the synaptosomal size before and after the addition of Lunar and Martian Soil Simulants was measured and the binding of Lunar and Martian Soil Simulants inorganic particles to nerve terminals was demonstrated. Using potential-sensitive fluorescent dye rhodamine 6G, we showed that Lunar and Martian Soil particles did not influence the potential of the plasma membrane of nerve terminals. Acidification of synaptic vesicles of nerve terminals was not changed in the presence of Lunar and Martian Soil particles that was revealed with pH-sensitive fluorescent dye acridine orange. Martian Soil Simulant particles did not change binding of L-[14C]glutamate to brain nerve terminals, in contrast, Lunar ones changed this parameter and this fact may have harmful consequences to human physiology, in particular, glutamate homeostasis in the mammalian CNS.

  15. Extended Survival of Several Microorganisms and Relevant Amino Acid Biomarkers under Simulated Martian Surface Conditions as a Function of Burial Depth

    SciTech Connect

    Johnson, Adam; Pratt, L.M.; Vishnivetskaya, Tatiana A; Pfiffner, S. M.; Bryan, R. A.; Dadachova, E.; Whyte, L G; Radtke, K.; Chan, E.; Tronick, S.; Borgonie, G.; Mancinelli, R.; Rothschild, L.; Rogoff, D.; Horikawa, D. D.; Onstott, T. C.

    2011-01-01

    Recent orbital and landed missions have provided substantial evidence for ancient liquid water on the martian surface as well as evidence of more recent sedimentary deposits formed by water and/or ice. These observations raise serious questions regarding an independent origin and evolution of life on Mars. Future missions seek to identify signs of extinct martian biota in the form of biomarkers or morphological characteristics, but the inherent danger of spacecraft-borne terrestrial life makes the possibility of forward contamination a serious threat not only to the life detection experiments, but also to any extant martian ecosystem. A variety of cold and desiccation-tolerant organisms were exposed to 40 days of simulated martian surface conditions while embedded within several centimeters of regolith simulant in order to ascertain the plausibility of such organisms survival as a function of environmental parameters and burial depth. Relevant amino acid biomarkers associated with terrestrial life were also analyzed in order to understand the feasibility of detecting chemical evidence for previous biological activity. Results indicate that stresses due to desiccation and oxidation were the primary deterrent to organism survival, and that the effects of UV-associated damage, diurnal temperature variations, and reactive atmospheric species were minimal. Organisms with resistance to desiccation and radiation environments showed increased levels of survival after the experiment compared to organisms characterized as psychrotolerant. Amino acid analysis indicated the presence of an oxidation mechanism that migrated downward through the samples during the course of the experiment and likely represents the formation of various oxidizing species at mineral surfaces as water vapor diffused through the regolith. Current sterilization protocols may specifically select for organisms best adapted to survival at the martian surface, namely species that show tolerance to radical

  16. Windblown Dust on Mars: Laboratory Simulations of Flux as a Function of Surface Roughness

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Greeley, Robert; Wilson, Gregory; Coquilla, Rachel; White, Bruce; Haberle, Robert

    2000-01-01

    Experiments were conducted to determine the flux of dust (particles less than few microns in diameter) under Martian atmospheric conditions for surface of three aerodynamic roughness (z(sub 0)). For smooth surface on Mars (z(sub 0) = 0.00125 cm corresponding to 0.0125 cm on Mars) suspension threshold was not achieved at the highest velocities run (u(sub 0) = 322 cm/s); for a moderately rough surface (z(sub 0) = 0.010 cm corresponding to 0.01 cm on Mars), flux averaged 1.5 x 10(exp -7)g/sq cm/s; for a rough surface (z(sub 0) = 0.015 cm corresponding to 0.15 cm on Mars), flux averaged 5 x 10(exp -7) g/sq cm/s. Although the results are preliminary, flux varied widely as a function of wind speed and roughness, suggesting that raising dust into suspension on Mars is complex. Nonetheless, using these results as a guide, 9000 Mt of dust could be raised into the atmosphere of Mars per second from only 5% of the surface.

  17. Outflow Channels and Martian Climate: General Circulation Model (GCM) Simulations with Emplaced Water and Cloud Physics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santiago, D.; Colaprete, A.; Haberle, R.; Asphaug, E.; Sloan, L.

    2005-12-01

    One of the most intriguing signatures of surface water on Mars is large outflow channels believed to have been carved out by gigantic flood events in the late Noachian or Hesperian. We use the NASA Ames Mars General Circulation Model (MGCM) to study how abrupt eruption of water onto the Martian surface might have affected the early climate of Mars, and to calculate where the water ultimately went as part of a transient hydrologic cycle. Our model includes the emplacement of large amounts of water onto the surface of a cold, dry Mars in the vicinity of Ares Valles, with current day orbital configurations. Specifically, 106 km3 of water was released at a rate of 0.1 km3/s at end of Northern Hemisphere summer. We have begun modeling with the MGCM with outflow water and cloud physics. The current cloud physics include cloud particle nucleation and growth, with radiative effects added at a later date. These results are being compared with a control case with no outflow in the model, and a case with water, but without clouds. In all cases we are examining the radiative effects of water vapor, albedo effects of water ice, and latent heat effects for this large influx of water. Preliminary results show differences between these three cases, but the factors that are causing these differences have not yet been determined. These results will be interesting to compare with studies that suggest significant, but possibly localized or regional, precipitation in the Hesperian, as opposed to the more widely recognized precipitation during the Noachian. Current analyses and longer model runs will allow us to calculate the specific effects of outflow water on past Martian climate, as well as where the water might have ended up.

  18. Formation of the Martian Polar Layered Terrains: Quantifying Polar Water Ice and Dust Surface Deposition during Current and Past Orbital Epochs with the NASA Ames GCM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emmett, Jeremy; Murphy, Jim

    2016-10-01

    Structural and compositional variability in the layering sequences comprising Mars' polar layered terrains (PLT's) is likely explained by orbital-forced climatic variations in the sedimentary cycles of water ice and dust from which they formed [1]. The PLT's therefore contain a direct, extensive record of the recent climate history of Mars encoded in their structure and stratigraphy, but deciphering this record requires understanding the depositional history of their dust and water ice constituents. 3D Mars atmosphere modeling enables direct simulation of atmospheric dynamics, aerosol transport and quantification of surface accumulation for a range of past and present orbital configurations. By quantifying the net yearly polar deposition rates of water ice and dust under Mars' current and past orbital configurations characteristic of the last several millions of years, and integrating these into the present with a time-stepping model, the formation history of the north and south PLT's will be investigated, further constraining their age and composition, and, if reproducible, revealing the processes responsible for prominent features and stratigraphy observed within the deposits. Simulating the formation of the deposits by quantifying net deposition rates during past orbital epochs and integrating these into the present, effectively 'rebuilding' the terrains, could aid in understanding deeper stratigraphic trends, correlating between geographically-separated deposits, explaining the presence and shapes of large-scale polar features, and correlating stratigraphy with geological time. Quantification of the magnitude and geographical distribution of surface aerosol accumulation will build on the work of previous GCM-based investigations [3]. Construction and analysis of hypothetical stratigraphic sequences in the PLT's will draw from previous climate-controlled stratigraphy methodologies [2,4], but will utilize GCM-derived net deposition rates to model orbital

  19. Lunar Dust and Lunar Simulant Activation and Monitoring

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wallace, W. T.; Hammond, D. K.; Jeevarajan, A. S.

    2008-01-01

    Prior to returning to the moon, understanding the effects of lunar dust on both human physiology and mechanical equipment is a pressing concern, as problems related to lunar dust during the Apollo missions have been well documented (J.R. Gaier, The Effects of Lunar Dust on EVA Systems During the Apollo Missions. 2005, NASA-Glenn Research Center. p. 65). While efforts were made to remove the dust before reentering the lunar module, via brushing of the suits or vacuuming, a significant amount of dust was returned to the spacecraft, causing various problems. For instance, astronaut Harrison Schmitt complained of hay fever effects caused by the dust, and the abrasive nature of the material was found to cause problems with various joints and seals of the spacecraft and suits. It is clear that, in order to avoid potential health and performance problems while on the lunar surface, the reactive properties of lunar dust must be quenched. It is likely that soil on the lunar surface is in an activated form, i.e. capable of producing oxygen-based radicals in a humidified air environment, due to constant exposure to meteorite impacts, UV radiation, and elements of the solar wind. An activated silica surface serves as a good example. An oxygen-based radical species arises from the breaking of Si-OSi bonds. This system is comparable to that expected for the lunar dust system due to the large amounts of agglutinic glass and silicate vapor deposits present in lunar soil. Unfortunately, exposure to the Earth s atmosphere has passivated the active species on lunar dust, leading to efforts to reactivate the dust in order to understand the true effects that will be experienced by astronauts and equipment on the moon. Electron spin resonance (ESR) spectroscopy is commonly used for the study of radical species, and has been used previously to study silicon- and oxygen-based radicals, as well as the hydroxyl radicals produced by these species in solution (V. Vallyathan, et al., Am. Rev

  20. Lunar Dust and Lunar Simulant Activation, Monitoring, Solution and Cellular Toxicity Properties

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wallace, William; Jeevarajan, A. S.

    2009-01-01

    During the Apollo missions, many undesirable situations were encountered that must be mitigated prior to returning humans to the moon. Lunar dust (that part of the lunar regolith less than 20 microns in diameter) was found to produce several problems with mechanical equipment and could have conceivably produced harmful physiological effects for the astronauts. For instance, the abrasive nature of the dust was found to cause malfunctions of various joints and seals of the spacecraft and suits. Additionally, though efforts were made to exclude lunar dust from the cabin of the lunar module, a significant amount of material nonetheless found its way inside. With the loss of gravity correlated with ascent from the lunar surface, much of the finer fraction of this dust began to float and was inhaled by the astronauts. The short visits tothe Moon during Apollo lessened exposure to the dust, but the plan for future lunar stays of up to six months demands that methods be developed to minimize the risk of dust inhalation. The guidelines for what constitutes "safe" exposure will guide the development of engineering controls aimed at preventing the presence of dust in the lunar habitat. This work has shown the effects of grinding on the activation level of lunar dust, the changes in dissolution properties of lunar simulant, and the production of cytokines by cellular systems. Grinding of lunar dust leads to the production of radicals in solution and increased dissolution of lunar simulant in buffers of different pH. Additionally, ground lunar simulant has been shown to promote the production of IL-6 and IL-8, pro-inflammatory cytokines, by alveolar epithelial cells. These results provide evidence of the need for further studies on these materials prior to returning to the lunar surface.

  1. Simulations of Supernova Reverse Shock Dust Destruction in Metal-Enriched Clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Silvia, Devin W.; Smith, B. D.; Shull, J. M.

    2011-01-01

    In following previous work, we present hydrodynamic simulations used to study the effects of dust destruction by sputtering in the reverse shocks of supernova remnants. As before (Silvia et al. 2010), we use an idealized setup of a planar shock impacting a dense, spherical clump implanted with a population of Lagrangian particles that act as tracers of dust. These tracers represent a distribution of dust grains that vary in both species and size. Specifically, we investigate those cases in which the cloud initially has super-solar metal abundances (Z 1000 Z⊙), as we expect the ejecta knots from supernova explosions to be extremely metal-enriched. A high abundance of metals has significant influence on both the cooling properties of the cloud and the thermal sputtering rates of the embedded dust grains. We also include a brief discussion about the difficulty of using the piecewise parabolic method for solving the hydrodynamic equations with high cooling rates produced by high metallicities. Through these simulations, we seek to quantify the fragmentation of ejecta clumps for comparison to observations of nearby supernova remnants and calculate the dust survival rate for these heavily metal-enriched cases. Estimates for dust survival in supernova shocks is critical in determining the source of dust at high redshift.

  2. UV irradiation experiments under simulated martian surface conditions: Bio-effects on glycine, phage T7 and isolated T7 DNA

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bérces, Attila; ten Kate, I. L.; Fekete, A.; Hegedus, M.; Garry, J. R. C.; Lammer, Helmut; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Peeters, Zan; Kovacs, G.; Ronto, G.

    Mars is considered as a main target for astrobiologically relevant exploration programmes. In order to explain the non-detection of organic material to a detection level of several parts per billion (ppb) by the Viking landers, several hypotheses have been suggested, including degradation processes occurring on the martian surface and in the martian soil and subsurface. UV exposure experiments have been performed in which thin layers of glycine ( 300 nm), and aqueous suspensions of phage T7 and isolated T7 DNA were irradiated with a Deuterium lamp and for comparison with a Xenon arc lamp, modified to simulate the solar irradiation on the surface of Mars (MarsUV). The glycine sample was subjected to 24 hours of irradiation with MarsUV. The results of this glycine experiment show a destruction rate comparable to the results of previous experiments in which thin layers of glycine were irradiated with a deuterium lamp (ten Kate et al., 2005, 2006). After exposure of different doses of simulated Martian UV radiation a decrease of the biological activity of phages and characteristic changes in the UV absorption spectrum have been detected, indicating the UV damage of isolated and intraphage T7 DNA. The results of our experiments show that intraphage DNA is 4 times more sensitive to simulated martian UV and deuterium lamp radiation than isolated T7 DNA. This result indicates the significant role that phage proteins play in the UV damage. The effect of simulated martian radiation is smaller than the biological defects observed after the exposure with a deuterium lamp for both cases, in intraphage and isolated DNA, despite of the 100 times larger intensity of the MarsUV lamp. The detected spectral differences are about ten times smaller; the biological activity is about 3 - 4 times smaller, indicating that the shorter wavelength UV radiation from the deuterium lamp is more effective in inducing DNA damage, irrespective of being intraphage or isolated.

  3. Resistance of halobacterial isolates from Permian rock salt to physico-chemical extremes, including heat and a simulated Martian atmosphere.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leuko, S.; Weidler, G.; Radax, C.; Stan-Lotter, H.

    2003-04-01

    Extremely halophilic archaebacteria (halobacteria) are found today in hypersaline surface waters, such as the brines in solar salterns, or the Dead Sea. However, from Alpine rock salt of Permo-Triassic age several species of halobacteria were isolated during the last years (1, 2). Halobacteria are not known to produce spores or dormant forms; thus it remains enigmatic how they survived in the salt sediments. Extraterrestrial halite has been detected in meteorites from Mars and from the asteroids; in addition, the Jovian moon Europa is thought to contain a salty ocean. Therefore halobacteria would be useful model organisms when considering the search for extraterrestrial life. We are developing experimental protocols to evaluate the effects of physico-chemical stress factors on halobacteria, in particular present-day Martian conditions. But the effect of higher temperatures is also of interest, since Mars may have been warmer in the past, and the Alpine salt sediments are known to have experienced local temperature peaks. Cells of Halococcus dombrowskii (2) and, for comparison, of Halobacterium sp. NRC-1 were grown in complex medium, containing up to 4 M NaCl (2). Aliquots of cultures were kept at minus 70oC for several days, or freeze-dried in a lyophilizer, or incubated at temperatures of 50 to 80oC for 24 hours, respectively. In addition, exposure experiments of halobacterial cells in a liquid nitrogen cooled Martian simulation chamber were begun. Survival of cells was evaluated by determining colony-forming units and by examination of cellular morphology by fluorescence microscopy, following staining with the LIVE-DEAD kit. Results indicated that the LIVE-DEAD kit can be successfully used in the presence of 4 M NaCl, although it was developed for tests at low ionic strength. Data will be presented which show that Hc. dombrowskii survived deep freezing, temperatures of up to 80 oC and Martian atmospheric conditions generally better than Halobacterium sp. NRC-1

  4. Moon Dust may Simulate Vascular Hazards of Urban Pollution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rowe, W. J.

    A long duration mission to the moon presents several potential cardiovascular complications. To the risks of microgravity and hypokinesia, and the fact that pharmaceuticals cannot be always depended upon in the space fight conditions, there is a possible additional risk due to inhalation in the lunar module of ultra-fine dust (<100 nm). This may trigger endothelial dysfunction by mechanisms similar to those shown to precipitate endothelial insults complicating ultra-fine urban dust exposure. Vascular constriction and a significant increase in diastolic blood pressures have been found in subjects inhaling urban dust within just two hours, possibly triggered by oxidative stress, inflammatory effects, and calcium overload with a potential magnesium ion deficit playing an important contributing role. Both Irwin and Scott on Apollo 15, experienced arrhythmias, and in Irwin's case associated with syncope and severe dyspnea with angina during reentry. After the mission both had impairment in cardiac function, and delay in cardiovascular recovery, with Irwin in addition having stress test- induced extremely high blood pressures, with no available stress test results in Scott's case for comparison. It is conceivable that the chemical nature or particle size of the lunar dust is sufficiently variable to account for these complications, which were not described on the other Apollo missions. This could be determined by non-invasive endothelial-dependent flow-mediated dilatation studies in the lunar environment at various sites, thereby determining the site with the least endothelial vulnerability to dysfunction. These studies could be used also to demonstrate possible intensification of endothelial dysfunction from inhalation of ultra-fine moon dust in the lunar module.

  5. Far-infrared and dust properties of present-day galaxies in the EAGLE simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Camps, Peter; Trayford, James W.; Baes, Maarten; Theuns, Tom; Schaller, Matthieu; Schaye, Joop

    2016-10-01

    The Evolution and Assembly of GaLaxies and their Environments (EAGLE) cosmological simulations reproduce the observed galaxy stellar mass function and many galaxy properties. In this work, we study the dust-related properties of present-day EAGLE galaxies through mock observations in the far-infrared and submm wavelength ranges obtained with the 3D dust radiative transfer code SKIRT. To prepare an EAGLE galaxy for radiative transfer processing, we derive a diffuse dust distribution from the gas particles and we re-sample the star-forming gas particles and the youngest star particles into star-forming regions that are assigned dedicated emission templates. We select a set of redshift-zero EAGLE galaxies that matches the K-band luminosity distribution of the galaxies in the Herschel Reference Survey (HRS), a volume-limited sample of about 300 normal galaxies in the Local Universe. We find overall agreement of the EAGLE dust scaling relations with those observed in the HRS, such as the dust-to-stellar mass ratio versus stellar mass and versus NUV-r colour relations. A discrepancy in the f250/f350 versus f350/f500 submm colour-colour relation implies that part of the simulated dust is insufficiently heated, likely because of limitations in our sub-grid model for star-forming regions. We also investigate the effect of adjusting the metal-to-dust ratio and the covering factor of the photodissociation regions surrounding the star-forming cores. We are able to constrain the important dust-related parameters in our method, informing the calculation of dust attenuation for EAGLE galaxies in the UV and optical domain.

  6. Comparison of Morphologies of Apollo 17 Dust Particles with Lunar Simulant, JSC-1

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liu, Yang; Taylor, Lawrence A.; Hill, Eddy; Kihm, Kenneth D.; Day, James D. M.

    2005-01-01

    Lunar dust (< 20 microns) makes up approx.20 wt.% of the lunar soil. Because of the abrasive and adhering nature of lunar soil, a detailed knowledge of the morphology (size, shape and abundance) of lunar dust is important for dust mitigation on the Moon. This represents a critical step towards the establishment of long-term human presence on the Moon (Taylor et al. 2005). Machinery design for in-situ resource utilization (ISRU) on the Moon also requires detailed information on dust morphology and general physical/chemical characteristics. Here, we report a morphological study of Apollo 17 dust sample 70051 and compare it to lunar soil stimulant, JSC-1. W e have obtained SEM images of dust grains from sample 70051 soil (Fig. 1). The dust grains imaged are composed of fragments of minerals, rocks, agglutinates and glass. Most particles consist largely of agglutinitic impact glass with their typical vesicular textures (fine bubbles). All grains show sub-angular to angular shapes, commonly with sharp edges, common for crushed glass fragments. There are mainly four textures: (1) ropey-textured pieces (typical for agglutinates), (2) angular shards, (3) blocky bits, and (4) Swiss-cheese grains. This last type with its high concentration of submicron bubbles, occurs on all scales. Submicron cracks are also present in most grains. Dust-sized grains of lunar soil simulant, JSC-1, were also studied. JSC-1 is a basaltic tuff with relatively high glass content (approx.50%; McKay et al. 1994). It was initially chosen in the early 90s to approximate the geotechnical properties of the average lunar soil (Klosky et al. 1996). JSC-1 dust grains also show angular blocky and shard textures (Fig. 2), similar to those of lunar dust. However, the JSC-1 grains lack the Swiss-cheese textured particles, as well as submicron cracks and bubbles in most grains.

  7. Abrasion of Candidate Spacesuit Fabrics by Simulated Lunar Dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Meador, Mary Ann; Rogers, Kerry J.; Sheehy, Brennan H.

    2009-01-01

    A protocol has been developed that produced the type of lunar soil abrasion damage observed on Apollo spacesuits. This protocol was then applied to four materials (Kevlar (DuPont), Vectran (Kuraray Co., Ltd.), Orthofabric, and Tyvek (DuPont)) that are candidates for advanced spacesuits. Three of the four new candidate fabrics (all but Vectran) were effective at keeping the dust from penetrating to layers beneath. In the cases of Kevlar and Orthofabric this was accomplished by the addition of a silicone layer. In the case of Tyvek, the paper structure was dense enough to block dust transport. The least abrasive damage was suffered by the Tyvek. This was thought to be due in large part to its non-woven paper structure. The woven structures were all abraded where the top of the weave was struck by the abrasive. Of these, the Orthofabric suffered the least wear, with both Vectran and Kevlar suffering considerably more extensive filament breakage.

  8. THE REBOUND CONDITION OF DUST AGGREGATES REVEALED BY NUMERICAL SIMULATION OF THEIR COLLISIONS

    SciTech Connect

    Wada, Koji; Tanaka, Hidekazu; Yamamoto, Tetsuo; Suyama, Toru; Kimura, Hiroshi

    2011-08-10

    Collisional growth of dust aggregates is a plausible root of planetesimals forming in protoplanetary disks. However, a rebound of colliding dust aggregates prevents dust from growing into planetesimals. In fact, rebounding aggregates are observed in laboratory experiments but not in previous numerical simulations. Therefore, the condition of rebound between dust aggregates should be clarified to better understand the processes of dust growth and planetesimal formation. We have carried out numerical simulations of aggregate collisions for various types of aggregates and succeeded in reproducing a rebound of colliding aggregates under specific conditions. Our finding is that in the rebound process, the key factor of the aggregate structure is the coordination number, namely, the number of particles in contact with a particle. A rebound is governed by the energy dissipation along with restructuring of the aggregates and a large coordination number inhibits the restructuring at collisions. Results of our numerical simulation for various aggregates indicate that they stick to each other when the mean coordination number is less than 6, regardless of their materials and structures, as long as their collision velocity is less than the critical velocity for fragmentation. This criterion of the coordination number would correspond to a filling factor of {approx}0.3, which is somewhat larger than that reported in laboratory experiments. In protoplanetary disks, dust aggregates are expected to have low bulk densities (<0.1 g cm{sup -3}) during their growth, which would prevent dust aggregates from rebounding. This result supports the formation of planetesimals with direct dust growth in protoplanetary disks.

  9. NUMERICAL SIMULATIONS OF SUPERNOVA DUST DESTRUCTION. I. CLOUD-CRUSHING AND POST-PROCESSED GRAIN SPUTTERING

    SciTech Connect

    Silvia, Devin W.; Smith, Britton D.; Michael Shull, J. E-mail: britton.smith@colorado.ed

    2010-06-01

    We investigate through hydrodynamic simulations the destruction of newly formed dust grains by sputtering in the reverse shocks of supernova (SN) remnants. Using an idealized setup of a planar shock impacting a dense, spherical clump, we implant a population of Lagrangian particles into the clump to represent a distribution of dust grains in size and composition. We then post-process the simulation output to calculate the grain sputtering for a variety of species and size distributions. We explore the parameter space appropriate for this problem by altering the overdensity of the ejecta clumps and the speed of the reverse shocks. Since radiative cooling could lower the temperature of the medium in which the dust is embedded and potentially protect the dust by slowing or halting grain sputtering, we study the effects of different cooling methods over the timescale of the simulations. In general, our results indicate that grains with radii less than 0.1 {mu}m are sputtered to much smaller radii and often destroyed completely, while larger grains survive their interaction with the reverse shock. We also find that, for high ejecta densities, the percentage of dust that survives is strongly dependent on the relative velocity between the clump and the reverse shock, causing up to 50% more destruction for the highest velocity shocks. The fraction of dust destroyed varies widely across grain species, ranging from total destruction of Al{sub 2}O{sub 3} grains to minimal destruction of Fe grains (only 20% destruction in the most extreme cases). C and SiO{sub 2} grains show moderate to strong sputtering as well, with 38% and 80% mass loss. The survival rate of grains formed by early SNe is crucial in determining whether or not they can act as the 'dust factories' needed to explain high-redshift dust.

  10. MECA Worksop on Dust on Mars 2

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lee, Steven (Editor)

    1986-01-01

    Topics addressed include: sedimentary debris; mineralogy; Martian dust cycles; Mariner 9 mission; Viking observations; Mars Observer; atmospheric circulation; aeolian features; aerosols; and landslides.

  11. Effects of Spatial Resolution on the Simulated Dust Aerosol Lifecycle: Implications for Dust Event Magnitude and Timing in the NASA GEOS-5 AGCM

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nowottnick, E.; Colarco, Peter R.; daSilva, A.

    2011-01-01

    The NASA GEOS-5 atmospheric transport model simulates global aerosol distributions with an online aerosol module. GEOS-5 may be run at various horizontal spatial resolutions depending on the research application. For example, long integration climate simulations are typically run at 2 deg or 1 deg grid spacing, whereas aerosol reanalysis and forecasting applications may be performed at O.5 deg or 0.25 deg resolutions. In this study, we assess the implications of varying spatial resolution on the simulated aerosol fields, with a particular focus on dust. Dust emissions in GEOS-5 are calculated with one of two parameterizations, one based on the Goddard Chemistry, Aerosol, Radiation, and Transport (GO CART) model and another based on the Dust Entrainment and Deposition (DEAD) model. Emission fluxes are parameterized in terms of the surface wind speed, either the 10-m (GO CART) or friction (DEAD) wind speed. We consider how surface wind speeds and thus the dust emission rates are a function of the model spatial resolution. We find that spatial resolution has a significant effect on the magnitude of dust emissions, as higher resolution versions of the model have typically higher surface wind speeds. Utilizing space-borne observations from MISR, MODIS, and CALIOP, we find that simulated Aerosol Optical Thickness (AOT) distributions respond differently to spatial resolution over the African and Asian source regions, highlighting the need to regional dust emission tuning. When compared to ground-based observations from AERONET, we found improved timing of dust events with as spatial resolution was increased. In an attempt to improve the representation of the dust aerosol lifecycle at coarse resolutions, we found that incorporating the effects of sub-grid wind variability in a course resolution simulation led to improved agreement with observed AOT magnitudes, but did not impact the timing of simulated dust events.

  12. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Martian Aeolian and Mass Wasting Processes: Blowing and Flowing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    The session Martian Aeolian and Mass Wasting Processes: BLowing and Flowing included the following topics: 1) Three Decades of Martian Surface Changes; 2) Thermophysical Properties of Isidis Basin, Mars; 3) Intracrater Material in Eastern Arabia Terra: THEMIS, MOC, and MOLA Analysis of Wind-blown Deposits and Possible High-Inertia Source Material; 4) Thermal Properties of Sand from TES and THEMIS: Do Martian Dunes Make a Good Control for Thermal Inertia Calculations? 5) A Comparative Analysis of Barchan Dunes in the Intra-Crater Dune Fields and the North Polar Sand Sea; 6) Diluvial Dunes in Athabasca Valles, Mars: Morphology, Modeling and Implications; 7) Surface Profiling of Natural Dust Devils; 8) Martian Dust Devil Tracks: Inferred Directions of Movement; 9) Numerical Simulations of Anastomosing Slope Streaks on Mars; 10) Young Fans in an Equatorial Crater in Xanthe Terra, Mars; 11) Large Well-exposed Alluvual Fans in Deep Late-Noachian Craters; 12) New Evidence for the Formation of Large Landslides on Mars; and 13) What Can We Learn from the Ages of Valles Marineris Landslides on Martian Impact History?

  13. Use of Combined A-Train Observations to Validate GEOS Model Simulated Dust Distributions During NAMMA

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Nowottnick, E.

    2007-01-01

    During August 2006, the NASA African Multidisciplinary Analyses Mission (NAMMA) field experiment was conducted to characterize the structure of African Easterly Waves and their evolution into tropical storms. Mineral dust aerosols affect tropical storm development, although their exact role remains to be understood. To better understand the role of dust on tropical cyclogenesis, we have implemented a dust source, transport, and optical model in the NASA Goddard Earth Observing System (GEOS) atmospheric general circulation model and data assimilation system. Our dust source scheme is more physically based scheme than previous incarnations of the model, and we introduce improved dust optical and microphysical processes through inclusion of a detailed microphysical scheme. Here we use A-Train observations from MODIS, OMI, and CALIPSO with NAMMA DC-8 flight data to evaluate the simulated dust distributions and microphysical properties. Our goal is to synthesize the multi-spectral observations from the A-Train sensors to arrive at a consistent set of optical properties for the dust aerosols suitable for direct forcing calculations.

  14. The Martian twilight

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kahn, R.; Goody, R.; Pollack, J. B.

    1981-07-01

    The changing sky brightness during the Martian twilight as measured by the Viking lander cameras is shown to be consistent with data obtained from sky brightness measurements. An exponential distribution of dust with a scale height of 10 km, equal to the atmospheric scale height, is consistent with the shape of the light curve. Multiple scattering resulting from the forward scattering peak of large particles makes a major contribution to the intensity of the twilight. The spectral distribution of light in the twilight sky may require slightly different optical properties for the scattering particles at high levels from those of the aerosol at lower levels.

  15. Aeolian Removal of Dust Types from Photovoltaic Surfaces on Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Perez-Davis, Marla E.

    1990-01-01

    Dust elevated in local or global dust storms on the Martian surface could settle on photovoltaic (PV) surfaces and seriously hamper their performance. Using a recently developed technique to apply a uniform dust layer, PV surface materials were subjected to simulated Martian winds in an attempt to determine whether natural aeolian processes on Mars would sweep off the settled dust. Three different types of dust were used. The effects of wind velocity, angle of attack, height above the Martian surface, and surface coating material were investigated. It was found that arrays mounted on an angle of attack approaching 45 deg show the most efficient clearing. Although the angular dependence is not sharp, horizontally mounted arrays required much higher wind velocities to clear off the dust. From this test it appears that the arrays may be erected quite near the ground, but previous studies have suggested that saltation effects can be expected to cause such arrays to be covered by soil if they are set up less than about a meter from the ground. Particle size effect appear to dominate over surface chemistry in these experiments, but additional tests are required to confirm this.

  16. Accelerating Dust Storm Simulation by Balancing Task Allocation in Parallel Computing Environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gui, Z.; Yang, C.; XIA, J.; Huang, Q.; YU, M.

    2013-12-01

    Dust storm has serious negative impacts on environment, human health, and assets. The continuing global climate change has increased the frequency and intensity of dust storm in the past decades. To better understand and predict the distribution, intensity and structure of dust storm, a series of dust storm models have been developed, such as Dust Regional Atmospheric Model (DREAM), the NMM meteorological module (NMM-dust) and Chinese Unified Atmospheric Chemistry Environment for Dust (CUACE/Dust). The developments and applications of these models have contributed significantly to both scientific research and our daily life. However, dust storm simulation is a data and computing intensive process. Normally, a simulation for a single dust storm event may take several days or hours to run. It seriously impacts the timeliness of prediction and potential applications. To speed up the process, high performance computing is widely adopted. By partitioning a large study area into small subdomains according to their geographic location and executing them on different computing nodes in a parallel fashion, the computing performance can be significantly improved. Since spatiotemporal correlations exist in the geophysical process of dust storm simulation, each subdomain allocated to a node need to communicate with other geographically adjacent subdomains to exchange data. Inappropriate allocations may introduce imbalance task loads and unnecessary communications among computing nodes. Therefore, task allocation method is the key factor, which may impact the feasibility of the paralleling. The allocation algorithm needs to carefully leverage the computing cost and communication cost for each computing node to minimize total execution time and reduce overall communication cost for the entire system. This presentation introduces two algorithms for such allocation and compares them with evenly distributed allocation method. Specifically, 1) In order to get optimized solutions, a

  17. Reflection of solar wind protons on the Martian bow shock: Investigations by means of 3-dimensional simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richer, E.; Chanteur, G. M.; Modolo, R.; Dubinin, E.

    2012-09-01

    The reflection of solar wind protons on the Martian bow shock (BS) is investigated by means of three-dimensional simulation models. A two steps approach is adopted to allow a detailed analysis of the reflected population. Firstly, the 3-dimensional hybrid model of Modolo et al. (2005) is used to compute a stationary state of the interaction of the solar wind (SW) with Mars. Secondly, the motion of test particles is followed in the electromagnetic field computed by the hybrid simulation meanwhile detection criteria defined to identify reflected protons are applied. This study demonstrates some effects of the large curvature of a planetary BS on the structure of the foreshock. Reflected protons encounter the BS in a region encompassing parts of the quasi-perpendicular and quasi-parallel shocks, and exit the shock mainly from the quasi-parallel region. The energy spectrum of all reflected protons extends from 0 to almost 15keV. A virtual omnidirectional detector (VOD) is used to compute the local omnidirectional flux of reflected protons at various locations upstream of the BS. Spatial variations of this omnidirectional flux indicate the location and spatial extent of the proton foreshock and demonstrate its shift, increasing with the distance downstream, in the direction opposite to the motional electric field of the SW. Local energy spectra computed from the VOD observations demonstrate the existence of an energy gradient along the direction of the convection electric field.

  18. The study of minerals under simulated planetary conditions: Experiments of hydrated sulphates at environmental conditions of martian surface

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Prieto-Ballesteros, O.; Mateo-Martí, E.; Fernández-Remolar, D.

    2007-08-01

    Minerals on planetary surfaces are usually identified comparing remote infrared spectral data to laboratory mineral databases obtained under terrestrial conditions. However, environmental conditions at other planetary surfaces could produce alterations on the standard mineral spectra. Spectroscopic signals of hydrated magnesium, calcium and hydroxlated iron sulphates have been recently detected on surface of Mars. Some experiments using environmental conditions at the martian surface (temperature and pressure ranges; atmospheric composition, including water vapor content; and ultraviolet radiation) of different sulphates have been performed in order to both, constrain the stability of the hydrated phases and detect any possible modification in their spectra. Experiments have been done in a simulation chamber located in Centro de Astrobiologia, Madrid. The equipment has been developed for a wide range of simulation conditions, including a range of irradiation sources, and the implementation of analytical techniques, including IR and UV spectroscopy and mass spectrometry. The equipment consists of a main vacuum chamber with dimensions of 50 cm long x 40 cm diameter, a second internal chamber connected by differential pumping with the main one, and a third side chamber for the gases analysis using a mass spectrometer. Chambers pressures are monitorized by different pirani-penning gauges. A liquid nitrogen cooling system is connected to the sample holder, and a gas system allows the mixing of gases and water.

  19. Outflow Channels and Martian Climate: General Circulation Model (GCM) Simulations with Emplaced Water

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Santiago, D.; Colaprete, A.; Haberle, R.; Asphaug, E.; Sloan, L.

    2005-08-01

    The existence of past surface water on Mars has been inferred on the basis of geomorphologic interpretation of spacecraft images. Among the most intriguing signatures of surface water are large outflow channels believed to have been carved out by gigantic flood events in the late Noachian or Hesperian. We use the NASA Ames Mars General Circulation Model (MGCM) to study how abrupt eruption of water onto the Martian surface might have affected climate, and to consider where the water ultimately went. Our initial model begins by emplacing large amounts of water onto the surface of Mars in the vicinity of Ares Valley, for current day orbital configurations. Specifically, 10\\^6 km\\^3 of water was released at a rate of 0.1 km\\^3/s at end of Northern summer. The MGCM was run for 10 years; a control version, without water, was run the same length of time, in order to assess the climatic impact from the radiative and thermal effects of the released water. Model modifications for the results that will be presented include (1) a customized sublimation scheme, (2) latent heat effects of water transitions, (3) radiative effects of water vapor, (4) albedo effects, and (5) clouds. Preliminary results indicate slight surface temperature increases due to latent heating is areas of water deposition, and cooling in the outflow formation area. Results also suggest that water vapor is distributed throughout the atmosphere. Results for these and other atmospheric variables, as well as water tracer distribution, will be presented. We acknowledge the University Aligned Research Center and the Mars Fundamental Research Program for their funding contributions.

  20. 35 GHz Measurements of CO2 Crystals for Simulating Observations of the Martian Polar Caps

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Foster, J. L.; Chang, A. T. C.; Hall, D. K.; Tait, A. B.; Barton, J. S.

    1998-01-01

    In order to learn more about the Martian polar caps, it is important to compare and contrast the behavior of both frozen H2O and CO2 in different parts of the electromagnetic spectrum. Relatively little attention has been given, thus far, to observing the thermal microwave part of the spectrum. In this experiment, passive microwave radiation emanating from within a 33 cm snowpack was measured with a 35 GHz hand-held radiometer, and in addition to the natural snow measurements, the radiometer was used to measure the microwave emission and scattering from layers of manufactured CO2 (dry ice). A 1 m x 2 m plate of aluminum sheet metal was positioned beneath the natural snow so that microwave emissions from the underlying soil layers would be minimized. Compared to the natural snow crystals, results for the dry ice layers exhibit lower' microwave brightness temperatures for similar thicknesses, regardless of the incidence angle of the radiometer. For example, at 50 degree H (horizontal polarization) and with a covering of 21 cm of snow and 18 cm of dry ice, the brightness temperatures were 150 K and 76 K, respectively. When the snow depth was 33 cm, the brightness temperature was 144 K, and when the total thickness of the dry ice was 27 cm, the brightness temperature was 86 K. The lower brightness temperatures are due to a combination of the lower physical temperature and the larger crystal sizes of the commercial CO2 Crystals compared to the snow crystals. As the crystal size approaches the size of the microwave wavelength, it scatters microwave radiation more effectively, thus lowering the brightness temperature. The dry ice crystals in this experiment were about an order of magnitude larger than the snow crystals and three orders of magnitude larger than the CO2 Crystals produced in the cold stage of a scanning electron microscope. Spreading soil, approximately 2 mm in thickness, on the dry ice appeared to have no effect on the brightness temperatures.

  1. Survival of endospores of Bacillus subtilis on spacecraft surfaces under simulated martian environments: . implications for the forward contamination of Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schuerger, Andrew C.; Mancinelli, Rocco L.; Kern, Roger G.; Rothschild, Lynn J.; McKay, Christopher P.

    2003-10-01

    Experiments were conducted in a Mars simulation chamber (MSC) to characterize the survival of endospores of Bacillus subtilis under high UV irradiation and simulated martian conditions. The MSC was used to create Mars surface environments in which pressure (8.5 mb), temperature (-80, -40, -10, or +23 °C), gas composition (Earth-normal N 2/O 2 mix, pure N 2, pure CO 2, or a Mars gas mix), and UV-VIS-NIR fluence rates (200-1200 nm) were maintained within tight limits. The Mars gas mix was composed of CO 2 (95.3%), N 2 (2.7%), Ar (1.7%), O 2 (0.2%), and water vapor (0.03%). Experiments were conducted to measure the effects of pressure, gas composition, and temperature alone or in combination with Mars-normal UV-VIS-NIR light environments. Endospores of B. subtilis, were deposited on aluminum coupons as monolayers in which the average density applied to coupons was 2.47×10 6 bacteria per sample. Populations of B. subtilis placed on aluminum coupons and subjected to an Earth-normal temperature (23 °C), pressure (1013 mb), and gas mix (normal N 2/O 2 ratio) but illuminated with a Mars-normal UV-VIS-NIR spectrum were reduced by over 99.9% after 30 sec exposure to Mars-normal UV fluence rates. However, it required at least 15 min of Mars-normal UV exposure to reduce bacterial populations on aluminum coupons to non-recoverable levels. These results were duplicated when bacteria were exposed to Mars-normal environments of temperature (-10 °C), pressure (8.5 mb), gas composition (pure CO 2), and UV fluence rates. In other experiments, results indicated that the gas composition of the atmosphere and the temperature of the bacterial monolayers at the time of Mars UV exposure had no effects on the survival of bacterial endospores. But Mars-normal pressures (8.5 mb) were found to reduce survival by approximately 20-35% compared to Earth-normal pressures (1013 mb). The primary implications of these results are (a) that greater than 99.9% of bacterial populations on sun

  2. Survival of endospores of Bacillus subtilis on spacecraft surfaces under simulated martian environments: implications for the forward contamination of Mars.

    PubMed

    Schuerger, Andrew C; Mancinelli, Rocco L; Kern, Roger G; Rothschild, Lynn J; McKay, Christopher P

    2003-10-01

    Experiments were conducted in a Mars simulation chamber (MSC) to characterize the survival of endospores of Bacillus subtilis under high UV irradiation and simulated martian conditions. The MSC was used to create Mars surface environments in which pressure (8.5 mb), temperature (-80, -40, -10, or +23 degrees C), gas composition (Earth-normal N2/O2 mix, pure N2, pure CO2, or a Mars gas mix), and UV-VIS-NIR fluence rates (200-1200 nm) were maintained within tight limits. The Mars gas mix was composed of CO2 (95.3%), N2 (2.7%), Ar (1.7%), O2 (0.2%), and water vapor (0.03%). Experiments were conducted to measure the effects of pressure, gas composition, and temperature alone or in combination with Mars-normal UV-VIS-NIR light environments. Endospores of B. subtilis, were deposited on aluminum coupons as monolayers in which the average density applied to coupons was 2.47 x 10(6) bacteria per sample. Populations of B. subtilis placed on aluminum coupons and subjected to an Earth-normal temperature (23 degrees C), pressure (1013 mb), and gas mix (normal N2/O2 ratio) but illuminated with a Mars-normal UV-VIS-NIR spectrum were reduced by over 99.9% after 30 sec exposure to Mars-normal UV fluence rates. However, it required at least 15 min of Mars-normal UV exposure to reduce bacterial populations on aluminum coupons to non-recoverable levels. These results were duplicated when bacteria were exposed to Mars-normal environments of temperature (-10 degrees C), pressure (8.5 mb), gas composition (pure CO2), and UV fluence rates. In other experiments, results indicated that the gas composition of the atmosphere and the temperature of the bacterial monolayers at the time of Mars UV exposure had no effects on the survival of bacterial endospores. But Mars-normal pressures (8.5 mb) were found to reduce survival by approximately 20-35% compared to Earth-normal pressures (1013 mb). The primary implications of these results are (a) that greater than 99.9% of bacterial populations on

  3. Simulation of windblown dust transport from a mine tailings impoundment using a computational fluid dynamics model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stovern, Michael; Felix, Omar; Csavina, Janae; Rine, Kyle P.; Russell, MacKenzie R.; Jones, Robert M.; King, Matt; Betterton, Eric A.; Sáez, A. Eduardo

    2014-09-01

    Mining operations are potential sources of airborne particulate metal and metalloid contaminants through both direct smelter emissions and wind erosion of mine tailings. The warmer, drier conditions predicted for the Southwestern US by climate models may make contaminated atmospheric dust and aerosols increasingly important, due to potential deleterious effects on human health and ecology. Dust emissions and dispersion of dust and aerosol from the Iron King Mine tailings in Dewey-Humboldt, Arizona, a Superfund site, are currently being investigated through in situ field measurements and computational fluid dynamics modeling. These tailings are heavily contaminated with lead and arsenic. Using a computational fluid dynamics model, we model dust transport from the mine tailings to the surrounding region. The model includes gaseous plume dispersion to simulate the transport of the fine aerosols, while individual particle transport is used to track the trajectories of larger particles and to monitor their deposition locations. In order to improve the accuracy of the dust transport simulations, both regional topographical features and local weather patterns have been incorporated into the model simulations. Results show that local topography and wind velocity profiles are the major factors that control deposition.

  4. Simulation of windblown dust transport from a mine tailings impoundment using a computational fluid dynamics model

    PubMed Central

    Stovern, Michael; Felix, Omar; Csavina, Janae; Rine, Kyle P.; Russell, MacKenzie R.; Jones, Robert M.; King, Matt; Betterton, Eric A.; Sáez, A. Eduardo

    2014-01-01

    Mining operations are potential sources of airborne particulate metal and metalloid contaminants through both direct smelter emissions and wind erosion of mine tailings. The warmer, drier conditions predicted for the Southwestern US by climate models may make contaminated atmospheric dust and aerosols increasingly important, due to potential deleterious effects on human health and ecology. Dust emissions and dispersion of dust and aerosol from the Iron King Mine tailings in Dewey-Humboldt, Arizona, a Superfund site, are currently being investigated through in situ field measurements and computational fluid dynamics modeling. These tailings are heavily contaminated with lead and arsenic. Using a computational fluid dynamics model, we model dust transport from the mine tailings to the surrounding region. The model includes gaseous plume dispersion to simulate the transport of the fine aerosols, while individual particle transport is used to track the trajectories of larger particles and to monitor their deposition locations. In order to improve the accuracy of the dust transport simulations, both regional topographical features and local weather patterns have been incorporated into the model simulations. Results show that local topography and wind velocity profiles are the major factors that control deposition. PMID:25621085

  5. Abrasion of Candidate Spacesuit Fabrics by Simulated Lunar Dust

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gaier, James R.; Meador, Mary Ann; Rogers, Kerry J.; Sheehy, Brennan H.

    2009-01-01

    A protocol has been developed that produced the type of lunar soil abrasion damage observed on Apollo spacesuits. This protocol was then applied to four materials (Kevlar(Registered TradeMark), Vectran(Registered TradeMark), Orthofabric, and Tyvek(Registered TradeMark)) that are candidates for advanced spacesuits. Three of the four new candidate fabrics (all but Vectran(Registered TradeMark)) were effective at keeping the dust from penetrating to layers beneath. In the cases of Kevlar(Registered TradeMark) and Orthofabric this was accomplished by the addition of a silicone layer. In the case of Tyvek , the paper structure was dense enough to block dust transport. The least abrasive damage was suffered by the Tyvek(Registered TradeMark). This was thought to be due in large part to its non-woven paper structure. The woven structures were all abraded where the top of the weave was struck by the abrasive. Of these, the Orthofabric suffered the least wear, with both Vectran(Registered TradeMark) and Kevlar(Registered TradeMark) suffering considerably more extensive filament breakage.

  6. Optical Dust Characterization in Manned Mars Analogue Research Stations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bos, B. J.; Krebs, Carolyn (Technical Monitor)

    2003-01-01

    Martian dust has been identified as a potentially serious hazard to any manned Mars landing mission. NASA and other organizations realize this risk and continue to support Martian dust research through the Matador project led by researchers at the University of Arizona. The Mars Society can contribute to this work by beginning a regimen of monitoring and measuring dust properties at its Mars analogue research stations. These research facilities offer the unique opportunity to study the transport and distribution of dust particles within a crewed habitat supporting active geologic exploration. Information regarding the amount, location and size of dust particles that may accumulate in a Mars habitat will be required to design a real Mars habitat and habitat equipment. Beginning such an effort does not require a large outlay of equipment and can be accomplished using crewmembers experienced with station operations. Various optical techniques, such as dark-field illumination, coupled with image processing algorithms enable the collection of dust grain relative size and frequency information. Such approaches can be applied in several different zones within the research stations to evaluate the various dust reduction and isolation procedures implemented during a particular crew rotation. As the stations simulation fidelity increases, the applicability of such data to a functional Mars lander will increase. This presentation describes the optical equipment and procedures for measuring dust properties in Mars analogue research stations that can be implemented during the next field season.

  7. Performance of a 19.7 Meter Diameter Disk-Gap-Band Parachute in a Simulated Martian Environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1968-01-01

    Performance of a 19.7 Meter Diameter Disk-Gap-Band Parachute in a Simulated Martian Environment. Inflation and drag characteristics of a 64.7-foot (19.7-meter) nominal-diameter disk-gap-band parachute deployed at a Mach number of 1.59 and a dynamic pressure of 11.6 psf (555 newtons per m(exp 2)) were obtained from the second balloon-launched flight test of the Planetary Entry Parachute Program. In addition, parachute stability characteristics during the subsonic descent portion of the test are presented. After deployment, the parachute rapidly inflated to a full condition, partially collapsed, and then reinflated to a stable configuration. After reinflation, an average drag coefficient of about 0.55 based on nominal surface area was obtained. The parachute exhibited good stability characteristics during descent. The only major damage to the parachute during the test was the tearing of two canopy panels; a loss of less than 0.5 percent of nominal surface area resulted. [Entire movie available on DVD from CASI as Doc ID 20070030997. Contact help@sti.nasa.gov

  8. Developing Subdomain Allocation Algorithms Based on Spatial and Communicational Constraints to Accelerate Dust Storm Simulation

    PubMed Central

    Gui, Zhipeng; Yu, Manzhu; Yang, Chaowei; Jiang, Yunfeng; Chen, Songqing; Xia, Jizhe; Huang, Qunying; Liu, Kai; Li, Zhenlong; Hassan, Mohammed Anowarul; Jin, Baoxuan

    2016-01-01

    Dust storm has serious disastrous impacts on environment, human health, and assets. The developments and applications of dust storm models have contributed significantly to better understand and predict the distribution, intensity and structure of dust storms. However, dust storm simulation is a data and computing intensive process. To improve the computing performance, high performance computing has been widely adopted by dividing the entire study area into multiple subdomains and allocating each subdomain on different computing nodes in a parallel fashion. Inappropriate allocation may introduce imbalanced task loads and unnecessary communications among computing nodes. Therefore, allocation is a key factor that may impact the efficiency of parallel process. An allocation algorithm is expected to consider the computing cost and communication cost for each computing node to minimize total execution time and reduce overall communication cost for the entire simulation. This research introduces three algorithms to optimize the allocation by considering the spatial and communicational constraints: 1) an Integer Linear Programming (ILP) based algorithm from combinational optimization perspective; 2) a K-Means and Kernighan-Lin combined heuristic algorithm (K&K) integrating geometric and coordinate-free methods by merging local and global partitioning; 3) an automatic seeded region growing based geometric and local partitioning algorithm (ASRG). The performance and effectiveness of the three algorithms are compared based on different factors. Further, we adopt the K&K algorithm as the demonstrated algorithm for the experiment of dust model simulation with the non-hydrostatic mesoscale model (NMM-dust) and compared the performance with the MPI default sequential allocation. The results demonstrate that K&K method significantly improves the simulation performance with better subdomain allocation. This method can also be adopted for other relevant atmospheric and numerical

  9. Developing Subdomain Allocation Algorithms Based on Spatial and Communicational Constraints to Accelerate Dust Storm Simulation.

    PubMed

    Gui, Zhipeng; Yu, Manzhu; Yang, Chaowei; Jiang, Yunfeng; Chen, Songqing; Xia, Jizhe; Huang, Qunying; Liu, Kai; Li, Zhenlong; Hassan, Mohammed Anowarul; Jin, Baoxuan

    2016-01-01

    Dust storm has serious disastrous impacts on environment, human health, and assets. The developments and applications of dust storm models have contributed significantly to better understand and predict the distribution, intensity and structure of dust storms. However, dust storm simulation is a data and computing intensive process. To improve the computing performance, high performance computing has been widely adopted by dividing the entire study area into multiple subdomains and allocating each subdomain on different computing nodes in a parallel fashion. Inappropriate allocation may introduce imbalanced task loads and unnecessary communications among computing nodes. Therefore, allocation is a key factor that may impact the efficiency of parallel process. An allocation algorithm is expected to consider the computing cost and communication cost for each computing node to minimize total execution time and reduce overall communication cost for the entire simulation. This research introduces three algorithms to optimize the allocation by considering the spatial and communicational constraints: 1) an Integer Linear Programming (ILP) based algorithm from combinational optimization perspective; 2) a K-Means and Kernighan-Lin combined heuristic algorithm (K&K) integrating geometric and coordinate-free methods by merging local and global partitioning; 3) an automatic seeded region growing based geometric and local partitioning algorithm (ASRG). The performance and effectiveness of the three algorithms are compared based on different factors. Further, we adopt the K&K algorithm as the demonstrated algorithm for the experiment of dust model simulation with the non-hydrostatic mesoscale model (NMM-dust) and compared the performance with the MPI default sequential allocation. The results demonstrate that K&K method significantly improves the simulation performance with better subdomain allocation. This method can also be adopted for other relevant atmospheric and numerical

  10. Simulation of a Martian Solar Thermal Power Plant - Diurnal Operation and Power-Efficiency Correlations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Badescu, V.; Popescu, G.; Feidt, M.

    A solar thermal power plant operating on Mars surface is analyzed in this work. During analysis meteorological data measured at Viking Landers (VL) sites were used. Our results show that during autumn at VL1 site, properly designed thermal power plant based on flat - plate solar collectors are comparable in performance with PV- based power systems. During a winter dust-storm day the maximum output power is much smaller than during autumn. High efficiency thermal engines is recommended to be used in combination with solar collectors kept perpendicular on Sun's rays. When a horizontal solar collector is considered, the dependence of the maximum output power on optimum solar efficiency seems to be quadratic at both VL1 and VL2 sites. When a collector perpendicular on Sun's rays is considered, this dependence is more complicate, but keeps the quadratic feature. A certain optimum solar efficiency threshold (around 5%) must be exceeded in order the system provide useful power. No obvious difference exists between power plant performance in the two years of VL2 operation.

  11. Simulation Study of Dust-scattered Far-ultraviolet Emission in the Orion-Eridanus Superbubble

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jo, Young-Soo; Min, Kyoung-Wook; Lim, Tae-Ho; Seon, Kwang-Il

    2012-09-01

    We present the results of dust scattering simulations carried out for the Orion-Eridanus Superbubble region by comparing them with observations made in the far-ultraviolet. The albedo and the phase function asymmetry factor (g-factor) of interstellar grains were estimated, as were the distance and thickness of the dust layers. The results are as follows: 0.43+0.02 - 0.04 for the albedo and 0.45+0.2 - 0.2 for the g-factor, in good agreement with previous determinations and theoretical predictions. The distance of the assumed single dust layer, modeled for the Orion Molecular Cloud Complex, was estimated to be ~110 pc and the thickness ranged from ~130 at the core to ~50 pc at the boundary for the region of present interest, implying that the dust cloud is located in front of the superbubble. The simulation result also indicates that a thin (~10 pc) dust shell surrounds the inner X-ray cavities of hot gas at a distance of ~70-90 pc.

  12. Formation of the Martian Polar Layered Terrains: Quantifying Polar Water Ice and Dust Surface Deposition During Current and Past Orbital Epochs with the NASA Ames GCM

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Emmett, J. A.; Murphy, J. R.

    2016-09-01

    The NASA Ames GCM will be used to quantify net annual polar deposition rates of water ice and dust on Mars during current and past orbital epochs to investigate the formation history, structure, and stratigraphy of the polar layered terrains.

  13. The martian surface.

    PubMed

    Opik, E J

    1966-07-15

    smaller than the "saturation density" of lunar highlands. Many primeval craters, those from the last impacts which formed the planet, must have become erased, either by late impacts of preferentially surviving large asteroids or by a primeval atmosphere which rapidly escaped. The tenuous Martian atmosphere may have originated entirely from outgassing of surface rocks by asteroidal impacts, which also could have produced some molten lava. The role of genuine volcanism on Mars must have been insignificant, if any. The large amplitude in temperature indicates that the Martian upper soil, equally in the bright and the dark areas, is of a porous unconsolidated structure, with a thermal conductivity as low as that of atmospheric air. Limb darkening at full phase in green, yellow, and red light indicates absorption by atmospheric haze, aerosols, and dust. The loss of contrast in the blue and violet is caused by stronger absorptivity of the haze, which is almost as dark as soot, and not by a true decrease in contrast of the surface markings. Photometric measurementsin the blue reveal a residual contrast of 5 to 7 percent between the markings in 1958, invisible to the eye at a time when there was no "blue clearing." The surface brightness of the maria was surprisingly uniform in 1958 (late summer in the southern hemisphere), while the continentes showed considerable variation. In view of the spotty microstructure of the Martian surface as revealed by Mariner IV, and the lack of a sharp border between a mare and a continens, it seems that all the difference consists in the relative number of small dark and bright areas in the surface mosaic. If there is vegetation on Mars, it should be concentrated in the darkarea elements, measuring 10 to 100 kilometers. Vegetation is the best hypothesis to account for seasonal changes in the maria and for the persistence of these formations despite dust storms of global extent. Survival of vegetation in the extreme dryness of the Martian climate

  14. Effect of nontronite smectite clay on the chemical evolution of several organic molecules under simulated martian surface ultraviolet radiation conditions.

    PubMed

    Poch, Olivier; Jaber, Maguy; Stalport, Fabien; Nowak, Sophie; Georgelin, Thomas; Lambert, Jean-François; Szopa, Cyril; Coll, Patrice

    2015-03-01

    Most of the phyllosilicates detected at the surface of Mars today are probably remnants of ancient environments that sustained long-term bodies of liquid water at the surface or subsurface and were possibly favorable for the emergence of life. Consequently, phyllosilicates have become the main mineral target in the search for organics on Mars. But are phyllosilicates efficient at preserving organic molecules under current environmental conditions at the surface of Mars? We monitored the qualitative and quantitative evolutions of glycine, urea, and adenine in interaction with the Fe(3+)-smectite clay nontronite, one of the most abundant phyllosilicates present at the surface of Mars, under simulated martian surface ultraviolet light (190-400 nm), mean temperature (218 ± 2 K), and pressure (6 ± 1 mbar) in a laboratory simulation setup. We tested organic-rich samples that were representative of the evaporation of a small, warm pond of liquid water containing a high concentration of organics. For each molecule, we observed how the nontronite influences its quantum efficiency of photodecomposition and the nature of its solid evolution products. The results reveal a pronounced photoprotective effect of nontronite on the evolution of glycine and adenine; their efficiencies of photodecomposition were reduced by a factor of 5 when mixed at a concentration of 2.6 × 10(-2) mol of molecules per gram of nontronite. Moreover, when the amount of nontronite in the sample of glycine was increased by a factor of 2, the gain of photoprotection was multiplied by a factor of 5. This indicates that the photoprotection provided by the nontronite is not a purely mechanical shielding effect but is also due to stabilizing interactions. No new evolution product was firmly identified, but the results obtained with urea suggest a particular reactivity in the presence of nontronite, leading to an increase of its dissociation rate.

  15. Chemical reactivity of the Martian soil

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zent, A. P.; Mckay, C. P.

    1992-01-01

    The Viking life sciences experimental packages detected extraordinary chemical activity in the martian soil, probably the result of soil-surface chemistry. At least one very strong oxidant may exist in the martian soil. The electrochemical nature of the martian soil has figured prominently in discussions of future life sciences research on Mars. Putative oxidants in the martian soil may be responsible for the destruction of organic material to considerable depth, precluding the recovery of reducing material that may be relic of early biological forms. Also, there have been serious expressions of concern regarding the effect that soil oxidants may have on human health and safety. The concern here has centered on the possible irritation of the respiratory system due to dust carried into the martian habitat through the air locks.

  16. Transcriptomic responses of germinating Bacillus subtilis spores exposed to 1.5 years of space and simulated martian conditions on the EXPOSE-E experiment PROTECT.

    PubMed

    Nicholson, Wayne L; Moeller, Ralf; Horneck, Gerda

    2012-05-01

    Because of their ubiquity and resistance to spacecraft decontamination, bacterial spores are considered likely potential forward contaminants on robotic missions to Mars. Thus, it is important to understand their global responses to long-term exposure to space or martian environments. As part of the PROTECT experiment, spores of B. subtilis 168 were exposed to real space conditions and to simulated martian conditions for 559 days in low-Earth orbit mounted on the EXPOSE-E exposure platform outside the European Columbus module on the International Space Station. Upon return, spores were germinated, total RNA extracted, fluorescently labeled, and used to probe a custom Bacillus subtilis microarray to identify genes preferentially activated or repressed relative to ground control spores. Increased transcript levels were detected for a number of stress-related regulons responding to DNA damage (SOS response, SPβ prophage induction), protein damage (CtsR/Clp system), oxidative stress (PerR regulon), and cell envelope stress (SigV regulon). Spores exposed to space demonstrated a much broader and more severe stress response than spores exposed to simulated martian conditions. The results are discussed in the context of planetary protection for a hypothetical journey of potential forward contaminant spores from Earth to Mars and their subsequent residence on Mars.

  17. Self-Consistent Simulation of the Brownian Stage of Dust Growth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kempf, S.; Pfalzner, S.; Henning, Th.

    1996-01-01

    It is a widely accepted view that in proto-planetary accretion disks the collision and following sticking of dust particles embedded in the gas eventually leads to the formation of planetesimals (coagulation). For the smallest dust grains, Brownian motion is assumed to be the dominant source of their relative velocities leading to collisions between these dust grains. As the dust grains grow they eventually couple to the turbulent motion of the gas which then drives the coagulation much more efficiently. Many numerical coagulation simulations have been carried out to calculate the fractal dimension of the aggregates, which determines the duration of the ineffective Brownian stage of growth. Predominantly on-lattice and off-lattice methods were used. However, both methods require simplification of the astrophysical conditions. The aggregates found by those methods had a fractal dimension of approximately 2 which is equivalent to a constant, mass-independent friction time. If this value were valid for the conditions in an accretion disk, this would mean that the coagulation process would finally 'freeze out' and the growth of a planetesimal would be impossible within the lifetime of an accretion disk. In order to investigate whether this fractal dimension is model independent, we simulate self-consistently the Brownian stage of the coagulation by an N-particle code. This method has the advantage that no further assumptions about homogeneity of the dust have to be made. In our model, the dust grains are considered as aggregates built up of spheres. The equation of motion of the dust grains is based on the probability density for the diffusive transport within the gas atmosphere. Because of the very low number density of the dust grains, only 2-body-collisions have to be considered. As the Brownian stage of growth is very inefficient, the system is to be simulated over long periods of time. In order to find close particle pairs of the system which are most likely to

  18. Impact of improved soil climatology and intialization on WRF-chem dust simulations over West Asia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Omid Nabavi, Seyed; Haimberger, Leopold; Samimi, Cyrus

    2016-04-01

    Meteorological forecast models such as WRF-chem are designed to forecast not only standard atmospheric parameters but also aerosol, particularly mineral dust concentrations. It has therefore become an important tool for the prediction of dust storms in West Asia where dust storms have the considerable impact on living conditions. However, verification of forecasts against satellite data indicates only moderate skill in prediction of such events. Earlier studies have already indicated that the erosion factor, land use classification, soil moisture, and temperature initializations play a critical role in the accuracy of WRF-chem dust simulations. In the standard setting the erosion factor and land use classification are based on topographic variations and post-processed images of the advanced very high-resolution radiometer (AVHRR) during the period April 1992-March 1993. Furthermore, WRF-chem is normally initialized by the soil moisture and temperature of Final Analysis (FNL) model on 1.0x1.0 degree grids. In this study, we have changed boundary initial conditions so that they better represent current changing environmental conditions. To do so, land use (only bare soil class) and the erosion factor were both modified using information from MODIS deep blue AOD (Aerosol Optical Depth). In this method, bare soils are where the relative frequency of dust occurrence (deep blue AOD > 0.5) is more than one-third of a given month. Subsequently, the erosion factor, limited within the bare soil class, is determined by the monthly frequency of dust occurrence ranging from 0.3 to 1. It is worth to mention, that 50 percent of calculated erosion factor is afterward assigned to sand class while silt and clay classes each gain 25 percent of it. Soil moisture and temperature from the Global Land Data Assimilation System (GLDAS) were utilized to provide these initializations in higher resolution of 0.25 degree than in the standard setting. Modified and control simulations were

  19. WRF-Chem model simulations of a dust outbreak over the central Mediterranean and comparison with multi-sensor desert dust observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rizza, Umberto; Barnaba, Francesca; Marcello Miglietta, Mario; Mangia, Cristina; Di Liberto, Luca; Dionisi, Davide; Costabile, Francesca; Grasso, Fabio; Gobbi, Gian Paolo

    2017-01-01

    In this study, the Weather Research and Forecasting model with online coupled chemistry (WRF-Chem) is applied to simulate an intense Saharan dust outbreak event that took place over the Mediterranean in May 2014. Comparison of a simulation using a physics-based desert dust emission scheme with a numerical experiment using a simplified (minimal) emission scheme is included to highlight the advantages of the former. The model was found to reproduce well the synoptic meteorological conditions driving the dust outbreak: an omega-like pressure configuration associated with a cyclogenesis in the Atlantic coasts of Spain. The model performances in reproducing the atmospheric desert dust load were evaluated using a multi-platform observational dataset of aerosol and desert dust properties, including optical properties from satellite and ground-based sun photometers and lidars, plus in situ particulate matter mass concentration (PM) data. This comparison allowed us to investigate the model ability in reproducing both the horizontal and the vertical displacement of the dust plume, as well as its evolution in time. The comparison with satellite (MODIS-Terra) and sun photometers (AERONET) showed that the model is able to reproduce well the horizontal field of the aerosol optical depth (AOD) and its evolution in time (temporal correlation coefficient with AERONET of 0.85). On the vertical scale, the comparison with lidar data at a single site (Rome, Italy) confirms that the desert dust advection occurs in several, superimposed "pulses" as simulated by the model. Cross-analysis of the modeled AOD and desert dust emission fluxes further allowed for the source regions of the observed plumes to be inferred. The vertical displacement of the modeled dust plume was in rather good agreement with the lidar soundings, with correlation coefficients among aerosol extinction profiles up to 1 and mean discrepancy of about 50 %. The model-measurement comparison for PM10 and PM2.5 showed a

  20. Laboratory simulation and modeling of size, shape distributed interstellar graphite dust analogues: A comparative study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Boruah, Manash J.; Gogoi, Ankur; Ahmed, Gazi A.

    2016-06-01

    The computation of the light scattering properties of size and shape distributed interstellar graphite dust analogues using discrete dipole approximation (DDA) is presented. The light scattering properties of dust particles of arbitrary shapes having sizes ranging from 0.5 to 5.0 μm were computed using DDSCAT 7.3.0 software package and an indigenously developed post-processing tool for size and shape averaging. In order to model realistic samples of graphite dust and compute their light scattering properties using DDA, different target geometries were generated to represent the graphite particle composition in terms of surface smoothness, surface roughness and aggregation or their combination, for using as the target for DDSCAT calculations. A comparison of the theoretical volume scattering function at 543.5 nm and 632.8 nm incident wavelengths with laboratory simulation is also presented in this paper.

  1. Impact of Lunar Dust on the Exploration Initiative

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stubbs, T. J.; Vondrak, R. R.; Farrell, W. M.

    2005-01-01

    From the Apollo era it is known that dust on the Moon can cause serious problems for exploration activities. Such problems include adhering to clothing and equipment, reducing external visibility on landings, and causing difficulty to breathing and vision within the spacecraft. An important step in dealing with dust-related problems is to understand how dust grains behave in the lunar environment. All astronauts who walked on the Moon reported difficulties with lunar dust. Eugene Cernan, commander of Apollo 17, stated that one of the most aggravating, restricting facets of lunar surface exploration is the dust and its adherence to everything no matter what kind of material, whether it be skin, suit material, metal, no matter what it be and it's restrictive friction-like action to everything it gets on. Dust has also been highlighted as a priority by the Mars Exploration Program Assessment Group (MEPAG): 1A. Characterize both aeolian dust and particulates that would be kicked up from the martian regolith by surface operations of a human mission with fidelity sufficient to establish credible engineering simulation labs and/or software codes on Earth. We shall briefly describe the properties of lunar dust and its impact on the Apollo astronauts, and then summarize three main problems areas for understanding its behavior: Dust Adhesion and Abrasion, Surface Electric Fields and Dust Transport. These issues are all inter-related and must be well understood in order to minimize the impact of dust on lunar surface exploration.

  2. Effect of Lunar Dust Simulant on Wound Healing: An In Vitro Study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Monici, Monica; Cialdai, Francesca; Lulli, Matteo; Capaccioli, Sergio; Marziliano, Nicola; Sundaresan, Alamelu

    2013-02-01

    Lunar dust properties are partly unknown and even less known are the effects on human health. Based on reports of the Apollo astronauts and studies performed so far, it is expected that lunar dust could cause skin, ocular and respiratory diseases. Since lunar dust is very pervasive, it could easily contaminate any injuries, abrasions, burns and alter the healing process. On the basis of this hypothesis we studied the effect of a lunar dust simulant on the behavior of dermal fibroblasts, which play a crucial role in wound healing. Cell viability, morphology, proliferation, apoptosis, ability to adhere to substrate and migrate to heal a wound, gene expression profile were assessed at 1, 3 and 6 days of treatment and compared with untreated controls. The results showed strong increase in apoptosis, decrease in cell viability and proliferation, cytoskeletal and morphological alterations. The ability to adhere to a substrate as well as migrate and heal a wound decreased. The findings indicate that, in case of wounds, ulcers or burns, lunar dust contamination could impair healing since it alters the behaviour of fibroblasts.

  3. Comparison of dust charging between orbital-motion-limited theory and particle-in-cell simulations

    SciTech Connect

    Delzanno, Gian Luca Tang, Xian-Zhu

    2015-11-15

    The Orbital-Motion-Limited (OML) theory has been modified to predict the dust charge and the results were contrasted with the Whipple approximation [X. Z. Tang and G. L. Delzanno, Phys. Plasmas 21, 123708 (2014)]. To further establish its regime of applicability, in this paper, the OML predictions (for a non-electron-emitting, spherical dust grain at rest in a collisionless, unmagnetized plasma) are compared with particle-in-cell simulations that retain the absorption radius effect. It is found that for large dust grain radius r{sub d} relative to the plasma Debye length λ{sub D}, the revised OML theory remains a very good approximation as, for the parameters considered (r{sub d}/λ{sub D} ≤ 10, equal electron and ion temperatures), it yields the dust charge to within 20% accuracy. This is a substantial improvement over the Whipple approximation. The dust collected currents and energy fluxes, which remain the same in the revised and standard OML theories, are accurate to within 15%–30%.

  4. Molecular Dynamics Simulations of the Interactions Between Tungsten Dust and Beryllium Plasma-Facing Material

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Niu, Guojian; Li, Xiaochun; Xu, Qian; Yang, Zhongshi; Luo, Guangnan

    2015-12-01

    In the present research, molecular dynamics simulation is applied to study the interactions between tungsten dusts and a beryllium plasma-facing material surface. Calculation results show that it is quite difficult for nanometer-size dust particles to damage the plasma-facing material surface, which is different from the micrometer-size ones. The reason may be the size difference between dust and crystal grains. The depth of dust penetration into plasma-facing materials is closely related to the incident velocity, and the impacting angle also plays an important role. Dust and material surface damage is also investigated. Results show that both incident velocity and angle can significantly influence the damage. supported by the National Magnetic Confinement Fusion Science Program of China (Nos. 2013GB105001, 2013GB105002, and 2015GB109001), National Natural Science Foundation of China (Nos. 11205198, 11305213 and 11405201), as well as Technological Development Grant of Hefei Science Center of CAS (No. 2014TDG-HSC003)

  5. Survival of endospores of Bacillus subtilis on spacecraft surfaces under simulated martian environments: implications for the forward contamination of Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schuerger, Andrew C.; Mancinelli, Rocco L.; Kern, Roger G.; Rothschild, Lynn J.; McKay, Christopher P.

    2003-01-01

    Experiments were conducted in a Mars simulation chamber (MSC) to characterize the survival of endospores of Bacillus subtilis under high UV irradiation and simulated martian conditions. The MSC was used to create Mars surface environments in which pressure (8.5 mb), temperature (-80, -40, -10, or +23 degrees C), gas composition (Earth-normal N2/O2 mix, pure N2, pure CO2, or a Mars gas mix), and UV-VIS-NIR fluence rates (200-1200 nm) were maintained within tight limits. The Mars gas mix was composed of CO2 (95.3%), N2 (2.7%), Ar (1.7%), O2 (0.2%), and water vapor (0.03%). Experiments were conducted to measure the effects of pressure, gas composition, and temperature alone or in combination with Mars-normal UV-VIS-NIR light environments. Endospores of B. subtilis, were deposited on aluminum coupons as monolayers in which the average density applied to coupons was 2.47 x 10(6) bacteria per sample. Populations of B. subtilis placed on aluminum coupons and subjected to an Earth-normal temperature (23 degrees C), pressure (1013 mb), and gas mix (normal N2/O2 ratio) but illuminated with a Mars-normal UV-VIS-NIR spectrum were reduced by over 99.9% after 30 sec exposure to Mars-normal UV fluence rates. However, it required at least 15 min of Mars-normal UV exposure to reduce bacterial populations on aluminum coupons to non-recoverable levels. These results were duplicated when bacteria were exposed to Mars-normal environments of temperature (-10 degrees C), pressure (8.5 mb), gas composition (pure CO2), and UV fluence rates. In other experiments, results indicated that the gas composition of the atmosphere and the temperature of the bacterial monolayers at the time of Mars UV exposure had no effects on the survival of bacterial endospores. But Mars-normal pressures (8.5 mb) were found to reduce survival by approximately 20-35% compared to Earth-normal pressures (1013 mb). The primary implications of these results are (a) that greater than 99.9% of bacterial populations on

  6. Effects of Lunar Dust Simulant (JSC-1A-vf) on WI-38 Human Embryonic Lung Cells

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Currie, Stephen; Hammond, Dianne; Jeevarajan, Anthony

    2007-01-01

    In order to develop appropriate countermeasures for NASA's return mission to the moon, the potential toxicity of lunar dust needs to be examined. Due to its abrasiveness, reactivity, composition and small size, lunar dust may pose a serious health risk to astronauts who inhale it. This project focuses on the toxicity of lunar dust simulant (JSC-1A-vf) using WI-38 human embryonic lung cells. Past results show that the simulant has toxic effects on small animals using intratracheal instillation. Earlier studies in this lab suggest that the dust remaining in media after low speed centrifugation is toxic. In order to better assess its toxicity, the simulant has been diluted in media, filtered with a 5 micron filter before combining it with media. This filtered dust is compared with dust centrifuged in media. Whole dust toxicity is also tested. Toxicity is estimated using a 3-(4,5-Dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide (MTT) toxicity test which measures the activity of reducing enzymes in the mitochondria of viable cells. Preliminary results suggest that simulant which is diluted in media at different concentrations is slightly toxic. Interestingly, the cells appear to sweep up and collect the simulant. Whether this contributes to its toxicity is unclear. This project provides possible toxicity testing protocols for lunar dust and contributes to the knowledge of nanosize particle toxicity.

  7. Dust transport and abrasion assessment within simulated standing vegetation

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Crop residues are useful in protecting the top soil from depletion and abrasion due to wind erosion. A wind tunnel study was done to measure sand transport and abrasion energies within the simulated artificial standing vegetation. Wind profiles, relative abrasion energies and rates of sand dischar...

  8. Martian seismicity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, Roger J.; Grimm, Robert E.

    1991-01-01

    The design and ultimate success of network seismology experiments on Mars depends on the present level of Martian seismicity. Volcanic and tectonic landforms observed from imaging experiments show that Mars must have been a seismically active planet in the past and there is no reason to discount the notion that Mars is seismically active today but at a lower level of activity. Models are explored for present day Mars seismicity. Depending on the sensitivity and geometry of a seismic network and the attenuation and scattering properties of the interior, it appears that a reasonable number of Martian seismic events would be detected over the period of a decade. The thermoelastic cooling mechanism as estimated is surely a lower bound, and a more refined estimate would take into account specifically the regional cooling of Tharsis and lead to a higher frequency of seismic events.

  9. Martian Magnets Under the Microscope

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    NASA's Mars Exploration Rover Spirit acquired this microscopic imager view of its capture magnet on sol 92 (April 6, 2004). Both Spirit and the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity are equipped with a number of magnets. The capture magnet, as seen here, has a stronger charge than its sidekick, the filter magnet. The lower-powered filter magnet captures only the most magnetic airborne dust with the strongest charges, while the capture magnet picks up all magnetic airborne dust.

    The magnets' primary purpose is to collect the martian magnetic dust so that scientists can analyze it with the rovers' Moessbauer spectrometers. While there is plenty of dust on the surface of Mars, it is difficult to confirm where it came from, and when it was last airborne. Because scientists are interested in learning about the properties of the dust in the atmosphere, they devised this dust-collection experiment.

    The capture magnet is about 4.5 centimeters (1.8 inches) in diameter and is constructed with a central cylinder and three rings, each with alternating orientations of magnetization. Scientists have been monitoring the continual accumulation of dust since the beginning of the mission with panoramic camera and microscopic imager images. They had to wait until enough dust accumulated before they could get a Moessbauer spectrometer analysis. The results of that analysis, performed on sol 92, have not been sent back to Earth yet.

  10. Lunar Dust and Lunar Simulant Activation, Monitoring, Solution and Cellular Toxicity Properties

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jeevarajan, A.S.; Wallace, W.T.

    2009-01-01

    During the Apollo missions, many undesirable situations were encountered that must be mitigated prior to returning humans to the moon. Lunar dust (that part of the lunar regolith less than 20 m in diameter) was found to produce several problems with astronaut s suits and helmets, mechanical seals and equipment, and could have conceivably produced harmful physiological effects for the astronauts. For instance, the abrasive nature of the dust was found to cause malfunctions of various joints and seals of the spacecraft and suits. Additionally, though efforts were made to exclude lunar dust from the cabin of the lunar module, a significant amount of material nonetheless found its way inside. With the loss of gravity correlated with ascent of the lunar module from the lunar surface to rendezvous with the command module, much of the major portions of the contaminating soil and dust began to float, irritating the astronaut s eyes and being inhaled into their lungs. Our goal has been to understand some of the properties of lunar dust that could lead to possible hazards for humans. Due to the lack of an atmosphere, there is nothing to protect the lunar soil from ultraviolet radiation, solar wind, and meteorite impacts. These processes could all serve to activate the soil, or produce reactive surface species. In order to understand the possible toxic effects of the reactive dust, it is necessary to reactivate the dust, as samples returned during the Apollo missions were exposed to the atmosphere of the Earth. We have used grinding and UV exposure to mimic some of the processes occurring on the Moon. The level of activation has been monitored using two methods: fluorescence spectroscopy and electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy (EPR). These techniques allow the monitoring of hydroxyl radical production in solution. We have found that grinding of lunar dust produces 2-3 times the concentration of hydroxyl radicals as lunar simulant and 10 times that of quartz. Exposure

  11. Modeling, simulation, and high-autonomy control of a Martian oxygen production plant

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schooley, L. C.; Cellier, F. E.; Wang, F.-Y.; Zeigler, B. P.

    1992-01-01

    Progress on a project for the development of a high-autonomy intelligent command and control architecture for process plants used to produce oxygen from local planetary resources is reported. A distributed command and control architecture is being developed and implemented so that an oxygen production plant, or other equipment, can be reliably commanded and controlled over an extended time period in a high-autonomy mode with high-level task-oriented teleoperation from one or several remote locations. During the reporting period, progress was made at all levels of the architecture. At the remote site, several remote observers can now participate in monitoring the plant. At the local site, a command and control center was introduced for increased flexibility, reliability, and robustness. The local control architecture was enhanced to control multiple tubes in parallel, and was refined for increased robustness. The simulation model was enhanced to full dynamics descriptions.

  12. The Martian rotation from Doppler measurements: Simulations of future radioscience experiments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Péters, Marie-Julie; Yseboodt, Marie; Dehant, Véronique; Le Maistre, Sebastien; Marty, Jean-Charles

    2016-10-01

    The radioscience experiment onboard the future InSight and ExoMars missions consists in two-way Doppler shift measurement from a X-band radio link between a lander on Mars and the ground stations on Earth. The Doppler effect on the radio signal is related to the revolution of the planets around the Sun and to the variations of the orientation and the rotation of Mars. The variations of the orientation of the rotation axis are the precession and nutations, related to the deep interior of Mars and the variations of the rotation rate are the length-of-day variation, related to the dynamic of the atmosphere.We perform numerical simulations of the Doppler measurements in order to quantify the precision that can be achieved on the determination of the Mars rotation and orientation parameters (MOP). For this purpose, we use the GINS (Géodésie par Intégrations Numériques Simultanées) software developed by the CNES and further adapted at the Royal Observatory of Belgium for planetary geodesy applications. This software enables to simulate the relative motion of the lander at the surface of Mars relative to the ground stations and to compute the MOP signature on the Doppler shift. The signature is the difference between the Doppler observable estimated taking into account a MOP and the Doppler estimated without this parameter.The objective is to build a strategy to be applied to future data processing in order to improve our estimation of the MOP. We study the effect of the elevation of the Earth in the sky of the lander, of the tracking duration and number of pass per week, of the tracking time, of the lander position and of Doppler geometry on the signatures. Indeed, due to the geometry, the Doppler data are highly sensitive to the position variations along the line of sight.

  13. Laboratory Simulations of Permeability Pertaining to Biosignature Development and Preservation Potential for Martian Subsurface Habitability

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Perl, S. M.; Corsetti, F. A.; Berelson, W.; Nealson, K. H.; Bhartia, R.

    2014-12-01

    Sedimentological and mineralogical observations indicate that sandstones within the Eagle and Endurance crater sections of the Burns Formation of Meridiani Planum, Mars, were derived from sulfate-bearing altered basalt, possibly from a playa lake, and deposited by eolian and locally subaqueous processes in a eolian dune - sand sheet - interdune setting. Abrasion of rocks within the outcrop outlining Endurance Crater by the MER rover Opportunity revealed void spaces later determined to be secondary pore space created from the dissolution of soluble minerals from multiple groundwater movement (recharge) events. Previous investigations into the secondary porosity and permeability of rocks within the Karatepe section showed that the ability for fluid movement through the vertical sedimentary section was greatest between the Upper and Middle units at the Whatanga contact within Endurance Crater, where secondary porosity was measured to be ~40% of the rock. Our investigations into quantifying subsurface habitability involve simulating the paleo-groundwater environments on the micro-to-mesoscale (sub mm-scale to cm-scale) to determine how preservation potential changes with repeated water-rock interaction, varying fluid chemistry (pH, salinity, T, others), and pressure changes under Earth and Mars conditions. In addition to fluids, microbes (extremophiles) will be introduced into our simulation to observe how changing experimental input conditions impact the growth and development of biotic interactions and eventually biosignatures left behind within sedimentary microtextures. Moreover, detection of biosignatures using visual and UV methods will help inform the M2020 rover mission regarding in-situ analysis of abraded rock outcrops. Finally, results of this work will use terrestrial rocks and fluids from a known Mars analogue (the Rio Tinto basin) in order to aid in determining habitability and survivability in acidic and high saline conditions that are similar to

  14. Radon-222 and Polonium-210 in the Martian Atmosphere: A New Insight into the Exchange of Volatiles and the Dust Cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Meslin, P.-Y.; Sabroux, J.-C.; Chassefière, E.; Pineau, J.-F.

    2007-03-01

    We expose how 222radon and 210polonium can be used as geochemical probes to characterize the subsurface (water and 238U content, gas exchange) and the dust cycle. We present the first evidence of 210Po on Mars and make comparisons with the Moon.

  15. A Model for Generation of Martian Surface Dust, Soil and Rock Coatings: Physical vs. Chemical Interactions, and Palagonitic Plus Hydrothermal Alteration

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bishop, J. L.; Murchie, S.; Pieters, C.; Zent, A.

    1999-01-01

    This model is one of many possible scenarios to explain the generation of the current surface material on Mars using chemical, magnetic and spectroscopic data from Mars and geologic analogs from terrestrial sites. One basic premise is that there are physical and chemical interactions of the atmospheric dust particles and that these two processes create distinctly different results. Physical processes distribute dust particles on rocks, forming physical rock coatings, and on the surface between rocks forming soil units; these are reversible processes. Chemical reactions of the dust/soil particles create alteration rinds on rock surfaces or duricrust surface units, both of which are relatively permanent materials. According to this model the mineral components of the dust/soil particles are derived from a combination of "typical" palagonitic weathering of volcanic ash and hydrothermally altered components, primarily from steam vents or fumeroles. Both of these altered materials are composed of tiny particles, about 1 micron or smaller, that are aggregates of silicates and iron oxide/oxyhydroxide/sulfate phases. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  16. Martian thermal boundary layers: Subhourly variations induced by radiative-conductive heat transfer within the dust-laden atmosphere-ground system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pallmann, A. J.; Dannevik, W. P.; Frisella, S. P.

    1973-01-01

    Radiative-conductive heat transfer has been investigated for the ground-atmosphere system of the planet Mars. The basic goal was the quantitative determination of time dependent vertical distributions of temperature and static stability for Southern-Hemispheric summer season and middle and polar latitudes, for both dust-free and dust-laden atmospheric conditions. The numerical algorithm which models at high spatial and temporal resolution the thermal energy transports in the dual ground-atmosphere system, is based on solution of the applicable heating rate equation, including radiative and molecular-conductive heat transport terms. The two subsystems are coupled by an internal thermal boundary condition applied at the ground-atmosphere interface level. Initial data and input parameters are based on Mariner 4, 6, 7, and 9 measurements and the JPL Mars Scientific Model. Numerical experiments were run for dust-free and dust-laden conditions in the midlatitudes, as well as ice-free and ice-covered polar regions. Representative results and their interpretation are presented. Finally, the theoretical framework of the generalized problem with nonconservative Mie scattering and explicit thermal-convective heat transfer is formulated, and applicable solution algorithms are outlined.

  17. Effects of Palagonitic Dust Coatings on Thermal Emission Spectra of Rocks and Minerals: Implications for Mineralogical Characterization of the Martian Surface by MGS-TES

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Graff, T. G.; Morris, R.; Christensen, P.

    2001-01-01

    Thermal emission measurements on dust-coated rocks and minerals show that a 300 5m thick layer is required to mask emission from the substrate and that non-linear effects are present. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  18. Walking in simulated Martian gravity: influence of the portable life support system's design on dynamic stability.

    PubMed

    Scott-Pandorf, Melissa M; O'Connor, Daniel P; Layne, Charles S; Josić, Kresimir; Kurz, Max J

    2009-09-01

    With human exploration of the moon and Mars on the horizon, research considerations for space suit redesign have surfaced. The portable life support system (PLSS) used in conjunction with the space suit during the Apollo missions may have influenced the dynamic balance of the gait pattern. This investigation explored potential issues with the PLSS design that may arise during the Mars exploration. A better understanding of how the location of the PLSS load influences the dynamic stability of the gait pattern may provide insight, such that space missions may have more productive missions with a smaller risk of injury and damaging equipment while falling. We explored the influence the PLSS load position had on the dynamic stability of the walking pattern. While walking, participants wore a device built to simulate possible PLSS load configurations. Floquet and Lyapunov analysis techniques were used to quantify the dynamic stability of the gait pattern. The dynamic stability of the gait pattern was influenced by the position of load. PLSS loads that are placed high and forward on the torso resulted in less dynamically stable walking patterns than loads placed evenly and low on the torso. Furthermore, the kinematic results demonstrated that all joints of the lower extremity may be important for adjusting to different load placements and maintaining dynamic stability. Space scientists and engineers may want to consider PLSS designs that distribute loads evenly and low, and space suit designs that will not limit the sagittal plane range of motion at the lower extremity joints.

  19. Effects of lunar and mars dust simulants on HaCaT keratinocytes and CHO-K1 fibroblasts

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rehders, Maren; Grosshäuser, Bianka B.; Smarandache, Anita; Sadhukhan, Annapurna; Mirastschijski, Ursula; Kempf, Jürgen; Dünne, Matthias; Slenzka, Klaus; Brix, Klaudia

    2011-04-01

    Exposure to lunar dust during Apollo missions resulted in occasional reports of ocular, respiratory and dermal irritations which showed that lunar dust has a risk potential for human health. This is caused by its high reactivity as well as its small size, leading to a wide distribution also inside habitats. Hence, detailed information regarding effects of extraterrestrial lunar dusts on human health is required to best support future missions to moon, mars or other destinations. In this study, we used several methods to assess the specific effects of extraterrestrial dusts onto mammalian skin by exposing HaCaT keratinocytes and CHO-K1 fibroblasts to dusts simulating lunar or mars soils. These particular cell types were chosen because the skin protects the human body from potentially harmful substances and because a well orchestrated program ensures proper wound healing. Keratinocytes and fibroblasts were exposed to the dusts for different durations of time and their effects on morphology and viability of the cells were determined. Cytotoxicity was measured using the MTT assay and by monitoring culture impedance, while phalloidin staining of the actin cytoskeleton was performed to address structural integrity of the cells which was also investigated by propidium iodide intake. It was found that the effects of the two types of dust simulants on the different features of both cell lines varied to a considerable extent. Moreover, proliferation of HaCaT keratinocytes, as analyzed by Ki67 labeling, was suppressed in sub-confluent cultures exposed to lunar dust simulant. Furthermore, experimental evidence is provided for a delay in regeneration of keratinocyte monolayers from scratch-wounding when exposed to lunar dust simulant. The obtained results will facilitate further investigations of dust exposure during wound healing and will ease risk assessment studies e.g., for lunar lander approaches. The investigations will help to determine safety measures to be taken during

  20. Accuracy of core mass estimates in simulated observations of dust emission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Malinen, J.; Juvela, M.; Collins, D. C.; Lunttila, T.; Padoan, P.

    2011-06-01

    Aims: We study the reliability of the mass estimates obtained for molecular cloud cores using sub-millimetre and infrared dust emission. Methods: We use magnetohydrodynamic simulations and radiative transfer to produce synthetic observations with spatial resolution and noise levels typical of Herschel surveys. We estimate dust colour temperatures using different pairs of intensities, calculate column densities with opacity at one wavelength, and compare the estimated masses with the true values. We compare these results to the case when all five Herschel wavelengths are available. We investigate the effects of spatial variations of dust properties and the influence of embedded heating sources. Results: Wrong assumptions of dust opacity and its spectral index β can cause significant systematic errors in mass estimates. These are mainly multiplicative and leave the slope of the mass spectrum intact, unless cores with very high optical depth are included. Temperature variations bias the colour temperature estimates and, in quiescent cores with optical depths higher than for normal stable cores, masses can be underestimated by up to one order of magnitude. When heated by internal radiation sources, the dust in the core centre becomes visible and the observations recover the true mass spectra. Conclusions: The shape, although not the position, of the mass spectrum is reliable against observational errors and biases introduced in the analysis. This changes only if the cores have optical depths much higher than expected for basic hydrostatic equilibrium conditions. Observations underestimate the value of β whenever there are temperature variations along the line of sight. A bias can also be observed when the true β varies with wavelength. Internal heating sources produce an inverse correlation between colour temperature and β that may be difficult to separate from any intrinsic β(T) relation of the dust grains. This suggests caution when interpreting the observed

  1. Reexamination of Lunar Exospheric Dust Estimates Using Discrete Dipole Scattering Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stubbs, T. J.; Glenar, D. A.; Richard, D. T.; Feldman, P. D.; Retherford, K. D.

    2014-12-01

    Analysis of Apollo regolith samples showed that lunar dust grains consist of a diverse set of shapes. Consequently, the optical scattering properties of these grains will differ from those predicted using the Mie approximation, which strictly applies only for spheres. Because it is analytically convenient and without shape ambiguity, Mie theory has been used routinely to estimate the concentration of dust or it's upper limits in the lunar exosphere from brightness measurements acquired during orbital dust searches. Utilizing the Discrete Dipole Approximation (DDA), we have computed a more realistic set of scattering parameters for a collection of sub-micron grain shapes that represents the ultra-fine fraction of lunar soil. Included in this suite are spheroids (oblate and prolate) and irregular geometries resembling isolated grains observed in Apollo samples. A subset of these models includes the addition of nanophase iron, in order to examine the influence of space weathering. Wavelength coverage of the DDA scattering computations extends from far-UV to near-IR. This range is diagnostic of grain size and shape, since scattering efficiency depends on both of these parameters. This collection of grain scattering models is used, together with an observing simulation code, to reexamine some prior estimates of exospheric dust concentration derived from Apollo-era limb brightness measurements (e.g., Apollo 15 coronal photography), as well as the subsequent Clementine star tracker search and a search for lunar horizon glow by LRO Lyman Alpha Mapping Project (LAMP). We compare our revised estimates of exospheric dust abundance with the results of these previous dust searches.

  2. Dependence of simulations of long range transport on meteorology, model and dust size

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mahowald, N. M.; Albani, S.; Smith, M.; Losno, R.; Marticorena, B.; Ridley, D. A.; Heald, C. L.; Qu, Z.

    2015-12-01

    Mineral aerosols interact with radiation directly, as well as modifying climate, and provide important micronutrients to ocean and land ecosystems. Mineral aerosols are transported long distances from the source regions to remote regions, but the rates at which this occurs can be difficult to deduce from either observations or models. Here we consider interactions between the details of the simulation of dust size and long-range transport. In addition, we compare simulations of dust using multiple reanalysis datasets, as well as different model basis to understand how robust the mean, seasonality and interannual variability are in models. Models can provide insight into how long observations are required in order to characterize the atmospheric concentration and deposition to remote regions.

  3. Simulation of the electrostatic charging of Philae on 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko and of its interaction with the dusts.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hess, S. L. G.; Sarrailh, P.; Matéo-Vélez, J.-C.; Forest, J.; Jeanty-Ruard, B.; Cipriani, F.

    2015-12-01

    ROSETTA's probe Philae landed on a dust covered soil. This dust may be ejected from the ground through many mechanisms (other than spacecraft landing) : micro-meteorite impacts, electrostatic charging and soil outgassing. In any cases, the dust grains charge electrostatically in the ambient plasma and this charge impacts the dust interaction with the spacecraft, which is itself differentially charged due to its partial exposure to the solar UV light. Using the DUST addition to the Spacecraft-Plasma Interaction Software (SPIS) routinely used to compute the charge state of the spacecraft surfaces, we simulate the electrostatic charging of Philae as well as its dust environment. SPIS-DUST allows one to compute the electrostatic charging of the dust grains on the ground and in the plasma, and to model their ejection and their recollection by the probe. We simulated one cometary day of the Philae environment at different distances from the sun to observe the variation of the dust collection with Philae's local time.

  4. Developing Glassy Magnets from Simulated Composition of Martian Soil for Exploration Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ramachandran, Narayanan; Ray, Chandra; Rogers, Jan

    2004-01-01

    The long-term exploration goals of NASA include developing human habitation on Mars and conducting scientific investigations on Mars and other planetary bodies. In situ resource processing is a key objective in this area We focus OR the possibility of making magnetic glasses in situ for potential applications development. The paper will focus on ongoing work at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center on making magnetic glass h m Mars soil simulants and its characterization. Analysis of the glass morphology, strength, chemistry and resulting magnetic properties will provide a fi.mdamenta1 understanding ofthe synthesized materiai that can be used for pomtiai appiications cieveiopment. In an effort to characterize the magnetic properbes of the Mars glasses, a series of tests were performed at NASA MSFC. Preliminary tests indicated that the glasses were attracted to a magnet and also had a small amount of residual magnetism. They were opaque (almost black in color). As the first step, a sample of Mars 1 glass (-lm x lmm x 5 mm length) was machined, weighed and its hysteresis curve was measured using a Vibration Sample Magnetometer 0. Next, a small furnace was designed and built and the sample was baked in a graphite (reducing agent) crucible at 800 C in an Argon atmosphere for 3 hours in the presence of a uniform, transverse (transverse to the 5mm length of the sample) magnetic field of 0.37 Tesla. The treated sample showed reddening on the outside and showed substantially increased residual magnetism. This sample was again analyzed in the VSM. The data clearly showed that some chemical change occurred during the heat treatment (color change) and that both the glasses have useful magnetic properties. Although no orientation effects of the magnetic field were considered, the data showed the following: 1. Both glass samples are primarily soft magnets and display ferromagnetic behavior (hysteresis, saturation, etc.) 2. The treated glass has improved saturation magnetism (order

  5. Developing Glassy Magnets from Simulated Composition of Martian Soil for Exploration Applications

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ramachandran, N.; Ray, C. S.; Rogers, J. R.

    2004-01-01

    The long-term exploration goals of NASA include developing human habitation on Mars and conducting scientific investigations on Mars and other planetary bodies. In situ resource processing is a key objective in this area. We focus on the possibility of making magnetic glasses in situ for potential applications development. The paper will focus on ongoing work at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center on making magnetic glass from Mars soil simulants and its characterization. Analysis of the glass morphology, strength, chemistry and resulting magnetic properties will provide a fundamental understanding of the synthesized material that can be used for potential applications development. in an effort to characterize the magnetic properties of the Mars glasses, a series of tests were performed at NASA MSFC. Preliminary tests indicated that the glasses were attracted to a magnet and also had a small amount of residual magnetism. They were opaque (almost black in color). As the first step, a sample of Mars 1 glass (approx.1 mm x 1 mm x 5 mm length) was machined, weighed and its hysteresis curve was measured using a Vibration Sample Magnetometer (VSM). Next, a small furnace was designed and built and the sample was baked in a graphite (reducing agent) crucible at 800 C in an Argon atmosphere for 3 hours in the presence of a uniform, transverse (transverse to the 5mm length of the sample) magnetic field of 0.37 Tesla. The treated sample showed reddening on the outside and showed substantially increased residual magnetism. This sample was again analyzed in the VSM. The data clearly showed that some chemical change occurred during the heat treatment (color change) and that both the glasses have useful magnetic properties. Although no orientation effects of the magnetic field were considered, the data showed the following: 1. Both glass samples are primarily soft magnets and display ferromagnetic behavior (hysteresis, saturation, etc.) 2. The treated glass has improved saturation

  6. Three-dimensional simulation of gas and dust in Io's Pele plume

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McDoniel, William J.; Goldstein, David B.; Varghese, Philip L.; Trafton, Laurence M.

    2015-09-01

    Io's giant Pele plume rises high above the moon's surface and produces a complex deposition pattern. We use the direct simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) method to model the flow of SO2 gas and silicate ash from the surface of the lava lake, into the umbrella-shaped canopy of the plume, and eventually onto the surface where the flow leaves black "butterfly wings" surrounded by a large red ring. We show how the geometry of the lava lake, from which the gas is emitted, is responsible for significant asymmetry in the plume and for the shape of the red deposition ring by way of complicated gas-dynamic interactions between parts of the gas flow arising from different areas in the lava lake. We develop a model for gas flow in the immediate vicinity of the lava lake and use it to show that the behavior of ash particles of less than about 2 μm in diameter in the plume is insensitive to the details of how they are introduced into the flow because they are coupled to the gas at low altitudes. We simulate dust particles in the plume to show how particle size determines the distance from the lava lake at which particles deposit on the surface, and we use this dependence to find a size distribution of black dust particles in the plume that provides the best explanation for the observed black fans to the east and west of the lava lake. This best-fit particle size distribution suggests that there may be two distinct mechanisms of black dust creation at Pele, and when two log-normal distributions are fit to our results we obtain a mean particle diameter of 88 nm. We also propose a mechanism by which the condensible plume gas might overlay black dust in areas where black coloration is not observed and compare this to the observed overlaying of Pillanian dust by Pele's red ring.

  7. The chemical effects of the Martian environment on power system component materials: A theoretical approach

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Perez-Davis, Marla E.; Gaier, James R.

    1990-01-01

    In the foreseeable future, an expedition may be undertaken to explore the planet Mars. Some of the power source options being considered for such a mission are photovoltaics, regenerative fuel cells and nuclear reactors. In addition to electrical power requirements, environmental conditions en route to Mars, in the planetary orbit and on the Martian surface must be simulated and studied in order to anticipate and solve potential problems. Space power systems components such as photovoltaic arrays, radiators, and solar concentrators may be vulnerable to degradation in the Martian environment. Natural characteristics of Mars which may pose a threat to surface power systems include high velocity winds, dust, ultraviolet radiation, large daily variation in temperature, reaction to components of the soil, atmosphere and atmospheric condensates as well as synergistic combinations. Most of the current knowledge of the characteristics of the Martian atmosphere and soil composition was obtained from the Viking 1 and 2 missions in 1976. A theoretical study is presented which was used to assess the effects of the Martian atmospheric conditions on the power systems components. A computer program written at NASA-Lewis for combustion research that uses a free energy minimization technique was used to calculate chemical equilibrium for assigned thermodynamic states of temperature and pressure. The power system component materials selected for this study include: silicon dioxide, silicon, carbon, copper, and titanium. Combinations of environments and materials considered include: (1) Mars atmosphere with power surface material, (2) Mars atmosphere and dust component with power surface material, and (3) Mars atmosphere and hydrogen peroxide or superoxide or superoxide with power system material. The chemical equilibrium calculations were performed at a composition ratio (oxidant to reactant) of 100. The temperature for the silicon dioxide material and silicon, which simulate

  8. A Martian acoustic anemometer.

    PubMed

    Banfield, Don; Schindel, David W; Tarr, Steve; Dissly, Richard W

    2016-08-01

    An acoustic anemometer for use on Mars has been developed. To understand the processes that control the interaction between surface and atmosphere on Mars, not only the mean winds, but also the turbulent boundary layer, the fluxes of momentum, heat and molecular constituents between surface and atmosphere must be measured. Terrestrially this is done with acoustic anemometers, but the low density atmosphere on Mars makes it challenging to adapt such an instrument for use on Mars. This has been achieved using capacitive transducers and pulse compression, and was successfully demonstrated on a stratospheric balloon (simulating the Martian environment) and in a dedicated Mars Wind Tunnel facility. This instrument achieves a measurement accuracy of ∼5 cm/s with an update rate of >20 Hz under Martian conditions.

  9. Simulation of iron/dust in the atmosphere by a regional model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nickovic, S.; Perez, C.

    2008-12-01

    of about 40 km to simulate an extensive marine bacterial bloom associated with a major dust deposition in the Canary Islands region. Results show that the model is able to reproduce the observed increase of iron solubility along the downwind distance. The model shows that the iron solubility behaves in the same way with respect to the vertical distribution as well - i.e. increases with height. Such findings are consistent with recent studies that showing that the link between atmospheric iron processing and solubility is primarily physical rather than chemical in nature.

  10. Survival of microorganisms in a simulated Martian environment. II. Moisture and oxygen requirements for germination of Bacillus cereus and Bacillus subtilis var. niger spores.

    PubMed

    Hagen, C A; Hawrylewicz, E J; Ehrlich, R

    1967-03-01

    The effects of moisture and oxygen concentration on germination of Bacillus cereus and B. subtilis var. niger spores were investigated in a simulated Martian environment. Less moisture was required for germination than for vegetative growth of both organisms. A daily freeze-thaw cycle lowered moisture requirements for spore germination and vegetative growth of both organisms, as compared with a constant 35 C environment. Oxygen had a synergistic effect by lowing the moisture requirements for vegetative growth, and possibly germination, of both organisms. Oxygen was not required for spore germination of either organism, but was required for vegetative growth of B. subtilis and for sporulation of both organisms.

  11. The linkage between marine sediment records and changes in Holocene Saharan landscape: simulating the dust cycle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Egerer, Sabine; Claussen, Martin; Reick, Christian; Stanelle, Tanja

    2016-04-01

    Marine sediment records reveal an abrupt and strong increase in dust deposition in the North Atlantic at the end of the African Humid Period about 4.9 ka to 5.5 ka ago (deMenocal et al., 2000; McGee et al., 2013). The change in dust flux has been attributed to varying Saharan land surface cover. Alternatively, the enhanced dust accumulation is linked to enhanced surface winds and a consequent intensification of coastal upwelling. We present simulation results from a recent sensitivity study, where we demonstrate for the first time the direct link between dust accumulation in marine cores and changes in Saharan land surface during the Holocene. We have simulated timeslices of he mid-Holocene (6 ka BP) and pre-industrial (1850 AD) dust cycle as a function of Saharan land surface cover and atmosphere-ocean conditions using the coupled atmosphere-aerosol model ECHAM6.1-HAM2.1. We prescribe mid-Holocene vegetation cover based on a vegetation reconstruction from pollen data (Hoelzmann et al., 1998) and mid-Holocene lake surface area is determined using a water routing and storage model (Tegen et al., 2002). In agreement with data from marine sediment cores, our simulations show that mid-Holocene dust deposition fluxes in the North Atlantic were two to three times lower compared with pre-industrial fluxes. We identify Saharan land surface characteristics to be the main control on dust transport from North Africa to the North Atlantic. We conclude that the variation in dust accumulation in marine cores is likely related to a transition of the Saharan landscape during the Holocene and not due to changes in atmospheric or ocean conditions alone. Reference: deMenocal, P., Ortiz, J., Guilderson, T., Adkins, J., Sarnthein, M., Baker, L., and Yarusinsky, M.: Abrupt onset and termination of the African Humid Period:: rapid climate responses to gradual insolation forcing, Quaternary Science Reviews, 19, 347-361, 2000. Hoelzmann, P., Jolly, D., Harrison, S. P., Laarif, F

  12. HEAVY DUST OBSCURATION OF z = 7 GALAXIES IN A COSMOLOGICAL HYDRODYNAMIC SIMULATION

    SciTech Connect

    Kimm, Taysun; Cen, Renyue

    2013-10-10

    Hubble Space Telescope observations with the Wide Field Camera 3/Infrared reveal that galaxies at z ∼ 7 have very blue ultraviolet (UV) colors, consistent with these systems being dominated by young stellar populations with moderate or little attenuation by dust. We investigate UV and optical properties of the high-z galaxies in the standard cold dark matter model using a high-resolution adaptive mesh refinement cosmological hydrodynamic simulation. For this purpose, we perform panchromatic three-dimensional dust radiative transfer calculations on 198 galaxies of stellar mass 5 × 10{sup 8}-3 × 10{sup 10} M{sub ☉} with three parameters: the dust-to-metal ratio, the extinction curve, and the fraction of directly escaped light from stars (f{sub esc}). Our stellar mass function is found to be in broad agreement with Gonzalez et al., independent of these parameters. We find that our heavily dust-attenuated galaxies (A{sub V} ∼ 1.8) can also reasonably match modest UV-optical colors, blue UV slopes, as well as UV luminosity functions, provided that a significant fraction (∼10%) of light directly escapes from them. The observed UV slope and scatter are better explained with a Small-Magellanic-Cloud-type extinction curve, whereas a Milky-Way-type curve also predicts blue UV colors due to the 2175 Å bump. We expect that upcoming observations by the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array will be able to test this heavily obscured model.

  13. Numerical simulation of a dust event in northeastern Germany with a new dust emission scheme in COSMO-ART

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    The dust emission scheme of Shao (2004) has been implemented into the regional atmospheric model COSMO-ART and has been applied to a severe dust event in northeastern Germany on 8th April 2011. The model sensitivity to soil moisture and vegetation cover has been studied. Soil moisture has been found...

  14. Martian Fingerprints

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2005-01-01

    9 April 2005 This Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) image shows patterned ground on the martian northern plains. The circular features are buried meteor impact craters; the small dark dots associated with them are boulders. The dark feature at left center is a wind streak.

    Location near: 75.1oN, 303.0oW Image width: 3 km (1.9 mi) Illumination from: lower left Season: Northern Summer

  15. Multiple scattering of light in a spherical cometary atmosphere with an axisymmetric dust jet. II - Image simulation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chick, Kenneth M.; Gombosi, Tamas I.

    1993-01-01

    A numerical solution for the multiple light scattering in spherical axisymmetric geometry is applied to the simulation of images of a coma as it would appear to a near-flying satellite such as Giotto. The appearance of symmetric comas and dust jets is examined in detail; the nucleus visibility is studied; the effect of forward scattering is considered; and single and multiple scattering effects are quantified. Attention is given to simulated images of a coma with a hollow cone of dust, as predicted by dust-gas hydrodynamic modeling. The cone's appearance is very similar to the northern area of activity on Comet Halley, observed by the Giotto HMC.

  16. Improving Simulations of Fine Dust Surface Concentrations over the Western United States by Optimizing the Particle Size Distribution

    SciTech Connect

    Zhang, Li; Kok, Jasper F.; Henze, Daven; Li, Qinbin; Zhao, Chun

    2013-06-28

    To improve estimates of remote contributions of dust to fine particulate matter (PM2.5) in the western United States, new dust particle size distributions (PSDs) based upon scale-invariant fragmentation theory (Kok_PSD) with constraints from in situ measurements (IMP_PSD) are implemented in a chemical transport model (GEOS-Chem). Compared to initial simulations, this leads to reductions in the mass of emitted dust particles with radii <1.8 mm by 40%-60%. Consequently, the root-mean-square error in simulated fine dust concentrations compared to springtime surface observations in the western United States is reduced by 67%-81%. The ratio of simulated fine to coarse PM mass is also improved, which is not achievable by reductions in total dust emissions. The IMP_PSD best represents the PSD of dust transported from remote sources and reduces modeled PM2.5 concentrations up to 5 mg/m3 over the western United States, which is important when considering sources contributing to nonattainment of air quality standards. Citation: Zhang, L., J. F. Kok, D. K. Henze, Q. Li, and C. Zhao (2013), Improving simulations of fine dust surface concentrations over the western United States by optimizing the particle size distribution, Geophys. Res. Lett., 40, 3270-3275, doi:10.1002/grl.50591.

  17. Simulating Martian Temperatures

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buchanan, Randy K.

    2003-09-01

    The Mars Electrostatic Chamber (MEC) was designed to provide for research and testing relative to future missions to Mars. Environmental characteristics of Mars were emulated, including pressure, atmospheric composition, and temperature. Existing and newly acquired hardware were integrated with a centralized controller to bring about successful near-autonomous operation and temperature control. The MEC is principally comprised of systems that control atmospheric pressure, atmospheric content, and chamber temperature. The temperature control system is used to replicate temperatures within actual minimum and maximum values as would be experienced on Mars. Cryogenic liquid/gaseous nitrogen supplies as well as various heating techniques were used to obtain this temperature range. Fundamental to the stabilization of temperature within the chamber was the instrumentation of multiple temperature measurements and optimal control of extremely cold nitrogen. Through testing and characterization, cooling design modifications, and controller instrumentation revisions, the cryogenic supply was successfully throttled by a programmable controller system with appropriate programming. Stable temperature control was ultimately achieved and automated diurnal cycling provided.

  18. The Mineralogy of Martian Dust: Design and Analysis Considerations for an X-Ray Diffraction/X-Ray Fluorescence (XRD/XRF) Instrument for Exobiological Studies

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blake, David; Vaniman, David; Bish, David; Morrison, David (Technical Monitor)

    1994-01-01

    A principal objective of Mars exploration is the search for evidence of past life which may have existed during an earlier clement period of Mars history. We would like to investigate the history of surface water activity (which is a requirement for all known forms of life) by identifying and documenting the distribution of minerals which require water for their formation or distribution. A knowledge of the mineralogy of the present Martian surface would help to identify areas which, due to the early activity of water, might have harbored ancient life. It would be desirable to establish the presence and characterize the distribution of hydrated minerals such as clays, and of minerals which are primarily of sedimentary origin such as carbonates, silica and evaporites. Mineralogy, which is more critical to exobiological exploration than is simple chemical analysis (absent the detection of organics), will remain unknown or will at best be imprecisely constrained unless a technique sensitive to mineral structure such as powder X-ray diffraction (XRD) is employed. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  19. Cosmology with AGN dust time lags-simulating the new VEILS survey

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hönig, S. F.; Watson, D.; Kishimoto, M.; Gandhi, P.; Goad, M.; Horne, K.; Shankar, F.; Banerji, M.; Boulderstone, B.; Jarvis, M.; Smith, M.; Sullivan, M.

    2017-01-01

    The time lag between optical and near-infrared continuum emission in active galactic nuclei (AGN) shows a tight correlation with luminosity and has been proposed as a standardizable candle for cosmology. In this paper, we explore the use of these AGN hot-dust time lags for cosmological model fitting under the constraints of the new VISTA Extragalactic Infrared Legacy Survey (VEILS). This new survey will target a 9 deg2 field observed in J and Ks band with a 14-d cadence and will run for 3 yr. The same area will be covered simultaneously in the optical griz bands by the Dark Energy Survey, providing complementary time-domain optical data. We perform realistic simulations of the survey setup, showing that we expect to recover dust time lags for about 450 objects out of a total of 1350 optical type 1 AGN, spanning a redshift range of 0.1 < z < 1.2. We use the lags recovered from our simulations to calculate precise distance moduli, establish a Hubble diagram, and fit cosmological models. Assuming realistic scatter in the distribution of the dust around the AGN as well as in the normalization of the lag-luminosity relation, we are able to constrain Ω _Λ in ΛCDM with similar accuracy as current supernova samples. We discuss the benefits of combining AGN and supernovae for cosmology and connect the present work to future attempts to reach out to redshifts of z > 4.

  20. Dust Activity during Winter Time in East Asia and Snowfall Obervations and Simulations in Taiwan

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tsai, L.

    2013-12-01

    . Oppositely, for inactive years, drier-than-normal atmosphere appeared and consequently sluggish snowfall seasons followed. A SVD (singular value decomposition) analysis of the Asian synoptic circulation indicated that the connection between the pressure dipoles and the position of EAT is strong in 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2010, and 2011. It significantly affects both of the snowfall and dust activities. In summary, snowfall active years usually occurred when the East Asian dust storm was inactive. Nevertheless, the snowfall activity increased in Taiwan if there was dust event and the dust aerosol successfully transported to Taiwan. This finding is also demonstrated in the model simulation of this study.

  1. Coupling Planet Simulator Mars, a general circulation model of the Martian atmosphere, to the ice sheet model SICOPOLIS

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stenzel, O. J.; Grieger, B.; Keller, H. U.; Greve, R.; Fraedrich, K.; Kirk, E.; Lunkeit, F.

    2007-11-01

    A general circulation model of the Martian Atmosphere is coupled with a 3-dimensional polythermal ice-sheet model of the polar ice caps. With this combination a series of experiments is carried out to investigate the impact of long-term obliquity change on the Martian north polar ice cap (NPC). The behaviour of the NPC is tested under obliquities of θ=15∘, 25∘ and 35∘. With increasing obliquity the area covered by the NPC gets smaller but does not vanish. However, when started from an ice-free condition the models develop an ice cap only for low obliquities. The 'critical' obliquity at which a build-up of a new polar cap is possible is θ=22∘.

  2. PIC simulation of compressive and rarefactive dust ion-acoustic solitary waves

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Li, Zhong-Zheng; Zhang, Heng; Hong, Xue-Ren; Gao, Dong-Ning; Zhang, Jie; Duan, Wen-Shan; Yang, Lei

    2016-08-01

    The nonlinear propagations of dust ion-acoustic solitary waves in a collisionless four-component unmagnetized dusty plasma system containing nonextensive electrons, inertial negative ions, Maxwellian positive ions, and negatively charged static dust grains have been investigated by the particle-in-cell method. By comparing the simulation results with those obtained from the traditional reductive perturbation method, it is observed that the rarefactive KdV solitons propagate stably at a low amplitude, and when the amplitude is increased, the prime wave form evolves and then gradually breaks into several small amplitude solitary waves near the tail of soliton structure. The compressive KdV solitons propagate unstably and oscillation arises near the tail of soliton structure. The finite amplitude rarefactive and compressive Gardner solitons seem to propagate stably.

  3. Simulation of Dust Generation by Injecting a Pulsed Laser to a tungsten target in DiPS-2 Linear device

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Park, Insun; Kang, Inje; Shim, Sungyong; Bae, Min-Keun; Oh, Hye-Teak; Oh, Chahwan; Chung, Kyu-Sun

    2016-10-01

    A transient heat flux 50 MJ /m2s1/2 , which are frequently generated such as edge localize modes (ELMs), results in a higher thermal damage to plasma facing components (PFCs) since it is over the damage threshold 10 MW /m2 of tungsten walls in a steady state at a divertor of International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER). For studies on the mechanism of dust generation and the effect of dusts on plasmas, an experimental simulation of dust generation in Divertor Plasma Simulator - 2 (DiPS-2) was conducted by using an Nd:YAG pulsed laser (Energy, pulse duration, frequency) with various conditions such as a pulsed laser power, roughness of tungsten surfaces and irradiation angles. To investigate simulation results, size and quantity of dusts and its effect on plasmas were analysed by Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), optical diagnostics of Rayleigh scattering and electric probes (single and Mach probes).

  4. Survival of spores of the UV-resistant Bacillus subtilis strain MW01 after exposure to low-earth orbit and simulated martian conditions: data from the space experiment ADAPT on EXPOSE-E.

    PubMed

    Wassmann, Marko; Moeller, Ralf; Rabbow, Elke; Panitz, Corinna; Horneck, Gerda; Reitz, Günther; Douki, Thierry; Cadet, Jean; Stan-Lotter, Helga; Cockell, Charles S; Rettberg, Petra

    2012-05-01

    In the space experiment "Molecular adaptation strategies of microorganisms to different space and planetary UV climate conditions" (ADAPT), bacterial endospores of the highly UV-resistant Bacillus subtilis strain MW01 were exposed to low-Earth orbit (LEO) and simulated martian surface conditions for 559 days on board the European Space Agency's exposure facility EXPOSE-E, mounted outside the International Space Station. The survival of B. subtilis MW01 spores from both assays (LEO and simulated martian conditions) was determined by a colony-formation assay after retrieval. It was clearly shown that solar extraterrestrial UV radiation (λ≥110 nm) as well as the martian UV spectrum (λ≥200 nm) was the most deleterious factor applied; in some samples only a few spore survivors were recovered from B. subtilis MW01 spores exposed in monolayers. However, if shielded from solar irradiation, about 8% of MW01 spores survived in LEO conditions, and 100% survived in simulated martian conditions, compared to the laboratory controls. The results demonstrate the effect of shielding against the high inactivation potential of extraterrestrial solar UV radiation, which limits the chances of survival of even the highly UV-resistant strain of B. subtilis MW01 in the harsh environments of outer space and the martian surface.

  5. Sixteen Years of Ulysses Interstellar Dust Measurements in the Solar System. III. Simulations and Data Unveil New Insights into Local Interstellar Dust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sterken, Veerle J.; Strub, Peter; Krüger, Harald; von Steiger, Rudolf; Frisch, Priscilla

    2015-10-01

    Interstellar dust (ISD) in the solar system was detected in situ for the first time in 1993 by the Ulysses dust detector. The study of ISD is important for understanding its role in star and solar system formation. The goal of this paper is to understand the variability in the ISD observations from the Ulysses mission by using a Monte Carlo simulation of ISD trajectories, with the final aim to constrain the ISD particle properties from simulations and the data. The paper is part of a series of three: Strub et al. describe the variations of the ISD flow from the Ulysses data set, and Krüger et al. focus on its ISD mass distribution. We describe and interpret the simulations of the ISD flow at Ulysses orbit for a wide range of particle properties and discuss four open issues in ISD research: the existence of very big ISD particles, the lack of smaller ISD particles, the shift in dust flow direction in 2005, and particle properties. We conclude that the shift in the dust flow direction in 2005 can best be explained by Lorentz force in the inner heliosphere, but that an extra filtering mechanism is needed to fit the fluxes. A time-dependent filtering in the outer regions of the heliosphere is proposed for this. Also, the high charge-to-mass ratio values found for the heavier particles after 2003 indicate that these particles are lower in density than previously assumed. This method gives new insights into the ISD properties and paves the way toward getting a complete view on the ISD from the local interstellar cloud. We conclude that in combination with the data and simulations, also impact ionization experiments are necessary using low-density dust, in order to constrain the density of the particles.

  6. Multi-year model simulations of mineral dust distribution and transport over the Indian subcontinent during summer monsoon seasons

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sijikumar, S.; Aneesh, S.; Rajeev, K.

    2016-08-01

    Aerosol distribution over the Arabian Sea and the Indian subcontinent during the northern hemispheric summer is dominated by mineral dust transport from the West Asian desert regions. The radiative impact of these dust plumes is expected to have a prominent role in regulating the Asian Summer Monsoon circulation. While satellite observations have provided information in the spatial distribution of aerosols over the oceanic regions during the season, their utility over the land is rather limited. This study examines the transport of mineral dust over the West Asian desert, the Indian subcontinent and the surrounding oceanic regions during the summer monsoon season with the help of a regional scale model, WRF-Chem. Geographical locations of prominent dust sources, altitude ranges of mineral dust transport and their inter-annual variations are examined in detail. Multi-year model simulations were carried out during 2007 to 2012 with a model integration from 15 May to 31 August of each year. Six-year seasonal mean (June to August) vertically integrated dust amount from 1000 to 300 hPa level shows prominent dust loading over the eastern parts of Arabian desert and the northwestern part of India which are identified as two major sources of dust production. Large latitudinal gradient in dust amount is observed over the Arabian Sea with the largest dust concentration over the northwestern part and is primarily caused by the prevailing northwesterly wind at 925 hPa level from the Arabian desert. The model simulations clearly show that most of the dust distributed over the Indo-Gangetic plane originates from the Rajasthan desert located in the northwestern part of India, whereas dust observed over the central and south peninsular India and over the Arabian Sea are mainly transported from the Arabian desert. Abnormal dust loading is observed over the north Arabian Sea during June 2008. This has been produced as a result of the low pressure system (associated with the onset of

  7. Mars - Experimental study of albedo changes caused by dust fallout

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wells, E. N.; Veverka, J.; Thomas, P.

    1984-01-01

    A laboratory apparatus was used to simulate the uniform fallout and deposition of particles 1 to 5 microns in diameter in an experimental study on how the spectral and photometric properties of representative Martian areas are affected by fallout of atmospheric dust (smaller than or equalling 60 microns) suspended during dust storms. In this study, measurements are made in the changes in reflectance at optical and near-infrared wavelengths (0.4 to 1.2 micron) caused by deposition of varying amounts of a Mars-analog dust on bright and dark substrates before and after deposition of 6 x 10 to the -5th to 1.5 x 10 to the -3rd g/sq cm of simulated fallout. It is believed that only small amounts of dust particles (approximately 3 x 10 to the -4th g/sq cm) are needed to make significant albedo changes in dark areas of Mars, and that this would rule out uniform dust deposition on the surface of the planet. Data also indicate that other high albedo features like bright crater-related wind streaks may not be areas of significant sediment deposits. Laboratory simulations have permitted estimates of how much the reflectance of an area on Mars would change given a certain amount of dust fallout (g/sq cm) or reflectance data. These simulations may also be useful in tracking the transport and deposition of the dust.

  8. Diagnostic evaluation of the Community Earth System Model in simulating mineral dust emission with insight into large-scale dust storm mobilization in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parajuli, Sagar Prasad; Yang, Zong-Liang; Lawrence, David M.

    2016-06-01

    Large amounts of mineral dust are injected into the atmosphere during dust storms, which are common in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) where most of the global dust hotspots are located. In this work, we present simulations of dust emission using the Community Earth System Model Version 1.2.2 (CESM 1.2.2) and evaluate how well it captures the spatio-temporal characteristics of dust emission in the MENA region with a focus on large-scale dust storm mobilization. We explicitly focus our analysis on the model's two major input parameters that affect the vertical mass flux of dust-surface winds and the soil erodibility factor. We analyze dust emissions in simulations with both prognostic CESM winds and with CESM winds that are nudged towards ERA-Interim reanalysis values. Simulations with three existing erodibility maps and a new observation-based erodibility map are also conducted. We compare the simulated results with MODIS satellite data, MACC reanalysis data, AERONET station data, and CALIPSO 3-d aerosol profile data. The dust emission simulated by CESM, when driven by nudged reanalysis winds, compares reasonably well with observations on daily to monthly time scales despite CESM being a global General Circulation Model. However, considerable bias exists around known high dust source locations in northwest/northeast Africa and over the Arabian Peninsula where recurring large-scale dust storms are common. The new observation-based erodibility map, which can represent anthropogenic dust sources that are not directly represented by existing erodibility maps, shows improved performance in terms of the simulated dust optical depth (DOD) and aerosol optical depth (AOD) compared to existing erodibility maps although the performance of different erodibility maps varies by region.

  9. The Martian surface layer

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Christensen, Philip R.; Moore, Henry J.

    1992-01-01

    The global characteristics of the Martian surface layer are discussed on the basis of thermal, albedo, color, and radar data for the region between approximately 60 deg S and 60 deg N. Thermal data reveal the presence of large low- and high-inertia regions of the northern hemisphere, with much of the south covered by material of moderate inertia. There is a strong anticorrelation between inertia and albedo, a correlation between inertia and rock abundance, and, over much of the planet, a correlation of radar-derived density with inertia. Viking Orbiter color data indicate the presence of three major surface materials: low-inertia, bright-red material that is presumably dust; high-inertia, dark-grey material interpreted to be lithic material mixed with palagonitelike dust; and moderate-inertia, dark-red material that is rough at subpixel scales and interpreted to be indurated. Observations from the Viking landing sites show rocks, fines of varying cohesion and crusts. These sites have indications of aeolian erosion and deposition in the recent past.

  10. Three-Body Abrasion Testing Using Lunar Dust Simulants to Evaluate Surface System Materials

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kobrick, Ryan L.; Budinski, Kenneth G.; Street, Kenneth W., Jr.; Klaus, David M.

    2010-01-01

    Numerous unexpected operational issues relating to the abrasive nature of lunar dust, such as scratched visors and spacesuit pressure seal leaks, were encountered during the Apollo missions. To avoid reoccurrence of these unexpected detrimental equipment problems on future missions to the Moon, a series of two- and three-body abrasion tests were developed and conducted in order to begin rigorously characterizing the effect of lunar dust abrasiveness on candidate surface system materials. Two-body scratch tests were initially performed to examine fundamental interactions of a single particle on a flat surface. These simple and robust tests were used to establish standardized measurement techniques for quantifying controlled volumetric wear. Subsequent efforts described in the paper involved three-body abrasion testing designed to be more representative of actual lunar interactions. For these tests, a new tribotester was developed to expose samples to a variety of industrial abrasives and lunar simulants. The work discussed in this paper describes the three-body hardware setup consisting of a rotating rubber wheel that applies a load on a specimen as a loose abrasive is fed into the system. The test methodology is based on ASTM International (ASTM) B611, except it does not mix water with the abrasive. All tests were run under identical conditions. Abraded material specimens included poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA), hardened 1045 steel, 6061-T6 aluminum (Al) and 1018 steel. Abrasives included lunar mare simulant JSC- 1A-F (nominal size distribution), sieved JSC-1A-F (<25 m particle diameter), lunar highland simulant NU-LHT-2M, alumina (average diameter of 50 m used per ASTM G76), and silica (50/70 mesh used per ASTM G65). The measured mass loss from each specimen was converted using standard densities to determine total wear volume in cm3. Abrasion was dominated by the alumina and the simulants were only similar to the silica (i.e., sand) on the softer materials of

  11. Control of Lunar and Martian DustExperimental Insights from Artificial and Natural Cyanobacterial and Algal Crusts in the Desert of Inner Mongolia, China

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Liu, Yongding; Cockell, Charles S.; Wang, Gaohong; Hu, Chunxiang; Chen, Lanzhou; De Philippis, Roberto

    2008-02-01

    Studies on the colonization of environmentally extreme ground surfaces were conducted in a Mars-like desert area of Inner Mongolia, People's Republic of China, with microalgae and cyanobacteria. We collected and mass-cultured cyanobacterial strains from these regions and investigated their ability to form desert crusts artificially. These crusts had the capacity to resist sand wind erosion after just 15 days of growth. Similar to the surface of some Chinese deserts, the surface of Mars is characterized by a layer of fine dust, which will challenge future human exploration activities, particularly in confined spaces that will include greenhouses and habitats. We discuss the use of such crusts for the local control of desert sands in enclosed spaces on Mars. These experiments suggest innovative new directions in the applied use of microbe-mineral interactions to advance the human exploration and settlement of space.

  12. Control of Lunar and Martian dust--experimental insights from artificial and natural cyanobacterial and algal crusts in the desert of Inner Mongolia, China.

    PubMed

    Liu, Yongding; Cockell, Charles S; Wang, Gaohong; Hu, Chunxiang; Chen, Lanzhou; De Philippis, Roberto

    2008-02-01

    Studies on the colonization of environmentally extreme ground surfaces were conducted in a Mars-like desert area of Inner Mongolia, People's Republic of China, with microalgae and cyanobacteria. We collected and mass-cultured cyanobacterial strains from these regions and investigated their ability to form desert crusts artificially. These crusts had the capacity to resist sand wind erosion after just 15 days of growth. Similar to the surface of some Chinese deserts, the surface of Mars is characterized by a layer of fine dust, which will challenge future human exploration activities, particularly in confined spaces that will include greenhouses and habitats. We discuss the use of such crusts for the local control of desert sands in enclosed spaces on Mars. These experiments suggest innovative new directions in the applied use of microbe-mineral interactions to advance the human exploration and settlement of space.

  13. Light Dust Devil Tracks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    14 October 2004 Many Mars Global Surveyor (MGS) Mars Orbiter Camera (MOC) images exhibit wild patterns of dark streaks thought to have formed by the passage of many dust devils. The dust devils disrupt the dust coating the martian surface, leaving behind a streak. However, not all dust devils make streaks, and not all dust devil streaks are dark. Some are light---it simply depends upon which is darker, the substrate or the dust that the spinning vortex disrupts. The example of light-toned dust devil streaks shown here is located in southern Schiaparelli Basin near 5.3oS, 343.3oW. The image covers an area about 3 km (1.9 mi) across; sunlight illuminates the scene from the left/upper left.

  14. Electrostatic fields in a dusty Martian environment

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sentman, D. D.

    1991-01-01

    While there have been several studies suggesting the possibility of electrical activity on Mars, to date there have been no measurements to search for evidence of such activity. In the absence of widespread water clouds and convective storm systems similar to those on the Earth and Jupiter, the most likely candidate for the creation of electrostatic charges and fields is triboelectric charging of dust, i.e., the friction between blown dust and the ground, and of dust particles with each other. Terrestrial experience demonstrates that electric fields 5 to 15 kV-m(exp -1) are not uncommon in dust storms and dust devils in desert regions, where the polarity varies according to the chemical composition and grain size. Simple laboratory experiments have demonstrated that modest electrostatic fields of roughly 5,000 V-m(exp -1) may be produced, along with electrical spark discharges and glow discharges, in a simulation of a dusty, turbulent Martian surface environment. While the Viking landers operated for several years with no apparent deleterious effects from electrostatic charging, this may have been at least partly due to good engineering design utilizing pre-1976 electronic circuitry to minimize the possibility of differential charging among the various system components. However, free roaming rovers, astronauts, and airborne probes may conceivably encounter an environment where electrostatic charging is a frequent occurrence, either by way of induction from a static electric field or friction with the dusty surface and atmosphere. This raises the possibility of spark discharges or current surges when subsequent contact is made with other pieces of electrical equipment, and the possibility of damage to modern microelectronic circuitry. Measurements of electrostatic fields on the surface of Mars could therefore be valuable for assessing this danger. Electric field measurements could also be useful for detecting natural discharges that originate in dust storms. This

  15. Electrodynamic Dust Shield for Surface Exploration Activities on the Moon and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Calle, C. I.; Immer, C. D.; Clements, J. S.; Chen, A.; Buhler, C. R.; Lundeen, P.; Mantovani, J. G.; Starnes, J. W.; Michalenko, M.; Mazumder, M. K.

    2006-01-01

    The Apollo missions to the moon showed that lunar dust can hamper astronaut surface activities due to its ability to cling to most surfaces. NASA's Mars exploration landers and rovers have also shown that the problem is equally hard if not harder on Mars. In this paper, we report on our efforts to develop and electrodynamic dust shield to prevent the accumulation of dust on surfaces and to remove dust already adhering to those surfaces. The parent technology for the electrodynamic dust shield, developed in the 1970s, has been shown to lift and transport charged and uncharged particles using electrostatic and dielectrophoretic forces. This technology has never been applied for space applications on Mars or the moon due to electrostatic breakdown concerns. In this paper, we show that an appropriate design can prevent the electrostatic breakdown at the low Martian atmospheric pressures. We are also able to show that uncharged dust can be lifted and removed from surfaces under simulated Martian environmental conditions. This technology has many potential benefits for removing dust from visors, viewports and many other surfaces as well as from solar arrays. We have also been able to develop a version of the electrodynamic dust shield working under. hard vacuum conditions. This version should work well on the moon.

  16. Long-Term Simulation of Dust Distribution with the GOCART Model: Correlation with the North Atlantic Oscillation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ginoux, P.; Prospero, J.; Torres, O.; Chin, M.

    2002-01-01

    Global distribution of aeolian dust is simulated from 1981 to 1996 with the Goddard Ozone Chemistry Aerosol Radiation and Transport (GOCART) model. The results are assessed with in-situ measurements and the Total Ozone Mapping Spectrometer (TOMS) aerosol products. The annual budget over the different continents and oceans are analyzed. It is found that there is a maximum of 25% difference of global annual emission from the minimum in 1996 to the maximum in 1988. There is a downward trend of dust emission over Africa and East Asia, of 6 and 2 Tg/yr, respectively. The inter-annual variability of dust distribution is analyzed over the North Atlantic and Africa. It is found that in winter most of the North Atlantic and Africa dust loading is correlated with the North Atlantic Oscillation. The GOCART model indicates that a controlling factor of such correlation can be attributed to dust emission from the Sahel. The Bodele depression is the major dust source in winter and its inter-annual variability is highly correlated with the NAO. However, it is not possible to conclude without further analysis that the North Atlantic Oscillation is forcing the inter-annual variability of dust emission and in-turn dust concentration over the North Atlantic.

  17. Perturb