NASA may now be working to return to the moon, but its real goal is Mars,media reported. This means that the agency needs to figure out in advance the best place to place humans on the red planet. It looks like NASA’s goal may be to be an area that is easily accessible to water ice.
On Tuesday, local time, NASA released a “Mars Water Ice Treasure Map.” The researchers used observations collected by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and Mars Odyssey probes to map the map. The images can be seen focusing on a place called Arcadia Planitia, which is understood to be about to hide shallow ice deposits that could provide valuable water for astronauts — both referenced and used to make rocket fuel.
And according to NASA’s Sylvain Piqueux, who is also the lead author of the study, astronauts do not need to use excavators to dig ice.
Because the water is heavy and difficult to transport, especially given the distance to and from Mars, being able to pick water directly around Mars upon arrival will result in a significant reduction in costs.