Ups and downs of water escape from Mars
After investigating the upper atmosphere of the Red Planet for a full Martian year, NASA's MAVEN mission has determined that the escaping water does not always go gently into space. Hydrogen in Mars' upper atmosphere comes from water vapor in the lower atmosphere. An atmospheric water molecule can be broken apart by sunlight, releasing the two hydrogen atoms from the oxygen atom that they had been bound to. Several processes at work in Mars' upper atmosphere may then act on the hydrogen, leading to its escape. Ref. Source 8v.
Climate cycles may explain how running water carved Mars' surface features
Dramatic climate cycles on early Mars, triggered by buildup of greenhouse gases, may be the key to understanding how liquid water left its mark on the planet's surface, according to a team of planetary scientists. Ref. Source 4u.
A fresh look at older data yields a surprise near the Martian equator. Scientists taking a new look at older data from NASA's longest-operating Mars orbiter have discovered evidence of significant hydration near the Martian equator -- a mysterious signature in a region of the Red Planet where planetary scientists figure ice shouldn't exist. Source 5e.
Water means the ability to sustain life. God how I would love to go there and colonize that planet. Of course, I would really rather go even further and be part of the group to colonize a world far from here with life forms we don't know and continents to explore. Ah, to be the Jedediah Smith of a new planet.
Steep slopes on Mars reveal structure of buried ice on Red Planet. Researchers have found eight sites where thick deposits of ice beneath Mars' surface are exposed in faces of eroding slopes. The ice was likely deposited as snow long ago. The deposits hold clues about Mars' climate history and also may make frozen water more accessible than previously thought to future robotic or human exploration missions. Source 9c.
It will be awesome if we can kick start life on Mars using plant life from here or perhaps if there is plant life underground already that could open up a whole new world!