Curiosity finds first signs of Mars’ history

By Tiffanie Reynolds |

Mars rover Curiosity will be drilling into what may be the first signs of water in the next two weeks.

During a news teleconference held Tuesday, Mars Science Laboratory project manager Richard Cook and the rest of the team announced their discovery of veins filled with hydrated calcium sulfate in the bedrock on Yellowknife Bay, a shallow depression toward the bottom of the Gale Crater, where Curiosity is currently located. The team takes the presence of hydrated calcium sulfate in the rock as a sign that there once was water in the area, because calcium sulfate is produced when water evaporates from the mineral as it is being heated.