No. 125: Sep-Oct 1999
The Mars Global Surveyor snapped an intriguing photo while orbiting over latitude 24.65°, longitude 207.10°. It looks like a lake! There even seem to be reflections of the surrounding terrain. But, as T. Van Flandern comments, this glassy-looking area cannot be liquid water because the vapor pressure is too low on Mars -- water would quickly evaporate away. Ice, however, is a strong possibility.
(Van Flandern, Tom; "'Lake' on Mars?" Meta Research Bulletin, 8:30, 1999. For details, go to: http://www.cbjd.net/orbit/mars/steadlake.html)
Comments. The reference did not specify the Martian hemisphere, but it was probably the northern, where there are extensive lowlands. In fact, if water once did flow on Mars, 75% of it would have drained into these lowlands. (Anonymous; "Mars in 3-D," Science News, 156:11, 1999.)
Back in 1976, the Viking Orbiter sent back pictures of so-called "searchlight areas" in the northern hemisphere. The speculation then was that these glassy, seemingly transparent features might be thin layers of ice. (AME5 in The Moon and the Planets)
|Possible ice-covered lake on Mars (Reproduction of a negative).|