Space Frontier News Available

Members of the Mars Society Australia can now also subscribe to Space Frontier News. This is an excellent bimonthly 12 page journal updating the latest space related events in Australia and includes a regular Mars Society column. Annual subscription costs $17.
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Australian Researcher Discovers Nanobes

In a discovery with implications for the search for life elsewhere in the solar system, Brisbane based researcher Dr Philippa Irwin has discovered what are believed to be life forms at an unprecedently small scale. Called nanobes, they were found in rock samples drilled from 5km below the seabed off the Western Australia.

As small as 20 nanometres, they are similar in size to the so-called fossils found in the Martian meteorite ALH84001. In 1996 NASA scientists controversially announced they thought they had found tiny fossil structures in this meteorite. The size of some of the structures was smaller than the known minimum scale of life on earth.
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First AGM Held in Sydney

The first Annual General Meeting of the Australian Mars Society was held in Sydney on Monday 8th March. The minutes can be read online.

The main outcomes of the meeting were that the rules for the society were formally adopted and that office bearers were elected. These developments will help the society deal with organisational matters and focus more on organising activities. Possible projects for the society is one of the issues being discussed on the Australian Chapter's new Message Board.
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MSA Invites Teachers to Attend Spaceward Bound Australia’s 2011 Pilbara Expedition

The Mars Society Australia offers Science teachers and graduate students an opportunity to join with NASA and MSA scientists on a field expedition to the Pilbara. Running between the 8th and 24th of July 2011, (during school holidays) it will involve participants examining fossil sites recording the early emergence of life of Earth, and also areas of tourist interest for the “Dawn Of Life Trail” near Marble Bar. Participants will also take part in the 11th Australian Mars Exploration Conference (AMEC2011) at the University of Western Australia at the end of the expedition. The cost per person will be between $1800 and $2200, includes camping equipment, fully catered expedition and transport from the start to the end of the expedition. These costs also include the registration fee for AMEC2011. Full details of these items will be available by end of May. These activities may be used for professional learning renewal for their college or teacher registration with listing the 40 hours...

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Mars 'Remains in Embryonic State'

Mars formed in record time, growing to its present size in a mere three million years, more quickly than scientists previously thought.

Its rapid formation could explain why the Red Planet is about one tenth the mass of Earth.

The study supports a 20-year-old theory that Mars remained small because it avoided collisions with planetary building material.

The new finding is published in the journal Nature.

In our early Solar System, well before planets had formed, a frisbee-shaped cloud of gas and dust encircled the Sun.

Scientists believe that the planets grew from material pulled together by electrostatic charges - the same force that's behind the "dust bunnies" under your bed.

These proto-planetary dust balls grew and grew until they formed what scientists term "embryo" planets.

These rocky masses were large enough to exert a considerable gravitational force on surrounding material,...

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