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WSU News Mars

Dust devils common in Washington – and on Mars

Dust devils outside Othello, Wash. (Photo by Henry Moore)

By Nic Loyd, WSU meteorologist, and Linda Weiford, WSU News

SPOKANE, Wash. – This time of year, dust devils put on a good show in the flatter, drier parts of the Pacific Northwest. You’ve probably seen these plumes of swirling dust zipping across farmland, open fields, roadsides and even parking lots. » More …

Mars rover team wins second in international competition

By Randy Bolerjack, WSU Everett

EVERETT, Wash. – The rust-colored badlands of the Mars Desert Research Station in Utah became a proving ground for aspiring engineers from around the world over the weekend. And at the end, students from the Washington State University North Puget Sound at Everett Mars rover team stood on the second-place podium. » More …

WSU Mars rover team advances in international competition

By Randy Bolerjack, WSU North Puget Sound at Everett

EVERETT, Wash. – For 13 months, Engineering Club students at Washington State University Everett have spent countless hours designing, building, testing and rebuilding a Mars rover meant to be able to work alongside human explorers on the surface of the Red Planet. » More …

Scientists publish case study for growing food on Mars

By Eric Sorensen, WSU science writer

MartianPULLMAN, Wash. – Scientists at Washington State University and the University of Idaho are helping students figure out how to farm on Mars, much like astronaut Mark Watney, played by Matt Damon, attempts in the critically acclaimed movie “The Martian.” » More …

WSU a finalist in NASA mission to Mars competition

WSU-dome-1-webPULLMAN, Wash. – A student team from Washington State University is in New York this week as one of 30 national finalists in NASA’s $2.5 million 3D-Printed Habitat Challenge to design an environment for Mars exploration using robotics and 3D printers. » More …

Exploring the limits of life in the universe

By Will Ferguson, College of Arts & Sciences

schulze-makuchPULLMAN, Wash. – Bizarre creatures that go years without water. Others that can survive the vacuum of open space. Some of the most unusual organisms found on Earth provide insights for Washington State University planetary scientist Dirk Schulze-Makuch to predict what life could be like elsewhere in the universe. » More …

Undergrad helps develop method to detect water on Mars

By Eric Sorensen, WSU science writer

Kellie-Wall-80PULLMAN, Wash. – A Washington State University undergraduate has helped develop a new method for detecting water on Mars. Her findings appear in Nature Communications, one of the most influential general science journals. » More …

Sterilizing Mars spacecraft is largely a waste of money


WSU’s Schulze-Makuch

PULLMAN, Wash. – Two university researchers say environmental restrictions have become unnecessarily restrictive and expensive – on Mars.

Writing in the journal Nature Geoscience, astrobiologists Alberto Fairén of Cornell University and Dirk Schulze-Makuch of Washington State University say the NASA Office of Planetary Protection’s “detailed and expensive” efforts to keep Earth microorganisms off Mars are making missions to search for life on the red planet “unviable.”

The researchers claim “the protocols and policies of planetary protection are unnecessarily restricting Mars exploration and need to be revised.”

The Office of Planetary Protection is like an … » More …

Topics: WSU changing course; Martians; H2O

Following are links to several recent media articles regarding WSU faculty and staff, as well as items of general interest in higher education news. To see a full article, just click on the corresponding live URL link.

Seattle Times — Washington State’s new president has university changing course. Washington Voices: Editorial views from across the state,

Seattle Times — Sophisticated Cougs: WSU’s efforts to recruit and keep more minority students have grown in sophistication and success,

Seattle Post-Intelligencer — WSU, enviros teeing off over water rights; an editorial by WSU professor Chuck Pezeshki,

KVEW-TV — WSU President Impressed With Growth … » More …