12 August 2009, JellyBean @ 9:27 am

Mars Monolith“UFO enthusiasts have discovered a “monolith” on Mars, but the planetary scientists behind the images say balderdash.

Taken in 2008, the image from NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter mission depicts boulders strewn across a canyon near Mars’ colossal Valles Marineris. “The structure closely resembles the black monolith that appears during key moments of man’s evolution in the film 2001: A Space Odyssey,” suggested a report in the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail on Monday.

Alas for science fiction fans. “The image they have is actually oriented incorrectly and when viewed with North up, one can see it’s a boulder reflecting sunlight,” says Ari Espinoza of the University of Arizona’s HiRISE team, which runs the spacecraft’s cameras and posted the image. “We certainly appreciate people coming to our site and looking at our beautiful images, but more often than not, there’s nothing to comment on.”

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USA Today Blogs: Mars monolith is a boulder

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