Don Juan Pond, Greenhouse Gases and Mars

don juan pond
May, 2010

A high saline pond in Antarctica may be the source of an important greenhouse gas.

Don Juan Pond in the McMurdo Dry Valleys could also offer important lessons for exploration of Mars, according to researchers who published their findings in the April 25 issue of the journal Nature Geoscience.

The scientists discovered a previously unreported chemical mechanism for the production of nitrous oxide, an important greenhouse gas. The discovery could also help space scientists understand the meaning of similar brine pools in a place whose ecosystem most closely resembles that of Don Juan Pond: Mars.

For the full story, refer to the Antarctic Sun website.

Snowy Rock

Wright Glacier and Labyrinth, from Mount Thor. © Andris Apse, Antarctica NZ Pictorial Collection: K211 07/08