Did Earth 'Steal' Martian Water?

Altair

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I was reading this great article and found a possible error.

This prediction was, like the others, considered heresy. But in 1962, the US Naval Research Laboratory in Washington announced that Venus had a slow retrograde rotation. It is the only planet in the solar system to display a retrograde rotation.
As far as I know, Uranus displays retrograde rotation, too. This sentence would be correct: "It is the only planet in the inner solar system to display a retrograde rotation."
 

Pashalis

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The number of moons for Jupiter has drastically changed since 2013. From the article:

Current data for Jupiter (as of 2018): 79 known satellites. The number of moons for Saturn and Uranus hasn't changed.
Yes. 12 new moons have been added last year including one "oddball". Especially the discovery of the oddball among those new moons is hard to explain by "it was there for a long time and we could only observe it now with new instruments":

Scientist just discovered 12 new moons of Jupiter! Including one "oddball" that "has an orbit like no other known Jovian moon”. Of course that can all just be explained by better observing methods and equipment. Sure! I highly doubt this though. See Pierres discussion in the book about this idea, which is pretty unlikely. More likely that Jupiter just captured 12 additional moons in the last couple of years because of an increased inflow of comets...

A DOZEN NEW MOONS OF JUPITER DISCOVERED, INCLUDING ONE “ODDBALL”

Monday, July 16, 2018

Washington, DC—
Twelve new moons orbiting Jupiter have been found—11 “normal” outer moons, and one that they’re calling an “oddball.” This brings Jupiter’s total number of known moons to a whopping 79—the most of any planet in our Solar System.

A team led by Carnegie’s Scott S. Sheppard first spotted the moons in the spring of 2017 while they were looking for very distant Solar System objects as part of the hunt for a possible massive planet far beyond Pluto.

In 2014, this same team found the object with the most-distant known orbit in our Solar System and was the first to realize that an unknown massive planet at the fringes of our Solar System, far beyond Pluto, could explain the similarity of the orbits of several small extremely distant objects. This putative planet is now sometimes popularly called Planet X or Planet Nine. University of Hawaii’s Dave Tholen and Northern Arizona University’s Chad Trujillo are also part of the planet search team.

“Jupiter just happened to be in the sky near the search fields where we were looking for extremely distant Solar System objects, so we were serendipitously able to look for new moons around Jupiter while at the same time looking for planets at the fringes of our Solar System,” said Sheppard.

Gareth Williams at the International Astronomical Union’s Minor Planet Center used the team’s observations to calculate orbits for the newly found moons.

“It takes several observations to confirm an object actually orbits around Jupiter,” Williams said. “So, the whole process took a year.”

Nine of the new moons are part of a distant outer swarm of moons that orbit it in the retrograde, or opposite direction of Jupiter’s spin rotation. These distant retrograde moons are grouped into at least three distinct orbital groupings and are thought to be the remnants of three once-larger parent bodies that broke apart during collisions with asteroids, comets, or other moons. The newly discovered retrograde moons take about two years to orbit Jupiter.

Two of the new discoveries are part of a closer, inner group of moons that orbit in the prograde, or same direction as the planet’s rotation. These inner prograde moons all have similar orbital distances and angles of inclinations around Jupiter and so are thought to also be fragments of a larger moon that was broken apart. These two newly discovered moons take a little less than a year to travel around Jupiter.

“Our other discovery is a real oddball and has an orbit like no other known Jovian moon,” Sheppard explained. “It’s also likely Jupiter’s smallest known moon, being less than one kilometer in diameter”.
This new “oddball” moon is more distant and more inclined than the prograde group of moons and takes about one and a half years to orbit Jupiter. So, unlike the closer-in prograde group of moons, this new oddball prograde moon has an orbit that crosses the outer retrograde moons.

As a result, head-on collisions are much more likely to occur between the “oddball” prograde and the retrograde moons, which are moving in opposite directions.

“This is an unstable situation,” said Sheppard. “Head-on collisions would quickly break apart and grind the objects down to dust.”

It’s possible the various orbital moon groupings we see today were formed in the distant past through this exact mechanism.

The team think this small “oddball” prograde moon could be the last-remaining remnant of a once-larger prograde-orbiting moon that formed some of the retrograde moon groupings during past head-on collisions. The name Valetudo has been proposed for it, after the Roman god Jupiter’s great-granddaughter, the goddess of health and hygiene.

Elucidating the complex influences that shaped a moon’s orbital history can teach scientists about our Solar System’s early years.

For example, the discovery that the smallest moons in Jupiter’s various orbital groups are still abundant suggests the collisions that created them occurred after the era of planet formation, when the Sun was still surrounded by a rotating disk of gas and dust from which the planets were born.
Because of their sizes—one to three kilometers—these moons are more influenced by surrounding gas and dust. If these raw materials had still been present when Jupiter’s first generation of moons collided to form its current clustered groupings of moons, the drag exerted by any remaining gas and dust on the smaller moons would have been sufficient to cause them to spiral inwards toward Jupiter. Their existence shows that they were likely formed after this gas and dust dissipated.



The initial discovery of most of the new moons were made on the Blanco 4-meter telescope at Cerro Tololo Inter-American in Chile and operated by the National Optical Astronomical Observatory of the United States. The telescope recently was upgraded with the Dark Energy Camera, making it a powerful tool for surveying the night sky for faint objects. Several telescopes were used to confirm the finds, including the 6.5-meter Magellan telescope at Carnegie’s Las Campanas Observatory in Chile; the 4-meter Discovery Channel Telescope at Lowell Observatory Arizona (thanks to Audrey Thirouin, Nick Moskovitz and Maxime Devogele); the 8-meter Subaru Telescope and the Univserity of Hawaii 2.2 meter telescope (thanks to Dave Tholen and Dora Fohring at the University of Hawaii); and 8-meter Gemini Telescope in Hawaii (thanks to Director’s Discretionary Time to recover Valetudo). Bob Jacobson and Marina Brozovic at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory confirmed the calculated orbit of the unusual oddball moon in 2017 in order to double check its location prediction during the 2018 recovery observations in order to make sure the new interesting moon was not lost.

Caption: Recovery images of Valetudo from the Magellan telescope in May 2018. The moon can be seen moving relative to the steady state background of distant stars. Jupiter is not in the field but off to the upper left.


__________________
This research was partially funded by a NASA Planetary Astronomy grant and includes data gathered with the 6.5-meter Magellan Telescopes. This project used data obtained with the Dark Energy Camera (DECam), which was constructed by the Dark Energy Survey (DES) collaborating institutions. Observations were partly obtained at CTIO, NOAO, which are operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, under contract with the NSF.

Notice that the "oddball" they discovered as one of the 12 new moons has the following feature:

So, unlike the closer-in prograde group of moons, this new oddball prograde moon has an orbit that crosses the outer retrograde moons.

As a result, head-on collisions are much more likely to occur between the “oddball” prograde and the retrograde moons, which are moving in opposite directions.

“This is an unstable situation,”
said Sheppard. “Head-on collisions would quickly break apart and grind the objects down to dust.”
So how come that the scientist don't question how since when this oddball actually could be flying there around Jupiter? I mean if there is a high likelihood that it will collide with other moons because of his strange orbit, that would suggest that there is also a good likelihood that it was captured rather recently because it is still there to observe?! Or am I missing something here?
Another case in point that supports Pierre's idea that many of those new moons actually are new and weren't there before.
 

MK Scarlett

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I didn't know exactly where share to this, so here I go: After have finished to translate the article in French (not published yet), I came to this article which was accepted for publication on 23 August 2019:

The Younger Dryas interval at Wonderkrater (South Africa) in the context of a platinum anomaly

Wonderkrater in the Limpopo Province in South Africa is a late Quaternary archaeological site with peat deposits extending back more than 30 000 years before the present. Palaeoclimatic indices based on multivariate analysis of pollen spectra reflect a decline in temperature identifiable with the Younger Dryas (YD). A prominent spike in platinum is documented in a Wonderkrater sample (5614) with a mean date of 12 744 cal yr BP using a Bayesian model, preceding the onset of the YD cooling event. The YD platinum spike at Wonderkrater is the first to be observed in Africa in the southern hemisphere, supplementing new discoveries from Patagonia in South America, in addition to more than 25 sites with such platinum anomalies in the northern hemisphere. The observations from South Africa serve to strengthen ongoing assessments of the controversial YD Impact Hypothesis, whereby it is proposed that a meteorite or cometary impact contributed to a decline in temperature, associated inter alia with dispersion of atmospheric dust, mammalian extinctions and cultural changes.
Plus, I added in a comment of the French version of the article, a picture of Mars (recently published) showing exactly that the ancient sea area has almost zero craters (I hope you don't mind, Pierre):

A slice of Mars in topographic context: Terra Sabaea and Arabia Terra



Released 19/09/2019 5:00 pm

Description:

This colour-coded topographic image shows a slice of the Red Planet from the northern polar cap downwards, and highlights cratered, pockmarked swathes of the Terra Sabaea and Arabia Terra regions. The area outlined in the centre of the image indicates the area imaged by the Mars Express High Resolution Stereo Camera on 17 June 2019 during orbit 19550.

This context map is based on data gathered by NASA’s Viking and Mars Global Surveyor missions; lower parts of the surface are shown in blues and purples, while higher altitude regions show up in whites, yellows, and reds, as indicated on the scale to the bottom left.
Thank you so much for this brilliant work Pierre, this subject does not stop to amaze me. :thup:
 

Pashalis

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As I was reading the part in Pierre's article today about the eccentricity of Mars orbit, the following two items I read a while ago came to mind:

1:


2:


And I thought if it might be possible (especially considering the second article) that they have gotten the closest approach Mars can have to earth also wrong by a rather significant amount and not just the average distance (which seems to be closer in this model compared to the usual model judging from the table)? So my thought went something like;

If the average distance between Mars and Earth is indeed quite closer than usually stated, the closest approach could be even closer than the mainstream has stated so far, since a closer approach of Mars toward Earth in terms of average, means that the whole circular oval/eccentric movement of Mars is on average closer to earth and it doesn't really tell us how much closer that would be on the closest point since we are talking about an eccentric/oval shape of movement?

So I had a closer look at the Video-Presentation in which the PCM model is explained, since from the data in the article you can't really tell how close Mars is coming towards earth in their model at the closest point:


So I wrote out the closest approaches that appear on the right-hand side of the video manually and discovered to my layman surprise that the closest approach of Mars towards earth varies very widely in terms of distance! Not only that, such close approaches don't happen every year, but only on average every two years. In the 17 close approaches that I wrote out from the video between 2001 and 2037 (37 years) the closest approach from the farthest (close) approach varied as much as almost 44.5 Million Kilometers! In other words: The closest approach I wrote down was 55.8 Million Kilometers away and the farthest 100.23 Million Kilometers away.

So I realized that really close approaches do in fact don't happen all that often between Mars and earth! So I went out to find more out about the topic and found among other websites the follwoing informations:

3:


4:


5:


6:


So I thought it might be interesting to see on which dates in history the really close approaches of mars actually happened. So I searched for an historical table of those really close encounters without much success. The only ones I could find are embedded in the last three articles posted above (4-6) and reach as far back as 756 AD in the last one.

I couldn't find any dates arranged in table form further back though. So after extensive search, the only way I could figure out a way to get dates further back was by using Stellarium via a long and meticulous manual search through time. So it is possible there.

So all that got me thinking that perhaps there is a way to nail down a rather specific date for the hypothesized close approach of Mars and its hypothesized electrical transfer of water and other stuff to earth and that this could possibly be correlated with other data about the cataclysm that happened around that time on earth (such as ice cores, spikes in cosmic radiation etc). Maybe with a close match even?

In other words; the above could potentially yield a rather specific possible date (or a range of rather specific possible dates) for when exactly the transfer and possibly also the cataclysm on earth really happened? Down to the exact day even? It seems that could be a possibility. Would be interesting to see what dates turn up in that time frame of the end of the younger Dryas via close approaches of Mars as summarized above. All under the assumption though that close approaches that we can observe and calculate now, really have something to do with the time in point the electrical transfer might have happened in the past. Or in other words; assuming the electrical movement/trend of Mars wasn't much different back then.

But there is possibly a big problem with that. Since the motions that they use to calculate how far away Mars was in the past, are based on assumptions like "no disruptions" and "gradual, purely mechanical celestial movements". In other words, the data of close approaches could be quite off in regard to the past in a number of places. On the other hand, I wonder if this data of Mars eccentric movement and how it changed in recorded time (meaning only using actual measurements of our days as data points) could be calculated back to a point where a specific disruption must have taken place to explain its movement now? I guess so.

Also, the first article mentioned above could potentially yield a new dimension/complication and possible resolution to the problem since we seem to not only talk about a vortex type of movement of every planet in the solar system but also something "far more interesting".
 
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Pashalis

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Another thought went through my mind today that also relates to the Mars/Earth problem. From Pierre‘s article:

So, electrically speaking, Mars is only one order of magnitude away from of Earth. However, the normal distance between Earth and Mars is too large for any electric discharge between the two planets. But could some kind of cosmic disruption have brought the two planets abnormally close?
What if Mars actually didn’t had to be so close to earth that a direct electrical discharge between the two could have happened because another causal agent „bridged“ the electrical gap between the two? What if such a agent could actually make sense both electrically and celestial mechanic wise, without the need to invoke a really close approach of the two Planets?

Could a rather large comet (Venus maybe) and/or a brought/dense and/or wide comet cluster (big/small enough and/or electrically strong/weak enough and/or charged rightly) between Mars and Earth at that point in time, have acted as a sort of „electrical brindge“ connecting both Planets electrically with eachother and transferring stuff from Mars to earth via an electrical „detour“ through this agent? Would that be possible?

I have not much of a clue about electricity, so this is an idea largely removed from any personal knowledge on how electricity works and if such a thing would even be possible.

Anybody know?
 
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anka

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Could a rather large comet (Venus maybe) and/or a brought/dense and/or wide comet cluster (big/small enough and/or electrically strong/weak enough and/or charged rightly) between Mars and Earth at that point in time, have acted as a sort of „electrical brindge“ connecting both Planets electrically with eachother and transferring stuff from Mars to earth via an electrical „detour“ through this agent? Would that be possible?

I have not much of a clue about electricity, so this is an idea largely removed from any personal knowledge on how electricity works and if such a thing would even be possible.

Anybody know?
I don't :-D but with my very limited understanding of how those things might work I could imagine that creating suitable conditions could have been possible even without an agent in between Mars and Earth. Considering the fact that some comets with larger nucleus that we recorded in our modern history have their tails spreading tens of millions kms, it could be possible that if the nucleus of the hypothesized agent (e.g. Venus) was big enough to sport a tail going a few hundred millions kms and if we presume that Venus was already trapped within Solar system on her more or less today's orbit, her still-very-fresh immense tail could envelope Mars and Earth altogether during conjunction event and make huge electrical discharges possible.

Forgive me if I am talking too much without backing it up with some solid research :-[
 

Debra

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This article has some interesting info about "Curiosity" and the info coming from Mars.
I got a laugh when I read how they are scrambling to find an alternative cause for the methane...a "Natural" gas because it is released during the decomposition of plant or other organic compounds.

NASA’s Curiosity rover returned some seriously surprising data to Earth earlier this year, with readings of elevated methane levels that were hard to explain. Subsequent tests attempted to pin down the cause of the higher-than-expected readings but scientists have yet to come up with a definitive answer.

Now, as questions about methane continue to swirl, scientists studying the behavior of gasses on Mars have noticed that oxygen on the Red Planet also acts much differently than it does on Earth. The observations were made in the Gale Crater, which the rover has called home since it landed there back in 2012.[...]

The air on Mars is largely carbon dioxide. In fact, a full 95% of the gas Curiosity breathes in during its tests is CO2. The remaining 5% is a mix of nitrogen, argon, oxygen, and carbon monoxide. By plotting levels of these gasses over the course of a full Martian year, scientists have noticed anomalies with regard to the amount of oxygen, relative to other gasses.

NASA explains:
Within this environment, scientists found that nitrogen and argon follow a predictable seasonal pattern, waxing and waning in concentration in Gale Crater throughout the year relative to how much CO2 is in the air. They expected oxygen to do the same. But it didn’t. Instead, the amount of the gas in the air rose throughout spring and summer by as much as 30%, and then dropped back to levels predicted by known chemistry in fall.
The fact that the oxygen levels vary as wildly as they do is significant because it hints at as-of-yet undiscovered processes at work on the surface of the planet. For the oxygen levels to see a significant upward spike and then a dramatically fall, something must be creating it and then another something is using it.

 

Pashalis

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While reading the book "Cataclysm" I came across an interesting section entitled "THE TORRENT FROM HEAVEN" that could relate to the idea of the water idea from Mars. I'll just quote the first sentence since it is whole sub chapter that might be of interest in further study of the subject:

THE TORRENT FROM HEAVEN

A variety of traditional sources also refer to what was seemingly yet another aspect of the Deluge, namely that very considerable quantities of water from celestial sources contributed to its final mass. [...]
 
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Pashalis

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Another interesting part in the book is something I've never heard before but could directly relate to the cataclysm and more specifically to extraterrestrial material "from Mars" or another source. The Phenomena is called Manganese Nodules. What follows is the full quote of that section. I highlight some of the interesting points in it, that might be of interest. Notice also the global Map the authors created from the available evidence for the nodules back then:

"Finally, we must consider more fully the ferromanganese concretions found in the red clay. Usually referred to as manganese nodules, these irregularly-shaped objects range in size from that of a garden pea to lumps up to 3ft (0.9m) in long diameter, and exist in countless numbers on the sea-bed worldwide251. Like the associated red clays, the nodules are naturally radioactive252, and at some localities are astonishingly abundant, forming veritable ‘fields’ and ‘pavements’. Some ‘fields’ consist of nodules packed so densely that they totally cover almost 100% of the sea-floor253. The wider distribution of the nodules is patchy, however. We are told, for example, that in the eastern central Pacific Ocean:

...records were taken with bottom-near television cameras, for hundreds of kilometres. For 5% of the records the sea-floor was covered to more than 50% by nodules, that is up to 25kg of ore per square metre. Conversely, 5% of the records showed the sea-floor free of nodules. Elsewhere, the cover varied, sometimes considerably, even over distances of only 50m. The reasons for the patchiness are not clear...254

The areas richest in nodules occur in the north-equatorial Pacific region255. Globally, however, it has been estimated that the nodules represent between 100 and 200 billion tonnes of material256. Map 5F shows the main areas from which they have been reported257, the concentrations in the Pacific and the western Atlantic, east of the Carolina ‘bays, being immediately noticeable.

Manganese nodules are rich in cobalt, nickel, copper and other heavy elements258, a factor suggesting to several authorities the idea that the nodules, which are thought to grow through natural chemical accretion of these and other elements in sea water, are very old. A very slow growth – one estimate suggests “a few millimetres per million years, at most”259 – has been postulated because these metal are rare in sea water, and long ages must have passed for the nodules to have attained their present size by such processes. The fact that the overwhelming majority of these nodules occur on the surface or uppermost layers of the red clay has suggested to some that they have formed principally in areas of low sedimentation rates, since “...because of their slow growth they would soon be covered up in regions of high sediment supply”260.

Unbenannt das.jpg

Map 5F Ocean floor areas from which ferromanganese nodules have been reported. Each dot represents a separate locality, not an individual nodule. Many areas have yet to be searched for nodules – the expectation being that the final number of nodule-yielding localities will be appreciably higher than shown here. Compiled from Berger, Horn, and other sources. Van der Grintens projection. Scale: 1:220,000,000 at the Equator.


No plausible explanation has yet been advanced to account for the formation of nodules in such areas. We have already seen, however, that the twin notions of a great age and slow deposition rate for the red clays are apparently erroneous – especially where the clays overlie geologically young lavas and basalts – and the inference must be that the associated nodules are at least as youthful if not more so. In any case, major geophysical changes to ocean floors approximately 11,500 years ago (see Part One) clearly nullify the concept of sea-bed deposits slowly accumulating under generally stable conditions over very long periods of time, or of a similar slow growth for the nodules. The abundance and distribution of the nodules is remarkable, yet if the sea water below which they lie is almost devoid of the materials from which they allegedly form, and if the associated sea-floors and bottom sediments are indeed geologically youthful261, then the nodules must have formed under other circumstances.

When all these factors are taken into consideration, they suggest that the nodules have been dumped en masse rather than accumulating slowly. This implies a cosmic source which, if correct, signifies that they arrived suddenly and in vast numbers. We recall that several traditional memories of that frightful event agree that some celestial object disintegrated into innumerable fragments while in the vicinity of Earth, showering it with its remnants. Are these nodules further evidence of that calamity and (considering their heavy mineral content) of shattered core material from Tiamat, or Kingu, or both?

Earth’s apparently ‘recent’ acquisition of iron-impregnated matter (subsequently accumulated as loess and red clay) and of enormous quantities of metalliferous nodules certainly calls for exceptional circumstances. Among other effects, these acquisitions would have rendered water supplies bitter and unpalatable. World tradition remembers just such a ‘recent’ event – the Phaeton disaster.

As noted previously, world tradition also links the bitterness of Earth’s waters with a widespread loss of marine life. Can it be coincidence, therefore, that together with other life-forms, pteropods suffered mass mortality in the eastern Atlantic during the alleged Weichselian (Würmian) phase of the so-called Ice Age? Today, the remains of these marine organisms are embedded in sea-floor sediments stretching from Portugal to Senegal, a distance of 1,560 miles (2,500km). These sediments, which have apparently been washed by red tides several times, are estimated to have been deposited sometime between 14,000 and 11,000 years BP262 – exactly that division of time when the Phaeton disaster apparently occurred. This pteropod destruction has been attributed directly to a sudden increase in sedimentation resulting from “rapid hydrographic and climatic changes”263, both highly prominent features of the Phaeton event!

It would seem, therefore, that both ferruginous dust and metalliferous nodules were simply further aspects of the tremendous celestial bombardment responsible for the aforementioned oriented ‘bays’ and Takes’. In short, they were indeed ‘rains of death’."
A question that they haven't adressed in regards to those nodules is the peculiar fact that they only seem to be found all over the oceans and not on land. How could that be? If it is indeed from the cataclysmic events back then, could it be, that due to their size, composition and fragile nature, they eroded away on landmasses by now and have been preserved on the ocean bottoms since there is far less means of erosion compared to landmasses?

I'm also wondering if there was ever a material composition tests done on those nodules? Could the originate from space and not from earth and could it be revealed by those tests? Could the test even show a connection to mars material? Also, could they have been a result or by product of electrical eroding?

Anyway, here is the Wikipedia entry on the subject of Nodules.
 

Pierre

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MKS said:
Plus, I added in a comment of the French version of the article, a picture of Mars (recently published) showing exactly that the ancient sea area has almost zero craters (I hope you don't mind, Pierre):
This is a good idea. I treated the crater pristine martian ocean in the following way:

Space leakage posits that, about 4.2 billion years ago, Mars lost its magnetic field and, devoid of this protection, solar winds stripped the planet of its atmosphere, and most of its water, within a few hundred million years.

However, this is probably not true for one simple reason: the top half of the Martian Northern hemisphere (where the Martian ocean once stood) exhibits far less and far smaller craters than the rest of the planet.

In 2011, Robbins et al published a database listing close to 400,000 craters. The picture on the right is excerpted from this paper and shows the geographic distribution of Martian craters (diameters between 30 and 50 km). Obviously, most of Mars' Northern hemisphere exhibits a far lower concentration of craters than the rest of the planet.
And I illustrated this text with the following picture:



The picture you added is probably a better illustration than a bland computer simulation that does not even display the location of the martian ocean.
 
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