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Dust Devils in Gusev Crater

NASA / JPL-Caltech / Texas A&M

Dust Devils in Gusev Crater. This movie clip shows several dust devils moving.

The question that began an 8-year study: How can Martian dust devils shown above at Gusev Crater form if pressure is under 10 millibars (average pressure on Earth is  1,013.25 millibars)? The film clip covers 12 minutes 17 seconds of what  was seen at Mars Exploration Rover Spirit on its 543rd day on Mars (July 13, 2005). Perhaps even more extraordinary is the evidence for running water at Recurring Slope Lineae on the surface of Mars.





ABSTRACT: We present evidence that NASA is seriously understating Martian air pressure. Our 10-year study critiques 2,674 Sols (~7.53 terrestrial years, 4 Martian years) of highly problematic MSL Rover Environmental Monitoring Station (REMS) weather data, and offers an in depth audit of over 8,311 hourly Viking 1 and 2 weather reports. We discuss analysis of technical papers, NASA documents, and personal interviews of transducer designers. We troubleshoot pressures based on radio occultation/spectroscopy, and the previously accepted small pressure ranges that could be measured by Viking 1 and 2 (18 mbar), Pathfinder and Phoenix (12 mbar), and MSL (11.5 mbar – altered to 14 mbar in 2017). For MSL there were several pressures published from August 30 to September 5, 2012 that were from 737 mbar to 747 mbar – two orders of magnitude high – only to be retracted. We challenged many pressures and NASA revised them down. However there are two pressure sensors ranges listed on a CAD for Mars Pathfinder. We long thought the CAD listed two different sensors, but based on specifications of a new Tavis sensor for InSight that is like that on PathFinder, it appears that the transducer could toggle between two pressures ranges: 0-0.174 PSIA/12 mbar (Tavis Dash 2) and 0-15 PSIA/1,034 mbar (Tavis Dash 1). Further, for the MSL according to an Abstract to the American Geophysical Union for the Fall 2012 meeting, The Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) states of their MSL (and Phoenix) Vaisala transducers, “The pressure device measurement range is 0 – 1025 hPa in temperature range of -45°C – +55°C (-45°C is much warmer than MSL night temperatures), but its calibration is optimized for the Martian pressure range of 4 – 12 hPa.” So while we first thought that of the first five landers that had meteorological suites, none could measure Earth-like pressures, in fact, three landers were actually equipped to get the job done. Further, all original 19 low UV values were removed when we asked about them, although they eventually restored 12 of them. REMS always-sunny opacity reports were contradicted by Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter photos. Why REMS Team data was so wrong is a matter of speculation, but we demonstrate that their weather data was regularly revised after they studied online critiques in working versions of this report. REMS even labelled all dust 2018 Global Dust Storm weather as sunny, although they did list the UV values then as all low.


Vikings and MSL showed consistent timing of daily pressure spikes which we link to how gas pressure in a sealed container would vary with Absolute temperature, to heating by radioisotope thermoelectric generators (RTGs), and to dust clots at air access tubes and dust filters. Pathfinder, Phoenix and MSL wind measurements failed. Phoenix and MSL pressure transducer design problems included confusion about dust filter location, and lack of information about nearby heat sources due to International Traffic and Arms Regulations (ITAR). NASA Ames could not replicate dust devils at 10 mbar. Rapidly filled MER Spirit tracks required wind speeds of 80 mph at the assumed low pressures. These winds were never recorded on Mars. Nor could NASA explain drifting Barchan sand dunes. Based on the above and dust devils on Arsia Mons to altitudes of 17 km above areoid (Martian equivalent of sea level), spiral storms with 10 km eye-walls above Arsia Mons and similar storms above Olympus Mons (over 21 km high), dust storm opacity at MER Opportunity blacking out the sun, snow that descends 1 to 2 km in only 5 or 10 minutes, excessive aero braking, liquid water running on the surface in numerous locations at Recurring Slope Lineae (RSL) and stratus clouds 13 km above areoid, we argue for an average pressure at areoid of ~511 mbar rather than the accepted 6.1 mbar. This pressure grows to 1,050 mbar in the Hellas Basin.

ANIMATED GIF 1 BELOW: A time-lapse animation of Palikir Crater shows how the streaks extend and darken during warmer months on Mars, then gradually fade as temperatures cool.


The August, 2012 landing of MSL Curiosity on Mars was brilliant. See it here. However, our research group named Mars Correct exists to prove that the U.S. Government espouses deeply flawed versions of Martian meteorology. While the greatest errors are with air pressure, NASA has published incorrect wind information, wrong temperatures, flawed relativity humidity reports, and incorrect ultraviolet radiation levels and even wrong sunrise and sunset times. We can say this because after NASA read our proofs, it removed all wind reports, adapted our day length calculations, and removed much of the rest of their mistaken data from their web sites. However, their fundamental error remains their claim that the average pressure on Mars is 6.1 millibars, which is close to a vacuum. The weather that we see occurring, even the blue color of the Martian sky that they would not let us see for 36 years, are all impossible with such a low pressure. We believe that the absurdly low pressure that they advance is proof of a political and/or religious agenda and cover-up that requires maintenance of the status quo. However, this site doesn’t delve into the full nature of that charge, although one article explores it a bit and it is briefly discussed in the Afterword of our Basic Report. Rather, this web site’s focus is just with proving the NASA weather data wrong. Our August 15, 2017 report is found at this link: MARS CORRECT: CRITIQUE OF ALL NASA MARS WEATHER DATA.

The July 17, 2018 PowerPoint summary of the Report may be found at Mars Correct? Mars is wet!

About Barry Roffman

I was born in Philadelphia, PA in May, 1947, graduated from Northeast High there in 1965, and from Temple University in 1969. At the University of Pennsylvania I earned a commission in the U.S. Navy in December 1968. After active duty in the Navy, I taught science (often Earth-Space Science) in Dade and Palm Beach Counties in Florida for 30 years before retiring in 2003. I also spent 10 years in the Navy Reserve and then joined the Coast Guard Reserve in 1983. In 1995 I retired from the military, but was recalled to active duty in March 2003. While on active duty, I wrote defense readiness and disaster response plans at Coast Guard District 7 in Miami, Coast Guard Pacific Area in Alameda, California, and for Districts 14 in Hawaii and 17 in Alaska. I retired again on my 60th birthday in May, 2007. I have been a guest speaker on the History Channel where I discussed my Torah Codes and Ark Code research (which is featured on my ArkCode.Com website); and at International Mars Society Conventions where (with my son, David, we have focused on Martian air pressure since 2010. MILITARY AWARDS RECEIVED: U.S Coast Guard Meritorious Service Medal, U.S. Coast Guard Commendation Medal, U.S. Coast Guard Achievement Medal, Commandant's Letter of Commendation Ribbon Bar (gold star in lieu of second), National Defense (double bronze star in lieu of third time), USCG Bicentennial Unit Commendation, Coast Guard Unit Commendation, USCG Humanitarian Service Medal, Armed Forces Reserve Medal (with M and Silver Hour Glass). As a Reservist, I proudly served aboard the following ships in the Navy: Aircraft Carriers: Lexington; Randolph; Franklin D. Roosevelt; Independence, and Kitty Hawk. I also served on amphibious communications command ship: Mount Whitney, destroyers Barton; Lowry; Blackwood (a DE) and USS Fox; frigate: Antrim, and coastal minesweeper: Thrush. In the Coast Guard I served on Buoy Tender Ironwood and WPB Aquidneck
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