Mars exploration has been guided by the search for water. The more complex quest by Mars Science Laboratory for habitable environments should illuminate the Martian environmental history, and possibly deliver insights into extraterrestrial life.
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Work on Mars Science Laboratory was sponsored by NASA. J. Crisp, W. Fischer, A. Knoll, R. Milliken, E. Stolper and A. Vasavada commented on the manuscript.
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Grotzinger, J. Beyond water on Mars. Nature Geosci 2, 231–233 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1038/ngeo480