Rover reveals magnetic Mars PhysicsWeb

Almost all dust particles in the Martian atmosphere are magnetic, according to new data obtained by NASA’s Mars Exploration Rover Spirit. The craft also examined rocks at the Gusev crater, which were found to contain the strong magnetic mineral magnetite (Fe3O4). The results — obtained by a team of scientists from Denmark, Germany and the US — could help to determine if water was involved in the formation of these minerals (P Bertelsen et al. 2004 Science 305 827).