Mars Expert Available at Rowan UniversityJune 21, 2000
Television, radio and newspapers are reporting that the Mars Global
Surveyor has discovered surface water on the planet.
Rowan University’s resident Mars expert, Dr. David Klassen, is available
for interviews about the findings. Klassen earned a Ph.D. in Physics from
the University of Wyoming and a B.S. in Astrophysics and B.Mathematics
from the University of Minnesota.
<+>Some reports are indicating that there may be evidence for running
water on the surface of Mars. Under current conditions it is not possible
for there to be liquid water on the surface. However, if the surface is
being fed by some kind of underground flow, water could exist for short
periods of time on the surface, making it possible for there to be an area
of Mars that is covered by liquid water. If this report is true, it would
indicate that there is sufficient subsurface heat to liquefy the water and
thus have great implications on the possibility for current, microbial life
on Mars,<+> Klassen said.
Klassen has studied Mars for more than 10 years, and his doctoral
dissertation was on <+>Infrared Imaging Spectroscopy of Martian Volatiles<+>
(a study of Martian ices, both water and carbon dioxide). Klassen has
regularly done research at the NASA Infrared Telescope Facility in
Manuna Kea, Hawaii. Time at that facility is allocated on a competitive
His current research focuses on the search for Martian clouds and their
role in the current climate and climate history of Mars.
Klassen can be reached directly at (856) 256-4500 ext. 3273.