Holy cow, there's water on Mars!

An artist's rendition of the European Space Agency's Mars Express orbiting the Red Planet. Photo by AFP/Getty Images.

This is not a drill, Earthlings. It looks like our celestial neighbor has a big 'ol lake on it.

Er, maybe I should say, a big 'ol lake in it.

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Heroes

When your roommate eats the last Oreo in the freezer, that's an annoyance. When your roommate eats the last Oreo you'll see in months, you might have a problem.

On Sept. 17, six volunteer crew members emerged from eight months of isolation. Their quarantine, part of a NASA-backed study by the University of Hawaii, could one day help humanity plan a drama-free Mars mission.

For the last eight months, the six volunteers lived in a tiny shelter on the slopes of an active volcano, sharing their living space, meager kitchen, and solitary shower.

From a distance, their house-sized habitat looked like a golf ball sitting in the loneliest sand trap in the universe. Photo from HI-SEAS V Crew/University of Hawaii News/Flickr.

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Heroes

On Aug. 28, 2016, six NASA scientists walked outside for the first time in a full year.

They stepped out, the morning fog just beginning to clear over the barren hills, having spent the last 365 days living in a 36-foot-diameter geodesic dome nestled in the volcanic mountains of Hawaii — the closest Earthly analog for the landscape of the planet Mars.

The longest space travel simulation ever conducted in the United States was complete.

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Heroes

You wouldn't expect Jane Goodall, who is basically the human form of Mother Earth, to talk about Mars.

But she makes a good point.

"The photographs obtained by that little robot that's crawling around the surface of Mars makes it very clear that the planet is not a hospitable environment for human colonization," the eco-octogenarian said during a recent speech at U.S. Department of State.

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