H-SAN LUIS OBISPO

Jun 7, 2011 1:36 AM by Bill Halter

San Luis Obispo man getting a lot of attention for video of Mars

David Martines of San Luis Obispo is getting some national and international attention for a discovery he made while looking at a Google map of Mars. Martines posted a video on YouTube of what looks like a structure on the surface of the red planet and the video has created quite a buzz on earth.

As of Monday night the video posted by Martines had gotten nearly 1.2 million hits. Martines says he noticed the white image which looks like a structure while zooming in and out of Google Mars, a feature offered by Google, similar to Google Earth.

"This is not a conspiracy, this is something that you can actually go to Google Mars and you can see this on their map" says Martines.

Martines calls the apparent structure, Biostation Alpha but planetary geologist Alfred McEwen from the University of Arizona says not so fast. McEwen thinks Biostation Alpha is simply a glitch in the image caused by cosmic energy interfering with the camera.

McEwen says, "with space images that are taken outside our magnetosphere, such as those taken by orbiting telescopes, it's very common to see these cosmic ray hits."

Martines says he's not an astronomy expert and doesn't know what the image is but isn't sold on McEwen's explanation.

"He says that it's a glitch caused by the reflection of the sun, but even he doesn't know what camera took the picture and even he doesn't know where the raw data exists" says Martines.

Martines says he has sent emails to N.A.S.A. for an explanation but has not heard back from them. He says his email inbox has been flooded since he posted the video on May 28. Martines says he's been contacted by national news organizations like MSNBC and FOX.

Martines accidentally deleted his YouTube video but has reposted it: here's a link

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