Rock collected on Mars contains key substance for life on the planet –


life mars

Image: ESA & MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/RSSD/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA/Reproduction

Billions of years ago, the climate on Mars was similar to Earth’s. Its atmosphere was thick and there was liquid water flowing through rivers and seas. In short, the planet had an environment conducive to the development of life.

No living beings were ever found there, but some signs may indicate that Mars was once inhabited by more than simple robots. NASA’s Curiosity rover has pinpointed a key ingredient for life in rocks taken from the Yellowknife Bay formation in Gale Crater.

Organic carbon was identified in the sample, created and used by all known life forms. It’s not the first time scientists have identified the structure on the planet, but this time it was found in greater numbers.

To make the measurement, the rover used the instrument Sample Analysis at Mars (SAM). The tool uses oxygen and high heat to convert organic carbon into carbon dioxide. The rover can calculate how much material has been turned into gas, arriving at the original amount.

Yes, there are chances that organic carbon comes from non-living sources like meteorites and volcanic eruptions. But the amount found by Curiosity – between 200 and 273 parts per million (ppm) – is comparable to what scientists find in terrestrial rocks located in regions with low rates of life, such as the Atacama Desert in Chile.

Organic carbon wasn’t the only sign of life found in the crater on Mars. There were others there conditions conducive to lifeas sources of chemical energy, low acidity and essential elements for biology, such as oxygen, nitrogen and sulfur.

About Raju Singh

Raju has an exquisite taste. For him, video games are more than entertainment and he likes to discuss forms and art.

Check Also

4 Gmail Extensions You Should Take Advantage Of

– Reading time: 2 minutes – Gmail is one of Google’s most used services and …