Life on Mars?


This video is called What sets Curiosity apart from other Mars Rovers?

From New Scientist:

No aliens on Mars? No problem, we will look elsewhere

02 May 2012

IN LESS than 100 days, the most ambitious Mars mission ever devised is due to land on the Red Planet. Mars Science Laboratory‘s main task is to search for signs of life, a $2.5 billion testament to our desire to know for sure whether we are alone in the universe.

Don’t expect a straight answer. The search for life on Mars isn’t black and white. Consider recent findings that Earthly bacteria can survive on Mars … .

This is a mixed blessing for alien hunters. It suggests Mars is habitable, and that any life that evolved there may be clinging on. But it also means any such discovery will be tinged with doubt. Unless Martian life is distinct from life as we know it, how do we rule out the possibility that it is actually from Earth?

Perhaps Titan is a better bet. It seems likely the ingredients for life are present, but would be assembled in an unequivocally alien way (see “How Saturn’s moon Titan could spark chemistry of life“).

Astrobiology is an odd science. It largely concerns itself with studying something that may not exist. Even so, it captures the imagination like nothing else. Even if Mars Science Laboratory doesn’t give us the answers we crave, the search will go on.

Mars Might Have a Lot More Water Than We Knew: here.

Saturn PHOTO Shows Moons Tethys And Enceladus In High Resolution: here.

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6 thoughts on “Life on Mars?

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