Did we get the evidence of life on Mars?
Mars is the fourth planet from the Sun and the second-smallest planet in the Solar System. It carries a name of the Roman god of war and is often referred to as the “Red Planet”. Scientists have always tried to find life on Mars.
Water on Mars
Researchers knew that Mars had large water bodies in past due to the planet’s landform, riverbeds, mountains, and valleys. Now after years of hypothesis, researchers have finally found liquid water.
— ESA Science (@esascience) July 25, 2018
Scientists of European Space Agency (ESA) used the Mars Advanced Radar for Subsurface and Ionosphere Sounding (MARSIS) instrument on the Mars Express spacecraft to scan the surface near the south pole. Then they detected the underground lake. It is about 2 km below the surface.
The lake is about 20 kilometers wide and 1 meter deep. This discovery is the evidence that confirms that water not only flowed in the past but it is still present in some regions.
Water is key to life
It is true that water is the key to habitability anywhere and the presence of water increases the probability of life. But, water found is very cold and to be present in the liquid state underground It must contain a high amount of salts.
“It’s plausible that the water may be an extremely cold, concentrated brine, which would be pretty challenging for life,” explained Dr. Claire Cousins, an astrobiologist from the University of St Andrews, UK.
It is still very exciting though. Dr. Manish Patel from the Open University said “We are not close to actually detecting life, but what this finding does is give us the location of where to look on Mars. It is like a treasure map – except, in this case, there will be lots of X marking the spots.”