From ancient martian oceans to tsunamis to our homeland to strange methane being released everywhere, these are the 7 mysteries of the planet mars.
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Did you know Mars is two faced? And not because it lied about cheating on us with Mercury, which we would totally understand, Mercury is super-hot.
In the late 19th Century Italian astronomer Giovanni Schiaparelli observed what he believed were canals on the surface of Mars, alluding to the presence of water and potentially life. This turned out to be an optical illusion, but geological examinations of the planet suggest that oceans and rivers were once abundant on its surface. In fact, a recent report by Planetary Science Institute Senior Scientist J. Alexis Palmero Rodriguez has uncovered sedimentary deposits which indicate that when Mars did have an ocean, it suffered from several huge mega-tsunamis caused by asteroid impacts. So if there was once intelligent life on the planet Mars, was a mega-tsunami to blame for wiping them out?
Water has been detected on Mars in the form of ice at the poles and at mid-latitudes, and a sample taken from the Mars rover Spirit in 2007 found further water molecules within chemical compounds within its soil. But is there any flowing water on the red planet today?
In 2005 the European Space Agency’s Mars Express detected small yet significant quantities of Methane in the atmosphere of Mars. Methane can be produced by volcanic activity, but much of the Methane in our own atmosphere is produced by life, and since neither cows nor human dads are prevalent on Mars we don’t know where this gas is coming from. Methane can only exist for around 300 years in the Martian atmosphere, so whatever is creating it has done so within the past few centuries, or alternatively, it is still producing it today.
The presence of water, the release of methane into the atmosphere, organic molecules detected by the Viking lander in 1975, the presence of formaldehyde found in 2005; each of these on its own may not be enough to confirm that life definitely exists on the mysterious red planet, but when combined this evidence makes a pretty compelling case that we could be closer than ever before to confirming the existence of extra-terrestrial beings.
NASA currently holds a catalogue of 34 Martian meteorites which have been discovered in Antarctica, Egypt, India, and various other sites across the globe, and there’s a strange anomaly with at least three of them which points to a fascinating possibility. Billions of years ago these meteorites were once part of Mars, ejected by the planet after other meteorites smashed into her surface, and when analysed they were found to contain strange tiny structures, structures which are usually made by microbes, microbes which exist here, today, on Earth.