Tag Archives: astrobiology

ExoMars 2020: Window into rover’s search for Mars life

Anyone interested in the scientific exploration of Mars and the search for life on the Red Planet will want to read a special issue of the journal Astrobiology. This collection of papers includes one dedicated to the objectives of ESA’s … Continue reading

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Lakes in Noctis Labyrinthus: ancient habitable environments?

Groundwater circulation beneath a massive tectonic rift zone located along the flanks of some the Solar System’s largest volcanic plateaus resulted in the formation more than 3 billion years ago of some the deepest basins on Mars, according to a … Continue reading

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Antarctic fungi survive Martian conditions for 18 months on ISS

European scientists have gathered tiny fungi that take shelter in Antarctic rocks and sent them to the International Space Station. After 18 months on board in conditions similar to those on Mars, more than 60% of their cells remained intact, … Continue reading

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Antarctic Dry Valleys reveal limits to life?

Failure to find active microbes in coldest Antarctic soils has implications for search for life on Mars. It took Jackie Goordial over 1000 petri dishes before she was ready to accept what she was seeing. Or not seeing. Goordial, a … Continue reading

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Scientists detect impact glass on Martian surface

NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter (MRO) has detected deposits of glass within impact craters on Mars. Though formed in the searing heat of a violent impact, such deposits might provide a delicate window into the possibility of past life on the … Continue reading

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Honing search methods to find Mars life

For centuries, people have imagined the possibility of life on Mars, but probes have so far uncovered no life at all. Yet Mars does have evidence that a prime condition for life once may have existed there: water. “There has … Continue reading

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Is carbon in Mars meteorite Tissint biological?

Did Mars ever have life? Does it still? A meteorite from Mars has reignited the old debate. An international team that includes scientists from the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne has published a paper in the scientific journal Meteoritics and … Continue reading

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Nakhla meteorite: newly found mineral features

A new ovoid structure discovered in the Nakhla Martian meteorite is made of nanocrystalline iron-rich clay, contains a variety of minerals, and shows evidence of undergoing a past shock event from impact, with resulting melting of the permafrost and mixing … Continue reading

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Mars ‘terraforming’ test among NAIC proposals

NASA has selected a dozen proposals for study under Phase I of the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) Program. Among the selected proposals is the Mars Ecopoiesis Test Bed by Eugene Boland (Techshot Inc.). (“Ecopoiesis” is the creation of an … Continue reading

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Mars meteorite altered by water, has spherules enriched in carbon

A team of scientists at NASA’s Johnson Space Center in Houston and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., has found evidence of past water movement throughout a Martian meteorite [Yamato 000593], reviving debate in the scientific community over life … Continue reading

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