Tag Archives: life

Could detoxing Mars soil lead to new medicines?

Bacterial resistance to antibiotics is one of humankind’s major long-term health challenges. Now research into helping humans live on Mars could help address this looming problem. Dennis Claessen, associate professor at the Institute of Biology in Leiden University, the Netherlands … Continue reading

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Can organisms survive on Mars, and can we identify them?

Earth is a very special planet. It is the only celestial body in the Solar System on which we know life exists. Could there be life on other planets or moons? Mars is always the first to be mentioned in … Continue reading

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Asteroid impacts+hydrogen = recipe for Mars life

A new study reveals asteroid impacts on ancient Mars could have produced key ingredients for life if the Martian atmosphere was rich in hydrogen. An early hydrogen-rich atmosphere on Mars could also explain how the planet remained habitable after its … Continue reading

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How should astronauts search for life on Mars?

An international team of researchers, which includes scientists from McMaster’s School of Geography & Earth Sciences, NASA, and others, is tackling one of the biggest problems of space travel to Mars: what happens when we get there? A series of … Continue reading

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Field test: Robotic rover collects subsurface samples with patchy, specialized microbial life

[Editor’s note: From a paper by Kimberley Warren-Rhodes and eight co-authors recently published in Frontiers in Microbiology.] Subsurface Microbial Habitats in an Extreme Desert Mars-Analog Environment Sediments in the hyper-arid core of the Atacama Desert are a terrestrial analog to … Continue reading

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What two planetary siblings can teach us about life

Mars and Earth are like two siblings who have grown apart. There was a time when their resemblance was uncanny: Both were warm, wet and shrouded in thick atmospheres. But 3 or 4 billion years ago, these two worlds took … Continue reading

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Rain brings death in Mars-like Atacama desert

When rains fell on the arid Atacama Desert, it was reasonable to expect floral blooms to follow. Instead, the water brought death. An international team of planetary astrobiologists has found that after encountering never-before-seen rainfall three years ago at the … Continue reading

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Could martian liquid water hold enough oxygen to support life?

A team led by scientists at Caltech and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), which Caltech manages for NASA, has calculated that if liquid water exists on Mars, it could — under specific conditions — contain more oxygen than previously thought … Continue reading

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Early Mars: Right ingredients for subsurface life

A new study shows that the breakdown of water molecules trapped in ancient Martian rocks likely produced enough chemical energy to sustain microorganisms for hundreds of millions of years beneath the Red Planet’s surface. (…) “We showed, based on basic … Continue reading

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‘Black Beauty’ meteorite expands window for early Mars life

The early surface of Mars consisted of a liquid magma ocean that crystallized extremely rapidly, just 20 million year after the formation of the solar system. Thereafter, a solid crust emerged on the red planet, potentially housing oceans with water … Continue reading

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