Hope for life on Mars: Volcanoes may be active

Hope for life on Mars: Volcanoes may be active

Using data from satellites orbiting Mars, scientists have uncovered evidence of recent volcanic activity. This would mark a major breakthrough in the search for extraterrestrial life on the Red Planet.

Most records of Mars show that they were volcanic 3 to 4 billion years ago, and in some places small eruptions lasted as recently as 3 million years. But the new study, published in the co-reviewed scientific journal Icarus, points to evidence that eruptions may have occurred over the past 50,000 years.

David Harvard, a research scientist at the Institute of Planetary Sciences in Arizona, USA, is the lead author of the study. “This may be the most recent volcanic eruption ever recorded on Mars. If the geological history of Mars were squeezed out in a single day, it would be the last second.” He spoke.

Scientists analyzed satellite data and found evidence of a 12-kilometer-wide flat and dark pile around a 32-kilometer-long volcanic eruption. These features indicate that they accumulated as a result of an explosion.

Jeff Andrews-Hannah, Associate Professor of Moon and Planetary Laboratory at the University of Arizona and Senior Professor of Research “When we first noticed this pile, we realized it was something special.” Said.

Andrews-Hannah,“This accumulation was unlike anything found in the region or on Mars, and its properties were similar to those created by ancient volcanic eruptions on the Moon or Mercury.” He added.

Upon further analysis of the data, the researchers concluded that the properties, composition and distribution of the substance correspond to what is expected of a type of magma eruption caused by an expanding gas called a pyroclastic eruption, which resembles the opening of a shake gas drink.

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According to researchers, the eruption site is about 1,600 kilometers from NASA’s Insight ground vehicle, which has been exploring seismic activity on the Red Planet and has been searching for “Mars shakes” since 2018.

Similar to Earthquakes on Earth, these planets appeared in the area around the volcanic system, where cracks and fissures were found, known as the Cerberus fossa. Recent studies also indicate that these may be caused by magma movements below the planet’s surface.

Harvard, “The young age of this structure certainly increases the likelihood of volcanic activity still present on Mars, and it is interesting to note that the latest Mars tremor detected by the Insight mission was caused by the Cerberus fossa.” Used expressions.

Scientists believe that such volcanic deposits may also increase the likelihood of recent habitable conditions beneath the surface of Mars.

Harvard, “The increasing contact of magma and frozen substrate in the region may have recently provided favorable conditions for microbial life, thus increasing the chances of survival in the region.” Said.

The combination of volcanic deposits described in the new study, evidence of the planet’s inland seismic hum and the possibility of methane emissions from underground detected by NASA’s Maven orbit, scientists believe Mars is “a cold, still far from the planet”.

Andrews-Hannah, “All of this data seems to tell the same story. Mars never died.” He spoke.

Source: Independent in Turkey

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About the Author: Cary Douglas

Cary Douglas is a reporter who covers everything from oil trading to China's biggest conglomerates and technology companies. Originally from Chicago, he is a graduate of New York University's business and economic reporting program.

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