Life had everything it needed for growth

Tous les ingrédients nécessaires à l'émergence de la vie auraient été présents sur Mars. © dottedyeti, Adobe Stock

Since 2012, the Round Curiosity is conducting research on the surface of Mars with the aim of better control Climate evolution of the Red Planet And water balance Liquid Its past, but determine whether or not Mars can ever support life.

Now if we know it Many lakes and rivers Mars has shaped the landscape and its Climate It was a favorable day for life, and no direct biological traces have yet been found. Okay, scientists continue to searchOrigin Of life.

The amount of organic carbon that is comparable to some land area

In 2014, Curiosity A series of experiments were carried out to measure the fraction Carbon Total organic matter on Mars. After eight years of data analysis, the results are finally available in the journal PNAS Reveals that the rocks of Mars are relatively rich in organic carbon, which is one of the key components for the launch. Chemical reactions Prebiotics and possibly The Construction Of Molecules Biology.

It has been some time since scientists discovered traces of organic carbon The red planet. But evaluating its availability is an important parameter that determines the growth potential of life. And the results are surprising because the rocks on Mars show a significant portion of organic carbon, comparable to some landforms. Admittedly, the values ​​are the same as the values ​​of the reduced harsh environments in organic carbon. Warehouse Landscape), as Atacama Desert, But these are encouraging results for Mars. Because it shows that there is enough carbon available for construction (comment) Organic moleculesIt is the basis of all life forms known to date.

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Water, carbon, energy sources … all the things in life together

Is defined as the amount of total organic carbonAtoms Carbon bound to organic molecules (usually made up of atoms)HydrogenOfOxygen And nitrogen). If most of the organic carbon on Earth is of biological origin, it may be of non-biological origin, especially Meteors, Volcanic activity or certain chemical reactions on the surface of the planet. Since Mars has organic carbon, there is no way to prove that life originated on this planet.

With liquid water, the significant amount of organic carbon on the other hand is a new element, indicating that the basic materials needed for life existed on Mars a few billion years ago. Curiosity would have been the gale groove that formed Sufficiently favorable place for the appearance of lifeBesides water and carbon, there are other essential elements in the environment: SourcesEnergyLow acidity, oxygen, nitrogen and Sulfur.

So the curiosity to find the first clues of the searched Mars life may be in the right place. However, if they were, accessing them would be harder than we thought.

Review the search strategy for organic molecules such as amino acids

A new experiment was carried out by NASA To actually get a chance to detect organic molecules, the rover would have to drill to a depth of two meters in the bottom of Mars. This is especially true of searchAmino acidsIt may or may not have a biological origin, but it is considered a building block for construction in all cases Protein. However, the Acids Amino acids are brittle and easily destroyed Cosmic rays The thin reaches the surface of Mars Atmosphere Does not provide effective protection. Currently, the rovers are drilling to a depth of five centimeters. At this depth, scientists estimate that amino acids are destroyed in just 20 million years. Knowing that life on Mars may have formed billions of years ago, it would seem utterly useless to explore this superficial scale.

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These results were published Astronomy, Show the need to implement a new search technique for rovers currently in operation, which unfortunately do not have the facility to drill to the required depth. Need to find a solution External crops Because of the recent revelation of deep areas such as small impact craters less than 10 million years old or materials expelled from such craters.

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