Why is water on Mars so important?
In August of 2011 scientists discovered that during the “Spring Months” of Mars, carved surfaces in the ground form and this may have been caused by heavily salted water. It is of interest to note that water or H2O HAS been found on Mars. However, much of this water is contained at either the planets poles or underground with the vast majority of the above surface water being frozen. There has been evidence to support claims that Mars may have been covered in Oceans in the distant past however this certainly hasn’t been observed during our modern times. This discovery of “carved surfaces” of the ground may support evidence that the possibility of liquid water exists on Mars.
These new streak formations are taking place over the course of two earth months. Some of these sloping streaks are 650 feet deep. These streaks are currently only forming around the planets warmest areas, with the majority being along the equator, which is facing the sun more often. This is not proof of liquid water but the most likely explanation currently is H2O in liquid form. Now with that said; why is the discovery of water on Mars so important or rather profound?
On the planet Earth, scientists have discovered that life as we know it can adapt to a wide variety of situations as long as there is water present. This means that wherever there is water there has been the discovery of life itself. The idea behind this being that if there is liquid water present on Mars, the likelihood of discovering life is very significant and highly relative. The implications of this is hard to fully fathom but it most certainly would be far reaching.
The discovery of liquid water on Mars would also mean the possibility of terra-forming Mars or even of the possibility of future generations of Earthians living on Mars in the not so distant future. As science progresses and our understanding of fuel and engines further increase we may in the near future be able to have space missions to Mars. Even more exciting is the prospect of Terra Formation of Mars. This would mean the possible long-term survival of the human race not to mention a staging point for future exploration of the rest of our solar system and beyond. The possibilities are endless and has gotten all of us in the scientific community excited.
Currently, the Mars Rover Curiosity is searching for liquid water and life signs on mars. This little rover offers humanity a very real possibility of solid evidence of liquid water on Mars and even life itself. Of course this may take many more months or even years as to the sheer size of Mars. The rover is being directed in a very systematic fashion of high probability areas. The Mars rover is a walking laboratory. With more gadgets than a swiss army knife this robot can collect soil, sample rock material, sort through the materials, and even has onboard instruments for the analyst of materials. Can you believe it even has a built in laser? At the moment this rover is our best instrument for the discovery of water and life signs on Mars. What will the future hold? No one knows but let me tell you it is exciting!
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