Mars Has Ancient Organic Material, Mysterious Methane

Big news from Mars today: NASA's Curiosity rover found ancient traces of organic matter embedded in Martian rocks and detected a "seasonal variation" in atmospheric methane on the Red Planet - an annual pulse of the gas, nearly as if something out there were breathing.

The organic molecules preserved in 3.5 billion-year-old bedrock in Gale Crater - believed to once contain a shallow lake around the size of Lake Ontario - suggest conditions back then may have been conducive to life. "I'm confident that our ongoing and planned missions will unlock even more breathtaking discoveries".

The Curiosity rover, launched in 2011 with about $2.5 billion worth of scientific equipment with the intent of exploring and analyzing Mars' Gale Crater.

Both studies resulting from the mission were published online today in the journal Science.

Paul Mahaffy, director of the Solar System Exploration Division at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, explained that the objective of the mission was to explore the possibility of sustaining life on Mars.

While we know that Mars was habitable in the past, the case demonstrates just how hard it will be to ever prove the existence of past life on its surface. Eigenbrode clarified, however, that the matter was not evidence of life as non-biological entities can create organic molecules.

'With these new findings, Mars is telling us to stay the course and keep searching for evidence of life, ' said Thomas Zurbuchen, associate administrator for the Science Mission Directorate at Nasa headquarters.

"This is the first time we've seen something repeatable in the methane story, so it offers us a handle in understanding it", said Chris Webster of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California, lead author of the second paper.

Nasa has found traces of organic molecules buried in the bed of an ancient lake on Mars.

Crocodile kills vicar during mass baptism in Ethiopia
Lake Abaya, Ethiopia's second-largest lake, is infested with aggressive crocodiles, according to the Lonely Planet travel guide . While hardly an everyday occurrence, crocodile attacks are a known risk in Ethiopia - as in any region where they thrive.

It had to stop analysing samples on the Red Planet after a mechanical problem took the rover drill offline in December 2016.

These molecules appeared to come from a much larger molecule, and contained high levels of sulfur.

"The question of whether life might have originated or existed on Mars is a lot more opportune now that we know that organic molecules were present on its surface at the time", wrote Utrecht University astrobiologist Inge Loes ten Kate of the Netherlands. This is all written down: the Union Aerospace Corporation went digging around Mars-quite possibly lured in by the discovery of ancient organic material-one thing led to another, and they opened a portal to Hell.

"We don't know if that methane is ancient or modern", Webster said in a press conference.

"The idea that best fits our data is the idea of sub-surface storage", he said.

"That is a good place for life to have lived if it ever existed on Mars", she said.

On Mars, organic molecules could have been produced by some form of either present or past lifeforms.

NASA also has another rover in the works with its Mars 2020 mission, which plans to drill cores and set them aside for a possible future pickup and return to Earth.

If Viking was phase one of our search for life on Mars, and the methodical quest for clues of habitability that followed was phase two, says Grinspoon, "this is the successful culmination of phase two".

Related news:

Hot News

Halep tops Muguruza, eyes first major title
Jun 08, 2018 - 02:22
Muguruza came back in the second set as both players shrieked and grunted every time they hit the ball. Like Sharapova, Halep was erratic early, making 30 unforced errors in the first set.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's daughters will NOT inherit a royal title
Jun 08, 2018 - 02:17
Their first stop on June 14 will be officially opening the Mersey Gateway Bridge , at Catalyst Science Discovery Centre. She even got it engraved 'To M.M.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Women Big California Primary Election Winners; Votes Still Being Counted
Jun 07, 2018 - 02:03
Insurgent Don Blankenship finished in a distant third place behind state Attorney General Patrick Morrisey in the U.S. Some Democratic groups that help candidates win races have been focused on turning Republican districts Democratic.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top French Open 2018: Garbine Muguruza thrashes Maria Sharapova to reach semi-finals
Jun 07, 2018 - 02:02
Muguruza isn't giving he opponent many chances to breathe, and that's the reason for her quick success in these recent matches. The Romanian broke at the start of the second set and then held for 6-3 as Kerber dropped her serve again in the ninth game.

Macron phone call went ‘terrible’
Jun 06, 2018 - 12:52
Last week, Macron denounced the imposition of U.S. tariffs on steel and aluminum as "illegal", calling it a "mistake". The readout said: "Both leaders discussed the migration problem in Libya, and timelines to solve it".

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Google unceremoniously removes the tablet section from official Android website
Jun 06, 2018 - 12:50
OEMs started producing a lot of premium and cheap tablets and over-saturation will, of course, lead to non-profitability. So while it might still be running the life support machine, Android tablets are practically dead for Google.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top High Court Orders Protection For Screening Of Rajinikanth's Kaala In Karnataka
Jun 06, 2018 - 12:49
According to reliable sources, Kaala , which was initially banned in Karnataka, will now release in almost 130 screens in the state.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Saudi Arabia 0-3 Peru
Jun 06, 2018 - 12:48
In its last World Cup appearance in 1982 in Spain, Peru finished last in its group and failed to make it out of the first round. Guerrero was initially banned for 12 months by Federation Internationale de Football Association , reduced to six on appeal.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Asus ROG Phone hands-on review: Razer phone 2.0
Jun 05, 2018 - 00:06
If you're a hardcore mobile gamer, however, nothing on or coming to the market now beats the gaming power packed in that size. If that's not enough, there's even an AeroActive Cooler which you can attach to the back of the ROG Phone .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Trump under fire for tweet about jobs report
Jun 03, 2018 - 20:35
Friday's tweet, however, was the first time he's ever spoken about the job's report before it was released. "Why not?" Mr. The jobs report proved strong and beat expectations, revealing that the US economy added 223,000 jobs in May.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top India's GDP grows at 7.7% in quarter of 2017-18: Piyush Goyal
Jun 03, 2018 - 20:34
Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian, who also present at the press meet, said "the impact of GST is behind us". There have been various quarters and years when oil prices have gone up but there has been growth also.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Italy financial markets plunge on political turmoil
Jun 02, 2018 - 00:59
Both Mr Di Maio and Mr Salvini vowed not to support Mr Cottarelli and called for elections straight away. Five Star and the League won 33 per cent and 17 per cent of votes respectively in the March election.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Kanye West officially releases new album Ye
Jun 02, 2018 - 00:58
The album art itself is pure Kanye as it features a landscape with the following tagline: "I hate being Bi-Polar its awesome". Simmons has been accused of rape and assault by multiple women.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Kremlin Critic Browder Arrested in Spain on Russian Warrant
Jun 01, 2018 - 15:46
But that all changed in 2005 when he was expelled from the country after being deemed a threat to national security. An Interpol spokesperson said: "There is not, and never has been, a Red Notice for Mr Bill Browder".

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Alberto bringing heavy rain to area this Memorial Day
May 31, 2018 - 18:00
A tropical storm warning remained in effect stretching from Florida's Suwannee River to the border of Alabama and Mississippi. Alberto formed several days ahead of the June 1 official start of the six-month Atlantic hurricane season .