January 27, 2023

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The first life in the solar system may have originated on Mars

The first life in the solar system may have originated on Mars

The first life in the solar system may have originated on Mars after icy asteroid bombardments during the first 100 million years of the planet’s existence.

This is evidenced by a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Copenhagen.

Researchers believe that 4.5 billion years ago, Mars was covered by a large ocean 300 meters deep, and that asteroids brought biologically relevant molecules and amino acids to the planet.

Charge your ears and listen to:

– This is a type of water-rich carbonaceous asteroid that originated at the far end of the solar system. It is also rich in organic molecules, explains Professor Martin Pizarro of the Center for Star and Planet Formation.

Components for life

Our study shows that two important components for the evolution of life were present on Mars, he says.

The ingredients it refers to are water and complex organic chemicals.

Researchers have studied meteorite fragments from the surface of Mars found on Earth. This is the product of an asteroid or meteorite that fused so hard on Mars that the rock was blasted into space several billion years ago, eventually ending up on Earth.

This crater was supposed to have formed after a meteorite hit Mars on December 24, 2021. Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona

Strong evidence

The study was reviewed and published in Science advances.

Bizarro believes they have strong evidence that there were fantastic causes for life on Mars long before it existed on Earth.

Mars is much smaller than Earth and does not have the same tectonic plates that drive Earth’s interior. These movements gradually erased all traces of what happened on Earth in the first 500 million years.

Mars: Perseverance investigates Jezero Crater on Mars.  This image is from March 4, 2021. Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Mars: Perseverance investigates Jezero Crater on Mars. This image is from March 4, 2021. Image: NASA/JPL-Caltech

effects below the surface

On the other hand, Mars has been bombarded by cosmic radiation, so the planet’s surface is relatively sterile.

– If there is any trace of life extinction on Mars now, it should be a meter or two deeper, says Pizarro.

Danish researchers believe that future Mars trips could help confirm their theories.

NASA’s Perseverance spacecraft is currently collecting rock samples, and the plan is to bring them back to Earth within a decade.

– These samples can confirm our hypothesis. And they can provide answers to many other questions. One of the biggest questions is whether there are traces of life on the surface of the planet.

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