Foreign life in the solar system

Foreign life in the solar system

MARS SURFACE. Image: alamy

Could give life in our cosmic neighborhood despite acid clouds, infernal heat, foreval radiation and extreme cold?

On the northeast hem of the huge vatnajokull glacier, the kverkfjoll mountains protrudes: a chain of active volcanoes standing out from the monotonic landscape of islands. Deep under these mountains brodelt heibes magma in underground chambers. Heat from this witch chamber lets the glacier ice cream double, which have a spectacular icehy of 2.8 kilometers long ago. The melt water collects in lakes that were freezed, she did not resolve the geothermal energy of the underground mag model chambers.

These hot surreeseas MOGEN initially seem to appear as a life-friendly, but nevertheless have certain bacteria there their habitat. Ian crawford, professor for planetary science and astrobiology at birkbeck college of the university of london, explores these robust organisms. "I take samples from the boiling sauressen. We want to find out how life has adapted to live there." these bacteria are only one example of extremophilic organisms, which under conditions that you still considered to be absolutely vital until recently, not only with oh and noise, but rather bruise and thrive. Halophiles are extremely salt resistant, xerophilic survival on the driest places of our planet, alkali philate thrive to strong basic locations.

Foreign life in the solar system

Thermal springs of yellowstone. In some sources of yellowstone park there is so much sulfuric acid that no life can exist – auber certain bacteria that are very comfortable there. Image: jim peaco, national park service / wikicommons, public domain

The realization that lives can exist in seemingly desolate places on earth, scientists gave the hope to find similar forms of life under extreme conditions in other places in the solar system. The research of ian crawford in iceland helps to identify potentially life-friendly environments on mars. "Boiling sour water changed surrounding rock", he explains. An interaction between volcanoes and ice was very frequent in the early marks history. The mars rover wear instruments to discover appropriate changes in the rock. How to find places on the martic surface, which perhaps once housed hydrothermal basin. "Mars does not allow life today, but maybe you may." even the proof of martleben, which has already extended a long time ago, a gross scientific breakthrough.

The mars is the planet, who is probably the most fascinated us the most. Thanks to a series of rovers, countries and orbitern, we know more about this planet than about his neighbors. Yes, consistently, we know more about certain parts of mars even more than we know about certain regions of our own earth: we have a better map of the martic surface than the earthly ocean floor! While the ten years, where the MARS express mission of the european space agency ESA already the mars radius, 95% of the surface were photographed.

A total of four mars-rover-driving robots, which are remotely controlled by the earth – have been successfully landed. The rover sojourner and spirit are now over operation, but opportunity and curiosity are active. Curiosity has incredibly celebrated the third year of successful marshal. These rover have revolutionized our knowledge about the planet. We owe you not only fantastic pictures, such as spectacular marsh sunset. The rover also searched the surface after the eligible life-friendliness of mars. And what they found, scientists have electrified.

Foreign life in the solar system

The landing of exomars. To arrive safely on the red planet, the rover 2018 has a number of manovals performed. Image: adrian man / space

  1. Entry the country module enters a high of 120 km into the marsatmosphere. The speed is still 21 at this time.000 km / h.
  2. Heat protection when braking mach 35 on mach 2, the front and rear heat shields protect the exomars rover in the interior in front of the 1.500 degrees celsius heat that produces friction with the surrounding atmosphere.
  3. Ballast draft as soon as exomars has reached the lower marsatmosphere, front and rear heat shield are thrown off.
  4. Sliding flight down at mach 2 offnet exomars the parachute to slide gentle down and brake up under sound.
  5. Adjacent three days before the mars is reached, the country module of exomars is lost. The remainder is reset in the savings mode. A few hours before arrival the wake up.
  6. Meng of the surface the computer of exomars determines the exact point in the landing procedure using the radar that measures the high over the surface.
  7. Brake at the right moment over the surface, exomars starts its brake stories. This is how the speed is reduced, while the soil conveys.
  8. Landing the landing site is still available from four possible locations: mawrth vallis, oxia planum, hypanis vallis and oxia palus. They all find themselves in regions where life could theoretically exist.
  9. Put on eight minutes after entering the atmosphere, the exomars brake stores have braked the probe to less than 15 km / h. This allows a controlled landing on the martian surface.

Mars was once warm and humid, and just a much poet atmosphere. Fruhe was covered up to a third of his surface with water. When the curiosity rover landed in the gale crater (surrounding mount sharp on the mars-aquator) and explored the surrounding area, he found that this was once a gross subwater lake. When he drilled mudstone, he discovered minerals who had once made the crater together with water to a fairly good-friendly environment.

The idea that mars housed millions of years ago is by no means absurd. Today, however, there was no life on the mars. The once wet planet is now a dry, dusty desire with an extremely dun atmosphere, who could hardly protect life from the dangers from the all.

The climatic decline probably began around 3.8 billion years ago. "Living on the surface goods extinct within a few million years, quit from the cosmic radiation that produces the sun and supernovae", explains dr. Lewis dartnell, astrobiologist at the university of leicester. Dartnell has collected extremophiles in the antarctic dry valley – one of the marveling regions on earth – and bombarded with radiation to find out how well they can handle it. Not good, he found out.

Urbigen is none of the four mars-rover with instruments to be considered, the life could discover directly. They only find outwards that the planet environments offered (or: offers) that allowed life. The rover are therefore looking for the right mixture of water and chemical connections, but not after life itself. However, there were two mars missions, the instruments for direct search for life: the lander viking 1 and viking 2. The two NASA probes set up in 1976 on the mars surface. They could not move like rover, but their robot arms collected samples of mars soil. These samples were examined in traces of life, but none of both probes also found only the slightest sign.

But in 2018, the first rover was able to start the right equipment to find directly after martleben. The ESA exomars mission will take some things, which did not have a previous rover: a massive drill. "The drill of exomars will be two meters long – the curiosity is just as long as my little finger," explains dartnell, who is involved in the mission. Through the drilling into the martic surface, an area can be examined in which possibly old life could have hidden from space radiation.

Exomars will also bring a panoramic camera – pancam – looking for rock changes that correspond to the icelandic. So you can search for evidence that living organisms – once or today – have changed the surface of marsgestein. The answer, if there was ever life on mars (or maybe it still exists), could provide art missions.

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