ISS experiment results showed that life on Mars is possible
"Planted" in the lining of the International Space Station (ISS), extremophile bacteria could survive for 533 days under the influence of solar ultraviolet radiation and extreme temperature changes. This experiment proves the possibility of life on Mars, according to a magazine article of Astrobiology, as well as on the website of the German Aerospace Center (DLR).
Of all the planets in the solar system, Mars is probably the most likely candidate for the role of planets capable of supporting life. But this is a very inhospitable place - the conditions of the dusty, arid, with a very small amount of oxygen, there is reduced gravity, and more surface is exposed to constant sunlight, because the atmosphere is low. There is very cold and very hot. A dust storms often covered the entire planet, plunging everything into darkness.
Life on Mars, we have not yet found, but scientists are conducting experiments aimed at understanding the potential of its possible presence on the Red Planet. For example, the recently completed BIOMEX experiments carried out by the German aerospace center with a variety of living organisms, which were sent to the ISS and a half were proud in a very unsuitable, as it seemed at first sight conditions.
"Certain types of organisms and biomolecules that we studied were extremely resistant to radiation, and they returned to Earth in quite living state. Of course, this does not mean that these microbes exist on Mars. On the other hand, we now have even more reason to look for it in the framework of follow-up missions, "- commented results of the study, Jean-Pierre de Vera Institute of planetologicheskih DLR Research in Berlin.
The study of extremophiles on the ISS was conducted over 18 months, from October 2014 to June 2016. Thereafter life samples were brought back to the earth for analysis.
All capsules, which are living organisms have been arranged in such a way. For example, some bacteria and other organisms in their "direct" contact with cosmic radiation and other microbes were in a kind of environment that simulates the Martian or lunar soil. So scientists wanted to see whether the spores of bacteria or archaea, or their colonies to survive in the real Martian soil and where there is a search for them.
The experiment showed as expected that most algae and microbes are unable to survive on the surface of Mars due to ultraviolet radiation. However, some of them turned out to be incredibly resistant to the action of cosmic radiation and other extreme influences that, at least in theory talks about the possibility of their existence is quite comfortable in the surface layers of the soil of the Red Planet.
"For example, we studied the archaea found in permafrost in the Arctic. They not only have experienced space travel, but they can be found in the soil with the help of the techniques that we have created in the framework of the project BIOMEX. These single-celled organisms may well be found on a real Mars "- adds Jean-Pierre de Vera.
The researchers hope that the data collected will help the rover "Rosalind Franklin" European Space Agency found traces of an existing or even extinct life and find clues that will point to the possibility of its presence on some other planets of the solar system.
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