back to article Signs of sediment-rich ocean lend direction to Mars life search

If new 3D models of Mars's surface are accurate, we finally possess the most convincing evidence to date that much of the northern hemisphere of Mars was once an ocean. Scientists at Pennsylvania State University targeted a region known as Aeolis Dorsa, believed to have the densest collection of "fluvial ridges" that indicate …

  1. tiggity Silver badge

    Reg standards

    Found a bit of a flaw with reg standards converter

    Curiosity speed so slow, don't even get any decimal places when converted to % of the maximum velocity of a sheep in a vacuum. Just shows 0

    So maybe that bug rather than reg standards being next in line to go, is the reason speed was not quoted in reg standard units

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Reg standards

      Perhaps we need to define a new unit equivalent to a millisheep? I would have suggested a lamb, but they tend to move faster than sheep.

  2. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    And on Earth 3.5 billion years ago?

    There's a fair bit of evidence that life on Earth land appeared then, our inner fish moved from the water onto the land and air, leading to the creation of reptiles and even mammals eventually (just another few billion years). So we may eventually find some small fossils in Mars that reveal that life is not totally uncommon in the Universe.

    1. tiggity Silver badge

      Re: And on Earth 3.5 billion years ago?

      Even if only simple life was present (bacteria style, nothing as complex as fish like creatures), if Mars had something akin to stromatolite producing bacteria of Earth then may* be possible to detect signs of life.

      Stromatolite rock formations can get large compared to bacteria that created them (a metre in size has been seen on Earth).

      *Problem is, can be very tricky to know a bit of rock is a bacteria produced stromatolite, as plenty of inorganic process can produce similar rock formations.. and problem becomes much worse if your "candidate" piece of rock is stuck on Mars

  3. Duncan Macdonald

    Life on Mars

    Both Mars and Earth have been hit by many meteors big enough to eject rocks from the planet. As there was a period when both Mars and Earth had water and Earth had life it is highly probable that at least some rocks ejected from one planet would have carried bacteria to the other planet infecting it with life.

    What is not known and might be very difficult to determine is - did life start on Earth and infect Mars or did it start on Mars and infect Earth ?

    Icon seems appropriate ============>

    1. TReko

      Re: Life on Mars

      Indeed, our ancestors could well be Martian microbes

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Life on Mars

        But, but, but microbes are are last line of defence against Martian invaders! UUUUuuuuuLAAaaaaa!!

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Other stories you might like