Home > Astronomy, Exobiology, General Astronomy, Mars, Solar System, Spaceflight, Unmanned Spaceflight > Mars-Like Places On Earth Give New Insights Into Rover Data And Conditions For Life

Mars-Like Places On Earth Give New Insights Into Rover Data And Conditions For Life


Life thrives on Planet Earth. In even the most inhospitable places – the freezing Antarctic permafrost, sun-baked saltpans in Tunisia or the corrosively acidic Rio Tinto in Spain – pockets of life can be found. Some of these locations have much in common with environments found on Mars, as discovered by orbiters and rovers exploring the surface. Researchers from the Centro de Astrobiología (CAB) in Madrid have made a series of field trips to the most Mars-like places on Earth. Today, they presented some of their findings during a press conference at the European Planetary Science Congress in Madrid.

Dr Felipe Goméz, the project leader said, “The big questions are: what is life, how can we define it and what are the requirements for supporting life? To understand the results we receive back from missions like Curiosity, we need to have detailed knowledge of similar environments on Earth. Metabolic diversity on Earth is huge. In the field campaigns, we have studied ecosystems in situ and we have also brought samples back to the laboratory for further analysis. We have found a range of complex chemical processes that allow life to survive in unexpected places.”

Full Story: http://www.europlanet-eu.org/outreach/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=381&Itemid=1

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