Category Archives: Mars

Methane on Mars may Singal First Signs of Life

The robotic vehicle traveling across the surface of Mars has seen an unprecedented spike in methane over certain days of its mission to explore the surface of the red planet. The Guardian explains this has been interpreted in a number of different ways, however, one hypothesis suggests some form of life has been detected on the surface of the planet, which led to the spike in methane gas close to Curiosity.

Small changes in the level of methane are commonly seen around the Rover as it passes over the surface of the planet and drills into the crust of the planet to conduct scientific experiments. Major methane spikes could be explained in different ways, with the atmosphere around the Rover spiking from 0.69 parts per billion of methane to 7.2 parts per billion on specific days of the year in areas less than one kilometer apart.

Major spikes in the level of methane have been detected in the Gale Crater, an area many scientists believe was covered in water around one billion years ago, which has led some to speculate the methane spikes are caused by an interaction between water below the surface of Mars and the rock within the crater. Mars seems about as far away as the Amen Clinic from where I am, but there is a vastly unexplored planet that could lead to some interesting possibilities for the human race.