NASA Confirms Ancient Lake on Mars, Supporting Potential for Past Microbial Life
On January 28th, IT Home reported that data from NASA’s Perseverance rover confirmed the presence of ancient lakebed sediments in the Jezero Crater on Mars. This research was published in the journal “Science Advances”. The discovery provides compelling evidence for the theory that Mars was once covered in water and may have harbored microbial life.
The study, led by teams from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of Oslo, analyzed underground scanning data collected by the Perseverance rover as it traversed the Martian surface over several months in 2022. The rover ascended from the bottom of the crater to an adjacent area characterized by braided sedimentary rock features, resembling river delta seen from orbit, much like those on Earth.
The rover’s RIMFAX radar instrument emitted signals that allowed scientists to “see” underground and obtain cross-sectional views of rock layers down to a depth of 20 meters.
These layers provided unequivocal evidence that sediment carried by water was deposited in the Jezero Crater and its delta, similar to sediment in Earth’s lakes. These findings further confirm previous suggestions that Mars, which is currently cold, dry, and seemingly lifeless, was once warm, wet, and potentially habitable.
Scientists are eager to conduct close-up studies of the Jezero sediments, dating back approximately 3 billion years. The Perseverance rover has already collected samples for potential return to Earth in the future.
Advertisement Disclaimer: This article contains outbound links (including hyperlinks, QR codes, passwords, etc.) designed to provide additional information, save selection time, and provide references, all within the context of this article from IT Home.