Work being carried out on the Arctic ice sheets could aid in the hunt for life on other worlds.
Scientists have been studying the edges of the ice sheets to investigate the release of methane, a gas that can either be produced by living organisms or through geological processes. In the hunt for life on alien worlds the ability to determine whether methane emissions are being produced by living organisms is essential.
Environments not dissimilar to the Arctic conditions here on Earth are believed to exist on other worlds in our solar system such as Jupiter's icy moon Europa, future missions to these worlds will rely on research such as that being conducted on the ice sheets to help locate potential new forms of life.
"Microbes living at the edges of Arctic ice sheets could help researchers pinpoint evidence for similar microorganisms that may have evolved on Mars, Jupiter's moon Europa or Saturn's moon Enceladus, researchers say."
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Source: Yahoo! News
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