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qxcontinuum

specialist seeing signs of past life on Mars

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Grandpa Greenman

Thanks for posting. Fossil hunting on mars. We need to send a robot that can send back samples.

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freetoroam

Would it really be surprising if ancient past life on mars were to be found? we still do not know what may have been before the dinosaurs on Earth, any ancient life on mars found would not be a surprise and do not see why it should be. It could give us an explanation towards our life here and yet maybe it will not. What does seem clear is that whatever life may have excited on Mars, it was not an evolved species of humans, there are no remains of buildings or pottery or anything resembling a man had lived there or anything with a skill to build......now that would be interesting if found though....carry on Rover, we need more.

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Hammerclaw

It makes you wonder why we continue to send expensive missions to Mars to search for signs of life without the equipment to verify signs of life.

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Grandpa Greenman

It makes you wonder why we continue to send expensive missions to Mars to search for signs of life without the equipment to verify signs of life.

I can counter with I wonder why we keep fighting endless wars here on earth with idiots when we could be upgrading our equipment to look for life in the solar system. <_<

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Sundew

This would seem the logical place for some robotic "collector" to pick up samples. We did return humans (and rock samples) from the Moon; we could return samples from Mars. Yes, the gravity is greater than the Moon's but we also do not have the human payload and all the associated life support systems. It would be nice to have a decent sampling of material, rather than a few meteors found in Antarctica which may or may not have been contaminated by Earth organisms.

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SyntheticBrilliance

What does seem clear is that whatever life may have excited on Mars, it was not an evolved species of humans, there are no remains of buildings or pottery or anything resembling a man had lived there or anything with a skill to build......now that would be interesting if found though....carry on Rover, we need more.

Well that works mainly on the assumption that life evolved in the same order it did on Mars, it could be entirely possible that humanoids were among the first to spring up after their primordial soup got cooking, and then extinction level events paved the way for other species. Which would mean any evidence of them would require excavation.

Any signs of life past are likely burried in sedement and dirt, until we can get feet on the ground capable of digging deeper, speculation is all we will probably ever have. There are plenty of compelling things that could be hidden under millions of years of dirt, we find it here all the time.

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keithisco

Would it really be surprising if ancient past life on mars were to be found? we still do not know what may have been before the dinosaurs on Earth, any ancient life on mars found would not be a surprise and do not see why it should be. It could give us an explanation towards our life here and yet maybe it will not. What does seem clear is that whatever life may have excited on Mars, it was not an evolved species of humans, there are no remains of buildings or pottery or anything resembling a man had lived there or anything with a skill to build......now that would be interesting if found though....carry on Rover, we need more.

You are kidding right?... there is a huge fossil record that predates the Dinosaurs stretching back to Cambrian, and pre-Cambrian epochs.

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Hammerclaw

I can counter with I wonder why we keep fighting endless wars here on earth with idiots when we could be upgrading our equipment to look for life in the solar system. <_<

If we stopped, the idiots would win? A whole generation was robbed of the Kubrick/Clarke twenty-first century, so I tend to agree. Edited by Hammerclaw

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freetoroam

I can counter with I wonder why we keep fighting endless wars here on earth with idiots when we could be upgrading our equipment to look for life in the solar system. <_<

Ha, a very similar thought came into my mind...I wonder why some keep killing each other on Earth at the same time others are looking for life elsewhere. I agree, our resources are not being used correctly.

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Calibeliever

Noffke's work seems very solid (from what I can see) and she has a good pedigree. Does anyone have a link to the paper?

It's a far cry from "proof" but it's another encouraging piece of a puzzle that continues to take shape. The case for past (or possible present) microbial life is getting stronger each year, but I agree that we won't be able to say for sure until we have a smoking gun: a fossil or evidence of a compound that is known to be only caused by a living organism.

If we find such a bug and it turns out to be something recognizable from our past on earth it will change our view of the cosmos overnight.

Edited by Calibeliever
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Imaginarynumber1

It makes you wonder why we continue to send expensive missions to Mars to search for signs of life without the equipment to verify signs of life.

Umm...none of the primary missions of any of the missions to Mars has been to look for life.

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Imaginarynumber1

we still do not know what may have been before the dinosaurs on Earth,

You don't really believe that,do you? That statement was just poorly worded, right?

Edited by Imaginarynumber1
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freetoroam

You don't really believe that,do you? That statement was just poorly worded, right?

It was a bit flippant. Things had to evolve first and there was life before. But I was mainly trying to point out it would not be a surprise to find some form of ancient past life on Mars....possibly similar to pre dinosaur life on here.., but there are no ruins of buildings, so an intelligent life like man did not flourish there before escaping to Earth, as some think.

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badeskov

One of the problems NASA and other agencies have is how do you look for life on Mars? In other words, what experiments do we need to send up to prove, beyond a doubt, that life existed or still exists on Mars. That is one of Curiosity's missions, to get a better idea of what we need to look for and how we can best be able to test and prove that life existed/exists.

A second mission, based on the Curiosity chassis and delivery system, is being designed now to explore specifically for life, past and present, on Mars and is due to launch in 2020. Curiosity's science and discoveries are being used to design the science package for that mission. Theories like Professor Noffke's are an important part of this design effort as they are narrowing down the most likely forms of life to look for.

Very good post Merc! That is exactly what NASA is doing.

Cheers,

Badeskov

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Imaginarynumber1

It was a bit flippant. Things had to evolve first and there was life before. But I was mainly trying to point out it would not be a surprise to find some form of ancient past life on Mars....possibly similar to pre dinosaur life on here.., but there are no ruins of buildings, so an intelligent life like man did not flourish there before escaping to Earth, as some think.

I got you now. I got scared at first and thought you were becoming one of those people....

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Hammerclaw

Umm...none of the primary missions of any of the missions to Mars has been to look for life.

You must be reading in the geologist's section. http://mars.nasa.gov/mer/science/goals.html
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Imaginarynumber1

You must be reading in the geologist's section. http://mars.nasa.gov...ence/goals.html

Well. That shut me up.

I was under the assumption that searching for life wasnt part of the primary mission for either spirit or opportunity, but rather secondary goals.

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DONTEATUS

We may find as many already think,Life is very abundant in the Universe, The real trick is for it to take hold and evolve ! We may very well find the proof that Mars had it in the rocks, ect,Maybe some future race will scratch there Heads why we didn't make it form our fossils , And remains, I do hope that at least they will finf our probes,and robots and see we were trying ! Earth Looks Sweet for Now But look at what can Happen , Look at Mars ! :tu:

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A rather obscure Bassoon

Send all the robots you like,the only sure way to know would be sending Humans....

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Hammerclaw

Well. That shut me up.

I was under the assumption that searching for life wasnt part of the primary mission for either spirit or opportunity, but rather secondary goals.

It's the PR reason. Shhhh! Don't tell anyone. The Hard science guys and gals would never forgive us! :geek:
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Imaginarynumber1

Send all the robots you like,the only sure way to know would be sending Humans....

Not true. Look what robots have been able to do for us so far....

robocop-reboot-sony-distributor.jpg

terminator-5-sarah-connor-actress.jpg

_40406541_c3p0300.jpg

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Sir Wearer of Hats

Thanks for posting. Fossil hunting on mars. We need to send a robot that can send back samples.

Or one that carries a specialist suite of tools that can do the analysis there.

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Merc14

Thanks for posting. Fossil hunting on mars. We need to send a robot that can send back samples.

The Mars Rover 2020 mission may include a sample taking test that will package materials for a later mission to return.

It was a bit flippant. Things had to evolve first and there was life before. But I was mainly trying to point out it would not be a surprise to find some form of ancient past life on Mars....possibly similar to pre dinosaur life on here.., but there are no ruins of buildings, so an intelligent life like man did not flourish there before escaping to Earth, as some think.

There is at least one geobiologist at Old Dominion University who thinks she has found pretty good evidence of this already http://www.astrobio.net/news-exclusive/potential-signs-ancient-life-mars-rover-photos/

Hopefully the 2020 mission will verify her results.

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