Sunday, September 22, 2019
Contact us    |    Advertise    |   Help    |   Cookie Policy    |   Privacy Policy    RSS icon Twitter icon Facebook icon
    Home  ·  News  ·  Forum  ·  Stories  ·  Image Gallery  ·  Columns  ·  Encyclopedia  ·  Videos
Find: in

Rover detects mystery methane spike on Mars


Posted on Sunday, 23 June, 2019 | Comment icon 18 comments

Where is the methane on Mars coming from ? Image Credit: NASA
NASA's long-lived Curiosity rover picked up the sudden and unexpected spike of methane on Wednesday.
"Startlingly high amounts" of the gas, which has long been associated with the presence of biological life, have reportedly been detected, however it is so far unclear where it might be coming from.

The discovery of methane on Mars is particularly interesting because methane breaks down and disappears over a relatively small amount of time, meaning that it must have been produced recently.

The methane levels in this case are three times higher than they were when the Curiosity rover previously detected the gas on Mars back in 2013.

According to reports, the sudden discovery has prompted NASA scientists to re-organize the rover's schedule to run follow-up experiments over the next few days.

Determining exactly where the methane is coming from however is likely to prove a challenge.


Source: Gizmodo | Comments (18)

Tags: Mars, Methane

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #9 Posted by Not A Rockstar on 22 June, 2019, 21:20
Well, if someone believes in ET visiting, your plunge won't make a difference to that belief a bit. I just hope for life to be found elsewhere. The whole new science that would open, of finding something that began same as here and is evolving differently elsewhere intrigues me. If reincarnation is true, I wouldn't mind coming back and studying that for a career, I think, if we are taking this topic off the original rails..† Or maybe be a real rock star, for once. IDK †
Comment icon #10 Posted by bison on 22 June, 2019, 21:48
Even microbial life on Mars would be†a scientific earthquake. That's why this story is noteworthy, even if that life, as indicated, is†a mere possibility, at the moment.† If life should be found on Mars it would be possible,†eventually, to get a sense of the connection, or the lack of it between life on the two worlds.† †If all life on Earth originated on Mars, or all life on Mars†came from Earth,†then there would be an apparent 'family resemblance' between life on the two worlds;†the same sort of genetic likeness that is known to connect†all known†life on Earth. If that resemblance is lacking... [More]
Comment icon #11 Posted by and then on 23 June, 2019, 2:38
Martian cow farts?† The Greenies will be losin they miiiinnds†
Comment icon #12 Posted by DieChecker on 23 June, 2019, 5:39
Are the scientists worried about Martian Global Warming?† Did they limit where the methane came from, geographically? I mean, it would have to be right next to the rover to be close enough to go check on. †
Comment icon #13 Posted by bison on 23 June, 2019, 14:51
Apparently the methane release site in in Gale crater, relatively near the Curiosity rover. They could be†trying to better define the†location, right now. If they moved the rover a bit, and the concentration of methane went†up, they would have a possible indication of the right direction to it. If the methane level went down, they'd know to move in the opposite direction. A series of such maneuvers, in various directions, could take them to the exact spot. ††
Comment icon #14 Posted by tmcom on 24 June, 2019, 9:11
The greenies should go to Venus! Yes, quite! NASA is discussing how to whitewash this as we speak, and ignore the plant on the left.
Comment icon #15 Posted by bison on 26 June, 2019, 18:11
The methane spike disappeared†before Curiosity could re-observe it. There's an outside chance that the Mars Express Orbiter observed the spike, too. It will apparently be a while before it downloads its data to Earth.† An increase of methane, of this concentration (~20 parts per billion by volume) could probably enable the Trace Gas Orbiter to distinguish between its carbon 12 and carbon 13. †An unexpected excess of carbon 12 could indicate that the source of the methane is life. Living things selectively take up the lighter isotope and concentrate it in their metabolism.††
Comment icon #16 Posted by Skulduggery on 29 June, 2019, 6:42
If the source is life, could it be something like algae? I am not sure how much methane that is by numbers. I have my faults. Other, more advanced life may not be recognizable if it is even possible to find. I would suspect underground might have something going on.
Comment icon #17 Posted by Skulduggery on 29 June, 2019, 7:04
Basically, asking how big of a spike this really is and what is it comparable to here on Earth as far as organism†bio markers go. Not that it would be the same but there may be archetypes.
Comment icon #18 Posted by bison on 29 June, 2019, 15:31
By itself, the Curiosity rover can't distinguish between methane from living and merely geological sources on Mars. †The concentration of methane in Earth's atmosphere is approximately one hundred times greater than the recent methane spike on Mars, and is†chiefly due to biological organisms.† This seems to suggest that if the methane on Mars is due to living things, it represents sparse life, in†comparison to Earth. This is largely in accord with scenarios for life on Mars, where it began under more favorable conditions earlier in Mars' history, and is now merely 'holding on', presumably unde... [More]


Please Login or Register to post a comment.


  On the forums
Forum posts:
Forum topics:
Members:

6551453
274209
181924

 
Attenborough: 'of course Nessie is a hoax'
9-22-2019
The legendary naturalist recently made his feelings about the famous monster very clear in a handwritten note.
Only a few dozen show up to 'Storm Area 51'
9-21-2019
After months of hype, barely anyone actually turned up to storm through the gates of the secretive facility.
Chinese 'river monster' is not what it seems
9-21-2019
Video footage of a large snake-like creature swimming in the Yangtze River recently went viral on social media.
'The Thing' discovered beneath the Antarctic
9-20-2019
Scientists have discovered a very strange gelatinous creature 3,500 meters beneath the ocean's surface.
Stories & Experiences
Oddest thing I've ever seen
9-19-2019 | Kentucky
 
The blanket tugger
9-19-2019 | QLD
 
Unknown flash
9-19-2019 | GA
 
An encounter in the woods
9-17-2019 | McGuire A.F.B., NJ
 
Orb of light woke me up
9-17-2019 | Virginia
 
A poltergeist eye witness
9-1-2019 | Iran, Kermanshah
 
A visit from beyond
8-20-2019 | Australia
 
A strange voice
8-5-2019 | St. Catharines Ontario.
 
House vibrates
7-20-2019 | Northern part of lower Michigan
 
Sudden writing on hand
7-20-2019 | England
 

         More stories | Send us your story
Featured Videos
Gallery icon 
Carl Sagan - Pale Blue Dot
Posted 8-8-2019 | 5 comments
The late Carl Sagan delivers this moving monologue about our place in the universe.
 
How do you move a 13-ton Sphinx ?
Posted 7-3-2019 | 2 comments
A look at how the Sphinx of Ramses II was moved at Philadelphia's Penn Museum.
 
'Deleting' disease using CRISPR
Posted 6-15-2019 | 5 comments
A look at science's goal of eliminating genetic diseases using gene-editing techniques.
 
What happens when lava meets ice ?
Posted 5-18-2019 | 2 comments
This intriguing experiment reveals just what happens when you pour lava on to ice.
 
7 ghost stories from the Queen Mary
Posted 5-10-2019 | 2 comments
A look at some creepy tales of ghosts and hauntings from the retired ocean liner.
 
 View: More videos
 
Top   |  Home   |   Forum   |   News   |   Image Gallery   |  Columns   |   Encyclopedia   |   Videos   |   Polls
UM-X 10.712 Unexplained-Mysteries.com (c) 2001-2019
Terms   |   Privacy Policy   |   Cookies   |   Advertise   |   Contact   |   Help/FAQ