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A sign of life?  Curiosity found organic matter on Mars

A sign of life? Curiosity found organic matter on Mars

Using a new analysis method, the rover has detected organic molecules on the surface of Mars. This could be a sign of past life on this planet.

NASA’s Curiosity probe has made an interesting discovery in a sample taken in the sandy region of Bagnold Dunes, according to reports. popular science.

The rover has been searching for biosignatures, earlier signs of life, on the Red Planet for nearly ten years. The sample from the Bangold Dunes contains none of these substances, but organic substances that have not been detected before on Mars: ammonia and benzoic acid.

These organic molecules can, in turn, be a kind of biomarker. According to researchers at NASA, the material can either originate from geological processes, or be the remains of life on our neighboring planet.

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May lead to new discoveries of Mars

The discovery itself is somewhat random. Four years ago, the drill Curiosity used to sample the surface stopped working. So NASA needed to change the technology to make samples, switching to a method where samples are taken from the surface of the planet and then placed in a chemical solution.

The results of the experiment show that this method has the potential to lead to new discoveries on Mars.

The study was published in the scientific journal natural astronomy.

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