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Following discovery of water, scientists hope for life on Mars

Following the recent discovery of water on Mars, hopes are rising that life might also be present on the planet. While life has proven to be highly resilient, water appears to be a necessary precondition.

Is man alone in the universe? Mathematically speaking, it’s highly unlikely, given the vastness of the known universe. Still, no conclusive evidence has been found of life outside of Earth, though evidence has suggested that bacteria from Mars may have hitched a ride on a meteorite and smashed into Antarctica thousands of years ago.

The assumption has been, however, that even if life existed on Mars, it would have long since died out. Reason why? No flowing water. To be clear, we’re talking about simple life, such as bacteria, rather than little green men. Still, clear evidence that Earth-based life is not alone in the solar system, let alone universe, would mark a huge breakthrough.

Life has proven to be one of the most persistent and adaptable forces known to humanity, having survived asteroid impacts on Earth, and other harsh conditions. Many things once assumed to be necessary for life, such as sunlight, have since been disproven. Some organisms, for example, are able to live in volcanic vents deep at the bottom of the ocean, well out of the reach of sunlight, and able to rely completely on the vents for energy.

One thing most scientists have assumed is absolutely necessary for life, however, is liquid water. While Mars is may have been warmer in the past, it is now a rather cold, desolate place, and up until recently, it has been believed that all water existed only in the form of ice on the surface of Mars.

Now that NASA has discovered evidence water still flows on Mars, hopes are rising that life might persist on the planet as well. Of course, this remains only speculation, but the chances of finding life on the so-called Red Planet appears to be higher than ever before.

Previous evidence of life on Mars?

The recent discovery of water on Mars wasn’t the first time Mars made headlines for the discovery of evidence of life on Mars. In 2011 the tissint meteorite was discovered in Antarctica. Scientists performed a close examination of the meteorite and found evidence of organic matter.