View Full Version : Mars Inhabitable!

James Brody
March 19th, 2007, 11:49 AM
We need to get started on another rock. Mars appears to be our next home.

from Netscape:
Enormous deposits of frozen water have been found on the south pole of Mars--so much water ice that if it were liquid it would flood the entire planet in 36 feet of water. And where there is water, there is the possibility of life.

Huge deposits of pure frozen water have been found under the southern pole of Mars. Click to see the radar images. Keep clicking for a breathtaking view of the planet.

Reuters reports that the stunning discovery was made by a NASA-Italian Space Agency radar instrument on the European Space Agency Mars Express spacecraft that was able to measure the thickness and volume of ice deposits on the Martian south pole, an area that is larger than the state of Texas. The frozen mixture of carbon dioxide and water is 2.3 miles thick and appears to be made up of at least 90 percent frozen water--with a little dust mixed in. While scientists have long known that frozen water exists at the Martian poles, they had no idea until now just how much of it there was.

Even the untrained eye can see the effect ancient underground fluids have had on the surface of Mars. These images show evidence that long-term underground water flows may provide an environment for microbial life.

The team is also examining the north pole of Mars, and preliminary data show that the ice deposits there are very similar to that of the south pole. "Life as we know it requires water and, in fact, at least transient liquid water for cells to survive and reproduce. So if we are expecting to find existing life on Mars we need to go to a location where water is available," Jeffrey Plaut of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, told Reuters. "So the polar regions are naturally a target because we certainly know that there's plenty of H2O there." The new observations hint at the possible existence of a thin layer of liquid water at the base of the ice deposits.

There is water on Mars. And where there is water, there is the possibility of life. These photographs of the Martian surface taken by orbiting spacecraft show liquid water occasionally flows on the planet.