Giant Liquid Water 'Lake' Discovered On Mars

26 July, 2018, 16:08 | Author: Harriet Bell
  • Scientists Detect Liquid Lake on Mars

A tool onboard the spacecraft sends radar pulses that penetrate the surface and ice caps of the planet and reflections off subsurface features provide scientists with information about what lies below.

The team, using radar instruments (MARSIS) aboard a European Space Agency orbiter, say they found a lake under the polar cap that stretches about 20km across and 1.5km deep.

Finding more liquid water on Mars may mean moving beyond radar technology, which is limited to detecting large quantities of water close to the surface.

Experts suspect there has been water on Mars for around 4bn years - and it might contain hints of life from that time.

The body of water is about 12.5 miles across and sequestered beneath almost a mile of ice at the south pole. Mars, like many frontier areas of science, has a history of exciting findings - such as the discovery of flowing water on the surface in 2015 - that turn out to be explained mostly by something far more mundane, flowing dust. But water on Mars is water on Mars-pretty darn cool. This would lower the water's freezing temperature, and combined with the pressures exerted by the 1.5 kilometres of ice above it, it would be prevented from freezing solid.

The principle is the same above Mars.

The data comes from the ESA's Mars Express orbiter, which carries a ground-penetrating radar instrument called MARSIS. When the researchers looked more closely at the pattern of the echo, they realized that the shape of the newly discovered material had a rough bottom and a smooth top.

The search for water on Mars goes back to an 1877 observation by Italian astronomer Giovanni Schiaparelli, in which he noted a series of canali on Mars. "We can show that there's enough energy to drive chemotrophic life-life that doesn't need sun, but lives on chemistry", he said.

He said a back-of-the-envelope calculation indicated several hundred million cubic meters of water. In comparison, salty ocean water freezes at 28.4 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. That suggests that the water is brim full of salts, allowing it to melt. They've turned to the icy regions, which contain ice caps of water and Carbon dioxide that may hide liquid water beneath. "Europa and Enceladus are cold, but they're potentially good habitats; this makes Mars sound like an even better habitat".

But considering Mars is so much colder than Earth, the only way for water to remain liquid is if it was filled with salt. If life did arise from those early, cosy conditions, it could have moved underground as the surface cooled and dried.

President Trump on EU Trade Negotiations: Better Late Than Never
Trump wrote in a Twitter post Tuesday, warning countries must negotiate a "fair" trade deal or they will get hit with tariffs. Trade Expansion Act, which handles trade matters considered a threat to national security.

Neymar: I am 100 percent with PSG
I know what they say about me, and I know what I have to about it'. "I got used to the criticism". If you know Neymar , you know how much quality he has and how special he is.

President Trump calls Russian Federation collusion probe a hoax once again
I would have liked, Bret, for him to do what Chris Wallace, your colleague, did in his interview with President Putin. Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin at a press conference in Helsinki, July 16, 2018.

The data collected on the anomalous area is similar to readings taken on Earth, showing large bodies of water beneath polar deposits in Antarctica.

Scientists have discovered a body of liquid water on Mars for the first time, raising the possibility that the planet could sustain life. On Earth those lakes are often connected by channels, forming branching riverlike networks of water that extend across vast spaces beneath the ice.

This particular lake, however, would be neither swimmable nor drinkable.

Still, he said, "Having a stable body of liquid water today is very intriguing and worthy of study".

"What we tend to think here on Earth is that if there is liquid water, there is a good chance for life".

"But there are terrestrial organisms that can survive and thrive, in fact, in similar environments". They found bacteria still living there in complete isolation.

"They haven't seen the light of day for hundreds of thousands of years", he said.

The discovery was made by Italian scientists who were analysing images from the the Mars Express spacecraft - a European satellite.

"All the technology to drill through this ice to the lake doesn't exist yet so it will probably take at least another 25 years before we will be examining this".

Recommended:



Popular

What does the apparent Trump-EU trade truce mean for China?
The administration clobbers farmers with an unnecessary trade war then attempts to assuage them with taxpayer handouts. Beijing imposed tariffs on $34 billion worth of USA products, including soybeans, earlier this month.

Mesut Ozil Reveals How He Feels About Arsenal’s Singapore Tour
Arsenal forward Reiss Nelson and midfielder Alex Iwobi sat alongside Ozil at the fan event in Singapore with the former admitting new coach Unai Emery had been very active in his first few training sessions with the club.

JW: Documents show Federal Bureau of Investigation deceived secret court in obtaining warrant
A plurality of Americans think Trump's campaign colluded with Russian Federation , but 87 percent of Republicans think it didn't. The documents, available online after media outlets sued for their release, actually suggest the opposite.

Trump says China is being 'vicious' by hitting US farmers with tariffs
Nick VanWychen, a Kaukauna farmer, says soybeans are one of the crops most affected by trade disputes. President Donald Trump has ordered the Department of Agriculture to dole out $12 billion in aid.

Riyad Mahrez reveals he rejected other clubs to join Manchester City
But to become a top top team you have to learn how to play football with courage. "I think to have competition is really good". Now the attention turns towards the summer, and the players who could be moving clubs ahead of the 2018-19 season.

Meghan Markle's sister hints at appearing in UK Celebrity Big Brother show
Meghan Markle's sister Samantha Markle is taken to hospital after a vehicle accident, she claims was caused by the Paparazzi. In the meanwhile, Markle's getting used to all this royal hubbub - from what to wear to how much PDA is too much.

Alphabet trounces profit estimates as Google reins in costs
The headlining story of this release is that the market was surprised by Google acheiving far stronger ad sales than expected. The average estimate of 13 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $9.45 per share.

2 dead, 13 injured, gunman killed in Toronto shooting
The rampage came just three months after a van struck and killed 10 people in Toronto in an apparent attack directed toward women. Toronto Mayor John Tory called the shooting a "despicable act" targeting innocents. "That was the scary part", she said.

Pakistan polls: Former cricketers turn to support Imran Khan
Durrani is contesting for NA-35 under the Muttahida Majlise-e-Amal (MMA) banner against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf chief Imran Khan. Video images from the scene showed three bleeding and unconscious passengers inside a badly damaged black sports utility vehicle.

Iran's President warns Donald Trump against 'mother of all wars'
Pompeo also blamed the government for Iran's economic woes, which have led to anti-government protests nationwide. Pompeo refused to distinguish between moderates and radicals at the heart of the Islamic republic.