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View Full Version : Do you think they'll find life on Mars?



Fraser
2003-Jul-13, 03:27 AM
Several spacecraft are headed to Mars and will be sniffing around the surface. The Mars Exploration rovers will be looking for evidence of past water, but Beagle 2 will be searching for chemical evidence of life.

Do you think it'll find anything? Do you think the Martian meteorite already proved there's life on Mars?

Duane
2003-Jul-16, 03:14 PM
I think there is a good possibility that they will find microbial remains of life, but I doubt they will find anything "alive", at least with the current rovers being sent there.

If there is any life on the planet, I would think it would be buried deep underground, deeper than ony of the rovers currently on route could reach.

It would be interesting to see if they discover any type of active venting systems, such as the thermal vents under our own oceans. If the planet still has an active interior (any evidence of this?) then there may be an opportunity to discover some type of life.

Personally, I think that if there is no tangible evidence of current life on the planet, then we should consider seeding it with bacteria or very hardy plant-life such as we find at sites in Antartica or in the Canadian far north.

Wouldn't it be interesting to see moss-like plants from earth growing happily on Mars? :o

Fraser
2003-Jul-16, 03:38 PM
I'm not confident they'll find life either. I think the only way to do a serious investigation into life on Mars is to send a human mission. In fact, scientists are still discovering life in extreme locations on Earth... and this is where we live.

Humans have to go and take the time to really look. I wouldn't be surprised if it takes until we have a permanent colony on Mars before microbial life is found.

DippyHippy
2003-Jul-17, 04:43 AM
I agree, I don't think you'll find anything more than microbes there... what will be interesting is how those microbes differ from those on Earth, if at all.

If they don't differ, then I guess we'll have to prove somehow that the microbes weren't carried there by whatever craft has landed there.

I have to admit, for some reason I have mixed views on the idea of terraforming... I have no problem with colonies etc but there's a part of me that says Mars should be left as it is! I know it's irrational - it might even become necessary to terraform Mars and it's not likely to happen for quite some time anyway... but there you go!

Dips

Fraser
2003-Jul-17, 05:49 AM
Since scientists have tested many parts of the theory that life could get from Earth to Mars or vice versa, I almost feel that the discovery of life on Mars would be anti-climatic. It's almost as if people would say... so? And then we'd go and find it all through the Solar System, and even that wouldn't give us any evidence of life in the Universe.

Josh
2003-Jul-17, 10:28 AM
But don't you think that finding life in whatever form on any other planet or the whole solar system would make you ask where the hell it all came from and how did it get there? If it can be proven to be a Sol-induced phomenon that's one thing, but if not then there's a good argument (I'd assume) that says that the natural tendency of planets and solar systems is to produce life. If we here on Earth all came from such simple lifeforms and now exist in such a plethora of varieties then ~I~ think it would be safe to assume that it happens all over the place.

Finding new life here on Earth in such places as volcanic vents and under ice shows that the priori for the supposed conditions that could sustain life doesn't hold - that there is not one condition only (Earth's climate, distance from sun, size, gravity, etc ...) for life to develop.

Outside of this I think there will be microbial life found on Mars. At least I hope so.

And as for terraforming: If the place os found to be barren then I think it's not only an okay thing but a good thing to do. Among many scientific and exploration reasons there is also the feeling that when humans feel smaller (as a whole) we are more at peace. I think having Earth as 'not the only place' would go a long way for peace on Earth ... or a more peaceful earth. That of course may just be me and a little idealism talking. Does anyone else get that?

Arramon
2003-Jul-17, 04:24 PM
Actually, that might help our egos just alittle to discover that we are, in fact, not the only ones out here... that we aren't the center of the universe, and that we aren't the only intelligent life to speak of...

we've come a long ways in just the last 30 years... yet our own Moon hasn't even been revisited, colonized, used for its abundant fuel... used as a stepping stone to the outer realms...

life on mars? it may have been a water world once, so most definitely life would appear within microscopic scales... but, to actually grow our own plants there?
Given the levels of radiation, the density of the atmosphere, or lack thereof, the amount of oxygen that must be produced... many facts still remain unknown as to how any life could still be 'alive'. Plenty of fossils to go around...

But what about the 5th planet of our solar system? you know.... the one drifting about in many millions and millions of pieces... who's to say that wasn't the cause of the death of Mars? When the 5th was destroyed, however that may have been, that amount of released energy and particles and debris may have driven life from Mars...
solar winds could have shrouded Mars for generations, cutting off all resources of life and energy from the surrounding system... As in, why the reddish tint of the planet Mars?

ideas ideas ideas...
:)

. .. -={Arramon}=-.. .

John Broomfield
2003-Jul-17, 05:58 PM
I think we'll find that life is quite abundant around the universe as the biochemical reactions, that we are effectively made of, can't help but happen given certain physical conditions.

I suspect that the size of any such organism will again depend on the surrounding conditions and that microbes will be the most common, but the fact that they will have self reproduced and changed with time and location will lead to a variety of life being found.

I'm always amazed everytime that I go diving at the variety of "little aliens" down there! :ph34r: It's a facinating World we live on and I suspect that the next 100 years will show that it is a (even more) facinating Universe we live in.

JB

ScottPithan
2003-Jul-17, 07:17 PM
I hope they don't find life on Mars. If we do find life on Mars in the
smallest forms, the enviromentalist will prohibit any more visits to
Mars. The enviromentalist will claim that further visits from robots or
humans will contaminate any new, old or begining life on planet Mars. This single issue will be enough for large amounts of funding for Mars or other plant exploration to be limited to telescopes only. It becomes then about money and politics. By finding life, We might just have opened the door for the opposition.
:(

Regarding one comment about exploring and developing the moon first. This again permits enviromentalist to object. Their objections would be on the fact that the earth's fragile eco-system hangs on the gravitational pull of the moon. If mankind adds to or subtracts from the mass of the moon, this in turn may affect the amount of gravitational pull the moon has on our planet thereby affecting all life on our planet.
:(

ROBERT S HOOVER
2003-Jul-18, 03:39 PM
Originally posted by fraser@Jul 13 2003, 03:27 AM
Several spacecraft are headed to Mars and will be sniffing around the surface. The Mars Exploration rovers will be looking for evidence of past water, but Beagle 2 will be searching for chemical evidence of life.

Do you think it'll find anything? Do you think the Martian meteorite already proved there's life on Mars?
I hope they will find evidence of past bacterial life on Mars in January.
There may even be life there now . Life exists everywhere on Earth even under extreme conditions of temperature and pressure and surprises occur continually on this planet.

As Isaac Asimov and others wrote , life may exist somewhere based on cycles of elements other than Carbon, H2O, O2, H2 ,Methane etc as we know it , possibly Silicon , sulfur etc based with much higher temperatures or other type Methane environments , even gaseous life forms.

A human exploration of Mars should be done as soon as possible and a base established there and on the Moon.

Nixons Policy killed the Space Program and we have been Shuttle Bound for 30 years beacause of it.

President Bush may spend 1 Billion dollars per week or day on Foreign Policy
and only 40 Billion dollars could have payed for a manned Mars Expedition.
I read a 1994 quote attributed to him stating that there are Canals and water on Mars and ...so follow the Water leading to Life .
Maybe someone can convince Bush him that there is OIL on Mars .....Follow the OIL not the Water George and push for a Manned Mars Expedition soon.

I am 73 years of age and would really like to be around when they go to Mars.

Angstrom
2003-Jul-18, 04:48 PM
I agree that finding signs of life on Mars would be anticlimactic. Even recognizing what constitutes life is debatable. Mars is just the easiest target we have right now for finding extra-terrestrial signs of life, but we also have the moons of a few other planets in our system.

All of this evidence is a long, slow and even agonizing search to help nail down some of the variables in the Drake equation.

Fraser
2003-Jul-18, 04:58 PM
I think that's the best suggestion I've heard so far. If Bush is gullable enough to believe there are canals and liquid water on Mars, then it should be easy for him to believe there's oil.

Aldo
2003-Jul-18, 05:17 PM
[FONT=Geneva][SIZE=1][COLOR=blue]Ok I am new into this forum, but what the hell...

I am agreed with Fraser. Robots are good tools for exploration but humans are able to interpretate 'things' than a cybernetic creature can't (at least in our present era and even them I believe we will be in a step forward). Humans MUST to walk the soil of Mars. We like it or not, humans are investigators and this quest for knowlegde is very strong to motivate the spirit of many.

Is there life in Mars? I certainly, we don't know yet. Would be good to receive a positive evidence, even if it is a fosil of a micro-organism. Would be a total revolution and a huge step forward for cience and a new era of investigations.

However we must re-define our interpretations about extraterrestrial forms of life. It's true, life resides in our planet into intense enviroments, and it could be the same in our Cosmos. But unfortunately, we still think like "humans" and our comparisons are all about Earth. Which is a good and perfect. We need a point of reference and consult. But I think the mind must dig even more. After we have our human form due to the Earth atmosphere and its internal system. I believe extarrestrial lifes will be totally different and in some case, we won't be able to recognise them after doing a second view.

We know few things about Universe, I mean the Universe huge! We know are just knowing our realm. The most important thing is to continue the search and don't give up! I know true investigators won't!

This is just an idea.
By the way, I hail for the terraformist idea in Mars.

::Aldo Requena, Editor of Maximal Collision

Edit: Profanity deleted - Matthew

Emil V Cseko
2003-Jul-18, 11:30 PM
There is no life akin to ours on Mars or anywhere else in the universe. There is more to life than meets the eyes of amateurs or scientists. If you want to know what it is, I have an article I can share with you. Contact ecseko@intas.net.au

Guest_brian
2003-Jul-21, 03:37 PM
they will not find anything on mars other than rocks with no life in/on them God created us and there is nothing out there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :blink:

Sid Wilson
2003-Jul-22, 10:16 AM
I'm new to this forum but have received Universe today for several years.
I hope they do find signs of life on Mars, simply because it would be so exciting for us all!

Sid Wilson. :rolleyes:

N3373H
2003-Jul-22, 10:06 PM
Life on Mars? Doubtful. Now Europa sounds like a more feasible target. All we have to do is figure a way to get through the ice.

kashi
2003-Jul-23, 10:21 AM
Who knows. Just because conditions might be suitable for life to exist doesn't mean that it does/has/will. Science doesn't fully understand how chemicals suddenly become living organisms. It can produce complex compounds and molecules with the same structure as simple organisms in the laboratory, but they are dead. What gives them "life" is unknown. That being said, I am not religious, and I don't believe in attributing everything we don't understand to God. If all people had done this throughout history, we'd never have computers, and we'd never have this forum to ask these very questions. We should strive to find answers to these questions in terms of theories that stand up to practical observation, rather than making sweeping statements about the very meaning of our existance with no scientific evidence to back them up. It is impossible to have an intellectual argument with people who refuse to acknowledge that they might be wrong! In science, nothing is absolute fact, right or wrong. Theories serve to bridge the gap between so called "reality" and our "minds". Theories that make accurate predictions are then adopted to help our understanding of "reality".

Let's face it. Nobody really knows for sure whether we will find any signs of life on Mars. There is evidence that microbes may have once existed in marsian soil, but there may be another explanation for traces of certain characteristic chemicals that we are not aware of.

Kashi

Bill AH
2003-Jul-26, 12:36 AM
I wondered about this topic for years and wanted to believe there was some kind of life on Mars, but it wasn't until recently that there was any evidence (to me) that there may be life there. I am refering to the recent discovery of sub-surface water (or liquid at any rate) seen by evidence of recent flows down the side of the cliffs. Where there is water there is a better possibility of life. Others have mentioned the finding of strange lifeforms in weird places here on Earth like boiling hot springs and vents in the ocean bottm and in the coldest extremes of the planet, but in all cases, to my knowledge, water in some form has been present. So my vote is a hopeful yes, they will find some evidence of life.

Guest_brian, I rarely become entangled in conversations like you bring up as there is no point in it, but it is only in arrogance that anyone could believe that God or any deity would tell us everything he/she did including starting life elsewhere in the universe.

doublestar
2003-Aug-05, 09:23 PM
> I believe extarrestrial lifes will be totally different and in some case, we won't be able to recognise them after doing a second view.

There you go! I think you may be on to something.

Arramon
2003-Aug-05, 10:26 PM
i like peanut butter and jelly....
but does that mean that if i've never tasted it, that i wouldn't?

prolly not... i just wouldn't know...

if there is evidence of the building blocks of life, then there is bound to be life in some form or another...
True, that life may be much different than what we're used to seeing, and may even be smaller than we already think possible... i would never count out the possibility of sentience elsewhere... that's too easy to do... prove that they dont exist first, then claim it...
For now, we're trying to prove that they do, and wont deny them that benefit of a doubt before hand....
In relative terms... we, as humans, are the babies of the local group within our region of space.. and are just now beginning to understand complex things...
as in, where are we? where are we going? where did we come from? and where will we be in X amount of generations from now?

I, for one, plan to live a looooong life to catch all the interesting news as it first happens...
..now if only i could do something about this aging process...

=P

. ..-={A}=-.. .

WendellG
2003-Aug-06, 09:47 PM
I'm pretty sure that my Ex is from Mars, neptune, pluto, - or wherever. Ok, this wasn't very scientific, I just needed to vent.

Thanks,

Wendell

N3373H
2003-Aug-06, 09:49 PM
Just curious. Could a life form transported to Mars on one of our spacecraft survive there? Whether it be bacteria or germs or whatever might hitch a ride. Could something like that even survive the journey? Is there anything on Earth that could live on Mars without anything else from Earth? There may be water and sunlight, but what is the atmosphere comprised of?

Fraser
2003-Aug-06, 10:47 PM
Anything is possible. Life has demonstrated that it can survive in all kinds of environments. I know that NASA takes extra precautions to avoid this kind of thing happening, so even they must be concerned about it.

Alaskan
2003-Aug-06, 10:53 PM
Is there life on Mars?

Of course there is life on Mars. Silly question. There is life everywhere in the Universe and probably in places you wouldn't think it could exist. Life is the paradigm of the Universe.

Should mankind be allowed to go into space? Allowed to explore? Allowed to land on planets and utilize them?

Mankind will go where his imagination shows him the way. There is no stopping expansion of mankind except for his survival as a species. And that could be jeapardized if politics keeps us chained to our home planet.


Let the count-down begin.

MarQ
2003-Aug-11, 04:19 AM
There is still debate that two of the three life-seeking experiments on both Viking 1 and Viking 2 landers on Mars in 1976 detected life. These experiments can be researched on web, but they definitely gave a positive reading that was dismissed as chemical in nature.

I believe there are microbes and simple-celled creatures in the substrates of the water-rich Martian ground.

A question from N3373H about microbes or germs surviving the harsh environs of space. This has happened on the Moon. When Apollo 12 landed in Nov. 1969 beside the Surveyor 3 robot craft that landed in the summer of 1968, Astronauts Pete Conrad (deceased) and Alan Bean brought back pieces of the pioneer moon lander. Back on Earth five days later, scientists found inside the scavaged camera of Surveyor some germs--those of the common cold! They had survived the three-day ride across a vacuum to the Moon, then 18 months of minus 250 and plus 225 F. tempertures! Sterilzation procedures at NASA for interplanetary spacecraft got some new safeguards after that.

So like Fraser notes, anything is possible under the Sun.

Planetwatcher
2003-Aug-11, 05:17 AM
i hate to disaggree with you fellows and sort of wish otherwise but short and simply, No, I doubt if life will be found on Mars.

imported_Draco
2003-Aug-11, 07:23 AM
I hope the do find some sort of life, or extinct life forms!:p
What if some ancient city is living deep near the core of the planet? Like Matrix Reloaded:p
I once read in a book that there are living creatures in Jupiter, but with wings, there was an illustration of some abnormal creatures, ready to eat some other weird balloon shaped being. lol!
Why can't the rovers plant bombs on the surface, or underground, and BANG. They have a better chance of finding something alive or dead ;)

pHoSfEe
2003-Aug-17, 02:01 AM
Hi everyone!
Just add me to the list of people who think life is extinct on Mars. I believe we'll find little fossils or just remnants of "colonies" of microbial life, but nothing more, but even that I think will probably make scientists want to keep people from colonizing Mars.
ttyl!

- YMP

VARN
2003-Aug-18, 02:37 AM
Let us say you are from Europa, with all that ice and wanted to explore earth. You would explore the places that you would think could support life, such as the artic or Antarctica. You land and explore 1 mile in all directions (that's how far you can go with your life support) you find nothing. You would assume no life exists here. We know different.
Since the age of both planets are about the same I think there is life walking around maybe like us and if we continue to explore we will find fossils perhaps of the inhabitance of Atlantis.

Duane
2003-Aug-19, 09:39 PM
I came across this article today:


http://spaceflightnow.com/news/n0308/16marshotspots/

Kinda makes you wonder, doesn't it? :blink:

Locke
2003-Aug-22, 02:15 AM
I believe that there's a sporting chance of microscopic life on Mars. From all the dry river beds, and ice caps and such, one could assume that there is life on Mars.

Locke

Arramon
2003-Aug-22, 04:17 PM
A recent report suggests that there may not be evidence of large bodies of water on Mars, because of the lack of minerals that should be present....

I find this amusing, seeing as how over vast amounts of time, the top layers of the planet could have been covered, eroded, disguised by many different sources of our solar systems elements.. not to forget that the 5h planet was destroyed, and could have sent a shrouding cloud that placed layers upon layers on Mars' surface...

...maybe it would take an actual excavation team to dig deep down before they find what they are looking for.....

the poles may hold some form of elements that may be percieved as building blocks of life.... but the real 'rewards' may lay even deeper....

. ..-={A}=-.. .

pHoSfEe
2003-Aug-22, 06:12 PM
That's right, Arramon.

I completely agree with you this time. I put up my post in the discuss story forum.
I truly believe there are large amounts of mineral deposits, but you just can't find 'em because they're covered with lots of dust or anything of the sort!

- YMP

megaquark
2003-Aug-22, 11:47 PM
Oil on Mars, now THAT would be something! lol Talk about a swift kick in the butt to get us off the planet!

I seriously doubt it is there, but Titan, now there's a planet with some possibilities! Covered in methane slush? Organic compounds? Maybe there's 500 million years worth of organic compounds that have broken down into not just oils, but some kind of super-oil!

Maybe we could just start a rumor of oil on another planet or moon and see what happens!

"It's been reported that the Huygens probe discovered oil on Titan and the oil companies are preventing this from being known to the general public"

That should do it, given the number of people that actually believed that Apollo moon landing hoax garbage! Maybe all the nuts will come out and DEMAND to go to IO at which point the government will have to just to get re-elected!

Anyways, great thought! What can we do with it?

imported_Draco
2003-Aug-23, 06:48 AM
Originally posted by VARN@Aug 18 2003, 02:37 AM
Let us say you are from Europa, with all that ice and wanted to explore earth. You would explore the places that you would think could support life, such as the artic or Antarctica. You land and explore 1 mile in all directions (that's how far you can go with your life support) you find nothing. You would assume no life exists here. We know different.
Since the age of both planets are about the same I think there is life walking around maybe like us and if we continue to explore we will find fossils perhaps of the inhabitance of Atlantis.
I agree with you.
Atlantis? Isn't there a cartoon movie about it? What is Atlantis? I'm not fully aware of what it all means? Is it some ancient civilisation....?

imported_Voyager
2003-Aug-23, 05:08 PM
Originally posted by Guest_brian@Jul 21 2003, 03:37 PM
they will not find anything on mars other than rocks with no life in/on them God created us and there is nothing out there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :blink:
I for one no not believe in this at all. How could we be the only living things in the universe! I mean, the universe is so vast, and we are only a fraction of it. Voyager :rolleyes:

Locke
2003-Aug-23, 07:08 PM
And besides, how do we know that God didn't create another set of intelligent lifeforms in "his own image"?

Locke

Titana
2005-May-10, 02:13 AM
Hello to everyone!!! My personal opinion is that i do not beleive that there is life on mars. I really think that all of our solar system planets are there for only one purpose and that is to maintain equilibrium of our solar system as a whole. I think that with the atmosferic conditions that exist on mars it would be almost imposible for any kind of life to exist, but if it did wow!!! this would really be something, because any kind of organism that can survive under those conditions would really have to be special.

Sixbender
2005-May-10, 05:16 PM
Howdy-
I'm not reading through this whole thread, but I thought I'd chime in on what I did read, fwiw.

Life has been shown to thrive on planet Earth in conditions more hostile than what might be on Mars. And, about the time that life was getting a spark here, Mars was a very differnt place.
Is life possilble on Mars? Certainly. We could "implant" life that could survive there. We ourselves will eventually live there, time permitting.
Is there life on Mars now, or has there ever been? There is simply no direct evidence to support that, one way or another.
That's why we explore.
But just because life can exist somewhere is not evidence that it does.

Part of the scientific community seems to be indulging in science fiction, maybe to help funding, but there is simply no evidence for life anywhere but on planet Earth. Good science requires a little observable phenomena, and there just isn't any.
I welcome the discovery of any evidence to support the reality of natural extraterristrial life, that will be a day to celebrate. In the meantime, I dont see why the discovery of alien microbes is more important that being able to communicate with some of the life here.
When it comes to "gee, what if....?", then I'm not willing to call that science yet.

And as far as God goes, God can do anything she wants. We can't box God up and say "these are the rules God must obey". We dont have a clue.
There could be life everywhere, or not.
What God and science have in common is that we dont make the rules.
We observe, and share our observations.

tyrie2001
2005-May-12, 07:34 AM
As I've said before in other similar topics; I think Mars may of supported life before, now that we know there was once water on the surface, nowadays though... well if there is life it will, in my opinion, most likely be 'primitve' life, most likely bacteria, possibly some very basic multicellear creatures, maybe living in underground lakes (if there are any). I doubt that we would find much on the surface though, life would have to be pretty tough to survive the varying temperatures and constant bombardment of solar radiation, but having said that, life has been found on Earth in places which had previosly been thought so uninhabitable that not even bacteria could survive. There's bound to be a manned mission to Mars to find out sooner or later, let's just hope we don't have to wait to long!

TuTone
2005-May-19, 10:01 PM
What stuns me is that there is sooo many different kinds of life on Earth that can been seen w/the naked eye, but when we visited other planets & moons (Mars, Titan, Moon, etc) there is not a spec of life seen by the naked eye, not an ant, crab, monkey, deer, lion, etc.....just dirt & rocks.
How did deer, lizards, lions, armadillos evolve?

Jakenorrish
2005-Jun-06, 11:54 AM
Darwin's works would be worth a look for you if you're after theories on evolution. The reason why Crabs and things like that evolved here is (very) basically that the right conditions are there for them to exist on Earth. On Titan it is very unlikely that a crab will evolve for quite some time- maybe when our Sun turns in to a red giant!

GOURDHEAD
2005-Jun-06, 12:50 PM
How did deer, lizards, lions, armadillos evolve?
Darwin's works would be worth a look for you if you're after theories on evolution. ......and Daniel Dennett's: Darwin's Dangerous Idea.

TuTone
2005-Jun-06, 09:36 PM
So Mercury & Venus must have had life on them when the sun was smaller. Now that the sun is expanding we are in the perfect zone here on Earth. So next to be the next Earth would be Mars and Earth would become Venus, right?

Jakenorrish
2005-Jun-07, 10:29 AM
That is one of many possibilities. I for one doubt whether conditions on Mercury were ever able to support life, but who knows. I or any body else can't discount the fact that there may be life there now in a deep crater in water ice however unlikely it seems.

With Venus, we are unable to establish its history and how it managed to obtain its runaway greenhouse effect, so probably will be unable to say beyond doubt the conditions which existed there previously, and whether life could've existed there.

RobWolfe
2005-Jun-10, 07:11 PM
Originally posted by N3373H@Jul 22 2003, 10:06 PM
Life on Mars? Doubtful. Now Europa sounds like a more feasible target. All we have to do is figure a way to get through the ice.
A long probe with a nuclear reactor in the tip with several miles of cable coiled up in the back. Shaped like a..... well I'll just say shaped like an adult novelty. It could leave an antenna module on the surface and as the heat from the reactor causes it to sink it could uncoil the cable behind it. Maybe have a bay to deploy a few submersible robots when it gets through and then act as radio relay and charging station for them after deployment. But if there is life there and you had a radiation leak from your reactor, how would you know which lifeforms were natural and which were mutants. :D

RobWolfe
2005-Jun-10, 07:21 PM
Originally posted by Arramon@Aug 22 2003, 04:17 PM
.. not to forget that the 5h planet was destroyed,
Is the asteroid belt the remnants of a destroyed planet? I was under the impression that it was just a lot of left over debris from the formation of the solar system. Seems I read somewhere that the total mass of all the asteroids combined is somewhat less than the mass of our moon. Could someone enlighten me on this?

John L
2005-Jun-10, 08:49 PM
RobWolfe,

According to The Nine Planets (http://www.seds.org/billa/tnp/asteroids.html) website, you are correct that the total mass of the asteroid belt is a little less than that of our Moon. Now, had a world that size been left in that orbit intact, we would have called it the 5th planet, but it would have been a very tiny planet, indeed. At first we called the first asteroids that were discovered planets. At one point Jupiter was the 11th planet in the solar system, but in the mid-1800's, as astronomy advanced and it was realized that the bodies being discovered were a belt of objects, they declassified them and moved Jupiter back to being planet #5.

John L
2005-Jun-10, 08:57 PM
As for life on Mars, I say YES. Where ever we have looked on Earth and found water we have found life. We've looked in the driest places on Earth like the Atacama desert in Chili and in the ultra-dry regions of Antarctica and found life. We've drilled into the Earth and in the rocks that come up we find life. We go to the deepest regions of the Earth's oceans and in the sediment or near heat sources we find life. We look in the hot springs and find life bubbling up in the water. If there is ANY water on Mars, and if it has EVER been liquid, then I find it hard to believe that there wouldn't be life there, too.

suntrack2
2005-Jun-11, 09:38 AM
The life cycles in the universe gone through the verious stages, there are many changes appearing in the universe, so far life on mars is concern, it will be little hurry to draw an opinion that no life was there, i think we are so small in searching the creativity besided earth on other planets, this is mainly due to the speed,time,age,technology and other boundaries, if we break all these aspects then it would be possible to search the life in the universe elsewhere, but not yet confirmed anyone and can not say by beating his forearms " that life is confirmly on such and such planet. in my opinion there is a big possibility of life was there on mars previously and or today there is life in another forms which are unknown to us, it is said that mars geography/structure/crust/size/situations are earth like. but we cannot expect a developed life on mars since there are poisonous gasses in the atmosphere of the mars, the surface is filled of some poisonous cotents, but who know in the inner crust, whether the life exist there, as we have seen in the star war movie, there was a colony in the deep valley, so such possibility can not be ruled out that the life is residing in the area which is unreachable to us, but we are today hopeful that mars is a prospecting star for finding life there.
i think we have to wait for some another 50 years for a greater and more advance search in respect of life on the mars, we can not become pessimist in this regard.

sunil