Water may reappear on Mars in the future: what scientists have learned

Dmytro IvancheskulLife
A raging river may have once flowed on Mars

Mars, which has now become a desert, may once again have liquid water in the future. This will not even require people or their technology to interfere with the planet's activities.

This is stated in a study published in the journal Science. Earlier, as you know, there was water on the red planet, but now it most likely exists only in the form of ice.

The scientists were prompted to speculate on the future appearance of water on Mars by the study of canals on the planet. There are similar ravines on Earth in Antarctica. On our planet, they were formed as a result of glacial melting. But on Mars, they are too high for running water to be present.

However, a study by a group of scientists from the United States suggests that this is the work of liquid water that flowed on the planet about 630,000 years ago.

The only condition under which this could have happened is that the inclination of the Mars axis had to reach 35 degrees. According to the temperature and circulation modelling carried out by the scientists, with such an inclination, the density of the atmosphere will cause the planet's surface to briefly heat up above the freezing point. This will be enough to melt some of the snow and ice that still exists on Mars.

"We know from many of our studies and others that early in Mars' history there was running water on its surface with a network of valleys and lakes," explained Brown University planetary scientist Jim Head, adding that about 3 billion years ago, all of this liquid water disappeared, turning Mars into a desert.

The research team's calculations shed more light on how these gullies were formed, how much erosion they caused, and how far they can extend.

The scientists also suggest that two factors triggered the formation of the gullies. In addition to the fact that the planet warmed up, there could be a second factor - the evaporation of CO2.

However, erosion by flowing water is better suited to the Martian landscape than erosion caused by CO2. In addition, scientists cannot test this theory on Earth, as there are simply no analogues of this phenomenon on our planet.

"Our study shows that the global distribution of gullies is better explained by liquid water over the last million years," said Jay Dixon, a planetary scientist at the California Institute of Technology.

According to him, the presence of liquid water better explains the distribution of gullies by height.

"This means that Mars has been able to create liquid water in a volume sufficient to erode the gullies over the past million years, which is a recent event in the geological history of Mars," the scientist said.

The tilt of Mars' axis is known to change over time, although it takes hundreds of thousands of years. Previously, this movement was associated with ice ages on the Red Planet. Eventually, the planet will rotate at a 35-degree angle, allowing local areas of liquid water to flow again.

At the same time, scientists suggest that the return of water to the planet may contribute to the development of living organisms.

"Any microorganism that could have evolved on early Mars would be in places where it would be comfortable in ice, and then would feel just as comfortable or thrive in liquid water," Head said.

Earlier, OBOZREVATEL also reported that life could have existed on Mars in the past, but the planet "committed suicide".

Only verified information is available in our Obozrevatel Telegram channel and Viber. Do not fall for fakes!

Other News

Easier than pizza: a hearty pita and cheese casserole

Easier than pizza: a hearty pita and cheese casserole

Cook in the oven for 30-40 minutes
The makeup artist named the most common mistake when applying blush: it adds age

The makeup artist named the most common mistake when applying blush: it adds age

The dermatologist also scientifically explained why the product should be applied higher