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Researchers find first evidence of a huge groundwater system on Mars



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Mars Express, a space exploration mission launched in 2003 by the European Space Agency with Russian support, unveiled images showing "clear signs of persecution of the Water Activity Across the Martian Surface ".

In a study published in the Journal of Geophysical Research: Planets Mars Express researchers have explored and claimed to do 24 deep, enclosed craters in the northern hemisphere of Mars have found the first geological evidence of a coherent water system deep below the surface of our smaller, redder neighbor.

READ MORE: "Signs of the Past Waters": Mars Probe Discovers Massive "River Valley Network"

These subterranean waters Presumably the reservoirs are former lakes containing important minerals used for to play a crucial role in life.

Each crater rises about 4,000 feet below sea level on Mars, and numerous features that can be seen at depths of 4,000 to 4,500 meters indicate that there is water, with signs of basins and rivers flowing in Have changed over time.

The scientists include canals and valleys as well as fan-shaped deposits of sediments.

"Early Mars was a watery world, but as the planet's climate changed, the water underneath the surface retreated to form pools and" groundwater. " We have traced this water in our study because its scale and role are controversial and we have found the first geological evidence for a planetary groundwater system, "said lead author Francesco Salese of the University of Utrecht in the Netherlands.

The researchers believe this discovery may indicate that a sea of ​​Mars was found three to four billion years ago.

"We believe that this ocean has been linked to a system of subterranean lakes that spread over the entire planet. These lakes would have existed about 3.5 billion years ago, perhaps they were contemporaries of a Martian ocean, "said co-author Gian Gabriele Ori, director of the International Research School of Planetary Sciences at Universita D & # 39; Annunzio, Italy.

In 5 Of the 24 craters, scientists discovered a series of clays, carbonates and silicates, which are closely linked to the emergence of life on Earth, and support the thesis that Mars once had the necessary components for life possessed.

"Insights like these are enormously important; They help us to identify the regions of Mars that are most promising for finding signs of a past life. It is particularly exciting that a mission so prolific on the Red Planet, Mars Express, is now instrumental in helping future missions like ExoMars explore the planet in a different way. It's a great example of successful mission cooperation, "said ESA's Mars Express ESA expert Dmitri Titov.

ExoMars, a joint mission of the European Space Agency and the Russian space company Roscosmos, is looking for evidence Life on Mars.


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