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Mars was covered with deep oceans. Then ‘something catastrophic’ happened, say scientists

Mars was covered with deep oceans. Then ‘something catastrophic’ happened, say scientists

Mars was an aquatic world. Planetary scientists see evidence of water all over the Red Planet, but a new study of meteorites suggests that Mars was once a blue planet, like Earth, covered in water up to 300 meters deep.

The new research published in Scientists progress, also suggests that they were icy asteroids that transported water to Mars, as is suspected for Earth. They may also have brought molecules such as amino acids, which form proteins and are the building blocks of life.

This is strong evidence that Earth’s above-ground living conditions were present on Mars long before.

It all happened in the first 100 million years of the planet’s evolution. “At that time, Mars was bombarded with ice-filled asteroids,” said Professor Martin Bizzarro of the Star and Planet Formation Center at the University of Copenhagen.

The new study, which relied on computer modelling, shows that the oceans covered the entire planet and could be up to 0.6 miles/one kilometer deep.

The insights gained from studying meteorites that were once part of the Martian surface are so profound because the Red Planet has no plate tectonics. Unlike Earth, whose first 500 million years are unknown due to constant churning of the surface, the surface of Mars is untouched.

“The plates [on Earth] are constantly moving and being recycled and destroyed inside our planet,” Bizzarro said. “In contrast, Mars has no plate tectonics so the planet’s surface retains a record of the planet’s earliest history.”

I wish you clear skies and big eyes.

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