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The fourth planet from the Sun is the second most studied planet after Earth, yet astronomers are still discovering something new. The researchers, who conducted the study, say their findings could answer the question of whether the Red Planet ever gave life.
A new study by scientists at Jackson State University, Cornell University, the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and the University of Hawaii found that the Red Planet was flooded at an unimaginable rate about 4 billion years ago.
“We first identified megafloods using detailed debris data observed by Rover Curiosity,” said Alberto G., a visiting astronomer and co-author of the study at the College of Arts and Sciences. Pharaoh said. “Deposits abandoned by megafloids have not previously been identified using orbiter data.”
The researchers came to this conclusion after examining data from the Curiosity rover, which has been studying the surface of the Red Planet since 2012, based on the findings of a study published in the Journal of Scientific Reports on November 5th. The rover specifically studied the Gail crater and its debris. Geographical features are a way to navigate over time and see how water, wind, and other factors have affected the planet.
Curiosity often refers to the giant wavelength characteristics of the Gail crater as “megaripples”. According to the study, these “megaripples” are a sign that they once flowed through the gale crater in the equator of Mars.
But how did all this water appear on Mars?
Researchers say the heat caused a meteorite to hit the Red Planet. In addition to melting hot ice on Mars, the collision also releases carbon dioxide and methane from the planet’s frozen water reservoirs. These gases caused hot and humid conditions on the red planet, creating heavy rainfall, which may have occurred in all parts of Mars.
Alberto G. Pheron says the study suggests that in the early days the presence of liquid water on the surface of Mars had to be supported. “So early Mars was a habitable planet. Was it inhabited? That’s the next rover’s persistence … will help answer that,” Pheron said.
The Perseverance Rover was launched in July and is expected to reach the Red Planet in February 2021. Astronomers hope the rover will study the climatic processes that made Mars uninhabitable, the structure of its surface, and the Red Planet. Hosted life at one point. The agency hopes the rover will help prepare for a humanitarian mission to Mars.