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Mars Space Science

Life Possible On 'Large Regions' of Mars 154

Posted by samzenpus
from the quato-approved dept.
astroengine writes "Australian scientists who modeled conditions on Mars to examine how much of the Red Planet was habitable have said that 'large regions' could sustain life. Using decades of global data, the researchers have evaluated the entire planet, and found that 3 percent of the Martian volume could sustain Earth-like microbial life. As a comparison, only one percent of the volume of Earth contains life. However, the only habitable regions are below the Martian surface where the temperature and pressure could sustain liquid water."
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Life Possible On 'Large Regions' of Mars

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  • by mosb1000 (710161) <mosb1000@mac.com> on Monday December 12, 2011 @10:41AM (#38342604)

    I know you were not being serious, but if they found oil it wouldn't be of any practical value since mars lacks an oxygen atmosphere. On the other hand, it would have a lot of scientific importance because it would mean either that mars had significant quantities of life in the past, or that oil can formed through processes that do not require life.

  • by vlm (69642) on Monday December 12, 2011 @10:59AM (#38342798)

    I know you were not being serious, but if they found oil it wouldn't be of any practical value since mars lacks an oxygen atmosphere.

    It would be of immense practical value as a reservoir of organic chems.

    Heres a weird example to think about. If we colonize mars, nothing will be painted. All plain bare metal. Why? No organic compounds and solvents to spare to make paint, and filtering paint solvents out in the air handlers is a PITA anyway. No problemo you say, we'll just power coat everything, powder coat is made out of plastic which is made out of ... Err, we'll make everything interior out of aluminum and anodize it, you just anodize aluminum and dip it in hyperconcentrated organic dyes, and those dyes are made out of ... Hmm. All those sci-fi sets with great paint jobs are just not gonna happen, are they?

    The best artsy craftsy idea I can come up with is ceramic enamel jobs done with solar powered rock grinders and solar powered kilns. But again, put up a solar powered artsy kiln and someone is gonna whine that it should be PV cells instead of a kiln at the focus...

    Technically you could turn your olive oil into paint given a huge energy intensive chemical plant, but wouldn't you rather ... eat? I'd rather spend the kilowatt hours and Kg of carbon on a nice beef steak than a nice paint job. Hmm.

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