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Mars Earth Space

ISS Studies Show Bacteria From Earth Could Colonize Mars 103

As reported by Tech Times, research conducted aboard the ISS has shown that Earth bacteria could survive the rigors of travel to Mars better than might be expected. "Research into bacterial colonization on the red planet was not part of the plan to terraform the alien world ahead of human occupation. Instead, three teams investigated how to prevent microbes from Earth from hitching a ride to the red planet aboard spacecraft. It is nearly impossible to remove all biological contaminants from equipment headed to other planets. By better understanding what organisms can survive in space or on the surfaces of other worlds, mission planners can learn which forms of microscopic life to concentrate on during the sanitation process. 'If you are able to reduce the numbers to acceptable levels, a proxy for cleanliness, the assumption is that the life forms will not survive under harsh space conditions,' Kasthuri Venkateswaran of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and co-author of all three papers, said."
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ISS Studies Show Bacteria From Earth Could Colonize Mars

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  • how long? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 04, 2014 @08:43PM (#46915909)
    So, group A wants to find extraterrestrial life. Group B wants to begin terraforming. How long must group B defer to group A?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday May 04, 2014 @08:52PM (#46915941)

    The story is so recently stolen from the Reddit front page that it's still viewable there within a few "next page" clicks.

    The real problem you're noticing is Dice and the hacks like timothy not giving a fuck about Slashdot, let alone education or science.

  • by NatasRevol ( 731260 ) on Sunday May 04, 2014 @10:57PM (#46916263) Journal

    No singificant amounts water, no source of nutrients to digest, no oxygen to convert sugar to energy. temperatures around -40 celsius, possibly toxic soil and atmospheric pressure low enough it might affect metabolism otherwise --- and little shielding from ultraviolet light (no ozone layer).

    And yet life lives here on earth under those conditions - middle of the desert, at the poles, thousands of feet under water.

  • Re:how long? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by RoLi ( 141856 ) on Monday May 05, 2014 @04:36AM (#46917285)

    Forever, because terraforming Mars makes no sense.

    Just think about it: Here on Earth, we put more and more plants under greenhouse because greenhouses are simply better for plant growth than the natural environment.

    Any terraforming of Mars would not only take almost forever but would result in an Antarctica-like climate were you would still need greenhouses anyway. It just makes much more sense to skip the terraforming-part altogether and just use greenhouses without any terraforming.

In seeking the unattainable, simplicity only gets in the way. -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982