Can there be life in other corners on the Solar System?

In the past, the red planet had an atmosphere that allowed the existence of oceans of liquid water. (NASA)

NASA reveals more and more mysteries about space

The exoplanets of the TRAPPIST-1 system are just seven more in what is a long list of planets that could harbor life. NASA has already investigated some thoroughly.

Mars

Because of its proximity and similarities with the Earth, Mars is the planet that has received most attention by astrobiologists. But the Martian surface receives a lot of radiation and it does not seem to contain water, so any chance of life of surviving are unlikely.

However, scientists suspect that there might be microorganisms in the ice beneath the surface of the Red Planet, where there is less radiation.

This image of the surface of Mars leads to believe that there could be water on the Red Planet. (NASA)

Europa

Nearly ten years ago an ocean was detected under the ice of Europa, one of the moons of Jupiter. This finding confirmed what many already suspected: there are not only oceans on Earth.

Scientists believe that water in Europa is likely to be in contact with a rocky surface, perhaps even with volcanic activity: an very similar environment to the one seen in the Earth’s beginnings, according to one of the most widely-accepted theories.

NASA wishes to further investigate this moon in Europa Clipper’s future misión.

Enceladus

When the Cassini probe approached the small moon of Enceladus, on Saturn, it discovered something amazing: geysers erupting jets of water at great height. These jets of water are connected to an ocean that hides beneath the icy surface in the moon’s south pole.

The water in these geysers contains hydrocarbons, an organic compound. This does not show that there is life in Enceladus, but does show that it has the necessary ingredients to develop it.

Titan

Of all the bodies of the solar system, Titan is one of the most intriguing. On its surface there are methane lakes that follow a cycle similar to that of water on Earth: their content evaporates to fall later in the form of rain.

Although it is complicated, some astrobiologists suggest that there could be life forms based on methane, in the same way that life on Earth is based on water.

Translated by Chaplin’s Languages | Find out more in Junior Report

FER UN COMENTARI

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here