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NASA’s Perseverance rover finds diverse organic matter on Mars


Source: DTE

 Context: NASA’s Perseverance rover has discovered evidence of organic compounds in a Martian crater, providing insights into the potential habitability of Mars.

  • The study, published in the journal Nature, reveals a more complex organic geochemical cycle on Mars than previously thought, indicating the presence of multiple reservoirs of potential organic molecules on the planet.


Key Findings:

  • The findings suggest that Mars has experienced aqueous processes and that water may have played a significant role in the existence of organic matter.
  • The research team used an instrument called the Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman and Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals (SHERLOC) to detect the organic compounds.
  • The rover’s landing site in Jezero Crater, which was once a lake basin, shows a high potential for past habitability, as it contains minerals such as carbonates, clays, and sulphates that could preserve organic compounds and traces of prehistoric life.