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Mars Methane Burping

Super-interesting research from Mars has come out today: It seems that there are consistent emissions of methane into the Martian atmosphere. The methane was first detected 5 years ago, and it’s still there today. Methane is broken down by sunlight, so that means that the methane wasn’t just released in a geological anomaly. It’s still being released into the atmosphere today.

There are three possible sources of the methane: One is the reaction of the minerals olivine and pyroxene with water. Another possible source is current Martian life. Methane is a process of some metabolic processes here on Earth. The final possible source of methane on Mars is extinct Martian life. There are many places on Earth where methane exists in frozen form. Perhaps ancient Martian life created methane deposits that are now melting.

Whatever the source, the methane on Mars could serve as a source of energy for future exploration and eventual colonization of the red planet.

2 comments to Mars Methane Burping

  • qs

    I just read your 2007 blog entry ron paul voting against a resolution for Aung San Suu Kyi.

    I think this is the first time I’ve ever somewhat disagreed with Paul although I can’t say for sure if I disagree with him for sure or not.

    btw- do you believe in interventionism in Burma or do you think they’re best of with the non-violent approach?

    I think General Than Shwe is ill right now and pretty old. The last time a general died in 88 was when there was last large pro-democracy uprisings so maybe in the next couple years?

    The non-violent approach is the LOOONNNGGG path as Daw Suu says.

  • qs

    Well in 88 the general didn’t die but just stepped down.

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