Scholars from the University of Newcastle have shown that wind erosion can be the primary cause of methane gas release on Mars.
Both biological and biological pathways can produce methane over time, and since it was first investigated in the Martian atmosphere in 2003, there has been intense speculation about the source of the gas and its potential to signal life on Earth.
Previous studies indicate that Mars cannot be evenly distributed in the atmosphere around Mars, but instead appears in local and very temporary pockets on the planet's surface. And methane & # 39; spikes & # 39; in a mercantile environment. Previous explorations of 'have sparked debate.
Now the research is led and published by the UK's Newcastle University Sci .Scientific ReportsDenies the possibility that methane levels can be generated by the erosion of rocks, releasing methane from the inclusion and fracture of fluid on the planet's surface.
Geochemist John Telling, Principal Investigator, based at Newcastle University's School of Natural and Environmental Sciences.
"The questions are – where does this methane come from, and where is the source biological? It is a big question and we need to rule out many factors first to get the answer.
"We realized one potential source of methane was that people did not look in any detail before the erosion of the air, releasing gases trapped in the rocks. Higher resolution images from orbit over the last decade show that winds on Mars can drive higher altitudes. , And therefore the possible rates of sand erosion, as previously recognized.
"In fact, in some cases, the rate of erosion is estimated to be comparable to that of cold and dry sand sand fields on the earth.
"Using the information available, we have estimated the rate of erosion on Mars' surface and how important it can be in releasing methane.
"And taking all that into account, we thought it was very unlikely to be a source.
"The important thing about this is that it reinforces the argument that methane must come from another source. Whether it's biological or not, we don't know yet."
Funded by the UK Space Agency, the research is experimenting with new published data to consider the potential methane contents of various light types and whether they have the ability to produce measurable levels of methane when worn.
The team found that, because wind erosion is a suitable method for producing methane that is detectable in the atmosphere of Mars, the methane content of any gases trapped in the rocks has to compete with some of the richest hydrocarbons that have a shell on Earth; A very unlikely scenario.
Postdoctoral researcher at Newcastle University's School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, lead author Dm.
"It's still an open question. Our paper is just part of a much larger story," he says.
"Ultimately, what we're trying to find is if there is a possibility of life on planets other than our own, either now lives or lives in the past that are now preserved as fossil or chemical signatures."
Methane disappears on Mars: Researchers propose new methodology as an explanation
E. Safi et al, Aeolian abrasion of rocks as a method of generating methane in a Mtianian atmosphere, Sci .Scientific Reports (2019) DOI: 10.1038 / s41598-019-44616-2
Methane not released by wind on Mars, experts find (August 12, 2019)
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