Nasa scientists found amino acids on the land of Mars and started experimenting in searching for potential Martian life.
Two NASA spacecraft arrived on Mars in 1976 to undertake the very first tests for extraterrestrial life ( This project has a deep connection to our future). As the building blocks of proteins and enzymes, amino acids are crucial to life as we know them.
Additionally, they are easily produced in several conceivable prebiotic environments and are typical in asteroids rich in carbon.
The two spacecraft Viking 1 and 2 probes, started their search for signs of surface bacteria that were still alive. After supplying nutrients or other substances that bacteria could metabolize to soil samples, researchers looked for chemicals that suggested active biochemistry.
However, other equipment aboard the Viking landers only found minuscule levels of organic compounds like dichloromethane and chloro- in the martian atmosphere.
But an organic or non-organic interpretation of the radiation and chemical results was not possible because there were no large molecules. The results of the landers’ other trials were, at best, ambiguous.
To all that, the NASA science world finally came to the conclusion that nonliving, or abiotic, processes like unidentified oxidants in the soil were a more likely explanation for the Viking results after many years of heated discussion.
These experimental findings showed how difficult it could be to spot extraterrestrial life or chemical indications of life, let alone declare with certainty that life has been discovered in some other biosphere.
What Were Exposed On The Land Of Mars:
A few meters of Martian bedrock and minerals contain amino acid residues and other organic matter, but exposure to cosmic radiation can damage these substances regardless of where they came from.
But experts have found a way and exposed a number of purified amino acids to gamma radiation at different temperatures and radiation dosages that were indicative of the martian near-subsurface in combinations of silicates with perchlorate salts, dry and wet sediments, and both.
The radiolysis characteristics of amino acids in silicate mixes were at least ten times bigger than the radiolysis constants of amino acids alone, according to their research, which showed that irradiating amino acids mixed with dry silica dust boosted the rate of amino acid radiolysis on the land of mars.
Unfortunately, they were unable to find any signs of amino acid racemization in the samples after being exposed to gamma radiation, suggesting that some of the remaining amino acids’ chirality may still be intact.
The findings from this investigation indicate that finding ancient amino acids and other types of organic biosignatures in the upper 2 m of the martian subsurface will present significant obstacles.
The fundamental chemistry of our world must first be understood, however, before scientists can decide whether a physical signal is peculiar enough to be the result of life. Currently, researchers are working to understand what sets biological chemistry apart from other types of chemistry and how to quantify its presence.
Reassessing chemists’ presumptions regarding how biochemistry developed on Earth is part of this endeavor. Astrobiologists anticipate that this basic chemical investigation will facilitate the collection and evaluation of information from both inside and beyond our solar system.