There Was Life On Mars But ‘Catastrophic’ Event Wiped It Out, Scientist Says

There Was Life On Mars But ‘Catastrophic’ Event Wiped It Out, Scientist Says

Lewis Datrnelll, a UK Space Agency research Fellow, believes early microscopic forms of life may well have formed on Mars billions of years ago, but a major environmental event later made the Red Planet completely inhospitable even to the single-celled organisms that may have formed.

Mr Dartnell, who is also author of The Knowledge: How to Rebuild our World from Scratch, a New York Times and Sunday Times best-selling book explaining how to rebuild society in the event of an apocalypse, said: "Something catastrophic has gone wrong on Mars environmentally."

He said the only life that would have developed before that would have been singled celled - "only the bacteria you would see under a microscope" - but whatever happened wiped out its chance of evolving into more complex creatures.

He said: "The atmosphere has been blown into space. It is too cold and dry for any life now.

"There were never any multi-celled life forms, animals or plants. The myths of canals on Mars will forever remain that."

He was speaking during a debate on the search for extra terrestrial intelligent life at the British Science Festival in Bradford University.

Mr Dartnell's hypothesis that Mars may have housed early life comes just weeks after Nasa revealed that its Curiosity Rover space probe had found unexpectedly high levels of water benath the surface of Mars and also separate evidence that it once had a continental crust, much like ours.In both cases they were hailed as major breakthroughs and evidence that the red Planet once probably had continents separated by vast oceans which possibly contained some form of life.


By Jon Austin, EXPRESS


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