2010年7月31日星期六

火星的岩石可能埋有生命形式的證據

火星上有否生命?星球的岩石'可能持有埋藏生命形式的證據'
Was there life on Mars? Planet's rocks 'may hold evidence of buried lifeforms'

By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 1:06 PM on 30th July 2010

Researchers have discovered rocks that could contain the fossilised remains of ancient life on early Mars.
研究人員發現岩石可能含有早期火星古老生命的遺骸化石。
The team made their discovery in the ancient rocks of Nili Fossae on the planet’s surface, which they say are almost identical to rocks in the Pilbara region of north-west Australia where some of the earliest evidence of life on Earth has been preserved.
研究隊作出他們的發現在星球表面的尼裡窩的古代岩石,他們說那裡的岩石幾乎是與澳洲西北部皮爾巴拉地區的相同,在那一些最早的地球生命證據已被保存。
The findings could mean that is evidence of living organisms on Mars around 4 billion years ago buried on the planet's surface.
研究結果可能意味,大約 40億年前火星上的生物證據被埋藏於星球的表面。
The ancient rocks of Nili Fossae which scientists have discovered have many similarities to rocks in Australia in terms of minerals
尼裡窩的古老岩石以礦物含量計,科學家們已發現與澳洲的岩石有許多相似之處

Scientists from the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence Institute (Seti) used infrared light from an instrument on the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter to study the Nili Fossae rocks.

They then used the exact same instrument to study the Pilbara rocks in Australia.
Scientists had first discovered that the Nili Fossae rocks contained carbonate in 2008.

Carbonate is formed when the shells and bodies of dead animals are buried and preserved.

Now they have discovered that the ancient rocks on Mars and in Australia share many similar minerals.

The similarities between the two sets of rocks in terms of carbonates is important because Pilbara is used to study the early stages of life on Earth 3.5 billion years ago.

The researchers believe could even contain ‘stromatolites’, as at Pilbara, which are formed by ancient microbes.

The rocky, red landscape of Hamersley Gorge in the Pilbara where ancient lifeforms have been found buried in layers of rock
在皮爾巴拉哈默斯利峽谷的岩石、紅土景觀,那裡古老的生命形式曾被發現埋藏在岩石層

Dr Adrian Brown, the paper’s author, told BBC News: ‘The Pilbara is very cool. It's part of the Earth that has managed to stay at the surface for around 3.5 billion years - so about three quarters of the history of the Earth.’
‘It allows us a little window into what was happening on the Earth at its very early stages.’
Now the team believes that the same 'hydrothermal' processes that preserved these markers of life on Earth could have taken place on Mars at Nili Fossae.
The rocks there are up to four billion years old, which means they have been around for three-quarters of the history of Mars.
Dr Brown explains: 'We suggest that the associated hydrothermal activity would have provided sufficient energy for biological activity on early Mars at Nili Fossae.
‘Furthermore, in the article we discuss the potential of the Archean volcanics of the East Pilbara region of Western Australia as an analog for the Nochian Nili Fossae on Mars.
‘They indicate that biomarkers or evidence of living organisms, if produced at Nili, could have been preserved, as they have been in the North Pole Dome region of the Pilbara craton.'
They report the findings in the journal Earth and Planetary Science Letters.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1298897/Mars-site-hold-buried-life-Do-planets-rocks-contain-evidence.html

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