Is There Life on Mars? Essay

2256 Words May 14th, 2007 10 Pages
IS THERE LIFE ON MARS? If you have a chance to go to a country side where you may have a clear view of the sky at night, you probably will discover a red star. That is probably Mars. With its bright and reddish color, Mars stands out for and easily noticed since the ancient times (Discovery). In 1877, astronomer Giovanni Schiaparelli discovered several crisscrossing lines on Mars that he believed to be the canals of water (Discovery). Go along with the hypothesis that life existed on Mars, several processes has been made to prove hypothesis. However, is there really lives on Mars or people are just wasting their times and money to prove the thing that never exists?

Mars is a one of five planets that can be seen from Earth without
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Size comparison of terrestrial planets (left to right):
Mercury, Venus, Earth, and Mars

As the second closest planet to Earth after the Moon, Mars is the target of several explorations of human in space traveling. Several attempts have been made by NASA, the world's leader of any space program and aerospace research since the year 1960 (NASA). Sadly, most of them ended up as terrible failures. Until 1964, the Marine 4 spacecraft has finally reached Mars and transmitted to Earth with the first 21 images of Mars (Hamilton). Mariner 4 gave scientists their first glimpse of Mars at close range. However, these images only covered about 1% of the Mars' total surface. It has given out close up images of this Red Planet (Hamilton). These pictures indicated that Mars is nothing but a vast, barren wasteland of craters strewn about a rust-colored carpet of sand, without rivers, ocean or any kind of life (Hamilton). The evidences proved that the canals-looking line observed by Giovanni Schiaparelli is just an optical illusion (Hamilton).

Mars' northern ice cap.

In 1971, Mariner 9 visited Mars and sent back images of enormous volcanoes and canyons. It discovered Olympus Mons, the highest mountain in the solar system (Mars Wikipedia). The spacecraft also found evidence that water once flowed on Mars. However, there were still no sightings of Schiaparelli's famous canals (Life).

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