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 Life on Mars? Study Showing Martian Soil Kills Bacteria Dims Hopes

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PostSubject: Life on Mars? Study Showing Martian Soil Kills Bacteria Dims Hopes   Sat Jul 08, 2017 3:43 am

Recent images and other compelling evidence that water once flowed on Mars have generated hope of finding microbial life there. That hope has been dealt a blow by a new study showing the soil surface is toxic to bacteria. 
Astrobiologists—researchers who search for microbial life elsewhere in the universe—have known for some time that the surface of Mars contains perchlorates, or salt minerals. The compounds are stable at room temperature but become activated at high heat. On Earth, perchlorate is used to produce rocket fuel and fireworks. The Atacama desert, in Chile, contains naturally occurring perchlorate, which has been mined for use in nitrate-based fertilizers.



http://www.newsweek.com/life-mars-study-showing-martian-soil-kills-bacteria-dims-hopes-633382
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