Oceans on Mars

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – Oceans on Mars may sound like science fiction, but new data from NASA shows that billions of years ago, it was a scientific fact.

The agency says the red planet was once blue.

Mars 2015, a planet of rock and red dust.

But apparently it wasn’t always like this.

The ridges seen in the martian surface hint that water once flowed here, but just how much was a mystery until now.

According to new research from NASA, This was Mars around four and a half billion years ago.

A planet with a vast ocean covering nearly 20 percent of its surface and as deep as the Mediterranean.

Mapping the waters of Mars required data from the red planet itself and even some data from right here on Earth.

It’s a collection of knowledge of meteorological records, spacecraft and ground based observations that have allowed us to get a very nice picture of how water evolved on the planet.

Key to the discovery were measurements of this rare form of water.

It contains a heavier form of Hydrogen, which prevents the water from leaving the martian atmosphere and being blown into space.

High concentrations of it found at the martian poles allowed scientists to calculate how much more water the planet once had.

Current estimates show that only 13 percent of the original martian water remains on the planet, with most stored as polar ice caps.

The rest, like much of Mars’ atmosphere was slowly lost.

As well as adding a splash of blue to the red planet.

This new data bolsters the idea that Mars may once have teamed with life.

And ultimately we can conclude this idea of ocean covering 20 percent of the planet which opens the idea of habitability and the evolution of life on the planet.

NASA’s next martian rover mission is due to launch in 2020.

It may help solve even more of the many mysteries the planet still holds.

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