Scientists have recently discovered an impressive characteristic in the Martian soil. It has been reported that the Red Planet’s soil contains traces of nitrogen. In addition to this, a new study has revealed that the Alan Hills meteorite contains carbon-rich molecules in combination with nitrogen particles, the compound that was responsible for the development of life on Earth.
Back in 1984, the Allan Hills sample was discovered in Antarctica. It is known as one of the biggest Meteorites that originate from Mars. Previous research has shown that the sample contains signs of microbial fossils. This discovery came as a controversy at first, being for the first time that researchers had their hands on Martian life.
A couple of billions of years ago, the Red Planet lost its atmosphere, its surface being exposed to an impressive amount of cosmic radiation and attacks from interstellar objects. In some cases, the blasts are so powerful, that pieces of the Martial land are ejected into the outer space, which eventually reaches the Earth’s atmosphere.
The Alan Hills could have arrived on our land more than 13,000 years ago, while the age of this piece of rock is around 4 billion years old, being the oldest Martian meteorite to be found. Even though at the moment, Mars seems to be an inhospitable environment, billions of years ago, it was a lush and wet world. Fortunately, more and more discoveries are showing that the Red Planet used to be a welcoming environment for organic molecules.
The Allan Hills meteorite is one of the examples, although its presence does not necessarily account for the existence of life forms on Mars. However, this piece of evidence shows promising results and supports this theory, given its specific nitrogen composition. Bearing in mind that life on our planet hangs on the presence of nitrogen, the Martian rock may tell the story of extinct life on Mars.