Life on Mars could have been discovered decades ago, but scientists choose to ignore the facts, Gilbert Levin, the principal investigator of a NASA mission that landed on Mars back in 1976 with the Viking Lander said.
The Labelled Release (LR) experiment mixed the Martian soil samples with liquid nutrients, with the idea that if there were any microorganisms in them, will consume the food and release carbon dioxide (CO2) gas.
“We were astonished to find that we immediately got gas coming out, and it continued for the full seven days of the experiment,” says Levin.
Initially, even Levin himself was doubtful that his research had proven life. At first, he thought that the ultraviolet beam arising at the surface of Mars was impacting the chemistry of the soil and allowing it to generate the carbon dioxide. So, he asked the spacecraft maneuvers to move a rock and collect a sample from underneath; however, the results remained identical.
A Scientist Thinks That Life On Mars Have Been Discovered 40 Years Ago
Another suggestion was that hydrogen peroxide from the Martian atmosphere and surface was the cause. But Levin then examined the data captured by a previous probe and found no track of the chemical.
“Over the 43 years, there have been at least 40 theories and experiments to explain away the LR life detection results,” says Levin, who notes that these suggestions do not have any ground when it comes to scientific inspection. In consequence, Levin now says that his research did find signs of life on Mars.
Other studies on Mars with the help of Habit, which is scheduled to land on the Red Planet onboard ESA’s Rosalind Franklin rover in 2020, will explore the planet for chemicals that could imply the presence of life.
Positive outcomes may change both ESA and NASA’s mind about launching a new variant of Levin’s LR research, which is able to identify active metabolisms.