Boron, a chemical signature of evaporated water is detected in Mars for the first time!
Development after development surpasses previous studies of water on Mars. Now scientists have recently detected the presence of boron in the red planet.
This discovery adds strongly to the evidence that the presence of water ran deeper in Mars than we previously thought which ultimately leads to the thought that the planet may have hosted life.
Boron is a chemical signature of evaporated water and are mined industrially as evaporites here on Earth. It is one of those chemicals found in tiny amounts across the Solar System including Earth.
The Curiosity rover has found boron on the surface of Mars, up the slopes of Mount Sharp, within the Gale Crater.
"No prior mission to Mars has found boron," according to Patrick Gasda, one of the researchers from the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico.
Gasda added that the location in Mars where boron was dissolved in underground would have been warm and conducive for microbial life
to thrive in.
"If the boron that we found in calcium sulfate mineral veins on Mars is similar to what we see on Earth, it would indicate that the groundwater of ancient Mars that formed these veins would have been 0-60 degrees Celsius [32-140 degrees Fahrenheit] and neutral-to-alkaline pH."
Boron deposits on Earth are chemically contaminated which means that the uncombined boron is not naturally found on our planet.
The discovery of boron in Mars is still open to a debate on how it must have gotten to the Gale Lake. It must have been that the dried out lake created the mineral deposits and that the materials of this surface layer may had been carried by groundwater down into the rock fissures. Or the other possibility that the chemical change of the underlying elements and the groundwater affected the transport of boron in the subsurface.
Mars Curiosity Rover
Prior to the discovery of boron and other related discoveries of possible signs of water, NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter also discovered strange funnels on crater lakes
that could have been frozen ice as potential areas for life formation.
See: NASA Space Heist Mission: Steal from Asteroid, Give to Moon