Exploring life on Mars is the motive of agencies around the world. And this week here is some interesting or should I say surprising news related to this, where Geneticist Christopher Mason, professor of Weil Cornell Medicine at Cornell University is claiming that rigorous measures of cleaning by NASA’s may have Originated Life on Mars. He wrote an article for this in detail for BBC.
Christopher Mason said that “if life detected on mars there could be a possibility that it is originated from NASA Labs.” He wrote in an article that NASA follows strict procedures for cleaning and assembling spacecraft in a sterilized room. This procedure restricts bacteria, viruses, fungi on machines that are sent to be on a mission. This process is also followed in Mars Rover.
“NASA and its engineers in the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) have precise and thorough protocols to minimize the number of organisms that might inadvertently hitchhike on a space mission. Internationally agreed standards guide how rigorous these protocols should be and NASA meets, and in some cases, exceeds them,” writes Mason.
Further, Mason wrote that “it is impossible to restrict any bacteria or organisms to be fully erased. There some microbes that can survive in the worst scenarios and they are found inside our bodies. And they can able to pass out from these strict cleaning and filtration processes.”
If these microbes can survive through these strict cleaning processes then they can also go to Mars in spacecraft. The two studies have done by Christopher Mason, which highlights some organisms survive the cleaning process and fast microbial species can grow while in space.
If these microbes reach Mars, then researchers referred to it as forwarding contamination, which can be bring something from one planet to another intentionally or unintentionally. There are ways which can tell the life Martian of origin which is hidden in between the DNA sequence.
Mason wrote that “if these microbes reach to new ecosystem then they can do great damages and can also lead to astronaut’s health.” He also added that “microbes on Mars are not all bad but they could also help in the future to survive there.”
NASA’s Mars Prservance Rover also made its way on 30 July 2020 and now hunting for life using an X-Ray device called PIXL. NASA said they are taking extra precautions to ensure that all samples are taken from Mars will be safe and further tests would be taken to identify the life on Mars.