Scientists have not found any evidence on the surface of Mars that meets the strict criteria to conclusively claim the existence of life there, despite years of research.
However, according to a claim by one scientist, alien life may have actually been found on Mars 50 years ago, but NASA accidentally destroyed the evidence, as reported by “Russia Today.”
Dirk Schulze-Makuch, from the Technical University of Berlin, believes that an experiment conducted in the 1970s involving adding water to Martian soil could have drowned any potential life hidden in the Martian terrain.
The test, known as the Viking Labeled Release experiment, was one of three biological experiments conducted by the “Viking” lander on Mars in 1976.
The experiment was designed to detect microscopic life in Martian soil by measuring the release of radiolabeled carbon dioxide from a sample of soil mixed with a nutrient solution.
The theory was that if there was life on Mars, the microorganisms would have consumed the nutrients and released radiolabeled carbon as a gas.
Schulze-Makuch believes that the water containing the nutrient solution in the soil might have been more liquid than necessary, causing “any life to die after a while.”
NASA’s “Viking” landers landed on the surface of Mars on July 20 and September 3, 1976. An investigation was conducted at the landing sites of both “Viking 1” and “Viking 2,” and in both sites, the experiment yielded positive results, indicating the release of 14CO2 from soil samples.
However, the interpretation of these results is controversial, as some scientists believe the positive results were due to the presence of microscopic life in Martian soil, while others believe the results were due to non-biological processes, such as oxidation of organic compounds by Martian soil.