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Life on Mars?

Chemistry Capstone

Melba Flores

on 20 June 2013

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Transcript of Life on Mars?

photo credit Nasa / Goddard Space Flight Center / Reto Stöckli
Features/Basic Facts
*Fourth from the Sun
*Named after the Roman God
*Believed to have life
(darks spots and lines)
*Barren with frequent and
severe dust storms
*No liquid H2O, limited oxygen
*Temperatures: -29 to -84 Celsius
Chemical Test 1: Mass Spectometer
Chemical Test 2: Gas Exchange
Chemical Test 3 and Chemical Test 4:
Label Release and Pyrolytic Release
Conclusion: May of 2008
Hsu, Tom. "Evidence For The Life on Mars." A Natural Approach to Chemistry. 4th ed. Ronkonkoma, NY: Lab-Aids, 2010. 685. Print.
"Mars." Astronomy & Space: From the Big Bang to the Big Crunch. Gale, 2011. Science In Context. Web. 18 June 2013.
"Gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer." World of Forensic Science. Ed. K. Lee Lerner and Brenda Wilmoth Lerner. Detroit: Gale, 2006. Science In Context. Web. 18 June 2013.
"Gas Exchange." Biology. Ed. Richard Robinson. New York: Macmillan Reference USA, 2009. Science In Context. Web. 18 June 2013.
Chiesl, Thomas N., et al. "Analysis of carbonaceous biomarkers with the Mars Organic Analyzer microchip capillary electrophoresis system: carboxylic acids." Astrobiology 11.6 (2011): 519+. Science In Context. Web. 18 June 2013.
By: Melba Flores
The Possible
Life on Mars

The Viking Mission in 1976
Past Encounters...
Soviet Union:
United States:
*1962: Mars 1
(Radio Contact)

*1972: Mars 2+3
(Radio Contact)

*Sent More Spacecraft:
One Successful Transmission

*Phobos program failed
*1965: Mariner 4
-22 pictures
-CO2 Atmosphere
- less than 1%

*1969: Mariner 6+7
-Structure and compostion
-Polar caps=haze, dry ice, and clouds

*1971: Mariner 9
-Dust Storm
-Two Moons
-Northern and
Southern Hemisphere

*Both Vikinigs landed on opposite sides of the planet

*Reddish boulder and sky inticated the presence of iron oxide

Atmosphere Composition:
*Carbon dioxide: 95.32 percent
*Nitrogen: 2.7 percent
*Argon: 1.6 percent
*Oxygen: 0.13 percent
*Carbon monoxide: 0.08 percent
***Also, minor amounts of: water, nitrogen moxide, neon, hydrogen-deuterium-oxygen, krypton and xenon

****Four Chemical Tests on Maritian Soil to see if there was any past or present life on Mars!****
The Ion Source
The Mass Analyzer
The Detector
*The sample is attacked by electrons generated by a heated filament

*The elements of the sample are created into ions

*Cautions and neutral are deflecte
-gas: leaks in the ion sorce
-liquid/solids: pushed away by a repeller plate

*ions don't last long, so atomic pressure is 778 torr
*Sorts the ions by mass-to-charge ratio
*Base peak
-A vertical graph is drawn m/z
-The abundance of the ion radiates a signal that helps organize the proportion of the element in each ion
-The abundance is shown by the height of the bar
*Measures the quantity of the indicator
*Measures and identifies the abundances of each ion:
-patterns in fragmentation
- already identified
Masses of molecules
*Conatains less CO2than lifeless lunar soil (Apollo program)
*One morning frost was discovered on the sides of a trench that the lander previously

*Found several salts and perchlorate
-percolates are found naturally on Earth in Chile's hyper-acid Atacama Desert
Phoniex Mission
Renew Interest:
Still Debatable!
Label Release:

Added a drop of dilute aqueous solution tagged with a radioactive 14C
Pyroltic Release:
*Expose to light and CO2

*Incubation of sample
-Heating the
label release
-Looking for photosynthesis
*Diffusion Follows Fick's Law
-Surface Area
-Distance between the molecules
-Concentration Gradient
-Dissolve in a fluid
-Moist Environment
*Martian Soil
-Treated with a liquid complex of organic and inorganic nutirents
*Looked for O2, CO2, h2, and CH4 and N2
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