Will Perseverance find the origin of methane on Mars?
As a planet close to and similar to Earth, Mars has long been of interest to researchers. Scientists once thought that there could be life on it. Gradually, humanity sent many automatic probes to Mars that worked both in its orbit and on its surface. Thanks to this fact, we have very specific information about Mars and especially about its chemical composition. When the biogenic gas methane was detected on Mars, a heated debate erupted among scientists about what this fact might mean. Because methane is known from Earth as a product of animal origin, its possible source was sought. It was thought of as a possible product of volcanic activity but in the secret of the soul, scientists hoped that Martian methane could also signal life – albeit probably on a microscopic level. Now the rover Perseverance is searching for its origin and humanity is waiting for more news. We talked to the professor, the important physical chemist prof. RNDr. Svatopluk Civiš, DSc., from the J. Heyrovský Institute of Physical Chemistry of the CAS.
The interview is available here.