Friday Poll: Will the Mars rover find signs of life?

Now that it has landed safely, the Mars rover is getting down to business, including looking for signs of previous life. What do you think Curiosity will uncover?

Mars dunes
Is that a cockroach scurrying around in the distance? NASA

The 1976 Viking mission to Mars uncovered some tantalizing, and much-debated, evidence of possible previous life on the big, red planet. Now we have the Curiosity rover over there to really sort things out.

Among other adventures, Curiosity is looking for organic molecules. The discovery of organic compounds could indicate previous life on Mars, though that life isn't likely to look like a toothy, long-headed alien that wants to hug your face.

While we wait for the rover to wander around and report back on its findings over the course of its mission, we have plenty of time to speculate about what it might find.

Curiosity might dig up organic molecules. If it finds complex carbon compounds, then we could be looking at pretty good indicators of previous life on the planet. Perhaps the rover won't uncover anything of note.

Maybe we'll get lucky and the rover cameras will capture a big-eyed alien out for a morning stroll on the dunes.

Put on your NASA hat and speculate. Do you think the Mars rover will find signs of life, past or present? Vote in our poll and share your reasoning in the comments.

 

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