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Water has probably not disappeared into space



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Once there was huge amounts of water on Mars. Until now it was considered certain that the cool water has disappeared into space. Now a NASA study throws this theory overboard. There was once so much water on Mars that the surface of the red planet was covered by an ocean between 100 and 1,500 meters deep – half the size of the Atlantic Ocean on Earth. But where did all that water go? Today the surface of Mars looks more like a huge rubble desert . So far, scientists have assumed that Mars has lost its water to space. A new study by NASA is now overturning this certainty.

According to a NASA research team that has evaluated various data collected from and on Mars, 30 to 99 percent of the water is likely to be bound in minerals in the planet’s crust. So far, researchers have assumed that the water disappeared into space because of the low gravity on Mars. However, a chemical analysis of the current surface of Mars and its atmosphere has shown that the proportion of deuterium would then have to be much higher.

Deuterium is a heavier form of hydrogen that, due to its mass, cannot escape into the upper atmosphere and space as easily as lighter hydrogen. If such large amounts of water had actually “flowed” from Mars into space, as previously assumed, then the researchers would have had to prove a corresponding proportion, as the future zone writes . But that was not the case.