Ottawa, Scientists at Canada’s York University have found a link between Mars’ rocky surface and methane in the planet’s atmosphere, according to the Canada Television Network (CTV) .
In the new study, researchers developed a computer model of the movement of methane through the subsurface and compared how much methane found its way into the atmosphere to the amount measured by Curiosity.
Associate professor at the University’s department of earth and space science and engineering, John Moores, told the agency that a process in the planet’s subsurface controls how much methane is released into the atmosphere above Gale Grater, the location where NASA’s Curiosity rover landed.
“We are also able to explain a likely mechanism for producing the seasonal cycle in methane levels that the Curiosity rover has recorded,” Moores said, adding that previous research has shown that the amount of methane varies from season to season at Gale Crater.
There is more methane in the atmosphere when it is warmer and less when it is cooler.
“We expect these processes to operate on Mars because they certainly happen on the Earth, so it’s not surprising,” the professor explained.
Source: Jordan News Agency