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Meteorite suggests existence of life on Mars

Date: 18 January 2022 Tags: Space


A new scientific study has managed to give explanation of some of the organic compounds found on meteorite called (ALH) 84001.



Earlier it was believed that these organic compounds were proof of ancient, primitive life on Mars.



  • The meteorite ALH 84001 arrived on Earth in 1984 from Mars. Among many assumptions, it was believed that compounds could have come from volcanic activity, impact events on Mars or hydrological exposure.

  • Eventhough no material from Mars has been analyzed till now, the meteorite certainly came from Mars as it had the presence of traces of certain gases that can only occur in Mars.


Study on organic compounds

  • The study says that the organic compounds found in the meteorite were a result of the interactions between water and rocks that occurred on Mars. It was similar to that of Earth.

  • This reaction between water and rock forms various organic compounds from which life could have evolved.


ALH 84001 meteorite

  • The meteorite was discovered at the Far Western Icefield of Allan Hills in Antarctica by a US meteorite hunting expedition group.

  • It was the most unusual rock collected. The rock was shaped like a rounded brick or a large potato.

  • The outer layer was covered with black glass (like it was dipped in tar). It is known as fusion crust and forms on all meteorites when they burn through the Earth’s atmosphere. 



Meteorite is a space object that enters the Earth’s atmosphere and hits the ground. It is believed that they may contain clues about the beginning of the solar system.