Chief scientist for NASA Jim Green predicts that within the next two years the space agency and its European partners will find definitive proof of alien life on Mars, says: “We’re close”.
He also says mankind is not “prepared for the results” of what that reality will mean.
Next year, NASA’s Mars 2020 mission will be the first to find evidence of Martian life, according to NASA physicist and chief scientist Jim Green.
The NASA Mars 2020 mission launches somewhere between July 17 and August 5, 2020. NASA is sending the latest generation of robotic explorers which build on the previous successes of the Spirit, Opportunity and Curiosity rovers.
However, NASA’s rover will not reach the red planet until around February 2021.
At the same time, the European Space Agency’s (ESA) is also sending its own ExoMars rover that will drill into the Martian surface down to a depth of approximately 6.5 feet below.
During an interview with the Express, Green talked about the gravity of such a monumental discovery as finding indisputable evidence of life on Mars.
“It will be revolutionary,” Green said regarding finding proof of Martian life forms.
“It’s like when Copernicus stated ‘no we go around the Sun’,” Green continued. “It will start a whole new line of thinking.”
Naturally, such a discovery is going to challenge a variety of beliefs – including those of various religions.
“I don’t think we’re prepared for the results,” Green said, “we’re not.”
The physicist also understands that what NASA and the ESA find could literally shake the worldview of many people around the globe.
“I’ve been worried about that because I think we’re close to finding it and making some announcements,” Green added.
Today, Mars is a barren desert and devoid of any life. However, scientists say that the red planet once had a thick, humid atmosphere.
Somewhere along the way, the planet lost its magnetosphere and the result was a stripping away of this lush atmosphere due to solar radiation.
“The bottom line is, where there is water there is life,” Green says. He believes that in “extreme environments,” like that on Mars, microbial life “moves into rocks.”
“We have gone in nuclear cesspools, places where you’d think nothing could survive,” Green says, “we go two miles deep into the Earth and if they were weeping with water they were full of life.”
Green isn’t the only one at NASA who believes life on Mars will be found.
NASA’s former chief Ellen Stefan also believes that finding life on Mars is simply a matter of digging deep enough and long enough.
NASA will employ a new technique for gathering soil and rock samples. The process involves a technique called “sample caching.”
NASA’s Mars 2020 rover will collect samples of rock and soil and store them inside protective tubes. These tubes will be left behind on Mars for future missions to retrieve.
According to NASA, this mission will be the first to you such a technique and demonstrate the ability to retrieve samples in this manner.