NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has snapped pictures of what appears to be flowing liquid water on the surface of the red planet. The pictures, which were taken over the past five years, show what look like seasonal patterns of flow, in which a spring surge trickles down the side of the crater throughout the summer, then dries up in winter. Though frozen water has been found on Mars, near the polar ice caps, liquid water is different. The presence of liquid water on the Martian surface would open the possibility of taking samples and finding living microbes. NASA may eventually be able to bring home and study the first known evidence of extraterrestrial life.
Clara Moskowitz is a senior writer for Space.com, recently covered the news of water on Mars.