Published: 06th August 2021
#ThrowbackToday: Once upon a time, aeons and aeons ago on Mars
In today's #TBT, we tell you about that one time back in 1984 that scientists found a meteorite that hailed straight from Mars and contained evidence that life existed on the planet once upon a time
On December 27, 1984, at Far Western Icefield of Allan Hills in Antarctica, ALH84001, a part of a bigger ancient Martian meteorite, was found by American meteorite hunters. On August 7, 1996, NASA announced that this very meteorite could contain evidence of life on Mars. The discovery and subsequent announcement may have taken a lot of time, but once it was announced, it created a huge uproar not only in the scientific community but the whole wide world. This life, they claimed, could date as far back as four million years.
Basically, upon scanning ALH84001 under the electron microscope fossils of bacteria-like lifeforms was found, among other evidence, which led NASA to make the ground-breaking albeit controversial announcement and even compelled the then President of the US Bill Clinton to make an announcement regarding it on TV. Immediately, it was touted as the biggest discovery made by mankind though many continued to argue that there was just not enough substantial evidence that the meteorite, which fell on Earth approximately 13,000 years ago, indeed was proof that life existed on Mars once upon a time. It is yet to gain wide acceptance, but would it be a stretch of the imagination to say that life could have once existed on the red planet?