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Life on Mars?

Aug 06, 1996

In 1996, NASA Administrator Daniel Goldin announced the discovery of potential evidence of a primitive life form on Mars. It came in the form of an alleged tiny fossil found on a meteorite in Antarctica, which was believed to have come from Mars. The fossil could be seen in only in a highly magnified image, as a tiny tube-like form, less than 1% of the width of a human hair. Perhaps, some believed, it represent a simple Martian organism that lived over 3.6 billion years ago. A huge impact 16 million years ago could have blasted the rock into space, and it landed in Earth's Antarctica only 13,000 years ago. The meteorite ALH 84001 also carried organic molecules and mineral features characteristic of biological activity. At best the evidence is inconclusive, and other scientists entirely dispute the interpretation.