If life exists on Mars, don't rely on sample return missions to find it, scientists say

While the demand continues to bring bits and pieces of Mars back to Earth for extensive studies, scientists are also devising tools and technologies that can be sent to the Red Planet for field investigations of life. Could these low-cost methods usurp the early need for samples taken directly from Mars?

This choice brings to mind the comment of Marcel Proust, the French novelist, literary critic, and essayist who wrote the novel. In search of lost time“The true voyage of discovery is not to seek new landscapes, but to have new eyes.” In order to discover past life on Mars, a sample return program would be best, but if we want to discover current life on the Red Planet, doing so with instruments on Mars is the way to go.

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