castanyes blaves

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I saw the movie and it didn't end well...

Chilean extremophile bacteria thrive in Mars-like conditions - Ars Technica
The Atacama desert lies on the western edge of South America, covering much of northern Chile and parts of Argentina. It is the closest one can get to Mars while remaining grounded on Earth. High atop the Socompa volcano on the Eastern edge of the Atacama desert, the atmosphere is thin, the ultraviolet radiation is intense, and the climate is dry. Nevertheless, the improbable has been found: life. Near the rim of the 19,850-foot-high Socompa volcano, researchers from the University of Colorado at Boulder's Alpine Microbial Observatory found a thriving, complex microbial community that appears to be supported by gases emanating from volcanic vents around the rim.

The Atacama desert is the driest place on Earth. Weather stations in the Antofagasta region of Chile average one millimeter of precipitation per year, and a number of weather stations in the Atacama have never recorded rainfall throughout their entire operational life. The extreme climate there is often compared to the surface of Mars. It is believed to be so similar that a Science article, published in 2003, used it in an attempt to re-create the experiments that Viking One and Two performed on the Martian surface. It is also a proving ground for equipment that NASA plans to send to Mars one day. Given the geologic similarities, the discovery of life in such a hostile place suggests that life could exist elsewhere as well.


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