• Question: Do you think there will be any new elements found on Mars?

    Asked by CJ to Beth on 12 Oct 2015.
    • Photo: Beth Healey

      Beth Healey answered on 12 Oct 2015:

      Hi, again! Just a reminder, this is Adrianos from Greece, I am Beth’s predecessor as a research doctor for the European Space Agency in Antarctica and I am filling in for her today due to connectivity problems over there.

      I don’t think it’s probable that we find any new elements on Mars. The reason i believe this is that today scientists have a fair understanding of our solar system and the components that form it. They have conducted plenty of observations to deduce which are the elements and substances that make up the planets (one of these is spectroscopy). What is more, the models they run on the elements’ formation and their concentration in the solar system seem to be well-based and consistent.

      That is not to say that Mars will not be full of surprises! I think that every place humans explore has something new to offer, to add to our knowledge. We always find things that we did not expect and so expand our horizons. Could we find a new element? I would not rule it out completely but i would say it’s very improbable – on the contrary i am certain we will find many surprises in other domains.