There may just be a simple reason why Mars doesn't have surface water

A new study has found that the size of a planet may be a determing factor in whether the planet will be able to contain water.

1 minute & 5 seconds read time

A team of researchers have published a new study that provides evidence that the size of a planet may be a determining factor in whether it will be able to contain water for extended periods of time.

There may just be a simple reason why Mars doesn't have surface water 01

The new study has been published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academies of Sciences and provides evidence that the size of a planet impacts habitabilty. The researchers looked at 20 meteorites that are representative of Mars' overall composition and measured the amount of potassium (K) isotopes that are within them.

Using K as a tracer for more "volatile" elements and compounds, the researchers were able to find correlated evidence that suggests that smaller planets lose lots of water during formation and that global magnetic fields shut down, which eventually causes the atmosphere to thin. Mars is an example of this.

According to Klaus Mezger, of the Center for Space and Habitability at the University of Bern in Switzerland and co-author on the study, "This study emphasizes that there is a very limited size range for planets to have just enough but not too much water to develop a habitable surface environment." Adding, "These results will guide astronomers in their search for habitable exoplanets in other solar systems."

For a more detailed explanation into how the researchers discovered this evidence, check out this link here.

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Jak joined the TweakTown team in 2017 and has since reviewed 100s of new tech products and kept us informed daily on the latest science, space, and artificial intelligence news. Jak's love for science, space, and technology, and, more specifically, PC gaming, began at 10 years old. It was the day his dad showed him how to play Age of Empires on an old Compaq PC. Ever since that day, Jak fell in love with games and the progression of the technology industry in all its forms. Instead of typical FPS, Jak holds a very special spot in his heart for RTS games.

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