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Life on Mars? ISRO begins countdown to find answers

Sep 12 2013, 11:26 IST
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SummaryA methane sensor, one of five payloads onboard the spacecraft, would look to detect presence of the gas.

Mars Orbiter Mission seeks to reveal if there is methane, considered a “precursor chemical” to life on the Red Planet, key officials behind the ambitious venture said Wednesday.

A methane sensor, one of five payloads onboard the spacecraft, would look to detect presence of the gas, MOM project director Arunan S said.

He said the sensor was aimed at understanding whether life existed on Mars or if it would have life in future. “Methane is the base for life on any planet.”

After a media preview of the Mars orbiter at ISRO Satellite Centre here, officials of the space agency indicated the aim was to launch the mission on October 21, weather permitting.

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