Mars rock samples could bring extraterrestrial virus to Earth, experts warn

Just as The Earth is not well prepared to face a new coronavirus pandemic, one researcher is already worried about viruses coming from outside the earth. Scott Hubbard, a former DIRECTOR of Ames, said future rock samples brought back from Mars would require rigorous checks and isolation, as would astronauts returning from the ground.

“I’ve heard from some of my colleagues in the field of human space that in the current environment, the public may be more worried about bringing back foreign microbes, viruses, or pollutants from the outside world,” Hubbard told the Stanford News. “

Mars rock samples could bring extraterrestrial virus to Earth, experts warn

He believes that the rock samples brought back by the Perseverance probe must be isolated and treated like Ebola virus until proven safe.

“They also need to ‘bake at high temperatures’ before they can be tested for safety,” Hubbard said.

It is reported that NASA will launch the Perseverance unmanned probe on July 17, 2020.

In March, Fox News reported that the outbreak had not yet affected the probe’s preparations for launch, and that work was still on track.

“As for humans, Apollo astronauts were also quarantined during the first few missions to make sure they showed no signs of illness, ” Hubbard explained. “

“Once the moon is found not to be a danger, the quarantine is lifted. There is no doubt that humans returning from Mars will follow the same procedure. “

In 1969, Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins were quarantined for three weeks after returning to Earth on their first manned mission to the moon. Aldrin recently told on social media about his experiences during his isolation.

‘The three of us are just normal astronauts, and whether we want to be isolated depends on the health of a group of rats with us,’ Collins told Fox News in 2019.

“The three of us went to the moon — it was either a national, an international victory, or a total disaster, and the result depended on the health of the mice we had,” Collins said. “

“If the mice survive, everything will be fine.” He added.

It is understood that the “Persistence” rover in addition to other missions, will also try to detect the existence of fossil evidence of extraterrestrial life.

Once the rover lands on Mars, it will join the still-running Curiosity rover and the defunct Opportunity rover.

Unlike Curiosity and Opportunity, THE PERSEVERance will carry the first helicopter capable of flying an alien, NASA said.

In the long run, NASA’s goal is to launch a Mars manned spacecraft in the 1930s to complete a Mars exploration mission.