“When you put it all together, there are centuries, if not millennia, of individual human investment in this thing,” Steltzner said. “So it’s a big deal, on a personal level, for all of us.” When I asked how he felt, he frowned. “I’m rationally confident and emotionally terrified,” he said. “We think we’ve crushed this fucker. But Mars, more often than not, has something waiting for us.”
lstanley: If life ever existed on Mars, he believes, it was most likely microscopic and lived more than three and a half billion years ago. But even on Earth, fossils that old are vanishingly rare. “You can count them on one hand,” Grotzinger says. “Five locations. You can waste time looking at hundreds of thousands of rocks and not find anything.”
That seems pretty important to understand.
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