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Science. 2004 Dec 3;306(5702):1758-61. Epub 2004 Oct 28.

Detection of methane in the atmosphere of Mars.

Author information

1
Istituto di Fisica dello Spazio Interplanetario INAF-IFSI, Via del Fosso del Cavaliere 100, 00133 Rome, Italy. formisan@nike.ifsi.rm.cnr.it

Abstract

We report a detection of methane in the martian atmosphere by the Planetary Fourier Spectrometer onboard the Mars Express spacecraft. The global average methane mixing ratio is found to be 10 +/- 5 parts per billion by volume (ppbv). However, the mixing ratio varies between 0 and 30 ppbv over the planet. The source of methane could be either biogenic or nonbiogenic, including past or present subsurface microorganisms, hydrothermal activity, or cometary impacts.

PMID:
15514118
DOI:
10.1126/science.1101732
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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