The Sun is constantly emitting high-energy particles, especially during solar storms -- on Earth, we're protected from these potentially harmful rays by the magnetic field that surrounds our planet. On Mars, there's not much a field to speak of, so obviously the effects are increasingly detrimental.
"Like the theft of a few coins from a cash register every day, the loss becomes significant over time...We've seen that the atmospheric erosion increases significantly during solar storms, so we think the loss rate was much higher billions of years ago when the sun was young and more active,” Bruce Jakosky, MAVEN principal investigator, said in a previous statement.
So what does this mean for Earth? Should we be terrified that our own wet and warm planet will follow the same fate as that cold, only slightly wet, red planet? With conditions like these, is it even possible for us to colonize -- or potentially terraform -- Mars? Will we ever be able to go up there and see that space babe and/or endorse her candidacy in the Miss Universe pageant?
It's all still up in the air, as of right now.
Wil Fulton is a Staff Writer for Thrillist. He thinks fortune favors the bold. And also the rich. Follow him @wilfulton
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