Монологи на английском языке с текстом и переводом. №99. Тема: Была ли жизнь на Марсе?

As you know, at this time we do not have reason to believe that there is currently life on planets other than Earth. We do, however, think that it is possible that life did exist on other planets at some time. Let's talk today about our neighbor planet, Mars. We have already talked about the existence of water on Mars many years ago.
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The evidence for the existence of water comes from photographs that were taken from satellites that investigated Mars. These photographs showed cracks in the surface of the planet that indicate that rivers had once been there. Other pictures showed that there were probably also glaciers on the planet at one time.
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So what is this new information that we have about the possibility of life on the planet? I am sure you have all heard of meteors, right? In case you haven't, a meteor is a piece of rock that breaks off from a planet. The meteor then flies through space until it lands somewhere else. In this case, a meteor flew off of the Red Planet and landed on Earth.
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The scientists that found this meteor first had to determine that it came from Mars. Once they determined that the meteor was from Mars, they analyzed the meteor. The scientists found that the meteor contained some of the same chemical elements that are essential for life. That is, these same chemicals are seen in dead micro-organisms - that is, tiny animals - on Earth.
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They also found some minerals in the meteor that are also found in living organisms. Finally, they found some tiny "globules" that they believe may be tiny fossils of primitive bacteria. In short, they found some of the forms of what could have been a very old kind of bacteria. All of these things they found in the meteor.
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Is all of this hard evidence for life on Mars? Not exactly. The meteor may have become contaminated when it struck the Earth. Elements from Earth may have stuck into the meteor upon impact. The scientists may have also contaminated the meteor with bacteria from their own hands while transporting the meteor.
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This type of contamination, although common, could disprove any idea of early life on Mars. The elements in the meteor could really be bacteria from our own planet, the Earth, and not from Mars at all.
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