But the water discovery on the Martian surface triggered new questions among the scientists-How can humans use the Martian water? The good news is that there is water on Mars and the not-so-good news is that it is salty.
The red planet is very cold; water that isn't frozen is nearly certainly full of salt from the Martian soil, which lowers its freezing temperature.
They have devised an electric system to break apart the salty water to its constituent molecules; oxygen and hydrogen. When a rocket requires the largest version to produce liquid-oxygen fuel, MOXIE is measured to produce about the amount of oxygen an active person needs to breathe.
Scientists from Washington University in St. Louis have unveiled a system which promises to transform Mars' salty water into oxygen and fuel.
Research conducted by Ramani's team has been included in the journal Proceedings of National Academy of Science (PNAS). After all, it performed a simulation of the Martian atmosphere at -33 degrees Fahrenheit in testing its brine electrolysis device.
Vijay Ramani from WU's Center for Solar Energy and Energy Storage describes that their Martian brine electrolyzer invention could "radically change the logistical calculus of missions to Mars and beyond". This technology is equally useful on Earth where the ocean is a viable source of oxygen and fuel (hydrogen).
In years ahead, space agencies - both private and public - aim to send manned missions to Mars and even try to live there temporarily. From that time, the European Space Agency's Mars Express has detected a number of underground ponds of water that remain in a liquid state due to the presence of magnesium perchlorate-salt.
Even if Mars had a warm and wet climate 4 billion years ago, with the loss of the magnetic field, atmospheric thinning and subsequent drop in global temperatures over time, liquid water may have been stable only at great depths, the researchers found. NASA's Perseverance rover is en-route to Mars now, carrying instruments that will use high-temperature electrolysis.
But the Mars Oxygen In-Situ Resource Utilization Experiment (MOXIE) will be generating only oxygen, from the carbon dioxide in the Martian atmosphere. It also has hydrogen, which could be used to fuel astronauts' trip home.
He also mentioned various components of the Martian brine electrolyzer, such as the ruthenate pyrochlore anode, which was created through the concurrence of the platinum element to the carbon cathode.
The meticulous design and exclusive anode enable the system to work without the need for heating or refining the water source.
Therefore, life, if it ever originated on Mars, may have followed liquid water to progressively greater depths, they said.
'They prevent the water from freezing and also improve the performance of the electrolyzer system by lowering the electrical resistance'.
Sankarasubramanian is a research scientist in Ramani's group.