One reason we may not have discovered the definitive answer to the question of whether there is life on Mars is because we have not used the right TOOLS to detect it. But now NASA is getting ready to send a life-detection tool to Mars that is 1,000 times more sensitive than previous instruments. Astronomer Jeffrey Bada says, "The bottom line is that if life is out there, the high-tech tools of chemistry will find it sooner or later. It certainly is starting to look like there may be something alive out there somewhere, with Mars being the most accessible place to search."
One forthcoming unmanned mission is the new Mars Science Laboratory rover, called Curiosity, scheduled for launch in November. The $2.5 billion nuclear-powered machine will land on Mars’ surface with a suite of 10 science instruments to try to determine if conditions are favorable for life. Another key Mars mission is scheduled for 2016. Called the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter, it will carry five science instruments and will study gases in Mars’ atmosphere, including methane, for evidence of biological or geological activity. It is a joint mission of the European Space Agency and NASA. According to Bada, "One reason that the questions linger is that they haven’t had the right instruments. We have the instruments now or are in the process of developing and refining them. The challenge is getting them onboard future spacecraft, knowing what kinds of compounds to look for and knowing exactly where to look."
NASA sees movies and TV shows about space as a way to keep public interest in its programs, so the agency often consults on Hollywood projects. But it has pulled back from "Apollo 18," because its premise makes them nervous. It's this: "In 1972, the United States sent two astronauts on a secret mission to the moon. Despite decades of denial by NASA and the Department of Defense, classified footage of the mission was leaked to the media." The problem is, it's being filmed in documentary style.
In the September 1st edition of the Los Angeles Times, Rebecca Keegan quotes NASA's Bert Ulrich as saying, "Apollo 18 is not a documentary. The film is a work of fiction, and we always knew that. We were minimally involved with this picture. The idea of portraying the Apollo 18 mission as authentic is simply a marketing ploy." Perhaps if the government was a bit more honest with us about what's really going on (NOTE: Subscribers can still listen to this show), movie goers wouldn't feel the NEED to flock to these films.
The BEST tool to discover whether there is life on Mars would be human beings to stop making films about space and go there and see for themselves, but there's a REASON that hasn't happened yet: In 1998, a mysterious man that Whitley Strieber calls the Master of the Key burst into his hotel room in Toronto and told him all kinds of things he didn't know--but when he checked them out later, he found out they were TRUE, and the new edition of The Key has a foreword that talks about how many of his statements later turned out to be true, is in bookstores NOW.
One of the few things that Whitley could NOT check out was MOTKE's provocative statement that we are stuck on this planet because the parents of the child who would have given us the ability to travel into space was killed in the holocaust!