(Daily Mail) NASA may have discovered alien life on Mars 50 years ago when it first put its two Viking landers on the Red Planet, but the agency may have also accidentally killed it.
The claims were made by Dirk Schulze-Makuch from the Technical University Berlin, who believes an experiment carried out in the 1970s that added water to the soil drowned any life lurking in the Martian landscape.
The test, known as the Viking Labeled Release experiment, initially returned positive for metabolism, but a related investigation found no trace of organic material.
Schulze-Makuch believes the water containing a nutrient solution in the soil may have been too much liquid 'and [any life] died off after a while.'
While the theories may sound outlandish to some, this is the case for microbes living inside salt rocks in the Atacama, which has a similar landscape to Mars, that do not need rain to survive - and too much water would eradicate them.
The two landers in NASA's Viking mission touched down on Mars on July 20, 1976 (Viking 1) and September 3, 1976 (Viking 2).