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June 14 2013

Toxic Mars: Astronauts Must Deal with Perchlorate on the Red Planet


The pervading carpet of perchlorate chemicals found on Mars may boost the chances that microbial life exists on the Red Planet but perchlorates are also perilous to the health of future crews destined to explore that way-off world.

Perchlorates are reactive chemicals first detected in arctic Martian soil by NASA's Phoenix lander that plopped down on Mars over five years ago in May 2008.

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