Report

Low Upper Limit to Methane Abundance on Mars

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Science  18 Oct 2013:
Vol. 342, Issue 6156, pp. 355-357
DOI: 10.1126/science.1242902

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No Methane to Be Found

On Earth, atmospheric methane is mostly produced biologically. Atmospheric methane has also been detected on Mars, but these reports have been controversial. Based on data from the Sample Analysis at Mars instrument suite on the Curiosity rover, which arrived at the surface of Mars in August 2012, Webster et al. (p. 355, published online 19 September) report no methane, with an upper limit of only 1.3 parts per billion by volume, about 6 times lower than previous measurements.

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