Hard to say
Tue Nov 29, 2016 6:13am

Here are the definitive excerpts from the original article:

"Nevertheless, the absence of unequivocal evidence for life on Mars favours an abiotic origin by default. We note however, that none of the available observations actually precludes a biogenic origin for the Home Plate digitate silica structures, making them worthy of additional investigation."

"The search for evidence of life on Mars remains a central focus of upcoming rover missions. In this context, NASA’s Mars 2020 Science Definition Team defined a potential biosignature as ‘an object, substance and/or pattern that might have a biological origin and thus compels investigators to gather more data before reaching a conclusion as to the presence or absence of life.' Because we can neither prove nor disprove a biological origin for the microstromatolite-like digitate silica structures at Home Plate, they constitute a potential biosignature according to this definition."

In otherwords, this isn't really science, but speculation. The article calls for further examination of this feature, requiring a Mars Sample Return mission in order to prove a biogenic origin.

Barry Degregorio must be beside himself over the prospect of that:

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