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B. An Innovative Drilling Technique Has Potential Use on Mars

Narrator: This is Science Today. Innovative drilling instruments and techniques developed to probe subglacial lakes in Antarctica, may someday lead to similar work on Mars. In fact, cosmic ray physicist Buford Price, of the University of California, Berkeley says their sterile, ultraviolet light-emitting detectors could possibly be used to search for signs of life on Martian polar caps.

Price: We know that there exists water widely distributed over both the north and South Pole on Mars. Whether it's in the form of liquid or solid, almost certainly most of it, at least down to many meters depth, is frozen. But that temperature is definitely such that certain kinds of organisms can survive.

Narrator: These microorganisms are aptly called extremophiles.

Price: Some of them don't need oxygen, some don't need sunlight, some eat hydrogen and breathe methane - they really are weird! They are so unusual that it has encouraged those biologists who are interested in life on other planets.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.