I like to think that if we find life on Mars, and answer that fundamental question of “are we alone in the universe” it would make us think a bit differently about our place in the universe, and what we are doing to our planet, and who we want to be as a race. That’s maybe a bit too hopeful though, as a lot of people only think about themselves and what they own and what people think of them! Maybe at some level, though, finding out that aliens exist and are out there will make us take a bit more accountability for our actions on our planet and the impact we are having.
With Rosalind Franklin we hope to find signs of primitive life 3.8 billion years ago when conditions on Mars were like those on Earth – when like was starting there too. Not really aliens but finding any life other than on Earth would be an amazing discovery