It has long been believed that our world is the only planet in the Solar System with an oxygen-based atmosphere, as there is a glowing green aura around the Earth formed by the combination of sunlight with oxygen atoms and atmospheric molecules. Similar emissions have now for the first time been spotted surrounding the Red Planet.

The European Space Agency’s ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO), circling the planet since 2016, has detected a glowing green oxygen aura in the Martian atmosphere for the first time, the agency said in a Monday statement.

The emission ring, seen previously only around the Earth by astronauts aboard the International Space Station, occurs when sunlight combines with oxygen atoms and air molecules in the planet’s atmosphere.



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