Even though water traces and salt lakes can be found under the surface of Mars, scientists have still not been able to detect liquid water on the Red Planet, and the international team of scientists has figured out why. A corresponding study was published in PNAS, the Washington University in St. Louis reports.

Scientists from the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Germany, and the USA analyzed Martian rock samples by using stable isotopes of potassium to assess the presence and distribution of volatile elements, including water.

Scientists Calculated How Long a Mars Mission Should Last
Scientists concluded that astronauts could safely stay on the Red Planet for no more than four years. They found out that the thickness of the cover of the spacecraft can play a crucial role in the safety of astronauts.

They found that Mars lost more volatile matter than Earth during formation, but less than the Moon. According to scientists, this happened due to the size of the planet.

Scientists say Mars is too small to hold a large amount of water for a long time, which is why complex life forms could not develop on the Red Planet.