Ancient Civilization on Mars?

Asked July 1, 2016, 6:22 PM EDT

I'm writing a story. I'm curious if it is preposterous to suggest an ancient civilization on Mars. I'm curious about a civilization being wiped out. A civilization that maybe got as far as us now or even to the time of the ancient Egyptians.

Is it possible for all traces to be wiped out where we could still discover some sort of evidence? Or is there empirical evidence that it is impossible? I'm happy to say that it was 50million or even a billion years ago. Would it be obvious to us now if there was once a civilization? Or can everything get washed away by erosion? Would maybe solid gold or canals or structures survive maybe?

Thanks so much in advance - I'm trying to keep my manuscript a bit reasonable.

DuPage County Illinois

3 Responses

Interesting question! This is probably not the forum to get the best answer. However, in the time frame you are looking at (millions of years) remember that on Earth we have had civilizations disappear mere thousands of years ago:

And what would happen on Earth if we disappeared?

Good luck with your story!

Wow - I forgot I posted from an alternative email and I didn't show the respect to thank the expert that took the time to answer me. I just didn't see it until now.

Thank you very much for your great response!!

Just to follow up now that I've seen your kind answer. These civilizations that disappeared are still something that we are speaking of so they didn't totally disappear as there is evidence.

I've learned that it's most likely that if humans died tomorrow, then a visiting alien species in a million years would never know of the "advanced civilization" that once inhabited Earth.

However, rock formations like Mount Rushmore and the pyramids could perhaps be discovered. In my script, I'm heading towards American explorers find old satellites in Martian orbit as that seems like, while unlikely, it's not impossible. Even finding a structure on Phobos but I don't want to rip off 2001 A Space Odyssey=)