Today, water on Mars is locked in ice deposits or held in deep underground lakes. But water once flowed across the planet’s surface, and researchers have found further evidence of its presence on the Red Planet.

A new study reveals that the Hellas impact basin on Mars once contained a number of ephemeral lakes, or lakes that are usually dry but fill up with water for brief periods of time.

Watery World

Located in the Red Planet’s southern hemisphere, the Hellas impact basin’s northeastern rim had many of these temporary lakes throughout Mars’ history, say researchers from the SETI Institute. The depressions were filled with water from a variety of sources, they say, including groundwater, snowfall, rivers and streams.

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