Holy graphene, heal thyself

New calculations by Alexander Pavlov of the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and colleagues suggest that the Martian lander Curiosity currently wending its way towards the Red Planet, will not have to dig too deep into the dirt to find un-degraded organic molecules with ten or more carbon atoms. Of course, such molecules would be present only if there life on Mars and, moreover, only if it used, or uses, the same molecules used by life on Earth. The team's calculations suggest that just 50 to 100 millimeters of coverage would be adequate to protect such molecules from cosmic radiation.