The planet Mars has been considered by scientists as a geologically dead world, but now there might be compelling evidence that the planet could support actual alien life.

The presence of liquid water lakes on Mars seems to be a very real possibility as scientists surmise that magma from underground volcanoes provides much-needed heat to melt ice at the south pole of Mars and this could lead the Red Planet to support life.

Previous reports from Journal Science indicated that the European space agency Mars Express has detected a 20 kilometer-wide lake of liquid water under the Planum Australe region. As what IBTimes previously reported, a possible explanation for how liquid water could exist beneath the ice cap shows that volcanoes beneath Mars are causing the ice to melt.

According to a research conducted by Michael Sori, an associate staff scientist in the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory (LPL) at the University of Arizona, the existence of both liquid water and a source of heat (the volcanoes) raise the possibility that there could be actual life on Mars. Now don’t just conclude red Martians or little green aliens are living on the planet now. Scientists believe that should there be organisms existing on the Red Planet, it could only be microbial and it could only exist below the surface.

“We think that if there is any life, it likely has to be protected in the subsurface from the radiation. If there are still magmatic processes active today, maybe they were more common in the recent past and could supply more widespread basal melting. This could provide a more favorable environment for liquid water and thus, perhaps, life,” Ali Bramson, who is a postdoctoral research associate at LPL and co-author of the research, said.

The theory of volcanoes and magmatic activities causing ice caps to melt and produce underwater lakes is based on the Earth studies that ice melts as it gets closer to the planet’s crust. Aside from this, scientists also believe that there could be the presence of salts that lower the melting point of ice, citing calcium perchlorate that generates the low temperatures to cause the ice caps to melt underneath.

Aside from the liquid water lake on Mars, the discovery of hematite by the NASA rover, Opportunity, suggests that there could be organic life on the Red Planet. Hematite, an iron oxide mineral, also indicates the presence of water. Clays on certain regions of the planet show that there could be pH-neutral water in the surroundings, making it an environment suitable for life to survive.

The planet Mars has been one of the main space missions that scientists focus on when it comes to finding life outside the Earth. Pictured: The NASA InSight spacecraft launches onboard a United Launch Alliance Atlas-V rocket on May 5, 2018, from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images