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aries1988 : planet   14

To find aliens, we must think of life as we don’t know it | Aeon Ideas

To open our minds, we need to go back to basics and consider the fundamental conditions that are necessary for life. First, it needs some form of energy, such as from volcanic hot springs or hydrothermal vents. That would seem to rule out any planets or moons lacking a strong source of internal heat. Life also needs protection from space radiation, such as an atmospheric ozone layer.

Finally, everything we know about life indicates that it requires some kind of liquid solvent in which chemical interactions can lead to self-replicating molecules. Water is exceptionally effective in that regard. It facilitates making and breaking chemical bonds, assembling proteins or other structural molecules, and – for an actual organism – feeding and getting rid of waste.

Meanwhile, another Saturn moon, Titan, could tell us whether life can arise without liquid water. Titan is dotted with lakes of methane and ethane, filled by a seasonal hydrocarbon rain.

If you think of the spectrum like a set of venetian blinds, there are only a few slats removed.
life  planet  research  astronomy  biology 
september 2017 by aries1988
La sonde Cassini a émis son dernier message en plongeant vers Saturne

Avec près de trois cents orbites autour de Saturne, la sonde a découvert notamment des mers de méthane liquide sur Titan, son plus grand satellite naturel, et un vaste océan d’eau salée sous la surface glacée d’Encelade, une petite Lune saturnienne. Les données recueillies par le spectromètre de Cassini lors de la traversée d’un panache de vapeur au pôle sud d’Encelade, ont révélé la présence d’hydrogène.

Cet hydrogène est la signature d’une activité hydrothermale propice à la vie, avaient alors conclu les scientifiques en annonçant cette importante découverte en avril dernier. « Ce monde océanique d’Encelade a vraiment changé notre approche sur la recherche de la vie ailleurs dans notre système solaire et au-delà », a pointé Linda Spilker.

Lune Europe, également dotée d’un vaste océan d’eau salé sous une épaisse banquise, où la vie pourrait exister.
planet  explore  nasa  esa  2017  2004 
september 2017 by aries1988
BepiColombo, une mission dans le barbecue de Mercure
Selon Alvaro Gimenez, directeur scientifique de l’Agence spatiale européenne, BepiColombo « est probablement la mission scientifique la plus compliquée que l’ESA ait menée ».

Au bout du compte, BepiColombo, tout de blanc et d’argent vêtu, est un monstre de complexité. Ce qui explique les nombreux retards qu’il a subis, les 70 % d’innovations qui le composent et aussi un budget de 1,3 milliard d’euros.
astro  europe  planet  mercury 
july 2017 by aries1988
Twitter
RT : "1.5 million penguins on an island just 5km across."
by from Islands
planet  earth  bbc  documentary  animal  southpole  tv 
january 2017 by aries1988
The Woman Who Might Find Us Another Earth - The New York Times
Widowhood was like a new universe for Seager to explore. She had never understood many social norms. The celebration of birthdays, for instance. “I just don’t see the point,” she says. “Why would I want to celebrate my birthday? Why on earth would I even care?” She had also drawn a hard line against Christmas and its myths. “I never wanted my kids to believe in Santa.” After Wevrick’s death, she became even more of a satellite, developing a deeper intolerance for life’s ordinary concerns.
female  scientist  planet  life  story  research  discovery  family  couple 
december 2016 by aries1988
SpaceX's Big Fucking Rocket – The Full Story - Wait But Why
The moon has few natural resources, a 28-day day, and with no atmosphere to either provide protection against the sun during the day or warm things up at night, both day and night become murderous.

We’re currently pretty close to Mars, since the last Mars opposition happened on May 22, 2016. That’s why, if you happen to be an “oh shit there’s a way-too-bright star let me take out my Sky Guide app and figure out which planet that is and then tell everyone I’m with and find that, yet again, no one cares, because everyone is a horrible person” nerd like me, you know that all summer, Mars has been super prominent and bright in our night sky.11 A year from now, Mars will be on the other side of the sun from us, and we won’t see it in our night sky at all.
explained  future  human  leader  planet  project  tesla 
october 2016 by aries1988
If Earth-like planet Proxima b has life, what might it be like? | New Scientist
With one face permanently turned to Proxima Centauri, Per Ardua’s “substellar point”, directly beneath the star, is a focus of climate patterns. Around it lie concentric bands of types of life, adapted to set levels of starlight, with analogues of tropical forest at the centre, and temperate forest and taiga further out. From space the planet looks like an archery target broken up across oceans.
book  scifi  planet  cosmos  2016 
august 2016 by aries1988
Venus could have been habitable while life evolved on Earth | New Scientist
Grinspoon and his colleagues aren’t the first to imagine Venus as a hospitable world. It’s similar to Earth in size and density, and the fact that the two planets formed close together suggests that their compositions are similar, too. Venus also has an unusually high ratio of deuterium to hydrogen atoms, a sign that it once had water delivered to the surface by comets, as we think happened on Earth.

The most promising of the four Venuses enjoyed moderate temperatures, thick cloud cover and even the occasional light snowfall (arxiv.org/abs/1608.00706).

His team discovered ancient rocks and sedimentary formations in the Jishi Gorge, in the upper reaches of the Yellow river, that could only have existed as a result of a cataclysmic flood. They also found evidence of an earthquake and analysed the skeletons of three children killed by it. Together these helped the team establish a timeline of events. (Science, doi.org/bnh9).
simulation  planet 
august 2016 by aries1988
The Search for 'Earth Proxima'
A short film about a team of scientists and their mission to build a powerful telescope to explore exoplanets.
science  scientist  astronomy  earth  planet  cosmos 
july 2016 by aries1988
NASA Confirms Signs of Water Flowing on Mars, Possible Niches for Life
Scientists looked at dark streaks that form each summer on the slopes of Martian mountains, craters and canyons.
planet  life  mars 
september 2015 by aries1988
Pluto dazzles in first new images downloaded since July's flyby | New Scientist
The highlight of the high-resolution pictures released so far is a soaring view that shows Pluto’s icy north-eastern expanses (pictured). Other images feature what could be windswept dunes, glaciers of solid nitrogen and valleys that look like they have been carved by flowing ice.
discovery  planet  sand  phd 
september 2015 by aries1988

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