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Exiobiology and Alien life:


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Does life exist elsewhere within our Solar system?
While as yet we have no conclusive evidence of life existing anywhere else,other then Earth, including in our Solar system, we do have possible havens for life, although anything beyond the most microbial and basic of life would be unlikely.

Some possible niches for life maybe the following places.....
Titan, Saturn's largest moon.
https://www.smithsonianmag.com/science-nature/where-solar-system-are-we-most-likely-find-life-180949994/#:~:text=In terms of life, Titan,amounts of methane and oxygen.
In terms of life, Titan—the largest moon of Saturn—has one thing going for it that none of the other destinations do: a thick, chemically active atmosphere. The moon's atmosphere is denser than Earth's, and the upper levels are mostly composed of nitrogen, with small amounts of methane and oxygen. This is encouraging, as life (at least on Earth) requires an atmosphere for protection from radiation and for the circulation of organic compounds.

Europa:
Europa, a moon of Jupiter, is an ice covered world where life could possibly emerge...It would likely be beneath the icy crust, due to the extremes of radiation from Jupiter, but it does likely have sub-surface water and chemical activity.
Enceladus:
This is another smaller moon of Saturn, but has been observed to have powerful long plumes of water vapour erupting from the surface, as detected by the Cassini craft, along with many other more complex organics.

Water has also been found on Ganymede the largest Jovian moon, and the largest in the solar system, as well as Callisto, Jupiter's other large moon.

So what are the chances that some basic life has arisen elsewhere in our solar system? and when will we be sure of such possibilities.
Some scientists seem to predict within the next decade or two.
Such findings, when they occur, may either give us a better idea of the process of Abiogenesis, (the only scientific theory for the emergence of life) or possibly indicate a support for another varient of Abiogenesis, namely Panspermia.
I just hope that such evidence is forthcoming before I kick the bucket.
 
 
 
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15 hours ago, beecee said:
Does life exist elsewhere within our Solar system?
So what are the chances that some basic life has arisen elsewhere in our solar system? and when will we be sure of such possibilities.
Some scientists seem to predict within the next decade or two.
Such findings, when they occur, may either give us a better idea of the process of Abiogenesis, (the only scientific theory for the emergence of life) or possibly indicate a support for another varient of Abiogenesis, namely Panspermia.
I just hope that such evidence is forthcoming before I kick the bucket.
 
 
 

I think personally I'd be more surprised if life wasn't found in areas where the conditions and the chemistry prevail for the possible formation of life. 

"I just hope that such evidence is forthcoming before I kick the bucket"- Beecee

I share this sentiment, though I hope that we discover life in other star systems and even more excitingly intelligent life!

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17 hours ago, beecee said:

So what are the chances that some basic life has arisen elsewhere in our solar system? and when will we be sure of such possibilities.
Some scientists seem to predict within the next decade or two.

The same chances that nuclear fusion is only twenty years away (for the last 50 year's or so)...

It might be possible, but we may never find out...

Edited by dimreepr
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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, Intoscience said:

I think personally I'd be more surprised if life wasn't found in areas where the conditions and the chemistry prevail for the possible formation of life. 

"I just hope that such evidence is forthcoming before I kick the bucket"- Beecee

I share this sentiment, though I hope that we discover life in other star systems and even more excitingly intelligent life!

The chances are pretty good, we will find evidence of some basic exobiology, within the next decade or so. Particularly with the advent of the JWST and the Nancy Roman one in 2027. I was always disappointed a couple of decades ago, when the plans for a Europa  probe was shelved and preference given to the New Horizons probe. Don't get me wrong, I 'm not at all detracting from the incredible success of the New Horizon's, just that personally, I saw far greater promise with exploring Europa. But that was not to be. 

A shame we cannot have an open cheque book on the exploration of space, the solar system and beyond.

The greatest question is how our religious folk and those believing in supernatural nonsense, would take to the discovery of life off this Earth. The mind boggles! 😁 (I'm reminded of that nut in the movie "Contact"

I'm pretty sure most scientists would be far, far more amazed if evidence was forthcoming that we were it on this fart arse little blue orb. Of course that can never really happen, taking into account, that we will probably never know the whole Universe. Moontanman always had some pretty reasonable thoughts on ET.

The other thing I would like to see before I kick the bucket, is boots on Mars!

 

6 hours ago, dimreepr said:

The same chances that nuclear fusion is only twenty years away (for the last 50 year's or so)...

Why do you say that? You understand that some scientific endeavours are inherently harder then others?

6 hours ago, dimreepr said:

It might be possible, but we may never find out...

It may be possible? how possible? And of course the chances of finding out depend on how much science we do. You do accept that, yes? Do you have any reason (religious or otherwise) to believe that we maybe the only life in the universe? Why would you think that,(if that is the case) considering that we are all star stuff and that Abiogenesis is the only scientific explanation for the emergence of life that we have, and that the stuff of life, (all the star stuff) is found wherever we look? Abiogenesis of course may have occurred in any numbers of places,(including those I have mentioned) and then we also have the possibility of Panspermia, although as yet no evidence to really indicate that. 

https://www.seti.org/ Where will you be when we find life beyond Earth.

Edited by beecee
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In my very humble opinion, the biggest question of all, is that when we do discover life off this Earth, will it be life, as we know it? In other words carbon based. Or could Abiogenesis possibly get started with say silicon?  Hope Moontanman is OK, this is his favourite topic, understandably so.

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Just found this......................................

https://phys.org/news/2022-03-jupiter-moon-europa-chaos-terrains.html

On Jupiter's moon Europa, 'chaos terrains' could be shuttling oxygen to ocean

Salt water within the icy shell of Jupiter's moon Europa could be transporting oxygen into an ice-covered ocean of liquid water where it could potentially help sustain alien life, according to a team of researchers led by The University of Texas at Austin.

This theory has been proposed by others, but the researchers put it to the test by building the world's first physics-based computer simulation of the process, with oxygen hitching a ride on salt water under the moon's "chaos terrains," landscapes made up of cracks, ridges and ice blocks that cover a quarter of the icy world.

The results show that not only is the transport possible, but that the amount of oxygen brought into Europa's ocean could be on a par with the quantity of oxygen in Earth's oceans today.

"Our research puts this process into the realm of the possible," said lead researcher Marc Hesse, a professor at the UT Jackson School of Geosciences Department of Geological Sciences. "It provides a solution to what is considered one of the outstanding problems of the habitability of the Europa subsurface ocean."

The study was recently published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

more at link..................

the paper:

https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1029/2021GL095416

Downward Oxidant Transport Through Europa's Ice Shell by Density-Driven Brine Percolation

Abstract

Jupiter's moon Europa is thought to have an ocean beneath its ice shell and the habitability of the internal ocean depends on the availability of redox gradients. Downward transport of radiolytic materials produced at the surface through the ice shell sets the flux of oxidants into the ocean. Here, we propose that oxidants are transported through the ice shell by the drainage of near-surface brines formed concurrently with chaotic terrains. We estimate that Europa's porous regolith contains 3.7 × 1014 to 5.6 × 1018 mol (1.2 × 1013 − 1.8 × 1017 kg) of trapped O2. Simulations of coupled melt-migration and eutectic phase behavior show that brines drain before they refreeze, delivering ∼85% of the surface oxidants to the ocean on timescales of 2 × 104 years. From the distribution of chaotic terrains and from Europa's surface age we estimate that brine drainage could deliver O2  to the ocean at rates of 2.0 × 106 to 1.3 × 1010 mol/yr (0.002−13.2 kg/s).

Plain Language Summary

Some icy moons in the outer solar system likely contain an ocean beneath their ice shells. Jupiter's moon Europa may be especially suitable for life if radiolytic oxidants generated at its surface travel efficiently through the ice. We propose that oxidants can be transported through the ice by drainage of brines generated during the formation of chaotic terrains. These enigmatic surface features are thought to require the formation of large volumes of near-surface brine. We show that the brines drain through the underlying ice before re-freezing and transport oxidants in pulses of melt called “porosity waves.” These pulses may propagate through the ice on timescales of 20,000 years. The rate of oxidant delivery is thus linked to chaotic terrain formation and is correspondingly spatially localized and episodic.

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13 hours ago, beecee said:

The chances are pretty good, we will find evidence of some basic exobiology, within the next decade or so. Particularly with the advent of the JWST and the Nancy Roman one in 2027. I was always disappointed a couple of decades ago, when the plans for a Europa  probe was shelved and preference given to the New Horizons probe. Don't get me wrong, I 'm not at all detracting from the incredible success of the New Horizon's, just that personally, I saw far greater promise with exploring Europa. But that was not to be. 

A shame we cannot have an open cheque book on the exploration of space, the solar system and beyond.

The greatest question is how our religious folk and those believing in supernatural nonsense, would take to the discovery of life off this Earth. The mind boggles! 😁 (I'm reminded of that nut in the movie "Contact"

I'm pretty sure most scientists would be far, far more amazed if evidence was forthcoming that we were it on this fart arse little blue orb. Of course that can never really happen, taking into account, that we will probably never know the whole Universe. Moontanman always had some pretty reasonable thoughts on ET.

The other thing I would like to see before I kick the bucket, is boots on Mars!

I stay hopeful and positive.

I don't worry about what the religious folk think or believe. Chances are if we do find life, if its less intelligent than us then they will just proclaim that we are still God's "chosen" ones. It will be more difficult however if intelligent life is discovered, especially so if its more advanced, older and intelligent than us.

The reality is that at the moment we could well be all there is in the entire universe. This seems absurd when you consider the vastness and age of the universe. Where there are trillions of star systems, many far older than our own. But abiogenesis could be extremely rare especially that which results in technologically capable living entities. In fact it could be so rare that it has only occurred just the one time in the current history of the universe! 

There are some interesting ideas around this and when we consider the odds (though not factually determined as yet) of life ever appearing in the way it is believed and then evolving into us today. You can easily come up with odds so low that they far outweigh the number of stars in the universe. IIRCC I watched a documentary on this and there where some figures hovering around odds of 1: 1030 + chances.    

My personal belief is that life in some form or another is abundant across the universe but intelligent life, especially technologically capable life is extremely rare maybe even non existence, other than us. 

Edited by Intoscience
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3 hours ago, Intoscience said:

I stay hopeful and positive.

I don't worry about what the religious folk think or believe. Chances are if we do find life, if its less intelligent than us then they will just proclaim that we are still God's "chosen" ones. It will be more difficult however if intelligent life is discovered, especially so if its more advanced, older and intelligent than us.

The reality is that at the moment we could well be all there is in the entire universe. This seems absurd when you consider the vastness and age of the universe. Where there are trillions of star systems, many far older than our own. But abiogenesis could be extremely rare especially that which results in technologically capable living entities. In fact it could be so rare that it has only occurred just the one time in the current history of the universe! 

There are some interesting ideas around this and when we consider the odds (though not factually determined as yet) of life ever appearing in the way it is believed and then evolving into us today. You can easily come up with odds so low that they far outweigh the number of stars in the universe. IIRCC I watched a documentary on this and there where some figures hovering around odds of 1: 1030 + chances.    

My personal belief is that life in some form or another is abundant across the universe but intelligent life, especially technologically capable life is extremely rare maybe even non existence, other than us. 

To add to these considerations, there can't be "many [stars] far older than our own." Older, yes, but not far older. Our star is 5 billion yo and the universe is 14 billion yo. That is our star's duration takes about 36% of the whole. Plus, it took time after the beginning to accumulate enough "metals" to start making long lived stars and planets. We are perhaps of the average age, not very young.

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17 hours ago, beecee said:

Why do you say that? You understand that some scientific endeavours are inherently harder then others?

I think the two equate nicely.

(1) Trying to create a star in a lab...

(2) Finding an alien on another planet...

We've been trying for year's to find life on Mars, a planet that's highly likely to have sustained life at some point in it's history and not even a hint of a corpse.

Landing a terrestrial rover on Mars is childs play, compared to landing and deploying a submersible on Titan. 

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Just now, dimreepr said:

We've been trying for year's to find life on Mars, a planet that's highly likely to have sustained life at some point in it's history and not even a hint of a corpse.

No guarantee that life that might have existed there is the kind that would leave a corpse.

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17 hours ago, beecee said:

And of course the chances of finding out depend on how much science we do. You do accept that, yes?

No, it's not a question of how much science we do, it's a question of how much time have we got, to do it in?

17 hours ago, beecee said:

Do you have any reason (religious or otherwise) to believe that we maybe the only life in the universe?

I believe it's certian, well 99.9%, that life exists in the universe; I'm far less certain that (intelligent) life exists in the solar system. 😆

10 minutes ago, swansont said:

No guarantee that life that might have existed there is the kind that would leave a corpse.

Indeed, they didn't find that either. 🙂

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Even if we find signs of life in our neighbor galaxy, Andromeda, all we'll know that it was there 2.5 million years ago. We'll not have a way to know what happened to it since then and what is there now. We'll still be alone. The vastness of the universe doesn't help in this respect.

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25 minutes ago, Genady said:

We'll still be alone. The vastness of the universe doesn't help in this respect.

We're not alone, we have alien's on this planet that we've yet to meet. 

I think this was what Douglas Adams had in mind with his "total perspective vortex"

Quote

The Total Perspective Vortex was a machine built with the intention of showing beings the infinity of creation, which became used as a method of torture.

 

Edited by dimreepr
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1 hour ago, dimreepr said:

We're not alone, we have alien's on this planet that we've yet to meet.

I am not sure what do you mean by this, but I suppose you speak about yet unknown species or branches of life. Unfortunately, up until now we didn't find any 'alien' here - all life we met were our relatives. For me, this is worrying and is a hint that life might be a rare event. If we could find anything completely separate here on Earth, that would be a big deal.

Fortunately, there is another way to think - it seems to me the life on Earth started very quickly after the last sterilization event (like the Theia impact, but I would guess there might be few smaller ones that followed).... hinting that that life arises readily.

1 hour ago, swansont said:

No guarantee that life that might have existed there is the kind that would leave a corpse.

True, but I think it is more likely that if life ever existed on Mars, it must still be there - possibly underground. I just don't see how a very slow change, even into extreme, can eradicate life... My understating is that we only recently discovered the life deep below earth surface, so I guess there is still some hope for Mars too.

1 hour ago, Genady said:

Even if we find signs of life in our neighbor galaxy, Andromeda, all we'll know that it was there 2.5 million years ago. We'll not have a way to know what happened to it since then and what is there now. We'll still be alone. The vastness of the universe doesn't help in this respect.

Still, for me finding it anywhere, anytime would be a major thing - completely changing my mindset. Maybe I would even start writing SF again :)

6 hours ago, Intoscience said:

My personal belief is that life in some form or another is abundant across the universe but intelligent life, especially technologically capable life is extremely rare maybe even non existence, other than us. 

Yes, I sign that belief too.

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1 minute ago, Danijel Gorupec said:

I am not sure what do you mean by this, but I suppose you speak about yet unknown species or branches of life. Unfortunately, up until now we didn't find any 'alien' here - all life we met were our relatives. For me, this is worrying and is a hint that life might be a rare event. If we could find anything completely separate here on Earth, that would be a big deal.

It depends on your definition of alien... 

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5 minutes ago, Danijel Gorupec said:

Still, for me finding it anywhere, anytime would be a major thing - completely changing my mindset. Maybe I would even start writing SF again :)

I don't see finding signs of life far away, long time ago would be changing my mindset at all. Surely two data points are better than one.

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On 3/24/2022 at 9:23 AM, dimreepr said:

The same chances that nuclear fusion is only twenty years away (for the last 50 year's or so)...

Self sustaining nuclear fusion, that can provide almost limitless energy, is only 8 minutes away.
( or 93 million miles/150 million kilometers/one AU )

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3 minutes ago, MigL said:

Self sustaining nuclear fusion, that can provide almost limitless energy, is only 8 minutes away.
( or 93 million miles/150 million kilometers/one AU )

Plus 50,000 years that takes the photons from the core to reach the photosphere.

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10 hours ago, Intoscience said:

My personal belief is that life in some form or another is abundant across the universe but intelligent life, especially technologically capable life is extremely rare maybe even non existence, other than us. 

Yep, pretty much agree.

6 hours ago, dimreepr said:

I think the two equate nicely.

(1) Trying to create a star in a lab...

(2) Finding an alien on another planet...

(1) A work in progress with limited forms of success. https://whyy.org/segments/fusion-energy/    https://www.livescience.com/nuclear-fusion-reactor-sparc-2025.html

(2) We are still in the baby step class as far as space exploration and the search for life goes, 

6 hours ago, dimreepr said:

We've been trying for year's to find life on Mars, a planet that's highly likely to have sustained life at some point in it's history and not even a hint of a corpse.

Yes, and we'll probably keep trying...that's science. " that's highly likely to have sustained life at some point in it's history" No, you mean "that's highly capable of the possibility of sustaining life at some point." And that's why we keep up with robotic searches, at least until we put boots on Mars.

6 hours ago, dimreepr said:

Landing a terrestrial rover on Mars is childs play, compared to landing and deploying a submersible on Titan. 

https://solarsystem.nasa.gov/missions/huygens/in-depth/#:~:text=The Cassini-Huygens project was,Saturn's largest moon%2C in 2005. Not to bad considering we are still taking baby steps. In time though, enginering, technological capabilities and know how, will probably also solve this.

6 hours ago, dimreepr said:

We're not alone, we have alien's on this planet that we've yet to meet. 

Any reference for that please? Note, we are sensibly speaking of Alien life, as life not originating on Earth, as most would attest to..

6 hours ago, dimreepr said:

I think this was what Douglas Adams had in mind with his "total perspective vortex"

A comedy sci/fi routine is not a reputable source.

7 hours ago, dimreepr said:

No, it's not a question of how much science we do, it's a question of how much time have we got, to do it in?

It wouldn't matter if we had trillions of years, it still needs enough of  practical and theoretical  science to be done. Unless of course you have some hidden insight into the future and how much time we have?

5 hours ago, Danijel Gorupec said:

I am not sure what do you mean by this, but I suppose you speak about yet unknown species or branches of life. Unfortunately, up until now we didn't find any 'alien' here - all life we met were our relatives.

+1 Yeah, I also found it to be less then appropriate. In a thread about exobiology, the definition of Alien is obvious. 

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, dimreepr said:

I think this was what Douglas Adams had in mind with his "total perspective vortex"

 

9 hours ago, dimreepr said:

The Total Perspective Vortex was a machine built with the intention of showing beings the infinity of creation, which became used as a method of torture.

Nearly forgot the above error; In actual fact, we cannot be sure that the universe is infinite or finite, just that it is very big. Our observable universe certainly does have a finite size and age....13.83 billion years and 96 billion L/years in diameter

 

10 hours ago, Genady said:

To add to these considerations, there can't be "many [stars] far older than our own." Older, yes, but not far older. Our star is 5 billion yo and the universe is 14 billion yo. That is our star's duration takes about 36% of the whole. Plus, it took time after the beginning to accumulate enough "metals" to start making long lived stars and planets. We are perhaps of the average age, not very young.

Another point that might add to the likelyhood of abiogenesis and life evolving, is that our Sun is also a rareity in that it isn't part of a binary or trinary or more system, as it appears most are. 

Edited by beecee
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17 hours ago, beecee said:

(1) A work in progress with limited forms of success. https://whyy.org/segments/fusion-energy/    https://www.livescience.com/nuclear-fusion-reactor-sparc-2025.html

(2) We are still in the baby step class as far as space exploration and the search for life goes, 

I see, you're right, they're completely different; despite the fact that both endevours started at roughly the same time and has had limited success. 😉

17 hours ago, beecee said:

Any reference for that please? Note, we are sensibly speaking of Alien life, as life not originating on Earth, as most would attest to..

Of course not, we have yet to meet them, or we are them... 

17 hours ago, beecee said:

A comedy sci/fi routine is not a reputable source.

It wasn't presented as evidence... 

15 hours ago, beecee said:
On 3/25/2022 at 1:08 PM, dimreepr said:

The Total Perspective Vortex was a machine built with the intention of showing beings the infinity of creation, which became used as a method of torture.

Nearly forgot the above error; In actual fact, we cannot be sure that the universe is infinite or finite, just that it is very big. Our observable universe certainly does have a finite size and age....13.83 billion years and 96 billion L/years in diameter

You'll note, the universe isn't mentioned "the infinity of creation"...

Even if the universe is finite, creation created it...

Edited by dimreepr
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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, dimreepr said:

I see, you're right, they're completely different; despite the fact that both endevours started at roughly the same time and has had limited success. 😉

Have you any reference for them starting at the same time? What do you mean by "roughly"? 

5 hours ago, dimreepr said:

Of course not, we have yet to meet them, or we are them... 

So why did you misinterpret what we generally mean by Alien in context with this thread? How do you know we will ever meet any alien for that matter?  "we are them" is another rather iffy statment, so we will ignore that bizarre bit.

5 hours ago, dimreepr said:

 It wasn't presented as evidence... 

Yes, that is for certain. Obviously you have none.

5 hours ago, dimreepr said:

You'll note, the universe isn't mentioned "the infinity of creation"...

What is it referring to then if not the universe or anything that followed that necessary first step? And generally speaking, when the word "creation" is mentioned and used, it inevitably is inferring a god. The universe evolved more then was created.

5 hours ago, dimreepr said:

Even if the universe is finite, creation created it...

??? 🥴 Would you like to explain that? or at least give a link to where you dug up that phrase? 😉

Edited by beecee
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On 3/25/2022 at 2:36 PM, Danijel Gorupec said:

Fortunately, there is another way to think - it seems to me the life on Earth started very quickly after the last sterilization event (like the Theia impact, but I would guess there might be few smaller ones that followed).... hinting that that life arises readily.

(Emphasis added)

Or that we should be paying more attention to the possibility of panspermia.

Until we have established, with a high degree of confidence, one or more plausible paths from pre-biotic to primitive cell, then any alleged estimate of probability for abiogenesis remains a wild-assed guess. I am not saying we shouldn't make wild assed guesses. They are entertaining and can inform future research, but we should remember they are just wild-assed guesses.

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