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Old 03-06-2011, 11:16 AM
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Default Nasa scientist thinks he may have found evidence of alien microbes

http://news.yahoo.com/s/digitaltrend...nceofalienlife

It may turn out to be nothing, but it's interesting
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Old 03-06-2011, 02:32 PM
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That's interesting. I wonder though how they could isolate the meteorite immediately from any microbes on Earth. Doesn't seem to possible as it has probably restet on or in the ground for some while so it'd be interesting to know whether they checked for this.
Then again I am sceptical as PZ Myers' blog entry took it apart pretty nastily.
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:01 PM
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That's interesting. I wonder though how they could isolate the meteorite immediately from any microbes on Earth. Doesn't seem to possible as it has probably restet on or in the ground for some while so it'd be interesting to know whether they checked for this.
Then again I am sceptical as PZ Myers' blog entry took it apart pretty nastily.
I agree, If the meteorite landed hot, anything could have been sucked into the dam thing as it cooled.
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:14 PM
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That's interesting. I wonder though how they could isolate the meteorite immediately from any microbes on Earth. Doesn't seem to possible as it has probably restet on or in the ground for some while so it'd be interesting to know whether they checked for this.
Then again I am sceptical as PZ Myers' blog entry took it apart pretty nastily.
Yeah, that's the problem with these science news articles. They're just articles but lack the important details that a full paper would. Probably have to get the paper from the Journal of Cosmology in order to see how. Of course, not being trained in that particular field, I could probably read the methods section and it all would look like Russian to me.
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Old 03-06-2011, 03:46 PM
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It's wise to be skeptical. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. We'll just have to see what the peer review comes up with.
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Old 03-06-2011, 04:08 PM
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I agree, If the meteorite landed hot, anything could have been sucked into the dam thing as it cooled.
Indeed. But even if Mr.Microbe survived frozenly in the middle of that meteorite, unharmed by the heating up of exterior of the meteorite during the entering of Earth's atmosphere he must have been at least heated up when he escaped the gravity well of his home planet.
Earth is teeming with life but the first time some microbes could have gotten out of here was when we shot up rockets. So they must have sticked to the shell of the rocket pretty tight, survived the immense heat and then travelled thousands of years on the equivalent of the Voyager or Pioneer probe, somehow hoped onto a meteorite and then traveled on and on until they arrived here.

Well, if they did all this our very distant ancestors were some pretty tough folks.
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Old 03-06-2011, 07:40 PM
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Indeed. But even if Mr.Microbe survived frozenly in the middle of that meteorite, unharmed by the heating up of exterior of the meteorite during the entering of Earth's atmosphere he must have been at least heated up when he escaped the gravity well of his home planet.
Earth is teeming with life but the first time some microbes could have gotten out of here was when we shot up rockets. So they must have sticked to the shell of the rocket pretty tight, survived the immense heat and then travelled thousands of years on the equivalent of the Voyager or Pioneer probe, somehow hoped onto a meteorite and then traveled on and on until they arrived here.

Well, if they did all this our very distant ancestors were some pretty tough folks.
Definitely pretty slim odds. Although I do recall growing up and hearing of an instance where I think one of the Apollo missions recovered I think one of the unmanned probes that had been sent to the moon 3 years earlier. During the examination they found microbes on I think a camera lens or something. I don't know if they ever traced the exact source of the contamination but one possibility was that someone sneeze on it at some stage of the assembly process before the probe was launched. The microbes after 3 years on the moon were still viable. The other explanation (and likely more probable) was that the contamination occurred inside the Lunar Receiving Lab. I've heard variations of the story that say there was a technician that admitted to sneezing on the camera. Haven't found a source that I have a great deal of faith in confirming or denying the truth of the story.
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:40 PM
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This does not seem to be holding up to peer review at all. Looks like there wasn't much to this.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110308/...sci_alien_life
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Old 03-08-2011, 09:48 PM
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This is what happens when the media rushes to report things. They probably should have waited a little bit longer to save themselves having to disavow.

It's a shame when they do this, I don't think it helps people's interest in this kind of stuff over the long run.
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