Part of the show New Year, New Naked Science
John Wilson, Netherlands asked:
Have they found any life in the rubbish that falls to Earth from outer space?
We put this to Dr Vic Pearson from the Open University:
The likelihood of finding life in meteorites is probably pretty slim. There was, in the 1990s, a big debate on whether or not NASA scientists had identified nanobacteria, so very small bacteria only identifiable using very powerful microscopes in meteorites that had come from the surface of Mars. This has pretty much been debunked now. That’s not to say that the building blocks of life may not have been brought in meteorites because meteorites themselves contain biogenic elements such as sulphur, nitrogen, phosphorous. Also, carbon-based molecules or organic molecules which are required for life on Earth and elsewhere in the solar system: these are things such as amino acids, carboxylic acids, sugars – all of which make up living systems on the Earth and all of which are the backbone of the organic molecules that make up our own DNA. The chances of being able to find life elsewhere in the solar system is also a lot stronger by the fact you can find the organic molecules. Whether or not you can actually get life itself from meteorites is probably very unlikely.
Of course not. At least the way we know life is. But we may have certainly come across some organic molecules. Who knows maybe life has been triggered on earth through these fallen debris ?
If they've found any, the secret agencies are not telling. Chemistry4me, Sun, 28th Dec 2008
If they fall on our planet.. And it comes at great speed... It is like a fireball..
And those life forms that make it to the ground are obviously very hot, as a result jump off the rock, and scatter to find water to cool their jets. No wonder we cannot find any.
My ex wife is clearly from outer space. More then that, I truly believe she was deliberately expelled for reasons I will not elaborate. It might endanger the entire planet. litespeed, Tue, 5th Jan 2010
Very interesting. Thanks for the share.