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Offline wolram

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There could be life captain
« on: 10/03/2006 10:10:30 »

The possibility of extra terestrial life seems more likely

http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0603219

Star like our sun is found.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/space/03/09/cassini.enceladus/

CNN) -- The Cassini space probe has found evidence of geysers erupting from underground pools of liquid water on Saturn's moon Enceladus, scientists announced on Thursday.

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Offline neilep

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #1 on: 10/03/2006 13:24:59 »
Thanks for this Robin.

It would have been good to post this in the science news articles thread.

Of course, finding a sun similar to ours means that there just may be a possibility of life akin to ours. This does not mean that life can only exist where there are similar circumstances to our own.

I firmly believe that life is a very adaptable thing, and elsewhere, in addition to circumstances similar to our own, there is life which dwells in  conditions completely alien to ours. There just has to be
 

Offline wolram

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #2 on: 10/03/2006 14:09:33 »

I agree Neil, when life on earth can exist in such extremes, from
great depths in the ocean around thermal vents, to the frozen wastes,
and bacteria has been found deep in the earth, it would be a very
strange thing if we were the only ones in the u.

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Offline wolram

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #3 on: 10/03/2006 14:25:26 »

It would have been good to post this in the science news articles thread.

Can it be moved Neil ?

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Offline neilep

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #4 on: 10/03/2006 14:32:07 »
It can be posted  there for viewing and then left here for discussing...just copy and paste the text and credit the source. I can do it for you if you wish, else, just copy and paste away..YAYYY !!
 

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #5 on: 10/03/2006 18:31:48 »
quote:
Originally posted by neilep

Thanks for this Robin.

It would have been good to post this in the science news articles thread.

Of course, finding a sun similar to ours means that there just may be a possibility of life akin to ours. This does not mean that life can only exist where there are similar circumstances to our own.

I firmly believe that life is a very adaptable thing, and elsewhere, in addition to circumstances similar to our own, there is life which dwells in  conditions completely alien to ours. There just has to be



I think it will ultimately boil down to what do you call life?

I am sure that long term sustainable chemical and physical processes can exist in many contexts, the question is when do you call it life?

Whatever it is, if it exists in an environment very different to our own, it will be very different to anything we would call life here.

Ofcourse, nothing on any of the extraterrestrial planets in our own solar system suggests anything beyond the possibility of microbial life, and nothing even close to suggesting multicellular life of any kind.




George
 

Offline neilep

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #6 on: 10/03/2006 19:30:20 »
quote:
Originally posted by another_someone

quote:
Originally posted by neilep

Thanks for this Robin.

It would have been good to post this in the science news articles thread.

Of course, finding a sun similar to ours means that there just may be a possibility of life akin to ours. This does not mean that life can only exist where there are similar circumstances to our own.

I firmly believe that life is a very adaptable thing, and elsewhere, in addition to circumstances similar to our own, there is life which dwells in  conditions completely alien to ours. There just has to be



I think it will ultimately boil down to what do you call life?

I am sure that long term sustainable chemical and physical processes can exist in many contexts, the question is when do you call it life?

Whatever it is, if it exists in an environment very different to our own, it will be very different to anything we would call life here.

Ofcourse, nothing on any of the extraterrestrial planets in our own solar system suggests anything beyond the possibility of microbial life, and nothing even close to suggesting multicellular life of any kind.




George




I quite agree.

Life is what ever we attribute the definition of life to, but at the same time I can also accept that the possibility of life exists that does not pertain to our definition, so, we may have to redefine our definition as ' new ' life is discovered.

How we determine that what we have discovered is life that exists outside our conventional rules for existence is another thing.....but it would be a great thing to discover that there is indeed life out there in.........another someone !!(pun intended)  :)

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Offline ukmicky

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #7 on: 10/03/2006 20:56:48 »
quote:
Originally posted by wolram


I agree Neil, when life on earth can exist in such extremes, from
great depths in the ocean around thermal vents, to the frozen wastes,
and bacteria has been found deep in the earth, it would be a very
strange thing if we were the only ones in the u.

A born optomist



Once life has started then it can evolve to live almost anywhere in one form or another
but of course for that life to be around at the thermal vents it had to have started  somewhere and evidence suggests that you could count on one hand the amount of times life has develop independently on earth, which isn’t much when you considering how old the earth is.


Michael
 

Offline wolram

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #8 on: 10/03/2006 20:58:41 »

This paper gives an overveiew of the extreme conditions that life can survive in.
http://www.liebertonline.com/doi/abs/10.1089/153110702762027862

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another_someone

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #9 on: 10/03/2006 23:03:44 »
quote:
Originally posted by ukmicky

Once life has started then it can evolve to live almost anywhere in one form or another
but of course for that life to be around at the thermal vents it had to have started  somewhere and evidence suggests that you could count on one hand the amount of times life has develop independently on earth, which isn’t much when you considering how old the earth is.




Not sure that this follows inevitably from what we know.

On this planet, live has learned to tolerate any temperature in which liquid water can exist (generally, from slightly below 273 kelvin, to somewhere around 400, and possibly up to 600, kelvin).  Our experience of life does not support the notion that life can survive at 100 kelvin or less, not at 1000 kelvin or more; although both of these extremes are well within what is regularly found in various parts of the cosmos.

Ofcourse, one of the aspects of life, all forms of life, is that they create their own micro-environment, so the limiting factor is not probably what the external environment might be, but how effectively the chemical processes of life can be insulated from that environment.  A single celled organism, although its chemistry is simple, so is its defensive isolation, merely a thin cell wall; while a multicellular organism, although its chemistry is more sensitive to its interior environment (warm blooded animals requiring very precise control of temperature), but so is its environmental management and isolation more sophisticated.

The limiting factor is, I suppose, whether the local materials exist to adequately provide for that micro-environmental isolation and management that is sufficient for the external environment in which the organism has to survive.



George
 

Offline ukmicky

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #10 on: 10/03/2006 23:40:00 »
George your so picky, meticulous, exacting, finicky,difficult to please :):D

Michael
« Last Edit: 11/03/2006 00:17:30 by ukmicky »
 

Offline JimBob

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #11 on: 11/03/2006 00:12:28 »
Re: Neilep's above post

Yet there is also a theory that nonobacteria began the spread of life across the galaxy, at least. This is not as rediculous as it may seem on the surface. These little "bugs" are considerd a major contributor to artrioschirosis, acording to the Mayo Clinic.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/05/040525060705.htm

So, perhaps we just do not understand life. The oldest know bacteria or bacteria made artifacts are almost as old as the earth itsel.

Just a thought. [^]

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Offline ukmicky

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #12 on: 11/03/2006 00:16:43 »
quote:
This paper gives an overview of the extreme conditions that life can survive in.
Surviving is one thing,  life developing for the first time on a planet devoid of all life is the biggest hurdle to there being extraterrestrial lifeforms. it just doesnt happen every day, the conditions required to give the spark of life to a collection of amino acids etc could be so exacting or so rare that the chances of it happening could be 1 in 100 billion trillion or more.


Michael
« Last Edit: 11/03/2006 02:28:12 by ukmicky »
 

Offline neilep

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #13 on: 11/03/2006 02:00:48 »
quote:
Originally posted by ukmicky

quote:
This paper gives an overview of the extreme conditions that life can survive in.
Surviving is one thing,  life developing for the first time on a planet devoid of all life is the biggest hurdle to there being extraterrestrial lifeforms. it just doesnt happen every day, the conditions required to give the spark of life to a collection of amino acids etc could be so exacting that the chances of it happening could be 1 in 100 billion trillion or more.

Michael





Michael, are you sure those odds are accurate ?....Those are not good odds and virtually isolates that form of life from happening anywhere else !

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Offline ukmicky

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #14 on: 11/03/2006 02:27:22 »
I'm not exactly the best at calculating odds and it is just a possibility but a possibility which does exist. its hard to put a figure on something when the odds of that something happening anywhere at anytime are so outstandingly high. We could be on the luckiest planet in the luckiest solar system in our our galaxy,a one in a 100 billion chance and are only here due to the most amazing amount of luck.  

In reality they don't even know how life started at all, its all guess work, lots of different theories.
However using earth as a model and going by the evidence which has survived they know whatever process it was which was used here on earth its not something that happens very often when you consider the earth is 4.5 billion years old and you could count how many times its happened  here on one hand and you would probably have fingers to spare.

 
quote:
Even on Earth the origin of life is a stubbornly enduring mystery. “How can a collection of chemicals form themselves into a living thing without any interference from outside?” asks Paul Davies, a physicist and writer. “On the face of it, life is an exceedingly unlikely event,” he argues. “There is no known principle of matter that says it has to organize itself into life. I’m very happy to believe in my head that we live in a bio-friendly universe, because in my heart I find that very congenial. But we have not yet discovered the Life Principle.”’
Joel Achenbach, Life Beyond Earth, National Geographic, January 2000, p. 45.


professor Andy Knoll of Harvard university:
 
quote:
All life that we know of is fundamentally pretty similar. That's why we think that you and I and bacteria and toadstools all had a single common ancestor early on the Earth. If you look at the cell of a bacterium, it has about the same proportions of carbon and oxygen and hydrogen as a human body does. The basic biochemical machinery of a bacterium is, in a broad way at least, similar to the chemistry of our cells.

The origin of life is still a mystery.
Michael
« Last Edit: 11/03/2006 03:57:07 by ukmicky »
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #15 on: 11/03/2006 03:29:16 »
Michael - I find it inconceivable that the only life in the whole universe is here on Earth. OK, maybe it was a fluke; but when you consider just how many other planets there may be, how different life-forms are on Earth, the diverse environments in which life on Earth thrives, there just has to be somewhere else where it has happened - like Belgium.

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Offline ukmicky

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #16 on: 11/03/2006 03:47:26 »
I  agree its a hard one to swallow but in theory completely possible.

Also you cant use the diversity of life on earth and the different environments which life thrives here as an argument for life on other planets because the different species and  ecosystems which they live in is a result of evolution and have got nothing to do with the conditions required for life to begin in its first instance (lifes origin)

Remember they believe all life on earth is related,They believe  all life has the same common ancestor. Which means if they are correct its happened here once in the history of the earth.

Michael
« Last Edit: 11/03/2006 03:49:07 by ukmicky »
 

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #17 on: 11/03/2006 04:23:03 »
quote:
Originally posted by ukmicky

Remember they believe all life on earth is related,They believe  all life has the same common ancestor. Which means if they are correct its happened here once in the history of the earth.

Michael



This does not follow.

Two siblings are related (they may even be identical twins), but that does not mean that they only had a single parent.

What you might say is that it shows they shared the same common ancestors, but that is not the same as saying that they shared the same common ancestor.

(I know – I'm impossible to please :D)



George
 

Offline neilep

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #18 on: 11/03/2006 04:34:57 »

We used to think the planets in our own solar system were unique, now we are discovering that planets are common. In fact very common.  We always use the number of stars as to represent the size of a galaxy and the numbers are phenomenal. Even more phenomenal now is the potential number of planets…now the number is growing exponentially, and now we must multiply it even further by the number of galaxies out there.

I  just cannot accept that life is so rare. I believe that the distant future will be filled with life from all over, we just need to discover it……..And that will come when we are advanced enough to build tools capable of finding it. We are held back by our inabilities.

I suppose there could still be the possibility that despite the age of the Universe that WE are indeed the first forms of life (as we know it) to exist…now what are those odds ?
 

Offline Soul Surfer

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #19 on: 11/03/2006 22:17:57 »
It seems quite likely that simple tife forms started quite quickly and possibly life several times on the earth but it took quite a period odf stability to achive things as complicated as a wooodlouse during the cambrian explosion  so on the whole I reckon that if the materials are there and the conditions are anything like suitable life will start and multicellular life will follow in a few hundred million years but as for inteeligent communicating life capable of building a spaceship wll thats an entirely different matter.
There's a fair chance that that could be a bit of an oddirty because getting musch beond the hunter gatherer social group is quite a barrier

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Offline ukmicky

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #20 on: 13/03/2006 00:03:07 »
quote:
Originally posted by Soul Surfer

It seems quite likely that simple tife forms started quite quickly and possibly life several times on the earth but it took quite a period odf stability to achive things as complicated as a wooodlouse during the cambrian explosion  so on the whole I reckon that if the materials are there and the conditions are anything like suitable life will start and multicellular life will follow in a few hundred million years but as for inteeligent communicating life capable of building a spaceship wll thats an entirely different matter.
There's a fair chance that that could be a bit of an oddirty because getting musch beond the hunter gatherer social group is quite a barrier

Learn, create, test and tell
evolution rules in all things
God says so!


Hi Ian thankyou for the reply

Why is it quite likely that simple life forms started quite quickly and several life forms possibly appeared several times on the earth. (if thats what you mean)

Maybe if they knew what the mechanism for life in the beginning was then maybe there would be some basis to the theory that life started quickly and in many unsuccessful guises but as there is no surviving evidence from the time period it makes me wonder why everybody assumes it. Or am i missing something,it wouldnt be the first time:)



Michael
« Last Edit: 13/03/2006 00:13:55 by ukmicky »
 

Offline Ophiolite

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #21 on: 13/03/2006 00:50:13 »
Given that life appears shortly after the end of the Heavy Bombardment period, it had to start quite quickly. Of course, pan spermia avoids this issue of rapid origin.

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Offline ukmicky

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #22 on: 13/03/2006 02:47:21 »
ophiolite is there any chance of having a person type name for you sir, its so much nicer to talk to someone on a first name basis,much more friendly like :) any name will do you can call yourself tom, dick or even harry if you wish.
____________________
I'm OK with the idea that the soup could have come from space,to me whats more interesting is the spark which ignited the soup and whether or not it happened once or lots of times. If life began from the soup once then to me it says its a luck thing and something that wouldn't have necessarily happened all over our galaxy or the universe meaning we could be practically alone in the universe. Understandably its a thought which most people do not wish to or like to entertain, but its an idea which even though i also don't like much i feel i need to investigate further .

Michael
« Last Edit: 13/03/2006 04:32:42 by ukmicky »
 

another_someone

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #23 on: 13/03/2006 04:57:11 »
quote:
Originally posted by neilep


We used to think the planets in our own solar system were unique, now we are discovering that planets are common. In fact very common.  We always use the number of stars as to represent the size of a galaxy and the numbers are phenomenal. Even more phenomenal now is the potential number of planets…now the number is growing exponentially, and now we must multiply it even further by the number of galaxies out there.

I  just cannot accept that life is so rare. I believe that the distant future will be filled with life from all over, we just need to discover it……..And that will come when we are advanced enough to build tools capable of finding it. We are held back by our inabilities.

I suppose there could still be the possibility that despite the age of the Universe that WE are indeed the first forms of life (as we know it) to exist…now what are those odds ?




We know that there are some rather unusual things about our solar system, and some we know have strongly shaped our life forms, others are less clear what effect they have.

Firstly, we have a significant amount of heavy elements on our planets, without which we could not have a magnetic field, and we could not have a hot core (and hence could not have plate tectonics).  In order to have so much heavy material in the planet, as far as I am aware, we needed to have been attached to a star that had been through two super-nova.

Secondly, our position on the edge of the galaxy has meant that we have relatively less cosmic background radiation than many of the stars deeper inside the galaxy.

These two facts alone would disqualify most others stars in the universe from having a similar life history to our own.  This does not preclude that life might exist in environs very different to our own, but it does preclude a simple assumption that counting the number of planets in the universe necessarily bears any relationship to counting the number of Earth-like planets in the universe.

The other problem is the fairly narrow window life has for forming.  Life on Earth is only about 4 to 5 billion years old, and yet within about another 5 billion years, our galaxy will probably collide with the Andromeda  galaxy, and probably extinguish life on this planet.  Thus the window of opportunity for life on this planet is probably about 10 billion years.



George
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #24 on: 13/03/2006 10:50:53 »
quote:
Secondly, our position on the edge of the galaxy has meant that we have relatively less cosmic background radiation than many of the stars deeper inside the galaxy.


Is that of any great significance? Life on Earth has evolved with a low level of tolerance to radiation. I think it quite plausible that life could eveolve with a much greater tolerance. Even here on Earth, cockroaches & scorpions (to name but 2) have an incredible high tolerance compared to humans.
If I remember correctly, radiation harms the struture of cells. So what if there are creatures that aren't cell/DNA based? I find it quite an arrogant point of view to assume that we work in the only way possible.

I referred to the diversity of life and environments on Earth merely to show that life can exist in very different conditions. Creatures have been found that live around underwater fumeroles and thrive on SO2. That to me says that just because a planet may have a high concentration of to-us toxic gases, it doesn't preclude life being found there.

As for the spark that caused life to begin being a fluke, that is mere conjecture. It is just as possible that given similar start conditions, life is inevitable.

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Re: There could be life captain
« Reply #24 on: 13/03/2006 10:50:53 »

 

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