Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Perchlorate in Martian soil and astrobioethics

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. You may notice that this and future entries are shorter than usual; career, family and book deal commitments have forced me to cut back some of my projects. Now, here's today's news:
g Abodes -Recent news reports have speculated that the Phoenix lander has discovered perchlorate on Mars. While Phoenix scientists admit that perchlorate salts may be present, they disagree with the assumption that the presence of such an oxidant makes the soil inhospitable for life. See article.
g Life - Deep in the hinterlands of the Republic of the Congo lies a secret ape paradise that is home to 125,000 western lowland gorillas, researchers announced this week. See article.
g Message -The spectral approach is a universal tool of both astronomical observations and SETI. Furthermore, it has a clear physical meaning – a spectrometer finds the energy distribution of photons, in human sensing it is color and pitch. Under the hypothesis on identity of physical laws in our part of universe, it may be proposed that spectrometry also are using by those aliens, who know radio and lead theirs own SETI, too. See article.
g Aftermath - Have you ever wanted to put a new word in the dictionary? Now's your chance: say hello to astrobioethics, a branch of ethics involving the implications of life science in space. See article.

Honoring the Past, Inspiring the Future

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