Sunday, May 08, 2011

Solar system’s oldest minerals and microbes on the Moon

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. Here's today's news:
g Abodes - In the May-June issue of the journal American Mineralogist, a team of scientists announced the discovery of the new mineral krotite, one of the earliest minerals formed in our solar system. It is the main component of an unusual inclusion embedded in a meteorite (NWA 1934), found in northwest Africa. These objects, known as refractory inclusions, are thought to be the first planetary materials formed in our solar system, dating back to before the formation of Earth and the other planets. See article.
g Life - New research is helping astrobiologists understand the end-Permian extinction, a dramatic biological crisis that profoundly affected the history of life on Earth. However, the new data indicates that this major extinction event may not have been catastrophic for some organisms. See article.
g Message - Recent discussions within the SETI community have thoroughly explored the issue of whether people with access to radio telescopes should send powerful signals to alien civilizations without some process of prior international consultation. In particular, those exchanges have focused on the question of "Active SETI." See article.
g Cosmicus - There has been a long-lived bit of Apollo Moon landing folklore that now appears to be a dead-end affair: microbes on the Moon. See article.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If there is such a thing as democracy, the right to vote on the decision to attempt to contact alien lifeforms should be every human beings prerogative. We have to assume the worst in this situation; there is absolutely no conclusive evidence that aliens will be friendly and compassionate, so logic stands to say that the safest thing to do is not attempt contact at all. If people already accept Steven Hawkins as the most intelligent person on earth, how can anybody be allowed to take this decision into their own hands on the behalf of the whole human race?
We must not allow our whole planet to be put at risk on the foolish, totally baseless assumption that aliens will be friendly and harmless. This could destroy us.