Mind Matters Natural and Artificial Intelligence News and Analysis

CategoryExtraterrestrial life

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Celestial digital art, Venus planet and galaxies in outer space

New Analysis Casts Doubt on Claims for Life on Venus

The newer study agrees that the composition of Venus’s atmosphere is unusual but not that it is evidence for life.

A new study throws cold water (vapor?) on an earlier paper that suggested that aerial life forms could exist in Venus’s massive cloud cover: Researchers from the University of Cambridge used a combination of biochemistry and atmospheric chemistry to test the ‘life in the clouds’ hypothesis, which astronomers have speculated about for decades, and found that life cannot explain the composition of the Venusian atmosphere. Any life form in sufficient abundance is expected to leave chemical fingerprints on a planet’s atmosphere as it consumes food and expels waste. However, the Cambridge researchers found no evidence of these fingerprints on Venus. University of Cambridge, “No signs (yet) of life on Venus” at ScienceDaily (June 14, 2022) The paper is open access.…

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Champagne Pool zone thermale Wai-O-Tapu en Nouvelle-Zélande

Earth’s Weirdest Life Forms Show That ET Life Is Possible

Whether it’s living in boiling water, breathing sulfur, or eating radiation, we’ve found life forms that do just that right here on Earth

Astrobiologists debate whether extraterrestrial life would be a lot like life on Earth or quite different. There may be a middle position… A number of life forms on Earth are just so weird that they demonstrate that life can come into existence — and stay in existence — in a variety of ways we never thought possible: ● A giant undersea meadow recently turned out to be one single plant – the world’s largest. Posidonia australis, a seagrass, kept all the genes from both parents so it reproduces by sprouting rhizomes, not by mating. Futurism (June 2, 2022) ● It’s not clear what The Blob at the Paris Zoo even is, in scientific terms. It has 720 sexes, no limbs,…

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Jupiter's moon Europa in front of the planet Jupiter

Why Scientists Think There Might Be Life on Europa

Jupiter’s moon Europa, somewhat smaller than Earth’s moon, may have surface water and organic chemicals, researchers say

Recent evidence suggests that Europa’s icy shell may have pockets of liquid water: “Because it’s closer to the surface, where you get interesting chemicals from space, other moons, and the volcanoes of Io, there’s a possibility that life has a shot if there are pockets of water in the shell,” says study author Dustin Schroeder, a geophysics expert at Stanford University in a statement. “If the mechanism we see in Greenland is how these things happen on Europa, it suggests there’s water everywhere.” Elizabeth Gamillo, “Europa’s Icy Shell May Be Habitable for Life” at Smithsonian Magazine (April 20, 2022) The paper is open access. NASA has noted the likely presence of organic chemicals as well: For Europa to be potentially…