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Category Archives: astrobiology
Space Travel I am still trying to decide whether my admiration for Elon Musk is because of his electric vehicles (S-3-X-Y) or his passion for space exploration. The topic of space exploration leads me to a scientific field I would like to talk about briefly, Astrobiology. Wikipedia defines Astrobiology as “an interdisciplinary scientific field concerned … Continue reading Astrobiology, The Future. → Continue reading → Continue reading
Believe it or not, there are organisms on Earth that can survive unimaginable conditions! These beings are called extremophiles, and they’re nothing short of amazing. One example is the tardigrade, which can live in the most extreme heat, cold, dehydration and radiation. The simple fact that these organisms exist give us reason to believe that … Continue reading Resilient Life on Earth Increases Possibility of Extraterrestrial Life → Continue reading → Continue reading
Discovered in 1970, Archaea might be the least well-known of the three domains of life (the others being Bacteria and Eukaryota), but it is a fascinating and diverse group of organisms and quite possibly the first on Earth. Like bacteria, archaea are unicellular, prokaryotic organisms, meaning that they lack nuclei and other membrane-bound organelles in […] Continue reading → Continue reading
Because the caves, mines, and crevasses on Earth are filled with extremophiles, NASA uses those lifeforms as a guide to its exploration of the universe. The hidden parts of the planet have to make their own way of survival. Surface life has photosynthesis, but subsurface only a tiny fraction of that energy trickles down so … Continue reading A Whole New World! → Continue reading → Continue reading
Liquid water, energy and organic material. According to NASA’s director of planetary science, James Green, these are the major criteria needed for life to form. Green and the rest of his NASA colleagues have also identified four extraterrestrial worlds in our Solar System that hold particular potential for the possibility of life. These worlds encompass one … Continue reading MEET the home of E.T.? → Continue reading → Continue reading
Viruses, microscopic organisms that exist everywhere, consist of genetic material, RNA or DNA that is surrounded by a coat of protein, lipid or glycoprotein. They are classified… Read more “Viruses Are An Option” Continue reading → Continue reading
We know that astronomers look to low-mass star systems for signs of life. But new research from NASA has indicated that these low-mass stars may emit substantial amounts of ultraviolet radiation during their lifetime, hindering if not eliminating the possibility of life on orbiting planets. Of course, astronomers look at terrestrial worlds that lie in … Continue reading Could Ultraviolet rays emitted by stars make planets uninhabitable? → Continue reading → Continue reading
Despite being the most abundant form of life on Earth, viruses and their dormant state known as virions, are often left out the conversation in identifying life outside this place. However, a group of scientists are now calling for this to change. Noting that the term virus is only used six times within NASA’s 250-paged […] Continue reading → Continue reading
Image of hematite tubes from microfossils discovered in the hydrothermal vents We only had to memorize a few dates for Astro 2110, but one of them was how long ago life on Earth began. Memorizing such dates are easy, but I think it’s so interesting to consider how exactly scientists (and our textbook authors!) are … Continue reading Blog #7Continue reading → Continue reading
In the not too distant future, NASA will be sending a probe to one of Jupiter’s moons. I’m sure you can guess from the title of this blog post that the probe will be sent to Europa. Recently, NASA announced the name of this mission: Europa Clipper. It is named after clippers, swift ships that […]Continue reading → Continue reading