Skip to comments.Ingredient for life detected in comet dust
Posted on 08/17/2009 9:39:38 PM PDT by AKSurprise
"Showing that the ingredients for life in the universe may be distributed far more widely than previously thought, scientists have found traces of a key building block of biology in dust snatched from the tail of a comet.
Scientists at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., have uncovered glycine, the simplest amino acid and a vital compound necessary for life, in a sample from the comet Wild 2. The sample was captured by NASA's Stardust spacecraft, which dropped it into the Utah desert in 2006.
"By detecting glycine, we now know that comets could have delivered amino acids to the early Earth, contributing to the ingredients that life originated from," said Jamie Elsila, a research scientist at Goddard"
""This is yet another piece of evidence that the ingredients for life are ubiquitous. These building blocks of life are everywhere," said Carl Pilcher, director of NASA's Astrobiology Institute, which helped fund the research. Pilcher said the discovery strengthens the argument that life in the universe may be common, rather than rare."
"Just having the right materials is no guarantee that life will begin, of course, any more than leaving a hammer, nails and planks lying around will cause a barn to rise. Brownlee pointed out that many of the 30,000 or so meteorites that have been found on Earth bear traces of organic compounds, and there also is evidence that they were once warm and wet, all necessary conditions for life. Yet none of the meteorites has shown any evidence of life forms.
"They are all failed places where life could have arisen," Brownlee said.
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
Yet life isn't.
re: comet dust
reminds me of “Remember oh Man that thou art dust, and to dust you will return.”
So, life may have begin in outer space. So how did come into existence in outer space. Advocates of panspermia just push the origin of life back a step or two. Still doesn’t explain origin of life.
I wonder why He decided to put this “ingredient” on a comet.
Moral of the article: Don’t eat yellow snowballs.
I’ve always found that it takes way more faith in Evolution to believe that the Earth evolved outside the hand of God, then it would ever take to believe that a benevolent and Loving God created the earth with it’s myriad of interconnected processes.
NASA is trying to justify their budget IMO
SciFi this is?
“This is yet another piece of evidence that the ingredients for life are ubiquitous. These building blocks of life are everywhere,”
Well Duh... so the molecules in living things are no different than the molecules in, say, a state park.... Wonder what’s missing?
Could it be the Holy Spirit???
THIS is what I was talking about in this post:
New land is still being created every day in slow lava flows. Earth is a system, (planet,) within a system, (solar) within a system, (galaxy,) within a system, (universe.)
NOTHING disappears. That is the first law of physics. It might change forms. Water is, after all, made up of gases. There might be fresh water left deep underground.
It is also possible that deep ocean trenches would deepen even further, and with it, the creation of many new life forms. New life forms are created continuously in places we have never seen and some in places we see every day but fail to notice.
Creation is a wonderful thing. It works. ALL of it. Life struggles to survive no matter what the conditions. It cant be uncreated.
Everything that is here is everywhere because that is the way the system works. I always chuckle when science finds earth stuff in the remotest reaches of the universe and are surprised, even amazed, by it. But that is a story for a different day.
77 posted on Monday, August 17, 2009 7:55:05 PM by MestaMachine (One if by land, 2 if by sea, 3 if by Air Force 1.)
If only more understood the full meaning of that sentence, there would be less argument between evos and creos.
They have the most frequent flier miles.
My prediction is that we will find even more advanced materials that originated on Earth and have been spashed into space by impact or explosion.
We are the only place known to have life, and tons and tons of the building blocks for life.
Sounds like a contaminated sample.
It’s everywhere. Comets pick it up and nothing needs to put it there. Life abounds in this universe in one form or another at the micro level. And yes, I believe in GOD. When someone, anyone can create life fron NO life, I might reconsider. But it hasn’t happened, won’t happen ever.
GOD=LIFE. There is nothing random about life, only the form it takes. And even that is not random in the true sense. Life forms at the micro level have the infinite capability to adapt to whatever environment they are in and work together as a unit to build larger forms. That simply can not be an accident because it signifies intelligence.
I think He put the ingredients for popsicle sticks on comets, too. Too bad there's no one to assemble them into popsicles, let alone eat them.
No. Just...no. That simply is not true.
As silly as that post was, the point is no one needs to assemble anything. It assembles itself into whatever it needs to be wherever it is.
Or, this comet ie: chuck of ice, originated from earth.
Uh huh. I throw shovel fulls of dirt up in the air all the time, and darn if it doesn't assemble itself into a new Mercedes.
You have to know the magic word. Whatsa matta you?
actually, there is so much radiation etc. in space, that no life can exist just ‘randomly floating around’. So this comet did not “pick it up” from anywhere, It contains it in the water (ice) it contains. And because this comet is in orbit around this sysem, it’s likely originated from earth to begin with.
it's 'happy birthday wife!' didn't you know?
I recall a professional talk (geology types) where a guy from NASA talked about this - or similar. (Where they collected the dust from the comet impact).
I forget what all he talked about and how he proved it, but he made the strong case that the amazing things they found in the dust where from earth. BUT - I think this raised a whole new question of where the comets originate from in the first place. I THINK he made the case that comets were created near earth. I could be wrong - crappy memory. But they were using the comet information in trying to “look back in time” as it were to what earth was like earlier on in its creation.
That is not true. What does a living thing have to be to qualify for your definition of life?
I don’t think it’s reasonably possible life originated in space or traveled here from another world or moon “seeding” the Earth. Amino acids aren’t life. They’re a vital, HUGE, and by our mathematics, seemingly impossible step in life’s direction. That they do come from space where actual life in Earth terms can’t exist reinforces the notion we are the product of stars, and that is consistent with many years of observation. It’s consistent both with Biblical and secular world views and should inspire at least some awe from everyone regardless of their perspective.
It is hard though to pay attention to these nice diversions when we, and all of humanity, are up against the Chicago Machine and the rest of the human propensity to tyranny which, absent divine intervention, has the capacity to destroy everything good we’ve made in the minutest fraction of a nanosecond in cosmological time if it gets its way. Let’s beat what everyone agrees is the enemy so we can debate the other issues.
If God exists, He requires we first help ourselves. If He doesn’t, we’d sure better help ourselves. We’d damned well better in either event.
Glycine and several other simple amino acids are not necessarily evidence of life. They can be synthesized quite easily in the laboratory or in nature under certain conditions.
There is no intelligent life on earth. This has been proven beyond any doubt by the election of Barack Hussein Obama.
“... have uncovered glycine, the simplest amino acid and a vital compound necessary for life, ...”
I’ll never understand how it is that people insist we know enough about science to believe life MUST be based on Carbon.
“I’ll never understand how it is that people insist we know enough about science to believe life MUST be based on Carbon.”
I only know what I read and the universe might surprise us yet, but as I understand it, the only element that comes close to carbon in forming complex compounds is silicon. Even there, there are problems and limitations.
To quote from LIFE EVERYWHERE by David Darling (Basic Books, 2001), page 13:
“But on closer examination, silicon’s biological credentials become less convincing. The biggest stumbling block seems to be the extreme ease with which silicon combines with oxygen. Wherever astronomers have looked — in meteorites, in the interstellar medium, in the outer layers of cool stars — they’ve found molecules of *oxidized* silicon (silicon dioxide and silicates) but no evidence at all of substances that might serve as the building blocks of a silicon biochemistry. The silicon analogues of hydrocarbons — long chains of hydrogen-silicon compounds — are nowhere to be found.”
On the next page, Darling goes on to say that:
“The door may still be ajar to the possibility of silicon-based biology — and for other novel biologies for that matter. But the fact remains that carbon really has no serious rival in the minds of most researchers who are actively seeking out extraterrestrial life.”
He quotes the Harvard biologist and Nobel laureate George Wald as saying: “I tell my students, learn your biochemistry here and you will be able to pass examinations on Arcturus.”
Again, the universe may surprise us, but it looks as though the current thinking among the experts is that only carbon is versatile enough in forming bonds to serve as a viable basis for biochemistry.
Bassez  endorses a shock wave or a high pressure environment at depth in marine hydrothermal systems on earth to trigger prebiotic syntheses. Apolar molecules in high pressure environments would cause precursor molecules of CH4, H2, N2, H2S and CO2 with metal catalysts to form the building blocks of life. In 1959, Elpiner and Sokolskaya  experimentally showed that shock waves in the presence of water, ammonia and carbon monoxide can produce prebiotic agents such as formaldehyde. Recently, meteorite impact modelling using rail gun instrumentation have shown that shock waves can polymerize amino acids to produce peptides . Would volcanic shock do likewise?
God has made a fascinating universe.
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