Possible Marker of Life Spotted on Venus

Is anyone, or thing, out there?
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fred8615
Posts: 281
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 12:29 pm
Location: Sorrento, LA

Possible Marker of Life Spotted on Venus

Post by fred8615 »

An international team of astronomers today announced the discovery of a rare molecule — phosphine — in the clouds of Venus. On Earth, this gas is only made industrially or by microbes that thrive in oxygen-free environments. Astronomers have speculated for decades that high clouds on Venus could offer a home for microbes — floating free of the scorching surface but needing to tolerate very high acidity. The detection of phosphine could point to such extra-terrestrial “aerial” life.

“When we got the first hints of phosphine in Venus’s spectrum, it was a shock!”, says team leader Jane Greaves of Cardiff University in the UK, who first spotted signs of phosphine in observations from the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope (JCMT), operated by the East Asian Observatory, in Hawaiʻi. Confirming their discovery required using 45 antennas of the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile, a more sensitive telescope in which the European Southern Observatory (ESO) is a partner. Both facilities observed Venus at a wavelength of about 1 millimetre, much longer than the human eye can see — only telescopes at high altitude can detect it effectively.

Read more: https://www.eso.org/public/news/eso2015/
Frederick J. Barnett
"Someone's got to take the responsibility if the job's going to get done!! Do you think that's easy?!" Gregory Peck - The Guns Of Navarone

Christopher K.
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Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Possible Marker of Life Spotted on Venus

Post by Christopher K. »

The latest commentary on this intriguing development will be included near the conclusion of the HRPO Remote Discussion "How to View Mars" this Friday the 25th at 6:30pm. As with all evocative pronouncements, measured excitement should join a respectful call for confirmation.

More information:
http://hrpo.lsu.edu/programs/special.html

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