Life Elsewhere

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by tetra, Mar 5, 2001.

?

Do you think, logically and not belief-wise, that life exists in the universe(s)?

  1. Yes. Absolutley. Theres almost no way for it to not exist.

    20 vote(s)
    100.0%
  2. No, we are not 100% positive (which is statistically impossible) that there is life so it doesnt exi

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. tetra Hello Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    144
    I recently pondered about life elsewhere....

    Theres so much evidence that it exists, right? So it does right? We can safley say it does, right?

    I thought this through many times over, and came to the conclusion that the people who claim that all of the evidence is contaminated are just afraid of change.

    We KNOW that it exists.

    So how about a celebration?
     
  2. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  3. Mons Formicarum Registered Member

    Messages:
    6
    It's a big universe...

    We already know that the universe does not revolve around the Earth. In recent years, we have seen many indications that show that life does not revolve around humanity, or any other arguably thinking beings on this planet. But daily, we are assaulted on all sides with the myriad diversity of our world's lifeforms, and are constantly amazed by the tenacity of life even under the harshest conditions.
    Very soon, either microfossil evidence from Mars, or perhaps, great big still-living things beneath the ice of Europa will show us that life is not indigenous to our world.
     
  4. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  5. Bobby Lee member Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    143
    Welcome to ST ELSEWHERE?

    Bob
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2001
  6. Google AdSense Guest Advertisement



    to hide all adverts.
  7. Javier Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    56
    Well,the terms of the poll are a little extremist:we don t totally understand yet from a biochemical point of view what is to be alive,and therefore how improbable is to get from the general uniformity of the known extraterrestrial universe in terms of phisical laws,chemical elements,zones of adecuate temperature,etc,to the particular(in the sense of having life) history that the earth passed according to its spatial features;
    but given the (no,astronomical would be redundant)colossal amount of stars out there,and the fact that planets seem to be quite common(this adds another prerrequisite in order to the odds of the particular case)is kind of having billions and billions of chances to countermeasure whichever the improbability may be...
     
  8. josharuni Registered Member

    Messages:
    21
    life is different.

    Without question, there is life elswhere in the universe. there could be carbon based lifeforms or metallic life forms. But life always exists in the strangest places. Consider the micro-organisms living deep inside the ocean, where temperatures reach that of the earths core, feeding on sulfur and other chemicals considered poison to terrestrial lifeforms. The question is: do we know what we are looking for? How do we know that the lifeforms we are searching for will be bacterium or even carbon based? We might be looking in the wrong direction. Life is anything that reproduces itself. there could be lifeforms out there made of non carbon based compounds, perhaps acidic or metallic. they may not use DNA as their reproductive foundation, it might be something totally different, out of the box.
     
  9. wet1 Wanderer Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    8,616
    Life? Out there?

    There are indications that planet formation may not go as we had originally thought and that our solar system may indeed be rarer than we had originally thought it to be. Original thinking was that our system was nothing unusual and at the very least depressingly common.

    In more recent photos obtained by the HST it is begining to look like it may be possible that planet formation can happen much faster. There seems not to be the millions of years for planets to form that was believed to be. When a star forms out of dust and matter and achieves ignition, the star starts to emit light. The light starts to push the dust away and disappates the material needed to form the planets on a long term basis. This means there are less places for life to be if this is so. The numbers speculated to exist may be far smaller than than hoped.

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!



    I'm sure that some form of life exists. Intellegent? Not so sure about that. After all life can be said to exist if bacteria are present. And bacteria is much more likely than intellegence to come to be.

    Add to that: it could be we simply could not or would not recognise life in any other form than what we know to exist. You don't see NASA pushing out probes to see if there is anything other than life as we know it. Being as said life needs food, air, and water to exist.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2001
  10. Success_Machine Impossible? I can do that Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    365
    We have to assume that life exists

    We have to assume that life exists elsewhere, since earth alone has millions of species. A planet with adequate conditions promptly produces life IMO. Now we could argue what those conditions are, debate the Drake equation, etc., but after all that discussion we will end up just having to assume it exists and live without the proof. We will never make contact. Here's why:

    - passive radio beacons will not be detected because of the inverse square law of radiation, they will be many orders of magnitude too weak.

    - lasers must be aimed with an accuracy of 1 billionth of an arcsecond to target the inner orbit of a nearby star. Less accuracy and it could miss the entire solar system. The beam will also become wider with distance so therefore must be focused with the same accuracy, 1 billionth of an arcsecond, otherwise the power level (watts per square meter) at the receiving end will be far too weak to detect.

    - a true beacon would have to split a single laser beam millions of ways, sending each beam to a different star system. Each beam would require optical tracking systems 6 orders of magnitude more accurate than those of the HUbble Space Telescope, capable of aiming and confining the beam within 1 billionth of an arcsecond. Since the laser beam is split so many times the original beam would have to be proportionally more powerful, perhaps on the order of trillions of watts. The beacon would have to be maintained and operate continuously for however long it takes, perhaps thousands or 10's of thousands of years before giving up hope for a response from a particular star.

    - detecting an alien beacon would be equally improbable.

    - an optical telescope capable of seeing city lights on a planet 74 lightyears away would have to have a diameter of 414.7 kilometers. The number of stars theoretically within this distance of Earth is about 800,000, and most have not been discovered yet. Such a telescope is impossible to build currently, although optical interferometry is in the works with much less ambitious goals under NASA's Origins Program. None of the planned projects could see artificial light sources on another planet even in theory.

    - interstellar travel is impossible. The simplest problem to define is survival of the spacecraft under constant bombardment from micrometeorites. At any reasonable speed, a tiny 10 gram meteorite would impact with the energy of many tons of TNT. No spacecraft could be built to survive and still carry enough propellant to get it up to speed.

    So you see, whether alien life exists out there we will never know. We must assume it does, just as life exists on Earth. But we need to understand that life is both isolated and confined to its native solar system. Perhaps this is a temporary condition and there is some higher plane of existence, but that is a taboo subject for the science community. I tend to think there is but do not pretend to understand it.
     
  11. wet1 Wanderer Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    8,616
    Today and tomarrow

    I still have hope for the advancement of technology to give us the keys and the access to the stars. I read the article (page) that you had posted of the link to Canada. I was amazed at the damage portrayed in the article. And to think this was caused by munitions!

    The Drake equation is relatively useless because it calls for speculation to input the necessary data to get an answer. Garbage in garbage out thing. We have no idea how many star systems have planets much less how many could or would support life.

    Yes splitting a beam to send multiple signals decreases the strength. Why use a laser? Surely somewhere along the line we will learn enough to be able to affect stars as much as we can affect our own planet now. The capability is there for us to destroy all life on the planet now. It is a distinct possibility that we may in the future be able to cause a star to be the beacon. And should we be able to do so then a star in another system would be the answer to a beacon. It eliminated the need to aim with any accuracy or any worry of is it strong enough. If the condition was stable it might only require a check up now and then.

    As much as I admire the SETI folks I don't think radio is going to be the answer to finding life or communicating if intelligent life is found. Just to many variables. Such as length of time between messages and is the receiving station at the level of tech necessary to hear what's there. But at least they are giving it a shot.

    There are plans in the works to increase the size of the telescopes in space. While it is not tested and true (so to say) tech it is indeed possible as the theory is sound. But we will have to move the scopes out farther from the earth so that temperature and gravity have less effect. There are also plans that if such should come to be that multiple scopes capable of linking for vla (very large arrays) could be spaced across the solar system for better parallax (stereoscopic) viewing and resolution.

    You are correct in a manner that no spacecraft built could carry to propellant needed. But that is to carry a spaceship at light speed. We are at present bumbling around in the solar system with probes. True, this is a lot different than interstellar travel but here is where we gain the experience make longer voyages. Light sail tech is currently being tested to prove the theory workable. Here is a cheap method to move about the solar system without the need of a motor. Slow it is, but we had much the same to move about the earth's surface at one time.

    While kinetic energy of micrometeorites is tremendous it has to hit to do damage. This may be the key to eliminate such disaster.
    I don't know what it will take but time is one of those things that bring changes. We have a lot of room to use in the solar system first. Resources too for that matter. In doing so we will gain experience in how to deal with such. Today's impossibility will be tomorrow’s everyday ordinary. So have faith, if we survive long enough it is possible. If we don't then it doesn't matter.

    Finally, I just can not accept in my heart that there is no hope. No bell rings to this thought. Call it blind faith, utter hope, whatever. I won't accept that there is no hope.
     
  12. papa_smirf Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    61
    The Beginning

    This is huge. Many months back I discovered of these plans and this forum has reminded me.

    Soon we will begin humanities inevitable reach into the cosmos. The artical which i read had to do with robotic colonies on the moon. Mark W. Tilden, a robot building genious (look him up on a search engine, you might be suprised), has begun negotiation between him and a private company on the feasability of selling moon rocks. There plan is to send 100's of robots designed by Tilden to the moon, while there they'll collect rock and dust to send back to Earth to sell to the general consumer. This is just the beginning though. Tilden is hoping that this could be the first step for many generations of robots to be sent to the moon, alowing a station to be built there. The first series would clear a circular area of debris such as rocks and dust which would be sold on Earth. These robots would use legs because of the rough terrain. Once the area is relatively clear, larger wheeled robots could be sent with large solar panels. These bots could self arrange themselves into a solar array for the power needs of a future station. I don't know how much sense this made since I'm working from a vague memory of the article. I'll try to find the original so that you can read it yourself.
     
  13. Chagur .Seeker. Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,235
    Just imagine ...

    That there's no life out there;
    That there's no 'other' earth out there;
    That the only place our species can survive is on earth;
    That the universe doesn't give a damn;
    That we're alone, alone, alone;
    That we're meaningless ...

    What difference would it make?
     
  14. kmguru Staff Member

    Messages:
    11,757
    Those who imagined we are alone are told they have no imagination. To really imagine the vastness of cosmos you have no choice but to imagine a simple premise:

    The universe is teaming with Life

    It is better to err with the past than the future....
     
  15. Chagur .Seeker. Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,235
    Believe what you want, kmguru
    But that doesn't address, let alone answer, the question I asked
    Chagur
     
  16. kmguru Staff Member

    Messages:
    11,757
    Oh! the answer....let me get it from another thread:


    "Let me offer another view. Talking about it will help NASA get some funding. Kids will study science in stead of LAW (we have enough locusts...sorry lawyers here...). Who knows, some of those kids may solve some prickly problems in due course. "

    So, I say...let us talk.... imagine...from imagination comes vision...from vision comes solution....

    I could ofcourse go on...but you have the answer right in the family...ask any grand children....
     
  17. Bebelina Feminazi Messiah Valued Senior Member

    Messages:
    4,997
    Of course life exists!

    How can anybody doubt that today???

    Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image!

     
  18. Chagur .Seeker. Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    2,235
    Bebelina That has nothing to do with the question I asked (see my 06/15/01 post "Just imagine" on this thread) which kmguru is dancing around but is unwilling to address directly.

    It's almost as though he's afraid that if he admitted that Santa Claus did not exist, the 'children' would be irrepairably harmed - So just keep lying to them.
     
  19. papa_smirf Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    61
    I think you're absolutely right Chagur. It really doesn't matter whether life exists on mars, Alpha Centari, or elsewhere. It also doesn't matter whether there is any meaning to our existence. This might be fine for you and me but for others it doesn't necessarily sit as well. Having the belief that there's life elsewhere, that we're not just a freak accident, and even a belief in a devine being gives many people the pseudo strength to live in the harsh reality which is our universe. So I say evolve, and let the pieces lie where they may.
     

Share This Page