Why Do Compounds Smell?

Discussion in 'Chemistry' started by OilIsMastery, Jul 8, 2008.

  1. draqon Banned Banned

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    lets not refer to people in an inapprorpriate disrespectful way and focus on the topic ahead of us.
     
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  3. Pandaemoni Valued Senior Member

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    Are there reputable geophysicists still backing the abiotic oil theory? Otherwise, as this is primarily a science forum, shouldn't talk of abiotic oil be limited to "Pseudoscience" or the "Cesspool"?

    I understand why people *want* to believe in abiotic oil, as a counter to peak oil hysteria, but so far as I know, modern geophysicists consider the theory of biological origin of petroleum products to be scientifically established. As I do not have a degree in the field myself, I certainly don't have the expertise to dispute them.

    As for hydrocarbons on Titan, I don't think people dispute that simple hydrocarbons can can have abiogenic origins, though the mechanism is supposed to be quite different than the abiotic oil theory, with Titan's hydrocarbons forming high in its atmosphere as sunlight breaks up methane.

    I am sure it is possible for the mechanisms about which abiotic oil enthusiasts have speculated to function in certain cases, but so far as I know the debate has been held, the data from real oil fields examined, and the theory rejected as applied to the actual Earth. I'm sure a few scientists remain behind the curve on the issue, just as Hoyle hoped the Big Bang theory would be rejected in favor of his "stead state" hypothesis, as Einstein hoped that quantum mechanics would eventually be replaced with a local and deterministic theory, or as many people (Michael Behe, Jonathan Wells et al) hope that evolution will be disproven.

    You can call my faith in the vast majority of geophysicists and their biogenic theory of petroleum "religious" if you like, but I can also call the abiogenic theory "crackpot science."
     
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  5. draqon Banned Banned

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    bacteria can also exist in atmosphere, in clouds.

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  7. Enmos Staff Member

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    Tell that to Oil, he hasn't posted ANYTHING on topic. In stead he prefers to rant about oil.. which has nothing to do with the topic at all.
     
  8. Pandaemoni Valued Senior Member

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    I accept that bacteria can exist in the atmosphere (on Earth certainly, and on Titan in theory), though I don't think that's the prevailing hypothesis for Titan.

    (If it were...wow, that's big news!)
     
  9. OilIsMastery Banned Banned

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    Yes. Every single one.

    "There has not been any 'debate' about the origin of hydrocarbons for over a century. Competent physicists, chemists, chemical engineers and men knowledgeable of thermodynamics have known that natural petroleum does not evolve from biological material since the last quarter of the 19th century." -- Jack F. Kenney, 2002

    That is not the mechanism. Volcanoes are the mechanism. Abiogenic theory does not say sunlight can't melt frozen methane. Your biogenic straw man is pathetic and laughable.
     
  10. OilIsMastery Banned Banned

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    ROFL.:roflmao:

    Every biogenic retard on the face of the earth.

    Human stupidity is indeed infinite.
     
  11. Enmos Staff Member

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    Mods please close this abomination.
    Oil degraded his own thread to yet another abiotic vs biotic rant fest.
     
  12. Enmos Staff Member

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    Who ? I never met anyone that calls carbon biotic.
     
  13. OilIsMastery Banned Banned

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    You don't know what vitalism is but it's what you believe in. Hydrocarbons are abiotic.
     
  14. Enmos Staff Member

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    What does biogenic mean according to you ?
     
  15. OilIsMastery Banned Banned

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    Biogenic theory, like vitalism before it, is the fringe pseudoscientific theory of the religious cult that doesn't believe chemical and physical explanations of the universe belong in astronomy and geology.
     
  16. Enmos Staff Member

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    That's not how I meant it, and that's also not the common definition.

    bi·o·gen·ic
    1. Produced by living organisms or biological processes.

    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/biogenic
     
  17. OilIsMastery Banned Banned

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    Exactly. The periodic table of elements is prior to any biological processes.
     
  18. Sciencelovah Registered Senior Member

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    If you focus on the 'smell' part, it could be put in biology section. His question
    I believe is indeed about chemistry.


    Here is an analogy: What does NaCl (salt) composed of? What does HNO3
    (nitric acid) composed of? Do they have similar characteristics with its
    individual elements (Na, Cl, and H, N, O)? No. Why? Because they are simply
    chemical compounds. Unlike physical compounds, chemical compounds have
    different physical and chemical characteristics from its constituting elements.

    Example of physical compounds, or more appropriately physical mixtures: sand
    + water. If you mix sand and water, you still can distinguish the sand and the
    water individually, because they don't chemically react and change their properties.
    They maintain their individual properties.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2008
  19. Enmos Staff Member

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    I agree.. to be honest I don't know where you got it from that I thought otherwise.
     
  20. Enmos Staff Member

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    But the smell part is at the heart of the question.
    He wants to know why we smell compounds such as H[sub]2[/sub]S and NH[[sub]3[/sub], but not the bare elements that make up these compounds.
    The only explanation is that we evolved to smell these compounds because it was beneficial, while smelling the bare elements was not.
    So it all comes down to evolution, which is Biology.
     
  21. OilIsMastery Banned Banned

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    You have already stated that you think the hydrocarbons in nebulae, planets, moons, meteoroids, and interstellar dust particles miraculously evolve from magic biological processes.
     
  22. Sciencelovah Registered Senior Member

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    I see your point. But then, how can you explain why carbon monoxide (CO) is odorless?
    This is also toxic. Why we don't evolve to smell CO?
     
  23. Enmos Staff Member

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    43,184
    No, I haven't. You must have misunderstood. Point me to the post in which you think I said it and I will clarify.
     

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