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Curiosity Discovers Organic Matter on Mars

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posted on May, 25 2015 @ 12:44 PM
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"The Curiosity rover has found and analysed the first definitively identified piece of organic matter on the surface of Mars.

These organic molecules, consisting primarily of carbon, hydrogen and oxygen atoms, are the building blocks of all life on Earth. However, it is important to note that these molecules may not have come from life forms on Mars -- organic molecules can be created from chemical processes that do not involve life, NASA said. At this stage, there is not enough evidence to determine the provenance of the molecules -- but either way, their presence has meaning."

This of course was whole point of going to Gale Crater, to find and analyze rocks and soil in the hopes of finding evidence of past life. And now they're found it! Organic molecules, which are very different from inorganic material. Having discovered the very thing the mission set out to find, the announcement passed with little, if any, fanfare. The general public has lost interest in the mission. The discovery flipped by me on JPL and was not repeated, so I went elsewhere to read it. So what say you, ATS? Will NASA dole out some more announcements, and kinda-sorta back the public into a gradual realization that Mars had past life? Anyway, here's the full article:

www.cnet.com...




posted on May, 25 2015 @ 12:54 PM
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a reply to: Parthin

Interesting, although isn't this older news? It is from December.

Organics that could be used as the basis of life, or could be the result of living organisms.

So how can it be determined what the source is?



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 01:29 PM
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Is it possible that those organic samples came from earth? After the conditions for life were already forming on earth, possibly an asteroid that collided with Earth sent organic materials into space and then landing on Mars?

Not that I wouldn't be excited to see that life has formed elsewhere, but until we find fossils on another planet it's going to have to default to a more simple explanation.
edit on 25-5-2015 by OhOkYeah because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 01:32 PM
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Slowly, but surely citizens if earth, the TPTB will lead you to some real living organisms in the grand universe.

It's like watching paint dry. But it will happen!




posted on May, 25 2015 @ 01:53 PM
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That article was published in Dec 2014, and of course there's a thread about this already: www.abovetopsecret.com...

In more recent news, Scientists find fixed nitrogen in Martian sediments



– This discovery is a new step in assessing whether Mars is and/or was habitable, since nitrogen is a basic requirement for life as we know it, says Javier Martín-Torres.

It's the researchers in the Mars Science Laboratory Mission Science Team, in which Javier Martín-Torres is included, who have discovered the solid forms of nitrogen on Mars.

– The presence of nitrogen-bearing compounds in Martian soil means the existence of a source of biochemically accessible nitrogen, and suggest that it could be a nitrogen cycle sometime along the evolution of Mars as a planet, he says.



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 04:29 PM
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I suspect that pretty much every element of the periodic table is able to be found somewhere on the martian surface.

If they would just say they were found together as molecules, then you've got something.

Unless, of course, they use the same arguments as they did against the viking probe results.

Which they probably will, because...

SCREW YOU MARTIANS! EARTH! YEAH! WHOO!!



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 05:53 PM
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Did not see it on JPL until I checked today. Although this may seem undramatic, it is an important confirmation of the existence of organic material on another planet.
a reply to: TommyD1966



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 05:58 PM
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a reply to: Parthin




Although this may seem undramatic, it is an important confirmation of the existence of organic material on another planet.

Organic material is not the same thing as organic matter. No organic material has been found. Organic compounds have been.

Titan has methane lakes, an organic compound.



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 07:12 PM
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the whole planet is organic isn't it?



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 08:24 PM
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I understand, but don't you think this is exciting? I mean, what else could be left on a planet so long after everything died? This is what we came to find. Not finding organic molecules in a place when open water existed for at least millions of years would mean that life probably never existed on Mars, finding them means that it probably did.
a reply to: Phage



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 08:29 PM
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a reply to: Parthin

I'll give you an "interesting", perhaps "very interesting." Not exciting.


I mean, what else could be left on a planet so long after everything died?
It does not necessarily have anything to do with anything ever having been alive.


Not finding organic molecules in a place when open water existed for at least millions of years would mean that life probably never existed on Mars, finding them means that it probably did.
No. On both. Unless you drop the "probablies."
edit on 5/25/2015 by Phage because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 08:46 PM
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originally posted by: Parthin
I understand, but don't you think this is exciting? I mean, what else could be left on a planet so long after everything died? This is what we came to find. Not finding organic molecules in a place when open water existed for at least millions of years would mean that life probably never existed on Mars, finding them means that it probably did.
a reply to: Phage



As interesting as the find is, it's a bit of a stretch to infer that finding these compounds "probably" means that there was life in Mars' past. From the source article-

However, it is important to note that these molecules may not have come from life forms on Mars -- organic molecules can be created from chemical processes that do not involve life, NASA said. At this stage, there is not enough evidence to determine the provenance of the molecules --


There are several reasons these compounds can exist where they were found. There's also a huge difference between finding organic molecules and organic compounds. It's not as if they found fossils or anything else remotely substantial that could verify definitive traces of past life. It certainly warrants further investigation though and that alone is interesting. There's nothing to be gained from forcing attributions where they don't belong though.



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 09:25 PM
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What you are saying is a lot like seeing a glass of water, and saying that is evidence the glass once contained ice. Organic matter in no way infers life.

Organic matter is everywhere.

journals.cambridge.org...



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 09:50 PM
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a reply to: OccamsRazor04
True.

But when they find Martian poop, it will most definitely be evidence that there once was a Martian butthole.



posted on May, 25 2015 @ 10:16 PM
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a reply to: Farlander

It would not be the find of the century, it would be the single greatest discovery in the history of humanity. When the actual proof is there, it will be incredible. I believe the next rover has a lot of instruments for this purpose.



posted on May, 26 2015 @ 12:26 AM
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yawn



posted on May, 26 2015 @ 02:00 AM
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The term "organic" is a bit misleading. The distinction between organic and inorganic chemistry is simply that organic chemistry involves carbon and inorganic does not. There are organic chemicals that are not part of living systems and there a plenty of inorganic ones that are.

It's kind of sloppy to infer that the presence of carbon points to life on mars. There's going to be carbon compounds everywhere.



posted on May, 26 2015 @ 04:35 AM
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originally posted by: mrwiffler
The term "organic" is a bit misleading. The distinction between organic and inorganic chemistry is simply that organic chemistry involves carbon and inorganic does not. There are organic chemicals that are not part of living systems and there a plenty of inorganic ones that are.

It's kind of sloppy to infer that the presence of carbon points to life on mars. There's going to be carbon compounds everywhere.

Organic compounds are hydrocarbons (as well as the more complex molecules that contain other elements), and they aren't everywhere. I'm not aware of any on the Moon, for example. A lot of asteroids and meteoroids are carbonaceous, but aren't known to contain any organics.

While organic compounds don't automatically point to life, they are a good indication that the forming blocks of life are present. Curiosity had been looking at other signs of past habitability on Mars, including the environment and presence of water. Organic molecules is just one part of the jigsaw puzzle.
edit on 26-5-2015 by wildespace because: (no reason given)



posted on May, 26 2015 @ 05:08 AM
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a reply to: wildespace


There are carbon compounds on the moon and in asteroids.

The moon: ntrs.nasa.gov...

Asteroids: adsabs.harvard.edu...

I still think it is dopey to get all excited about a few bits of carbon. It makes sense that the "building blocks of life" are going to be strewn throughout the cosmos. They're just chemicals...matter....and it's everywhere.



posted on May, 26 2015 @ 06:50 AM
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Can folks please stop getting excited about the word "Organic". That term in chemistry is used to apply to the subset of chemisty that involves the element Carbon.....that's all! The reason the term is used is because life is dependant on the chemistry of Carbon, massively.

Organic chemistry does NOT mean life.
Organic chemistry DOES mean chemical reactions of carbon.

Some of the "organic" molecules are very simple, a little energy and they will form.

Now put together a few billion molecules in the form of a living creature living on Mars, now that will be a game changer.

Just as big a game changer would be fossils on Mars. Given the apparent sedimentary nature of the rocks on Mars if there ever was life then there should be fossils. However, this would require a huge does of luck. Imagine a rover being dropped into the Arizona desert wandering up to a rock and discovering a fossil.......not very likely !!!! Even though the earth has been teeming with life for 3 billion years !




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