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Phosphine is among the stinkiest, most toxic gases on Earth, found in some of the foulest of places, including penguin dung heaps, the depths of swamps and bogs, and even in the bowels of some badgers and fish. This putrid "swamp gas" is also highly flammable and reactive with particles in our atmosphere.
Most life on Earth, specifically all aerobic, oxygen-breathing life, wants nothing to do with phosphine, neither producing it nor relying on it for survival.
Now MIT researchers have found that phosphine is produced by another, less abundant life form: anaerobic organisms, such as bacteria and microbes, that don't require oxygen to thrive. The team found that phosphine cannot be produced in any other way except by these extreme, oxygen-averse organisms, making phosphine a pure biosignature—a sign of life (at least of a certain kind).
The article goes goes on to say that Phosphine has a spectroscopic signature that could be detected as far away as 16 light years by the new James Webb Space Telescope !
originally posted by: roadgravel
A lot of human based assumption. The way things are on Earth may only be a small subset of the universe. But it may be worth a try.