Originally posted by iforget
Nice article about the Tagish meteorite that was found on a frozen lake in Canada. The stuff of life as we know it being produced in bare lumps of
rock orbiting fr out in the solar system and constantly bombarding all of the planets is astounding to me. If space can produce the raw materials
does it also produce that which would utilize them.
You will have to excuse me, comets are my current specialised subject, I have just spent the last few weeks obsessively learning about them.
The Deep Impact Mission is very much worth looking at, comets are, we now know, bodies of rock, dust, and water, but also a lot of air. The report of
the results from the mission actually used the phrase, 'Souffle-like' When they dropped the impactor into Tempel1, it caused a massive plume of
material, containing an estimated 250 million litres of water. Additionally, the probe caught sight of three bodies of water-ice on the surface.
Scientists now believe that radiation may keep the water in a liquid, or near liquid state for millions of years. Some of the meteors that hit Earth
in our early development, may have, before being toasted on it's way through our atmosphere, had living bacteria within the nucleus.
Either way, meteorites brought 2/3 of all the water in our oceans to Earth. Not only that, but a phenomenon called, 'Small comets', which are
estimated to vapourise in our upper atmosphere at a rate of 10 per minute, deposit between 20 and 40 tonnes of water vapour each
, and are
estimated to be adding to the Earth's water levels at a rate of 1 inch every 20,000 years. Additionally, it is interesting to note that these small
comets were first noted due to 'dark spots' appearing on satellite UV imaging reports as anomalous. These clouds seem to be very effective at
filtering out UVs.
I think that it is highly likely that both Rosetta and Osiris will come back with data that will completely change our perception of life on Earth...I
just hope that that is what is driving the Osiris mission, that 'Resource' in the full name has me suspicious that they may be a little more
interested in the Irridium.
Osiris have chosen the asteroid that they have, because there is a 1 in 1800 chance that it'll impact with the Earth in 2185. Which aren't bad
odds, though I shan't be putting a bet on...it wouldn't be decent