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Looking for life in a different way

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posted on Jan, 25 2014 @ 12:37 AM
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I was wondering if there are other ways to look for life on other planets. Not just photographic evidence.

Civilisations give off tell-tale signs, not only methane on Mars, but also heat signatures, IR signatures, radio transmissions, etc
If we looked at a map of Mars or the Moon for example, could we see areas which were hotter than others, or could we see white spots where the IR is more intense? What signs would someone be looking for and are these datasets available for the Moon and Mars?

I realise that temperature, pressure and other datasets are available, but I was reading somewhere that the temperatures are too general and are averaged daily and nightly temperatures which are virtually useless for hunting for signs of life.

What we would need is a detailed map of the surface with areas which are hotter or colder being highlighted. Of course, I am sure NASA have thought of this too and IF there is a huge conspiracy to keep us in the dark, then these datasets would not be available if they showed any evidence of life - either underground or on the surface.

Any thoughts on this?

edit on 25 Jan 2014 by qmantoo because: add link




posted on Jan, 25 2014 @ 03:26 AM
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reply to post by qmantoo
 


Both the Moon and Mars have been imaged in infrared. Google it.

Google Mars has "Global Maps" of both daytime and night time infrared, quite detailed.

However, what about searching for life on exoplanets? And what if most life out there are not civilizations but colonies of germs and algae?
edit on 25-1-2014 by wildespace because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 25 2014 @ 03:35 AM
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I think the best way would be different kinds spectroscopy for different none naturally occurring molecules. Methane is not a good example because it can occur with out life. Titan for example is full of Methane, But Cyclical hydrocarbons such as benzene would be a good indicator. You could also compare the age of the star and the radionuclides present and if there are radio nuclides present that do not have a half lives 10Xs longer than the age of the star than it is almost dead give away of intelligent life.



posted on Jan, 25 2014 @ 02:28 PM
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Years ago on ATS, I once referenced a paper titled Astrobiologfy: The Case for Venus by Geoffrey Landis (science fiction author and NASA researcher) that discussed analysis of the atmosphere of Venus that suggested the possibility of life existing in the clouds of Venus.

I can't find the article anymore, except if I want to pay for it (the old free links seem to be dead), but in it, Landis cited works by Dirk Schulze-Makuch and David Grinspoon that showed how "inequilibriums" of O2, H2, H2S, and SO2 have been found in the clouds of Venus, and those inequilibriums can suggest life processes. It is thought that these "inequilibriums" (imbalances of what the expected ratios of these compounds should be) may be caused by life processes.

The paper does say that other NON-life forces may be at work there, but the point is that life processes can possibly be found by analyzing ratios of elements and compounds in a planet's atmosphere. And astrobiology researchers ARE using methods such as this to detect potential signs of life elsewhere.


edit on 1/25/2014 by Soylent Green Is People because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 02:38 AM
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However, what about searching for life on exoplanets? And what if most life out there are not civilizations but colonies of germs and algae?
Apparently there is value in searching for germs and algae too. It would at least show some kind of life and once we found some, then we could all get used to the idea of the larger lifeforms which some of us believe already exist out there.

Yes, the IR mapping already show blooms of algae in the seas and lakes on Earth and would show energy plants if there were any made by aliens on other planets - but only if the maps are in sufficient detail and not averaged out. I dont know about you, but my energy usage goes up and down during the day and so I suppose any IR snapshot image looking at my house would probably not show much when my heating was off or when my heated swimming pool was empty. (Although I dont live in a house and I dont have a swimming pool)

However, having said that IR maps are available, a 500m/pixel map is not going to show where the aliens are hiding is it? :-)


The Astrogeology Program of the U.S. Geological Survey is pleased to announce the availability of a reduced-resolution version of the Clementine near-infrared (NIR) mosaic. Processed to 500 m/pixel spatial resolution, an ISIS cube version of this multispectral mosaic can be downloaded in east and west hemispheres (70° N to 70° S) here on the USGS Astrogeology Research Program web site.


Soylent -

The paper does say that other NON-life forces may be at work there, but the point is that life processes can possibly be found by analyzing ratios of elements and compounds in a planet's atmosphere. And astrobiology researchers ARE using methods such as this to detect potential signs of life elsewhere
But.. are they doing that for the Moon and Mars? Certainly, they have done that as far as water is concerned and I have seen a breakdown of the gases on Mars, but unless folks know what it all means we are going to be staying in the dark about whether it means anything scientifically significant as far as ET and his friends are concerned.

You can say that I am sure they would tell us if they found anything but I am not really so sure they would, due to pressure from the scientific community and losing their own good reputation as a credible scientist.
edit on 26 Jan 2014 by qmantoo because: elements and gases



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 09:27 AM
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qmantoo
Soylent -

The paper does say that other NON-life forces may be at work there, but the point is that life processes can possibly be found by analyzing ratios of elements and compounds in a planet's atmosphere. And astrobiology researchers ARE using methods such as this to detect potential signs of life elsewhere
But.. are they doing that for the Moon and Mars?

I couldn't find links to this sort of information for the Moon, but that may be because the Moon's atmosphere is virually non-existent (even more sparse than vacuum chambers on Earth), and that atmosphere is mostly hugs the surface, being the result of dust kicked up by micrometeors and off-gassing of rocks and soil.

As for Mars, there is ongoing research into the possible detection of methane in the atmosphere of Mars. Scientists are trying to determine several things, such as: what could possibly be the source of the methane -- biological or natural, and even if the methane gas detection is a false positive (although it seems as if the methane is really there).

Formaldehyde has also been found in the atmosphere of mars, which may imply life processes.
Here is an article about formaldehyde on Mars, which discusses the pros and cons of the formaldehyde-implies-life hypothesis:

Formaldehyde claim inflames martian debate



NASA researchers have also done some analysis of the atmosphere and surface of Titan, and have been initially intrigued by some of the findings. There is a lack of acetylene which may imply methane-based life on Titan, because acetylene could be and energy source for methane-based life. Granted, the research is in its infancy, and there are other nonbioligical processes that could possibly explain this lack of acetylene.

Below is an article on the subject:

NASA Article: What is Consuming Hydrogen and Acetylene on Titan?




Certainly, they have done that as far as water is concerned and I have seen a breakdown of the gases on Mars, but unless folks know what it all means we are going to be staying in the dark about whether it means anything scientifically significant as far as ET and his friends are concerned.

Most of the information I read does not really require anymore than a basic high school understanding or a university low-level course understanding of chemistry and biology. If moderately educated lay-people took the time to read these things carefully, they should gain at least a basic understanding of what is being presented to them, and they should not be in the dark.




You can say that I am sure they would tell us if they found anything but I am not really so sure they would, due to pressure from the scientific community and losing their own good reputation as a credible scientist.

This sort of thing is a discussion-ender, because no matter what "TPTB" says, you can always simply claim "Yeah -- but what if they're lying/not telling us everything", which is a claim that cannot be countered.

No questions can ever be answered adequately to the satisfaction some people if the answer is always countered by those people with "but what if they're not telling us everything"


edit on 1/26/2014 by Soylent Green Is People because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 03:08 PM
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qmantoo
I was wondering if there are other ways to look for life on other planets. Not just photographic evidence.

Civilisations give off tell-tale signs, not only methane on Mars, but also heat signatures, IR signatures, radio transmissions, etc
If we looked at a map of Mars or the Moon for example, could we see areas which were hotter than others, or could we see white spots where the IR is more intense? What signs would someone be looking for and are these datasets available for the Moon and Mars?

I realise that temperature, pressure and other datasets are available, but I was reading somewhere that the temperatures are too general and are averaged daily and nightly temperatures which are virtually useless for hunting for signs of life.

What we would need is a detailed map of the surface with areas which are hotter or colder being highlighted. Of course, I am sure NASA have thought of this too and IF there is a huge conspiracy to keep us in the dark, then these datasets would not be available if they showed any evidence of life - either underground or on the surface.

Any thoughts on this?

edit on 25 Jan 2014 by qmantoo because: add link


Yes. There are plenty of ways to look for both basic life and intelligent life via detecting biomarkers such as oxygen and methane in a planet's atmosphere to detecting radio signals, to looking for waste heat from a civilization (either on a planet or inside a Dyson Sphere/Shell), to looking for clusters of city lights on a planet's night side (future).

I have plenty of information and videos on all of the above but sine you seem very interested in detecting civilization's technology through waste heat then you will like this:



Check out: www.the-colossus.com...


Since you are interested in a search in our solar system I will point you to the following which is a search for artificial lights out in the Kuiper Belt of our solar system (where the comets come from):




Our civilization uses two basic classes of illumination: thermal (incandesent light bulbs) and quantum (light emitting diodes [LEDs] and fluorescent lamps). Such artificial light sources have different spectral properties than sunlight. The spectra of artificial lights on distant objects would likely distinguish them from natural illumination sources, since such emission would be exceptionally rare in the natural thermodynamic conditions present on the surface of relatively cold objects. Therefore, artificial illumination may serve as a lamppost which signals the existence of extraterrestrial technologies and thus civilizations.


From the paper: Detection Technique for Artificially-Illuminated Objects in the Outer Solar System and Beyond - Abraham Loeb (Harvard), Edwin L. Turner (Princeton) - Astrobiology Magazine - arXiv:1110.6181 [astro-ph.EP]

It should be kept in mind....


The first order of business is to show that searching for artificial lighting is possible within the Solar System, which Loeb and Turner approach by looking at objects in the Kuiper Belt. The technique is “…to measure the variation of the observed flux F as a function of its changing distance D along its orbit.” Working the math, they conclude that “…existing telescopes and surveys could detect the artificial light from a reasonably brightly illuminated region, roughly the size of a terrestrial city, located on a KBO.” Indeed, existing telescopes could pick out the artificially illuminated side of the Earth to a distance of roughly 1000 AU. If something equivalent to a major terrestrial city existed in the Kuiper Belt, we would be able to see its lights.



So while such a search in our solar system is unlikely to turn up anything but people are looking anyway as a means to test out techniques we may use on extrasolar planets.

If we have the capability to detect a city far out in the Kuiper Belt, might as well search right?

Like i said, this stuff is my major in college (see the line below this post) so if you have any questions feel free to ask.

Oh and I made a hypothetical story based on current science and future telescopes as well as real people (whose names were changed) about the detection of a civilization through these means on a planet around the star 40 Eridani A here:

ATS: Astronomers Detect First 'Clear Signs of Civilization' Beyond Earth - How will you react?
edit on 26-1-2014 by JadeStar because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 03:18 PM
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qmantoo
What signs would someone be looking for and are these datasets available for the Moon and Mars?



Rover noise? or local orbiter vent detections with gas or some other material released for all ventilation does not have to be gas does it? Areas where waste or trash disposal may be taking place (depending) if there is waste associated with Created group of interest. This is associated with more mass bearing biological entities. Another less mass possessing or dimensional entity group would carry different data characteristics, maybe discharges or captures of some energy they may use on a regular based. Interesting question qmantoo



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 03:19 PM
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Its impossible to know in my opinion.

How do we gain perspective on something to be able to observes its existence.

Who knows sentience can be a form of life.



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 03:24 PM
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onequestion
Its impossible to know in my opinion.

How do we gain perspective on something to be able to observes its existence.

Who knows sentience can be a form of life.


Life and especially intelligent life causes changes to its environment beyond what would be seen without life present. Such changes are detectable and the number of things we identify as ways to detect both primitive and intelligent life grows by the year.

Such searches are based on solid chemistry and physics. The laws of which are the same throughout the universe.

You might like this:

Discovery News - 13 Ways to Hunt Intelligent Aliens
edit on 26-1-2014 by JadeStar because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 03:36 PM
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reply to post by JadeStar
 


Nice im going to have to check it out this is a topic of interests for me. Thanks.



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 03:41 PM
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My logic tells me that if we were looking for intelligent and life forms, either as advanced or more advanced than the human race, I would probably suggest trying to find waste signatures from planets.

If they have evolved in any way similar to humans then there will be a waste trail leading right to them, maybe look for abnormal radiation spots (dumping sites) on local moons or masses of old satellites floating about in near planetary orbits.



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 04:02 PM
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Earthlurker
My logic tells me that if we were looking for intelligent and life forms, either as advanced or more advanced than the human race, I would probably suggest trying to find waste signatures from planets.

If they have evolved in any way similar to humans then there will be a waste trail leading right to them, maybe look for abnormal radiation spots (dumping sites) on local moons or masses of old satellites floating about in near planetary orbits.


Yes.

Many search strategies for Earth Equivalent Intelligence (EEI) or higher look for waste signatures: Radio radiation (Radio SETI), Laser pulses (Optical SETI), waste heat (Infrared SETI/Dyson Sphere searches), Artificial Light (Quantum SETI), Asteroid Mining (Examinations of exo-zodiacal dust clouds), Large Scale Astro-Engineering (Artifact SETI) etc.

Its a good strategy since it is unlikely that even advanced civilizations would be able to use/reuse all of their waste products.



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 04:09 PM
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reply to post by Earthlurker
 



JadeStar


Its a good strategy since it is unlikely that even advanced civilizations would be able to use/reuse all of their waste products.


It would seem a more advanced Created group would be able to turn waste back into environmental materials and just release the end material if gas back into the local atmosphere if solid back into landscape or into mineral removal holes fields, with some form of ejection method...
edit on 1/26/14 by Ophiuchus 13 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 04:19 PM
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Ophiuchus 13
reply to post by Earthlurker
 



JadeStar


Its a good strategy since it is unlikely that even advanced civilizations would be able to use/reuse all of their waste products.


It would seem a more advanced Created group would be able to turn waste back into environmental materials and just release the end material if gas back into the local atmosphere if solid back into landscape or into mineral removal holes fields, with some form of ejection method...
edit on 1/26/14 by Ophiuchus 13 because: (no reason given)


Well then you're basically doing astro-engineering... which is detectable


And stuff like waste heat is going to be VERY hard to keep undetectable. The more you do, the more waste heat you generate. So it becomes a cycle, the technology you use to re-radiate the waste heat as something else (light? radio?) then becomes more detectable, all you're doing is changing energy from one form (that's detectable) to another (that's detectable)....




posted on Jan, 26 2014 @ 08:43 PM
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Soylent - I dont really mean that educated people cannot understand the articles, although some use buzz words and formulae which whizz over some people's heads. What I meant was that we probably dont know how to interpret the results of data and to draw scientifically valid conclusions based on that data. For example, the quote and link I posted shows that the IR maps are at a resolution of 500m/pixel, but how many people are going to stop and realise on reading that, that it will not show biodomes (for example) unless they are humungously large. The same with the averaged temperature maps, so can you see what I was meaning?

As I said, I also dont think that some sections of the scientific community really want to find life because for whatever reason (maybe they enjoy academically looking for it and dont want to find it - rather like the fun in hunting may be the stalk, or hunt and not the actual kill.) However, I think you will all agree that looking for life-generated heat signatures is pretty useless at that resolution mentioned above.

I have read a pdf where the guy was arguing that some planets are far far closer to us than what astronomers think due to the actual magnification of telescopes. Distance is generally calculated by a relative parallax formula which takes into account the distances of known objects yet if these distances are incorrect, then many distances to planets would have been calculated using relative parallax rather than absolute calculations. (not sure if I have got this correct, but it is something like this. Link here - Revolution in Astronomy by Bahram Katirai

This gives us an idea of how small the parallax of an object is when it is located only 4 times farther than Sedna. Bear in mind that the parallax mentioned is the absolute parallax and that astronomers do not measure the absolute parallax. Instead, they measure the relative parallax that could give an amount hundreds and even thousands of times smaller than the absolute parallax.




edit on 26 Jan 2014 by qmantoo because: formatting
edit on 26 Jan 2014 by qmantoo because: add author



posted on Jan, 27 2014 @ 12:55 AM
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The most general definition for life, is a system which is able to reduce its internal entropy at the cost of outside resources, which it then discards in a degraded form. Some suggest that to look for life, we should slook for these entropy imbalances. en.wikipedia.org...



posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 01:25 AM
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A thought that occurred to me was that these live beings may be the equivalent of our cold-blooded animals, and so they could survive in colder climates without heat. Of course, we assume that anything we find may have biology like ours but in such a vasness of space, anything and everything is possible. Given the billions of years another life form might have had to develop, their biology might be based on silica or any other compound.

There are suggestions in the NASA photographs of 'smoke' or 'steam' rising from the surface of Mars which may well point to a thermal signature being a possibility as a sign of life, (not necessarily life as we know it Jim!) however that smoke/steam is controversial so I will leave it there.



posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 03:24 AM
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a reply to: qmantoo
On Earth at lest, reptiles still require some heat from the Sun to function properly. You won't find many reptiles (or amphibians) in the arctic region, they are mostly spread from temperate to tropical regions.



posted on Sep, 25 2014 @ 07:39 PM
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a reply to: wildespace

In spite of all the posted evidence throughout the web and on ATS, are you still convinced there is no life out there on rock floating about in our solar system? Surely the wealth of different things which people have found have convinced you that there is some intelligent life which has evolved independent of humans?

If so, what kind of intelligent life biology could survive in the harsh-to-humans environment in space? It would have to have some kind of reptillian, insect or other unknown makeup - and that is what I think we see on Mars.

I think beings which look like rocks which maybe move very slowly perhaps or have some other strange biology. Sticking my neck out to be chopped off, if you asked me to make a guess what kind of biology lives on Mars, I would say at least 5 types of being

a) normal-sized snake-like, rabbit/cat-like, gremlin-looking (as in the film Gremlins)
b) very small beings < 5cm perhaps
c) all sizes of rock-like beings

The now hundreds of strange things seen in the Mars rover images have to make you wonder what is going on up there. There are so many odd and out-of-place artifacts which have just been ignored by NASA as they pass by and if you think about it, even in our deserts and uninhabited places, there are not such strange objects found and that is on an Earth with billions of people on it!





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