nov 262013
 
Which Ancient Minerals Gave Rise to Life?

  Life originated as a result of natural processes that exploited early Earth’s raw materials. Scientific models of life’s origins almost always look to minerals for such essential tasks as the synthesis of life’s molecular building blocks or the supply of metabolic energy. But this assumes that the mineral species found on Earth today are [continue reading]

sep 172013
 
Cosmic Factory for Making Building Blocks of Life Discovered

  Kent scientists have helped discover a ‘cosmic factory’ for producing the building blocks of life, amino acids, in research published in the journal Nature Geoscience.  The ‘Great Comet’ of 1996, Hyakutake. Image Credit: NASA The team from the University of Kent, Imperial College London, and Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory have discovered that when icy [continue reading]

mei 312013
 
Saturn's Moon Dione Might Have a Subsurface Ocean

  From a distance, most of Saturn’s moon Dione resembles a bland cueball. Thanks to close-up images of a 500-mile-long (800-kilometer-long) mountain on the moon from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft, scientists have found more evidence for the idea that Dione was likely active in the past. It could still be active now. The Cassini spacecraft looks [continue reading]

apr 062013
 
The Power Behind Primordial Soup Discovered

  Researchers at the University of Leeds may have solved a key puzzle about how objects from space could have kindled life on Earth. An artists impression of a meteorite landing in a hot, acidic pool of liquids. Image Credit: James McKay 2013 (www.jamesmckay.info) While it is generally accepted that some important ingredients for life came from [continue reading]

mrt 062013
 
Evidence that Comets could have Seeded Life on Earth

  It’s among the most ancient of questions: What are the origins of life on Earth?   A new experiment simulating conditions in deep space reveals that the complex building blocks of life could have been created on icy interplanetary dust and then carried to Earth, jump-starting life. An image of Halley’s Comet taken in [continue reading]

mrt 052013
 
An Icy Cosmic Start for the Building Blocks of Life

  Using new technology at the telescope and in laboratories, researchers have discovered an important pair of prebiotic molecules in interstellar space. The discoveries indicate that some basic chemicals that are key steps on the way to life may have formed on dusty ice grains floating between the stars. The Robert C. Byrd Green Bank [continue reading]