PDA

View Full Version : Martian Meteorite



KB3HTS
2003-Aug-30, 03:42 AM
Hi everyone,
A few years back there was a huge controversey about a martian meteorite discovered in Antarctica that looked like it had fossilized bacteria in it. What does everyone think? Was there really something in the rock?
I personally am hesitant to pick either yes or no, but in the spirit of optimism I am leaning towards yes. :)

mnc1916
2003-Sep-04, 09:27 PM
It is my opinion that before any meaningfull dicussion about "life &#39; on mars that a real definition of life be established.Presently what satands for a definiopf life is actually only a description of a carbn based entity. To suppose that this is the end all is shotsighted and un scintific. That we are , at present unable to consive of alternate "beings&#39; things may only be due to the fact that logical thinking is a very new thing in the scheem of human development. So why not just assume for now that there is indeed "life" on Mars or for that matter thruout the Universe? As for my definition of Life < please ladies and gentlemen I&#39;m only human,87 years old, a bad typist and altogether new using a PC but still seekinganswers wherever and however they may be....and my grammar coul stand a little improvement.

Fraser
2003-Sep-04, 09:44 PM
I don&#39;t think astrobiologists consider only carbon-based life to be life. The description for life is a lot more generic; essentially something which can reproduce itself - whether that&#39;s carbon, silicon, or some strange energy creature.

We&#39;ve just studied life on Earth so much that we really understand what to look for. We know what chemicals will be present, what it consumes, what temperature ranges to look for, etc.

If something shows up that isn&#39;t based on Earth chemistry, I think that would be wonderful because it would be good evidence that it originated in a completely separate environment.

Even if scientists find bacteria living on Mars, there&#39;s enough evidence that life could spread between our two planets that it might not be seen as truly separate life.

Deep_Eye
2003-Sep-17, 11:41 PM
Exactly. Even though life as we know it is usually composed of carbon, I don&#39;t think we can eliminate the possiblity of life forms not containing it. And yes I think the meteorite does really contain bacteria from Mars. Its exciting to think about isn&#39;t it?

WendellG
2003-Sep-18, 05:36 PM
Ok, this probably is going to sound like a dumb question to you folks, but how did Martian Metiorite end up in Antarctica?

Wendell

Deep_Eye
2003-Sep-18, 09:58 PM
Maybe some other meteorite crashed into Mars, and it sent the debris out into space, which kept traveling (Newton&#39;s law&#39;s of motion) and eventually was pulled into earth&#39;s gravity and came crashing down into Antartica. But I&#39;m not sure.

KB3HTS
2003-Sep-19, 05:11 PM
Basically it&#39;s like that, the only thing really needed is a big enough rock to hit Mars and by chance the correct trajectory to make the Mars rock hit the Earth eventually. By the same token, isn&#39;t it interesting to think of where all of Earth&#39;s rocks might have ended up? :rolleyes:
Here&#39;s a little tidbit for those interested: one of the Carnegie museums here in Pittsburgh has a Rocks & Minerals section, and in there they have a piece of one of the Martian meteorites. You are, for the record, allowed to touch the rock. It&#39;s like the moon rock in Washington DC in that sense, but I prefer our Mars rock&#33;

WendellG
2003-Oct-07, 11:03 PM
Originally posted by Deep_Eye@Sep 18 2003, 09:58 PM
Maybe some other meteorite crashed into Mars, and it sent the debris out into space, which kept traveling (Newton&#39;s law&#39;s of motion) and eventually was pulled into earth&#39;s gravity and came crashing down into Antartica. But I&#39;m not sure.
Ok, this makes sense.

Thanks,

Wendell

DippyHippy
2003-Oct-12, 03:13 AM
Actually, I re-watched a programme from the late 90&#39;s on this very subject... at that time, the debate about the validity of the initial findings was still undecided but I think since then it&#39;s been proven that the bacteria were Earth-related.

If I remember rightly, the meteorite was blown off Mars by an impact several million years ago and struck the Earth about 4,000 years ago. But how they were able to date this, I don&#39;t know LOL