NASA Scientist Claims to Have Found Evidence of Extraterrestrial Life

 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 NEXT
 

NASA Scientist Claims to Have Found Evidence of Extraterrestrial Life

image

One of the most important questions in human history - are we alone? - may at last have a definitive answer.

It isn't the Vulcans. It isn't E.T. Hell, it isn't even Alf. But a NASA scientist claims to have found definitive proof that life in the universe can - and does - exist outside of Earth: fossils of alien bacteria discovered in meteorites.

Dr. Richard B. Hoover, an astrobiologist at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center, published his findings in Friday night's edition of the Journal of Cosmology, a peer-reviewed scientific journal with a website that looks like it came straight out of 1999. Hoover discovered the fossils in an extremely rare type of meteorite called CI1 carbonaceous chondrites, of which a mere nine specimens exist here on this blue planet.

"I interpret it as indicating that life is more broadly distributed than restricted strictly to the planet Earth," Hoover told Fox News in an interview, which is a strikingly anticlimactic way of essentially trying to say "we are not alone." According to Hoover, who has studied meteorites for a decade, many scientists ignored this field of research because they didn't believe they'd find anything there. "This field of study has just barely been touched - because quite frankly, a great many scientists would say that this is impossible."

He, however, says he did - by breaking apart the uber-rare space rock and analyzing its insides with an electron microscope that helped him discover the fossils in question. Many of the micro-organisms in the fossils resemble life on Earth, said Hoover, but others? Not so much. "There are some that are just very strange and don't look like anything that I've been able to identify, and I've shown them to many other experts that have also come up stump."

According to Journal of Cosmology editor-in-chief Dr. Rudy Schild, a scientist at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, the publication invited thousands of scientists to cross-examine and scrutinize Hoover's report to try and head off skeptics and naysayers. "No other paper in the history of science has undergone such a thorough vetting, and never before in the history of science has the scientific community been given the opportunity to critically analyze an important research paper before it is published."

Not everyone is convinced, of course. Dr. David Marais, an astrobiologist at NASA's AMES Research Center, says that similar claims have been made before and proven wrong - and that a discovery of this magnitude will need solid evidence rather than conjecture. "It's an extraordinary claim, and thus I'll need extraordinary evidence," Marais said. Until the claims could be independently verified, said Marais, this was merely a "potential signature of life." Which is still pretty huge, if you ask me. But then again, I'm not a scientist.

If true, however, the implications could be staggering beyond the simple revelation that life exists elsewhere in the cosmos, of course. "Maybe life was seeded on earth -- it developed on comets for example, and just landed here when these things were hitting the very early Earth," speculated SETI Institute senior astronomer Dr. Seth Shostak.

"It would suggest, well, life didn't really begin on the Earth, it began as the solar system was forming."

Or maybe life was intentionally seeded here as part of a grand scheme by the Forerunners as they built their installations to contain the threat of the Flood, and -- no, wait, that's Halo.

Either way, this is some pretty heavy stuff. It could be a false alarm, but if this is our first real hint that we are not alone in the universe? Holy crap.

Update: University of Minnesota professor PZ Myers has taken a pretty savage scalpel to this claim, and he makes a pretty convincing argument that this is absolute bunk. While the Fox Mulders of the world can still hold out hope, the Scullys may be in the right on this one. Alas.

(Fox News, via Yahoo News)

Permalink

Semi-serious response: No discovery of the Asari yet?

God damnit! >_<

Serious response: ..I'm too tired to care at the moment. I'll edit this later.

copycat

but nice presentation lol

Hoo wow... Of course, it was always going to be true. The idea of a universe so large we have no word for it but "infinite" had no other life at all but us was absurd.

Nonetheless, this is awesome that the rock landed here, and that we found it. It might easily have landed undiscovered in the sea, or Siberia.

I'd say it would be slightly more significant if we knew not that there was life out there, but where it had come from.

This is big, still skeptical, but I'd like to see this as signs of life. I'll wait until a few papers are published before I start building an alien proof bunker.

I'd be more impressed if something like this didn't occur every few months...

"There are some that are just very strange and don't look like anything that I've been able to identify, and I've shown them to many other experts that have also come up stump."

That is the most exciting sentence in this whole article.

scarab7:
This is big, still skeptical, but I'd like to see this as signs of life. I'll wait until a few papers are published before I start building an alien proof bunker.

By then it will be too late! I for one, welcome our new alien overlords.

This was inevitable, good to see that you guys picked up on this jewel as well!

Well it ain't no Xenomorph but still wonderful news.

I agree with Dr Marais, these need to be studied further, but it's still an insanely important find.

Definatly interesting. Who knows, might reveal a huge thing that we haven't found for ages.

Were getting closer. soon We will find our new alien masters, who will gladly lord over us from their masterful metorite vessels...

I mean ah, Yes, very early study. we should't be too ah...hasty. yes.

It is important to point out that if you look at ANYTHING under a scanning electron microscope, you can see features that look lifelike.

Garbage.

Edit:

Ok, I've gone through the article a bit. I'm not a cosmologist, but I do publish scientific articles in journals for a living. And "peer reviewed" does not mean "good." The first red flag is that this paper is available for free from the journal. The top multidisciplinary journal on earth is Science. Check it out at http://www.sciencemag.org. Neat huh? Try to read an article.

Ohhhh, you can't, unless you are in a library or at a university, or otherwise have some kind of subscription or are a AAAS member. Sometimes they'll hand the articles out to just anyone, but usually not. Theres rules for all that. This is an open publication journal. The idea sounds attractive on paper; lets have journals designed to get pioneering papers to the public faster! This isn't meant to get information to the public, this is meant to make a splash in the news media. This paper will go on the pile with all the other mineralized fossil bacteria from mars papers and everyone

The last time "life" was found that did get into Science. Turns out it was just funny wiggly things in SEM images. Oh look! These are funny wiggly things in SEM images. With chemicals on them! I forgot to properly clean some silicon wafers a few months back, and when I analyzed the surfaces by EDS I found all sorts of nitrogen, carbon, oxygen. Its called "shit that gets all over everything because you are on the planet earth, and probably anywhere else in the universe"

Where this manuscript starts grinding my gears is the random figures and images are thrown in there. Throw in enough figures and anything looks legit. The pictures of comets and meteroites and moons and what not? Utterly useless, and would not be included in a proper scientific manuscript.

image

Lol nice Halo reference. I'm assuming that it hasn't been reviewed by a whole lot of other scientists yet, because it hasn't been a huge news headline. Cause I mean, if it's 100% proven that any form of extraterrestrial life has been found, shouldn't it be big news all over the place, newspapers, TV, magazines, etc? Or will people still care more about what Snooki had for breakfast that morning.

Meh, Bacteria. It is kind of interesting, but it'll be better when we discover that Asari exist.

It seems more promising than ALH 84001, the Martian meteorite that received so much attention for having possible microfossils in the 90s. I look forward to seeing if more comes from this :)

I'm gonna have to hold out because the press reporting science is like... well... the press reporting science.

It's just bad.

Eh, this isn't huge news for me. Really, in my honest opinion, the universe is too huge not to have life. It's merely a question of:
a) How far away?
b) How much?
Really, finding a little microscopic organism isn't that impressive. There's bound to be something somewhere, of course.

Pretty cool. This'll likely get bashed by all the bull-headed skeptics out there.

I always beleived that there was life elsewhere, its just a matter of it there is sentient, and possibly even intelligent life out there that we need to prove now :)

Yes my plan of recreating star wars with real aliens is one step closer to completion.

Allan53:
I'd be more impressed if something like this didn't occur every few months...

yeah it's starting to get old. how about some actual DNA so you can clone your self a monster or something, i wanna see some crazy monster clones.

Like anyone expected there not to be.

WorldCritic:
Meh, Bacteria. It is kind of interesting, but it'll be better when we discover that Asari exist.

Pheh. Asari SmechSmari. I want to ride a Krogan.

If this turns out to be legit, then this is a pretty big find.

However, I'm a bit skeptical unless additional research confirms this. We've heard this story many times before, only to be disappointed.

God damn that is awesome.

Fingers crossed. I hope this is real.

Allan53:
I'd be more impressed if something like this didn't occur every few months...

Yeah, it gets tiresome.

"Scientist makes wild unsupported claim, yet to be verified". Meh.

we need to find this "intelligent" life, and immediately challenge them in battle.

humanity must prove it's superiority!

Awesome, I really hope we can be friends with all our alien contacts if only to exploit them mwhahaha

strictly speaking, the universe is mind-bogglingly huge, so much so that it would be a statistical impossibility that Earth has the only form of life.

out of easily over 3 billion stars, you can not say that there is not some form of life hiding out on a planet, they might not look human, or breathe the same atmosphere that we do, hell, they might look more like Tribble's than Vulcan's, but life is life.

Even if it is aiming a Q-36 Space Modulator at us.

image

I WANT TO BELIEVE

If you'll excuse me, I have to go stand on my back porch with a Shotgun pointed at the sky... you know, just in case they figure out they've been discovered.

I eagerly await verification that this is, in fact, real.

Extremely skeptical for sure. This isn't the first time this dude has claimed to find life from space. Also, they did just botch a rocket launch. Maybe they're just trying to save a little face? (In an extreme manner.)

thaluikhain:

Allan53:
I'd be more impressed if something like this didn't occur every few months...

Yeah, it gets tiresome.

"Scientist makes wild unsupported claim, yet to be verified". Meh.

We don't all do this.

I PROMISE.

BodomBeachChild:
Extremely skeptical for sure. This isn't the first time this dude has claimed to find life from space. Also, they did just botch a rocket launch. Maybe they're just trying to save a little face? (In an extreme manner.)

No one takes mineralized life seriously after the 1996 fiasco. Also, the people launching the rocket and these researchers are not affiliated.

Guess this means the Borg won't be far behind.

thiosk:

thaluikhain:

Allan53:
I'd be more impressed if something like this didn't occur every few months...

Yeah, it gets tiresome.

"Scientist makes wild unsupported claim, yet to be verified". Meh.

We don't all do this.

I PROMISE.

BodomBeachChild:
Extremely skeptical for sure. This isn't the first time this dude has claimed to find life from space. Also, they did just botch a rocket launch. Maybe they're just trying to save a little face? (In an extreme manner.)

No one takes mineralized life seriously after the 1996 fiasco. Also, the people launching the rocket and these researchers are not affiliated.

NASA takes everything they are slightly involved with and blows it out of proportion was what I was tryng to say. See: Chilean miner rescue. Usually they're like "Look at us!" And after the crash... but I see yer point.

 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here