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[Gizmodo] NASA Finds Water and Organic Matter In Mercury - Page 2

post #11 of 30
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by GrizzleBoy View Post

*Sends interplanetary rover to Mars
*Finds water on Mercury
Wat.

More like

*Sends interplanetary rover to Mars to try and find life.

*Finds life (or at least precursors/remnants of life) on Mercury.
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post #12 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Atham View Post

I know this is going to sound stupid, but how do they get this data? Mercury is closest to the Sun and that is a long way.

They use a spacecraft which orbits mercury, and it uses a neutron spectrometer which can detect subatomic particle neutrons as they stream from mercury. Hydrogen is the best absorber of neutrons and because there was a mdip in neutron count it showed that cast amounts of hydrogen was in specific places at the planets pole. Further measurements with a laser showed that much of the ice isa covered with a layer of dark material 10s of centimeters thick.
Source is BBC Science and Environment news

ALso, unrelated to mars rover tongue.gif
post #13 of 30

Awesome.

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post #14 of 30
They forgot to mention the interplanetary teleporter they found on mars and ended on mercury smile.gif
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post #15 of 30
Not surprising, life on other planets in the universe is inevitable and practically a fact.
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post #16 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mwarren View Post

Not surprising, life on other planets in the universe is inevitable and practically a fact.

The probability of life emerging in other places in the universe is huge - due to the vastness of the universe - at least as we understand it now.
But the existence of life or life supporting (note, not human or mammal life in general) in a planet within our solar system was considered - simply put - highly improbable.

Should they verify the existence of organic materials, organisms or byproducts of organic metabolism, the implications are enormous (independently of the hypothesis of panspermia)
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post #17 of 30
Doesn't organic matter just mean matter bonded to carbon? That's not exactly news. There are a ton of definitions of Organic, though.
post #18 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Art Vanelay View Post

Doesn't organic matter just mean matter bonded to carbon? That's not exactly news. There are a ton of definitions of Organic, though.

I wouldn't say there are tons of definitions. It's carbon-based matter. That's all there really is to it. Of course it's new. We've never detected carbon-containing compounds on Mercury before this.
    
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post #19 of 30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Art Vanelay View Post

Doesn't organic matter just mean matter bonded to carbon? That's not exactly news. There are a ton of definitions of Organic, though.

That is true, and it's a bit of a shame they couldn't go more in depth. To really go in depth, I think they would need to land a rover with scientific instruments (like on Mars) to be able to determine what kind of organic matter is there.
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post #20 of 30
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsumi View Post

That is true, and it's a bit of a shame they couldn't go more in depth. To really go in depth, I think they would need to land a rover with scientific instruments (like on Mars) to be able to determine what kind of organic matter is there.
Can they analyse the gases in the atmosphere with IR spectrometry? That shouldn't be that hard to do.
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