NASA has discovered evidence of a new type of life!
If this sounds familiar to you, yes, we’ve heard this as recently as last year.
Here at GeekBeat, we typically are pretty gadget-heavy in our coverage so this is a little off our beaten path, but given the possible scope of this and its obvious interest to those of a geeky bent, we thought we should weigh in on the issue.
The gist of it is, NASA has found what looks like fossils of completely extra-terrestrial bacteria in carbonaceous chondrite meteorites. The bacteria are very similar to terrestrial bacteria life.
“The exciting thing is that they are in many cases recognizable and can be associated very closely with the generic species here on earth,” said Richard B. Hoover, a NASA Astrobiologist. “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.”
This is a new discovery, not last year’s arsenic-based bacteria from Mono Lake story. It involves entirely different researchers. But you can bet that NASA hasn’t forgotten the furor over last year’s event and the fallout thereof, and they’re being ultra-cautious in dealing with this announcement.
It’s inevitable that there will be a lot of skepticism, and they’ve taken that into account. To deal with it, this study and the evidence for it have been released to peers in the scientific community in advance of its publication, and when it is published, it will be accompanied by comments from this early peer-review.
The peer review for this paper will involve 100 experts in the field and over 5000 other scientists from the community. According to Dr. Rudy Schild of the Journal of Cosmology, it’s the most thoroughly vetted paper in the history of science, and the first in history to be analyzed by the community prior to publication.
It’s very reassuring to see them taking such measures in verifying an announcement like this, since if it’s true, it answers one of the oldest questions we have as a species. It would mean that no, we are not alone.
(via Digital Trends)