NASA Discovers Life On Saturn’s Moon Titan – Maybe…

by Clayton on June 5, 2010

The stunning pictures of the lakes on Titan?

The age old discussion of ‘does life exist on other planets’ has been raging for years. There are those among us that believe that we are alone and no other forms of life could possibly exist. Well, those clever NASA boffins have made some very interesting discoveries on Saturn’s moon Titan. Life, as we perceive it, is what we know by our own discoveries on earth – water based meat eaters or plant eaters but surely this is a little blinkered?

NASA’s Cassini probe has analysed the chemistry on the surface of Titan which is apparently the only moon around the planet to have a dense atmosphere. The ‘Holy Cow’ discovery is that they have discovered life forms that have been breathing in the planet’s complex atmosphere and also feeding on its ‘surface fuel’.

2 separate studies have made various discoveries. The first is detailed in the Journal Icarus which highlights the hydrogen gas flowing around the planet’s atmosphere actually dissipates toward the planet’s surface suggesting this would be more than adequate to support life.

The second of these studies, to be found in the Journal of Geophysical Research, clearly stated there was a lack of the

Look familiar?

chemical on the surface. Earlier beliefs were that sunlight was interacting with chemicals in the atmosphere to produce acetylene gas – the Cassini probe detected none of this gas.

“…We suggested hydrogen consumption because it’s the obvious gas for life to consume on Titan, similar to the way we consume oxygen on Earth. If these signs do turn out to be a sign of life, it would be doubly exciting because it would represent a second form of life independent from water-based life on Earth…” a statement from Chris McKay an astrobiologist from NASA Ames Research Centre, at Moffett Field, California.

“…We believe the chemistry is there for life to form. It just needs heat and warmth to kick-start the process. In four billion years’ time, when the Sun swells into a red giant, it could be paradise on Titan…” John Zarnecki of the Open University.

Well something to look forward to then…

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

john June 6, 2010 at 12:36 am

Wow, you should write for the Daily Mail with all these unfounded assumptions you’re making. NASA NEVER said it had discovered life, just what they predicted would be the by-product of life had it evolved on the moon……….they also state that it could easily be the by-product of non living processes. Nice try.

Clayton June 7, 2010 at 12:25 pm

Hi John, thanks for reading. As per the title i actually include the word maybe and also at the end of the article claim that this would be ‘something to look forward to’ but if you do know of a job at the Daily Mail please send me the contact details :)

O February 7, 2011 at 4:18 am

I know we’er not the only one with life because there can always be a planet with life amd we’er not the only planet in the same spot and the same atmosphere as Earth.

Clayton February 7, 2011 at 9:33 am

Hopefully the evidence will continue to stack up :)

Yuuki July 31, 2011 at 7:18 am

Titan is my favourite moon besides our own. Since there is evidence of cyrptovolcanoes (volcanoes that spit out ice and other liquids other than lava) and hydrogen, i think there is a chance for life to evolve. Although i think the possiblity is very low i’d be very interesting to have other life other than our own :D i was quite sure they found a solar system very much like ours only in miniature form with plants that have possiable water visable on the surface ^^ our universe is large and unpredictable. If you don’t leave your mind open you’ll never have an interesting life

Clayton August 2, 2011 at 11:58 am

Wise words my friend, having an open mind will certainly lead you on a path of great discovery.

Kelsie October 26, 2011 at 11:02 pm

I think that there is extraterrestrail life on other planets :]

Clayton October 27, 2011 at 8:52 am

I think with the amount of galaxy’s out there, even if its insects, you’ll be proved right ;)

Jason June 15, 2012 at 12:53 pm

To all you Richard Dawkin’s worshipers out there…
GOD and UFOs or other life forms in the Universe are NOT mutually exclusive

Sharrie June 15, 2012 at 4:49 pm

There has to be life out there somewhere or it would be a grate waste of space. And they don’t have to evolve the way life did here on Earth.

metalrose June 15, 2012 at 7:25 pm

while I am not a beliver of revolution. neither can i quote the bible every verse. but i have read the bible, and if you read it you will find a verse where GOD SAID I HAVE MANY WORLDS.Also one where GOD SAID MY TIME IS NOT YOUR TIME. Who knows maybe one day to GOD is a billion years to us!!

Neofelis-nebulosa June 16, 2012 at 6:43 am

You have been deceived over and over, the World is flat, and the planets & stars circle the Earth, which is in the center of the universe. The gravity of this situation is proved by the fact that there are no more saber toothed cats: they are all extinct….

Neofelis-nebulosa June 16, 2012 at 6:47 am

Having an open mind can lead to castrations and mass suicides when some comet goes by.

Clayton June 18, 2012 at 8:17 am

Interesting comments guys :)

Ramon June 30, 2012 at 8:04 pm

I agree with John. And yes, you did insert maybe. Just as the grad student accused of plagiarism said he had carefully inserted quotation marks on page 1 and page 90 of the dissertation to illustrate he had not plagiarized just quoted the entire research proposal. Maybe. Right.

Miguel Angel July 30, 2012 at 2:12 pm

The origin of life is based on chemical compounds and chemical reactions, like proteins, enzymes, etc., and in the end.. DNA.. as we just read in the article, there is a huge chemical party on Titan’s surface, and for sure in several moons and planets in our solar system.

We are not the only miracle in the universe.

Clayton July 30, 2012 at 2:45 pm

Ramon I’m not entirely sure what you’re saying with your comments as it appears you’ve taken time out of your day to have a dig. Fair enough, everyone is entitled to their opinion but you’re on a tongue in cheek tech blog if you want something more factual then i recommend this website;

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/

Thanks for reading anyway.

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