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Life on Mars found but destroyed by mistake - Sci/Tech

Life on Mars found but destroyed by mistake - Sci/Tech
Bungling NASA scientists are believed to have found tiny live microbes on Mars - but mistakenly killed them by boiling them alive, a media report said. Bungling NASA scientists are believed to have found tiny live microbes on Mars - but mistakenly killed them by boiling them alive, a media report said Saturday. Two spacecraft that landed on the Red Planet in 1976 are now thought to have detected microbes in Martian soil. But scientists at the time failed to spot the signs of life - and cooked the bugs at 160 degrees Centigrade during experiments, The Sun reported. Now an international team has used modern techniques to re-examine data collected by the two unmanned Viking probes. Biologist Joseph Miller, of the University of Southern California, said: "I'm 99 percent sure there's life there. During the 1976 mission, nutrients were added to the Martian soil. Experts dismissed the possibility that the gas came from bugs.

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Titan's Massive Ice Cloud of Possible Organics Signals Change of Seasons An ice cloud taking shape over Titan's south pole is the latest sign that the change of seasons is setting off a cascade of radical changes in the atmosphere of Saturn's largest moon. Made from an unknown ice, this type of cloud has long hung over Titan's north pole, where it is now fading, according to observations made by the Composite Infrared Spectrometer (CIRS) on NASA's Cassini spacecraft. When Cassini first observed the circulation pattern, warm air from the southern hemisphere was rising high in the atmosphere and got transported to the cold north pole. There, the air cooled and sank down to lower layers of the atmosphere, where it formed ice clouds. Extensive water in Mars' interior © NASAMars, as seen by the Hubble Space Telescope. Until now, Earth was the only planet known to have vast reservoirs of water in its interior. Scientists analyzed the water content of two Martian meteorites originating from inside the Red Planet. They found that the amount of water in places of the Martian mantle is vastly larger than previous estimates and is similar to that of Earth's.

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Actress in anti-Muslim film sues for its removal online LOS ANGELES – An actress who appears in the anti-Muslim film trailer that has been blamed for riots in the Middle East is suing the filmmaker for fraud and slander, and is asking a judge to order YouTube to take down the clip. Cindy Lee Garcia's lawsuit filed Wednesday in Los Angeles claims the actress was duped by Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man behind "Innocence of Muslims" who has been forced into hiding since its 14-minute trailer rose to prominence last week. She was unaware of the film's anti-Muslim content and the pages of the script she received had no mention of the prophet Muhammad, religion or sexual content, according to her complaint. The lawsuit states Garcia responded to an ad and thought she was appearing in an ancient Egyptian adventure film called "Desert Warriors." Dialogue in the amateurish film was later dubbed to include anti-Islamic messages and to portray Muhammad as a fraud, a womanizer and a child molester, and it was also translated into Arabic.

Could Titan's Hydrocarbon Chemistry Have Crossed the Chasm to Life? If a space traveler ever visits Titan, they will find a world where temperatures plunge to minus 274 degrees Fahrenheit, methane rains from the sky and dunes of ice or tar cover the planet's most arid regions -- a cold mirror image of Earth's tropical climate, according to scientists at the University of Chicago. "You have all these things that are analogous to Earth. At the same time, it's foreign and unfamiliar," said Ray Pierrehumbert, the Louis Block Professor in Geophysical Sciences at Chicago. Titan, one of Saturn's 60 moons, is the only moon in the solar system large enough to support an atmosphere. Pierrehumbert and colleague Jonathan Mitchell, have been comparing observations of Titan collected by the Cassini space probe and the Hubble Space Telescope with their own computer simulations of the moon's atmosphere. Methane assumes an Earth-like role of water on Titan.

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"Mirrors the Conditions that Led to Origin of Life on Earth" (Weekend Feature) "We see Titan as a natural oasis of remarkable astrobiological significance to understand the environment in which origin of life took place on Earth," said Josep M. Trigo-Rodriguez, of the Institute of Space Sciences (CSIC-IEEC) in Barcelona, Spain.. "It seems that a plausible scenario to build life consists of a dense atmosphere, where small particles like organic haze and meteoric metals could act as catalysts for the formation of more complex organic compounds from simple precursors such as carbon monoxide and methane, thus promoting increasing complexity." "Titan provides an extraordinary environment to better understand some of the chemical processes that led to the appearance of life on Earth,” added Trigo-Rodriguez. “Titan’s atmosphere is a natural laboratory that, in many aspects, seems to have a strong similitude with our current picture of the pre-biotic atmosphere of Earth."

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