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Moon Space Science

Did Chandrayaan Find Organic Matter On the Moon? 141

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the regolith-wasn't-in-my-spellchecker dept.
Matt_dk writes "Surendra Pal, associate director of the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Satellite Centre says that Chandrayaan-1 picked up signatures of organic matter on parts of the Moon's surface. 'The findings are being analyzed and scrutinized for validation by ISRO scientists and peer reviewers,' Pal said. At a press conference Tuesday at the American Geophysical Union fall conference, scientists from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter also hinted at possible organics locked away in the lunar regolith. When asked directly about the Chandrayaan-1 claim of finding life on the Moon, NASA's chief lunar scientist, Mike Wargo, certainly did not dismiss the idea."
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Did Chandrayaan Find Organic Matter On the Moon?

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  • by thirty-seven (568076) on Thursday December 17, 2009 @11:58AM (#30474288)
    The summary seems to make a jump from talking about "organics" and "organic matter" to "the Chandrayaan-1 claim of finding life on the Moon". Is the ISRO actually claiming to have found life on the moon? And aren't there lots of sources of organic molecules that don't involve life?
  • by BadAnalogyGuy (945258) <BadAnalogyGuy@gmail.com> on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:00PM (#30474324)

    Though organic matter is the basis of life, it does not guarantee that life would exist. It is just a type of matter composed of carbon-based molecules. Is there carbon out there? You bet. That means that organic matter will also exist out there in space.

    Colin Powell was crucified for claiming the existence of WMDs in Iraq. It took a couple years, but we never found the smoking gun. Don't be too quick to jump on the first piece of evidence you find.

  • by SatanicPuppy (611928) * <Satanicpuppy@g m a i l .com> on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:05PM (#30474404) Journal

    Assuming panspermia is pretty big leap.

  • Re:Impact (Score:2, Insightful)

    by d3ac0n (715594) on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:07PM (#30474434)

    I was under the impression that the Earth was still in the early stages of cooling when struck by that other planet, and was still a highly "magmatic" planet at that point, and thus incapable of sustaining life yet.

  • Re:Impact (Score:3, Insightful)

    by mcgrew (92797) * on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:14PM (#30474524) Homepage Journal

    How could they know anything at all about the planet before it was struck?

  • Re:Impact (Score:3, Insightful)

    by pixelpusher220 (529617) on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:22PM (#30474596)
    Science theory. Based on observable evidence of other bodies, physical properties and elapsed time they can theorize with a fair bit of confidence, what the conditions were given the age of the earth at the time.

    That said, theories are only theories. I just saw an TV show that suggested the earth didn't become completely molten 'until' the impact by the other planet. This is what gave us the iron dense core we have as it settled out into the center while the earth was molten.
  • Re:Impact (Score:2, Insightful)

    by d3ac0n (715594) on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:26PM (#30474638)

    Well, IANAS, but my understanding is that the Earth was simply too young at that point to be anything other than a mostly molten ball of semi-liquid rock with a thin crust, as was the other planet. This is why Earth was able to re-form into a nice sphere again rather than a lopsided, cracked mess like Mimas did.

    But, in the strict sense you are correct in that they can't KNOW in that we weren't around then and we haven't yet invented Time Travel. But as a theory it certainly makes sense.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:28PM (#30474690)

    No, yes, no.

  • by NotSoHeavyD3 (1400425) on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:29PM (#30474708)
    It means hydrocarbons. So before any one asks to a chemist gasoline is organic.
  • Organic? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by VincenzoRomano (881055) on Thursday December 17, 2009 @12:43PM (#30474942) Homepage Journal
    It depends on what do they mean with "organic [wikipedia.org]"!
    At the bare minimum it's "anything that contains carbon". Which is not that hard to find when you stroll close to a star.
  • by joocemann (1273720) on Thursday December 17, 2009 @01:37PM (#30475674)

    A recent anonymous hacker hacked the hackings of hackery into the datas of the database datastores of the NASA research on the topic that is subject at hand.

    Several NASA e-mails indicate that there was an argument at the coffee machine that did not go well and that one of the arguers, Bob Shandley, said something to the tune of 'booshit there ain't not organic matter on the moon!'.

    While most would consider a discussion at the coffee machine unofficial and casual, many are fueled in their skepticism of NASA as a whole; they reason that if Bob could be so bold and deny the recent data, that there must be a serious level of corruption within NASA that may even bring into question the validity of the moon landing.

    Mary Jenkins, a Washington Elementary fourth Grader is quoted saying "Well. If the guy says something isn't true but it is true. Well then he's lying. And my mom says liars hang out with liars, and so.. well... NASA is full of liars. We never landed on the moon."

    Attempts to contact the Obama administration for comment on the topic have yielded no results. We assume the silence is likely due to cooperation between the administration and NASA to coverup the extreme level of non-science going on at NASA, regarding Bob Shandley's coverup.

    Thousands rallied against corruption and conspiracy outside the Austin, TX NASA launchpad on Friday; a day of high expectations set for the launch of NASA's new the Eagle II rocket. People from all walks of life stood through the cold and dry afternoon in protest with signs like "IF BOB WON'T, I WON'T" and "WHAT IS BOB HIDING".

    One protester standing a mere 400 feet from the Eagle II, who wishes to remain anonymous is quoted with the observation "That rocket doesn't even have a red tip. Chances are it's not even a real rocket, this is probably some 3d projection or something. Those damn NASA scientists are so full of lies and tricks we cannot trust them!"

    After the recent uncovering of Bob's coffee-machine side argument, the world is clearly up in arms and now standing in disbelief of everything NASA.

    Next at 5: Are America's youth getting dumber? New research indicates widespread failure in critical thinking, mathematics, and basic sciences among public school students. Check back for more in a half hour for more details.

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