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Proposed Indicator of Life On Alien Worlds May Be Bogus 112

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the exomoons-ruin-everything dept.
sciencehabit (1205606) writes with bad news for anyone hoping to use the spectral signatures of exoplanets to determine if their atmospheres have life-enabling compositions. "Call it the cosmic version of fool's gold. What was once considered a sure-fire sign of life on distant planets may not be so sure-fire after all, a new study suggests. The signal—a strong chemical imbalance in the planet's atmosphere that could only be generated by thriving ecosystems—could instead be the combined light from a lifeless exoplanet and its equally barren moon."
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Proposed Indicator of Life On Alien Worlds May Be Bogus

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  • Re:No big deal (Score:5, Informative)

    by TrollstonButterbeans (2914995) on Monday April 28, 2014 @08:20PM (#46864725)
    Any astronomer knows the meme "billions and billions". I think there was even a Carl Sagan skit on Saturday night live. In fact, Carl Sagan wrote a book in honor of the meme called "billions and billons"

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billions_and_Billions:_Thoughts_on_Life_and_Death_at_the_Brink_of_the_Millennium

    It is an astronomer inside joke. I made no apologizes any more than a programmer on slashdot making an inside C, or Perl or SQL joke.

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