“The Death Star” Event That Ejected Life Into the Solar System

1999 KW4 ESO

 

Some 65 million years ago the greatest asteroid impact in a billion years may have sown life throughout the solar system, even as it ravaged life on Earth. Blasted debris escaped Earth’s gravitational force forming irregular orbits around the sun, eventually finding its way to the planets and moons of the solar system. Mars was eventually dusted with the debris and according to a 2013 study in the journal Astrobiology, the 14-kilometer-wide object ejected tens of thousands of pounds of impact rubble that may have landed on Saturn’s moon, Titan and on Europa and Callisto, which orbit Jupiter – all satellites that scientists believe harbor promising habitats for life. Mathematical models indicate that at least some of this debris still carried living microbes.

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“Will China Claim Ownership?” –Chang’e-4 Rover to Touchdown On the Moon’s Far Side New Year 2019

Peaks of Eternal Light

 

China’s Chang’e-4 lunar rover is due to touchdown on the far side of the moon around New Year, 2019 at the Von Kármán crater in Aitken Basin –the craggy and complex terrain of the lunar south pole region. The planet’s new space superpower will plant its flag. Will it also claim ownership?

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Ceres –The Organic Dwarf Planet: “It’s Like a Chemical Factory”

Ceres Dwarf Planet

 

“With these findings, Ceres has gained a pivotal role in assessing the origin, evolution and distribution of organic species across the inner solar system,” said Southwest Research Institute scientist Simone Marchi. “One has to wonder about how this world may have driven organic chemistry pathways, and how these processes may have affected the make-up of larger planets like the Earth.”

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“Tasting Life?” New ESA Spacecraft to Probe Plumes of Europa’s Global Ocean

Europa's Plumes

 

“Europa’s plumes are the most straight-forward way to taste its subsurface ocean,” says Hans Huybrighs with Max-Planck Institute of Solar System Physics. “Flying through one of the plumes of water and taking samples of the material could be the easiest way to study Europa’s ocean. JUICE will be the first mission that might be able to do this.”

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Today’s “Planet Earth Report” –Missing Human DNA, China’s Pyramids, The Alien Desert

 

The “Planet Earth Report” connects you to the day’s news headlines on the discoveries, people, and events changing our planet and the future of the human species.

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“What Lies Beneath” –NASA 1st Scientific Deep Dive of Mars Interior Mysteries

 

“Our measurements will help us turn back the clock and understand what produced a verdant Earth but a desolate Mars,” said Bruce Banerdt, who leads the Insight mission, prior to Monday’s landing at the Elysium Planitia, a flat, smooth plain devoid of rocks and hills, 373 miles north of the Curiosity rover.

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