WorldWideScience

Sample records for extraterrestrial intelligence astrobiological

  1. Astrobiology in culture: the search for extraterrestrial life as "science".

    Science.gov (United States)

    Billings, Linda

    2012-10-01

    This analysis examines the social construction of authority, credibility, and legitimacy for exobiology/astrobiology and, in comparison, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI), considering English-language conceptions of these endeavors in scientific culture and popular culture primarily in the United States. The questions that define astrobiology as a scientific endeavor are multidisciplinary in nature, and this endeavor is broadly appealing to public audiences as well as to the scientific community. Thus, it is useful to examine astrobiology in culture-in scientific culture, official culture, and popular culture. A researcher may explore science in culture, science as culture, by analyzing its rhetoric, the primary means that people use to construct their social realities-their cultural environment, as it were. This analysis follows this path, considering scientific and public interest in astrobiology and SETI and focusing on scientific and official constructions of the two endeavors. This analysis will also consider whether and how scientific and public conceptions of astrobiology and SETI, which are related but at the same time separate endeavors, converge or diverge and whether and how these convergences or divergences affect the scientific authority, credibility, and legitimacy of these endeavors.

  2. Search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morrison, P.; Billingham, J.; Wolfe, J.

    1977-01-01

    Findings are presented of a series of workshops on the existence of extraterrestrial intelligent life and ways in which extraterrestrial intelligence might be detected. The coverage includes the cosmic and cultural evolutions, search strategies, detection of other planetary systems, alternate methods of communication, and radio frequency interference. 17 references

  3. Measuring the effect of an astrobiology course on student optimism regarding extraterrestrial life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morgan, David L.

    2017-07-01

    Students in an introductory undergraduate Astrobiology course were given a pre/post-test based on the Drake Equation in an attempt to measure changes in their perceptions regarding the prevalence of life in the Galaxy after taking the course. The results indicated that, after taking the course, the students were considerably more optimistic, by a 2 to 1 margin or more, about the prospect of habitable planets, the origin of life, and the evolution of intelligence in other planetary systems. The results suggest that, while it may not be the explicit goal of an astrobiology course to change student beliefs about the abundance or rarity of extraterrestrial life, such changes in opinion can and do occur.

  4. [An encounter with extraterrestrial intelligence].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hisabayashi, Hisashi

    2003-12-01

    It is much easier to find extraterrestrial intelligence than to detect simple organisms living on other planets. However, it is hard to communicate with such intelligence without the mutual understanding of inter-stellar communication protocol. The radio SETI (The Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence) was initiated with the pioneering work of F. Drake in 1960, one year after the historical SETI paper by Cocconi and Morrison. This talk explains that SETI evolves with two bases of science; the understanding of our universe and the development of technology. Since SETI has had strong connection with radio astronomy from its early beginning, the impacts of radio astronomical findings and technological breakthrough can be seen in many aspects of the SETI history. Topics of this talk include the detection of microwave 3 K background radiation in the universe. Interstellar atomic and molecular lines found in radio-wave spectra provide the evidence of pre-biotic chemical evolution in such region. Radio telescope imaging and spectral technique are closely associated with methodology of SETI. Topics of the talk extend to new Allen Telescope Array and projected Square Kilometer Array. Recent optical SETI and the discoveries of extra solar planets are also explained. In the end, the recent understanding of our universe is briefly introduced in terms of matter, dark matter and dark energy. Even our understanding of the universe has been evolutionarily revolved and accumulated after 1960, we must recognize that our universe is still poorly understood and that astronomy and SETI are required to proceed hand in hand.

  5. From Fossils to Astrobiology Records of Life on Earth and Search for Extraterrestrial Biosignatures

    CERN Document Server

    Seckbach, Joseph

    2008-01-01

    From Fossils to Astrobiology reviews developments in paleontology and geobiology that relate to the rapidly-developing field of Astrobiology, the study of life in the Universe. Many traditional areas of scientific study, including astronomy, chemistry and planetary science, contribute to Astrobiology, but the study of the record of life on planet Earth is critical in guiding investigations in the rest of the cosmos. In this varied book, expert scientists from 15 countries present peer-reviewed, stimulating reviews of paleontological and astrobiological studies. The overviews of established and emerging techniques for studying modern and ancient microorganisms on Earth and beyond, will be valuable guides to evaluating biosignatures which could be found in the extraterrestrial surface or subsurface within the Solar System and beyond. This volume also provides discussion on the controversial reports of "nanobacteria" in the Martian meteorite ALH84001. It is a unique volume among Astrobiology monographs in focusi...

  6. The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tarter, Jill

    The search for evidence of extraterrestrial intelligence is placed in the broader astronomical context of the search for extrasolar planets and biomarkers of primitive life elsewhere in the universe. A decision tree of possible search strategies is presented as well as a brief history of the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) projects since 1960. The characteristics of 14 SETI projects currently operating on telescopes are discussed and compared using one of many possible figures of merit. Plans for SETI searches in the immediate and more distant future are outlined. Plans for success, the significance of null results, and some opinions on deliberate transmission of signals (as well as listening) are also included. SETI results to date are negative, but in reality, not much searching has yet been done.

  7. Psycholinguistics and the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lidija Krotenko

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The author of the article reveals the possibilities of psycholinguistics in the identifi cation and interpretation of languages and texts of Alien Civilizations. The author combines modern interdisciplinary research in psycholinguistics with the theory “Evolving Matter” proposed by Oleg Bazaluk and concludes that the identifi cation of languages and texts of Alien Civilizations, as well as the communication of terrestrial civilization with Extraterrestrial Intelligence, is in principle possible. To that end, it is necessary to achieve the required level of the modeling of neurophilosophy and to include these achievements of modern psycholinguistics studies: а language acquisition; b language comprehension; c language production; d second language acquisition. On the one hand, the possibilities of neurophilosophy to accumulate and model advanced neuroscience research; on the other hand, highly specialized psycholinguistic studies in language evolution are able to provide the communication of terrestrial civilization with Extraterrestrial Intelligence.

  8. Extraterrestrial Intelligence: What Would it Mean?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Impey, Chris

    2015-04-01

    Results from NASA's Kepler mission imply a hundred million Earth-like habitable worlds in the Milky Way galaxy, many of which formed billions of years before the Earth. Each of these worlds is likely to have all of the ingredients needed for biology. The real estate of time and space for the evolution of intelligent life is formidable, begging the question of whether or not we are alone in the universe. The implications of making contact have been explored extensively in science fiction and the popular culture, but less frequently in the serious scientific literature. Astronomers have carried out searches for extraterrestrial intelligence for over half a century, with no success so far. In practice, it is easier to search for alien technology than to discern intelligence of unknown function and form. In this talk, the modes of technology that can currently be detected are summarized, along with the implications of a timing argument than any detected civilization is likely to be much more advanced than ours. Fermi's famous question ``Where Are They?'' is as well posed now as it was sixty years ago. The existence of extraterrestrial intelligence would have profound practical, cultural, and religious implications for humanity.

  9. Widening Perspectives: The Intellectual and Social Benefits of Astrobiology (Regardless of Whether Extraterrestrial Life is Discovered or Not)

    OpenAIRE

    Crawford, Ian A.

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is usually defined as the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe. As such it is inherently interdisciplinary and cannot help but engender a worldview infused by cosmic and evolutionary perspectives. Both these attributes of the study of astrobiology are, and will increasingly prove to be, beneficial to society regardless of whether extraterrestrial life is discovered or not.

  10. Widening perspectives: the intellectual and social benefits of astrobiology (regardless of whether extraterrestrial life is discovered or not)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crawford, I. A.

    2018-01-01

    Astrobiology is usually defined as the study of the origin, evolution, distribution and future of life in the Universe. As such it is inherently interdisciplinary and cannot help but engender a worldview infused by cosmic and evolutionary perspectives. Both these attributes of the study of astrobiology are, and will increasingly prove to be, beneficial to society regardless of whether extraterrestrial life is discovered or not.

  11. Development of extraterrestrial intelligence and physical laws

    Science.gov (United States)

    Troitskij, V. S.

    This paper considers the restrictions imposed by physical laws on the development of life and intelligence in the form of extraterrestrial civilizations. For this purpose intelligence is defined as the community of intelligent beings, joined by the exchange of mass, energy and information both between themselves and with the external medium. Due to the limitation of the velocity of exchange of information and, in particular, mass and energy exchange, the dimensions of the intelligence cannot exceed some light days, i.e. they are limited by the habitable zone about their star. It is shown that the energy consumption should not exceed the energy output of their star for the sake of preserving the cosmic near-star zone of life from energetic pollution. With the above restrictions of the energy product it takes millions of years to create an omnidirectional beacon-transmitter signals from which would be received by the contemporary antennas in all our Galaxy. It is realistic to create an omnidirectional beacon operating in the range of no more than 100-1000 light years.

  12. Funding the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence with a Lottery Bond

    OpenAIRE

    Haqq-Misra, Jacob

    2013-01-01

    I propose the establishment of a SETI Lottery Bond to provide a continued source of funding for the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). The SETI Lottery Bond is a fixed rate perpetual bond with a lottery at maturity, where maturity occurs only upon discovery and confirmation of extraterrestrial intelligent life. Investors in the SETI Lottery Bond purchase shares that yield a fixed rate of interest that continues indefinitely until SETI succeeds---at which point a random subset of...

  13. SETI pioneers scientists talk about their search for extraterrestrial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Swift, David W.

    1990-01-01

    Why did some scientists decide to conduct a search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI)? What factors in their personal development predisposed them to such a quest? What obstacles did they encounter along the way? David Swift interviewed the first scientists involved in the search & offers a fascinating overview of the emergence of this modern scientific endeavor. He allows some of the most imaginative scientific thinkers of our time to hold forth on their views regarding SETI & extraterrestrial life & on how the field has developed. Readers will react with a range of opinions as broad as those concerning the likelihood of success in SETI itself. ''A goldmine of original information.''

  14. Information theory, animal communication, and the search for extraterrestrial intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doyle, Laurance R.; McCowan, Brenda; Johnston, Simon; Hanser, Sean F.

    2011-02-01

    We present ongoing research in the application of information theory to animal communication systems with the goal of developing additional detectors and estimators for possible extraterrestrial intelligent signals. Regardless of the species, for intelligence (i.e., complex knowledge) to be transmitted certain rules of information theory must still be obeyed. We demonstrate some preliminary results of applying information theory to socially complex marine mammal species (bottlenose dolphins and humpback whales) as well as arboreal squirrel monkeys, because they almost exclusively rely on vocal signals for their communications, producing signals which can be readily characterized by signal analysis. Metrics such as Zipf's Law and higher-order information-entropic structure are emerging as indicators of the communicative complexity characteristic of an "intelligent message" content within these animals' signals, perhaps not surprising given these species' social complexity. In addition to human languages, for comparison we also apply these metrics to pulsar signals—perhaps (arguably) the most "organized" of stellar systems—as an example of astrophysical systems that would have to be distinguished from an extraterrestrial intelligence message by such information theoretic filters. We also look at a message transmitted from Earth (Arecibo Observatory) that contains a lot of meaning but little information in the mathematical sense we define it here. We conclude that the study of non-human communication systems on our own planet can make a valuable contribution to the detection of extraterrestrial intelligence by providing quantitative general measures of communicative complexity. Studying the complex communication systems of other intelligent species on our own planet may also be one of the best ways to deprovincialize our thinking about extraterrestrial communication systems in general.

  15. Science, religion, and the search for extraterrestrial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Wilkinson, David

    2013-01-01

    If the discovery of life elsewhere in the universe is just around the corner, what would be the consequences for religion? Would it represent another major conflict between science and religion, even leading to the death of faith? Some would suggest that the discovery of any suggestion of extraterrestrial life would have a greater impact than even the Copernican and Darwinian revolutions. It is now over 50 years since the first modern scientific papers were published on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). Yet the religious implications of this search and possible discovery have never been systematically addressed in the scientific or theological arena. SETI is now entering its most important era of scientific development. New observation techniques are leading to the discovery of extra-solar planets daily, and the Kepler mission has already collected over 1000 planetary candidates. This deluge of data is transforming the scientific and popular view of the existence of extraterrestrial intel...

  16. Internalizing Null Extraterrestrial "Signals": An Astrobiological App for a Technological Society

    OpenAIRE

    Chaisson, Eric J.

    2014-01-01

    One of the beneficial outcomes of searching for life in the Universe is that it grants greater awareness of our own problems here on Earth. Lack of contact with alien beings to date might actually comprise a null "signal" pointing humankind toward a viable future. Astrobiology has surprising practical applications to human society; within the larger cosmological context of cosmic evolution, astrobiology clarifies the energetic essence of complex systems throughout the Universe, including tech...

  17. Searching for Extraterrestrial Intelligence SETI Past, Present, and Future

    CERN Document Server

    Shuch, H Paul

    2011-01-01

    This book is a collection of essays written by the very scientists and engineers who have led, and continue to lead, the scientific quest known as SETI, the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. Divided into three parts, the first section, ‘The Spirit of SETI Past’, written by the surviving pioneers of this then emerging discipline, reviews the major projects undertaken during the first 50 years of SETI science and the results of that research. In the second section, ‘The Spirit of SETI Present’, the present-day science and technology is discussed in detail, providing the technical background to contemporary SETI instruments, experiments, and analytical techniques, including the processing of the received signals to extract potential alien communications. In the third and final section, ‘The Spirit of SETI Future’, the book looks ahead to the possible directions that SETI will take in the next 50 years, addressing such important topics as interstellar message construction, the risks and assump...

  18. International law implications of the detection of extraterrestrial intelligent signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kopal, Vladimir

    This paper first considers whether the present law of outer space, as it has been enshrined in five United Nations treaties and other legal documents concerning outer space, provides a satisfactory basis for SETI/CETI activities. In the author's opinion, these activities may serve "the common interest of all mankind in the progress of the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes," as recognized in the 1967 Outer Space Treaty. The use of the radio frequency spectrum for SETI/CETI purposes should be in conformity with the legal principles governing this valuable natural resource, as expressed in the International Telecommunication Convention and related documents, and with allocations of the relevant segments of the spectrum by the competent bodies of the International Telecommunication Union. In the second part the author examines the impact that the detection of extraterrestrial intelligent signals may have on the present body of space law. A possible role for the United Nations in this respect is also explored and a timely interest of the world body in discussing questions relating to this subject is recommended. Consideration of these questions could become a tool helping to concentrate the attention of the world community on problems of common concern and thus to strengthen international cooperation. However, the author believes that a law-making process that would aim at elaborating a special regulation of activities in this field would be premature at this stage. It should be initiated only when the boundary between possibilities and realities is crossed. Finally, the paper outlines some likely transformation in our space law thinking that would be the consequence of the detection of extraterrestrial intelligent signals. Elaboration of the principles and norms to govern relations between the international community of our own planet and other intelligent communities in the universe would add a new dimension to the present body of outer space

  19. Christianity's Response to the Discovery of Extraterrestrial Intelligent Life: Insights from Science and Religion and the Sociology of Religion

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertka, Constance M.

    The question of whether or not extraterrestrial life exists and its potential impact for religions, especially Christianity, is an ancient one addressed in numerous historical publications. The contemporary discussion has been dominated by a few notable scientists from the SETI and astrobiology communities, and by a few Christian theologians active in the science and religion field. This discussion amounts to scientists outside of the faith tradition predicting the demise of Christianity if extraterrestrial intelligent life is discovered and theologians within the tradition predicting the enrichment and reformulation of Christian doctrine. Missing from this discussion is insight drawn more broadly from the science and religion field and from the sociology of religion. A consideration of how possibilities for relating science and religion are reflected in the US public's varied acceptance of the theory of evolution; the growth of Christianity in the Global South; and a revised theory of secularization which inversely correlates religiosity to existential security, gives credence to the proposal that the response from those outside of academia would be much more varied and uncertain.

  20. Anthropomorphism in the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence - The limits of cognition?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bohlmann, Ulrike M.; Bürger, Moritz J. F.

    2018-02-01

    The question "Are we alone?" lingers in the human mind since ancient times. Early human civilisations populated the heavens above with a multitude of Gods endowed with some all too human characteristics - from their outer appearance to their innermost motivations. En passant they created thereby their own cultural founding myths on which they built their understanding of the world and its phenomena and deduced as well rules for the functioning of their own society. Advancing technology has enabled us to conduct this human quest for knowledge with more scientific means: optical and radio-wavelengths are being monitored for messages by an extra-terrestrial intelligence and active messaging attempts have also been undertaken. Scenarios have been developed for a possible detection of extra-terrestrial intelligence and post-detection guidelines and protocols have been elaborated. The human responses to the whole array of questions concerning the potential existence, discovery of and communication/interaction with an extra-terrestrial intelligence share as one clear thread a profound anthropomorphism, which ascribes classical human behavioural patterns also to an extra-terrestrial intelligence in much the same way as our ancestors attributed comparable conducts to mythological figures. This paper aims at pinpointing this thread in a number of classical reactions to basic questions related to the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence. Many of these reactions are based on human motives such as curiosity and fear, rationalised by experience and historical analogy and modelled in the Science Fiction Culture by literature and movies. Scrutinising the classical hypothetical explanations of the Fermi paradox under the angle of a potentially undue anthropomorphism, this paper intends to assist in understanding our human epistemological limitations in the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence. This attempt is structured into a series of questions: I. Can we be alone? II

  1. L factor: hope and fear in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rubin, Charles T.

    2001-08-01

    The L factor in the Drake equation is widely understood to account for most of the variance in estimates of the number of extraterrestrial intelligences that might be contacted by the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). It is also among the hardest to quantify. An examination of discussions of the L factor in the popular and technical SETI literature suggests that attempts to estimate L involve a variety of potentially conflicting assumptions about civilizational lifespan that reflect hopes and fears about the human future.

  2. Cultural Aspects of Astrobiology: A Preliminary Reconnaissance at

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven

    NASA's Astrobiology Roadmap, developed in 1998 by an interdisciplinary team of more than 150 individuals, recognizes ten science goals, 17 more specific science objectives, and four broad principles for the Astrobiology Program. Among the four operating principles, which emphasize multidisciplinarity, planetary stewardship and public outreach, is one that also recognizes broad societal interest for the implications of astrobiology, especially its extraterrestrial life component. Although several meetings ahve been convened in the past decade to discuss the implications of extraterrestrial intelligence, including NASA's own CASETI workshops in 1991-1992, none have surveyed the broader implications of astrobiology as now defined at NASA. In this paper we survey these societal questions raised by astrobiology, and then focus on those related to extraterrestrial life, and in particular how they might differ from SETI concerns already discussed. As we enter the new millennium, the necessity for interdisciplinary studies is increasingly recognized in academia, industry and government. Astrobiology provides an unprecedented opportunity to encourage the unity of knowledge, as recently proposed in E. O. Wilson's book Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge. It is incumbent on scientists to support research on the implications of their work, in particular large government-funded scientific projects. The deep insights such study may yield has been amply demonstrated by the Human Genome Project, among others.

  3. From cosmos to intelligent life: the four ages of astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gleiser, Marcelo

    2012-10-01

    The history of life on Earth and in other potential life-bearing planetary platforms is deeply linked to the history of the Universe. Since life, as we know, relies on chemical elements forged in dying heavy stars, the Universe needs to be old enough for stars to form and evolve. The current cosmological theory indicates that the Universe is 13.7 +/- 0.13 billion years old and that the first stars formed hundreds of millions of years after the Big Bang. At least some stars formed with stable planetary systems wherein a set of biochemical reactions leading to life could have taken place. In this paper, I argue that we can divide cosmological history into four ages, from the Big Bang to intelligent life. The physical age describes the origin of the Universe, of matter, of cosmic nucleosynthesis, as well as the formation of the first stars and Galaxies. The chemical age began when heavy stars provided the raw ingredients for life through stellar nucleosynthesis and describes how heavier chemical elements collected in nascent planets and Moons gave rise to prebiotic biomolecules. The biological age describes the origin of early life, its evolution through Darwinian natural selection and the emergence of complex multicellular life forms. Finally, the cognitive age describes how complex life evolved into intelligent life capable of self-awareness and of developing technology through the directed manipulation of energy and materials. I conclude discussing whether we are the rule or the exception.

  4. The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence in the 1960s: Science in Popular Culture

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Sierra

    2012-01-01

    Building upon the advancement of technology during the Second World War and the important scientific discoveries which have been made about the structure and components of the universe, scientists, especially in radio astronomy and physics, began seriously addressing the possibility of extraterrestrial intelligence in the 1960s. The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) quickly became one of the most controversial scientific issues in the post Second World War period. The controversy played out, not only in scientific and technical journals, but in newspapers and in popular literature. Proponents for SETI, including Frank Drake, Carl Sagan, and Philip Morrison, actively used a strategy of engagement with the public by using popular media to lobby for exposure and funding. This paper will examine the use of popular media by scientists interested in SETI to popularize and heighten public awareness and also to examine the effects of popularization on SETI's early development. My research has been generously supported by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory.

  5. Project Cyclops: a Design Study of a System for Detecting Extraterrestrial Intelligent Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    1972-01-01

    The requirements in hardware, manpower, time and funding to conduct a realistic effort aimed at detecting the existence of extraterrestrial intelligent life are examined. The methods used are limited to present or near term future state-of-the-art techniques. Subjects discussed include: (1) possible methods of contact, (2) communication by electromagnetic waves, (3) antenna array and system facilities, (4) antenna elements, (5) signal processing, (6) search strategy, and (7) radio and radar astronomy.

  6. Proceedings of the Astrobiology Science Conference 2010. Evolution and Life: Surviving Catastrophes and Extremes on Earth and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    Mars?; Titan Versus Europa - Potential for Astrobiology; Habitability Potential of Mars; Biosignatures: Tools and Development I; Origins of Molecular Asymmetry, Homochirality, and Life Detection; Deserts and Evaporite Basins and Associated Microbialite Systems; Ancient Life and Synthetic Biology: Crossroad of the Past and Future; Biosignatures: Tools and Development II; Free Oxygen: Proxies, Causes, and Consequences; Life in Modern Microbialite Systems - Function and Adaptation; Hydrothermal Systems and Organosynthesis Processes: Origin and Evolution of Life; Where Should We Go on Mars to Seek Signs of Life?; Search for Intelligent Life I. Innovative SETI Observing Programs and Future Directions; Integrating Astrobiology Research Across and Beyond the Community; Education in Astrobiology in K-12; Search for Intelligent Life II. Global Engagement and Interstellar Message Construction; Poster sessions included: Extraterrestrial Molecular Evolution and Pre-Biological Chemistry; Prebiotic Evolution: From Chemistry to Life; RNA World; Terrestrial Evolution: Implications for the Past, Present, and Future of Life on Earth; Hydrothermal Systems and Organosynthesis Processes: Origin and Evolution of Life; Virology and Astrobiology; Horizontal Genetic Transfer and Properties of Ancestral Organisms; Life in Volcanic Environments: On Earth and Beyond; Impact Events and Evolution; Evolution of Advanced Life; Evolution of Intelligent Life; Education in Astrobiology in K-12; Origins of Molecular Asymmetry, Homochirality, and Life Detection; Astrobiology and Interdisciplinary Communication; Diversity in Astrobiology Research and Education; Integrating Astrobiology Research Across and Beyond the Community; Policy and Societal Issues: Dealing with Potential Bumps in the Astrobiology Road Ahead; Results from ASTEP and Other Astrobiology Field Campaigns; Energy Flow in Microbial Ecosystems; Psychrophiles and Polar Environments; Deserts and Evaporite Basins and Associated Microbialite

  7. Astrobiological neurosystems rise and fall of intelligent life forms in the universe

    CERN Document Server

    Cranford, Jerry L

    2015-01-01

    This book explains why scientists believe that life may be more common in the Universe than previously considered possible. It presents the tools and strategies astronomers and astrobiologists are using in their formal search for habitable exoplanets as well as more advanced forms of life in other parts of our galaxy. The author then summarizes what is currently known about how and where organic molecules critical to our form of carbon-based life are manufactured. The core of the book explains (and presents educated guesses) how nervous systems evolved on Earth, how they work, and how they might work on other worlds. Combining his knowledge of neuroscience, computers, and astrobiology the author jumps into the discussion whether biological nervous systems are just the first step in the rise of intelligence in the Universe. The book ends with a description from both the psychologist’s and the neuroscientist’s viewpoints, exactly what it is about the fields of astrobiology and astronomy that “boggles...

  8. How far are extraterrestrial life and intelligence after Kepler?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wandel, Amri

    2017-08-01

    The Kepler mission has shown that a significant fraction of all stars may have an Earth-size habitable planet. A dramatic support was the recent detection of Proxima Centauri b. Using a Drake-equation like formalism I derive an equation for the abundance of biotic planets as a function of the relatively modest uncertainty in the astronomical data and of the (yet unknown) probability for the evolution of biotic life, Fb. I suggest that Fb may be estimated by future spectral observations of exoplanet biomarkers. It follows that if Fb is not very small, then a biotic planet may be expected within about 10 light years from Earth. Extending this analyses to advanced life, I derive expressions for the distance to putative civilizations in terms of two additional Drake parameters - the probability for evolution of a civilization, Fc, and its average longevity. Assuming "optimistic" values for the Drake parameters, (Fb Fc 1), and a broadcasting duration of a few thousand years, the likely distance to the nearest civilizations detectable by SETI is of the order of a few thousand light years. Finally I calculate the distance and probability of detecting intelligent signals with present and future radio telescopes such as Arecibo and SKA and how it could constrain the Drake parameters.

  9. Extraterrestrial Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klein, M. J.

    1993-01-01

    Extraterrestrial Intelligence is intelligent life that developed somewhere other than the earth. Such life has not yet been discovered. However, scientific research, including astronomy, biology, planetary science and studies of fossils here on earth have led many scientists to conclude that such life may exist on planets orbiting at least some of the hundreds of billions of stars in our Milky Way Galaxy. Today, some researchers are trying to find evidence for extraterrestrial intelligence. This effort is often called SETI, which stands for Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence. SETI researchers decided that looking for evidence of their technology might be the best way to discover other intelligent life in the Galaxy. They decided to use large radio telescopes to search the sky over a wide range of radio frequencies...

  10. Extraterrestrial intelligence and human imagination SETI at the intersection of science, religion, and culture

    CERN Document Server

    Traphagan, John

    2015-01-01

    The search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) represents one of the most significant crossroads at which the assumptions and methods of scientific inquiry come into direct contact with—and in many cases conflict with—those of religion. Indeed, at the core of SETI is the same question that motivates many interested in religion: What is the place of humanity in the universe? Both scientists involved with SETI (and in other areas) and those interested in and dedicated to some religious traditions are engaged in contemplating these types of questions, even if their respective approaches and answers differ significantly. This book explores this intersection with a focus on three core points: 1) the relationship between science and religion as it is expressed within the framework of SETI research, 2) the underlying assumptions, many of which are tacitly based upon cultural values common in American society, that have shaped the ways in which SETI researchers have conceptualized the nature of their endeavo...

  11. Polyphase-discrete Fourier transform spectrum analysis for the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence sky survey

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerman, G. A.; Gulkis, S.

    1991-01-01

    The sensitivity of a matched filter-detection system to a finite-duration continuous wave (CW) tone is compared with the sensitivities of a windowed discrete Fourier transform (DFT) system and an ideal bandpass filter-bank system. These comparisons are made in the context of the NASA Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) microwave observing project (MOP) sky survey. A review of the theory of polyphase-DFT filter banks and its relationship to the well-known windowed-DFT process is presented. The polyphase-DFT system approximates the ideal bandpass filter bank by using as few as eight filter taps per polyphase branch. An improvement in sensitivity of approx. 3 dB over a windowed-DFT system can be obtained by using the polyphase-DFT approach. Sidelobe rejection of the polyphase-DFT system is vastly superior to the windowed-DFT system, thereby improving its performance in the presence of radio frequency interference (RFI).

  12. Modeling an Optical and Infrared Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence Survey with Exoplanet Direct Imaging

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vides, Christina; Macintosh, Bruce; Ruffio, Jean-Baptiste; Nielsen, Eric; Povich, Matthew Samuel

    2018-01-01

    Gemini Planet Imager (GPI) is a direct high contrast imaging instrument coupled to the Gemini South Telescope. Its purpose is to image extrasolar planets around young (~Intelligence), we modeled GPI’s capabilities to detect an extraterrestrial continuous wave (CW) laser broadcasted within the H-band have been modeled. By using sensitivity evaluated for actual GPI observations of young target stars, we produced models of the CW laser power as a function of distance from the star that could be detected if GPI were to observe nearby (~ 3-5 pc) planet-hosting G-type stars. We took a variety of transmitters into consideration in producing these modeled values. GPI is known to be sensitive to both pulsed and CW coherent electromagnetic radiation. The results were compared to similar studies and it was found that these values are competitive to other optical and infrared observations.

  13. Woodpeckers and Diamonds: Some Aspects of Evolutionary Convergence in Astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ćirković, Milan M

    2018-05-01

    Jared Diamond's argument against extraterrestrial intelligence from evolutionary contingency is subjected to critical scrutiny. As with the earlier arguments of George Gaylord Simpson, it contains critical loopholes that lead to its unraveling. From the point of view of the contemporary debates about biological evolution, perhaps the most contentious aspect of such arguments is their atemporal and gradualist usage of the space of all possible biological forms (morphospace). Such usage enables the translation of the adaptive value of a trait into the probability of its evolving. This procedure, it is argued, is dangerously misleading. Contra Diamond, there are reasons to believe that convergence not only plays an important role in the history of life, but also profoundly improves the prospects for search for extraterrestrial intelligence success. Some further considerations about the role of observation selection effects and our scaling of complexity in the great debate about contingency and convergence are given. Taken together, these considerations militate against the pessimism of Diamond's conclusion, and suggest that the search for traces and manifestations of extraterrestrial intelligences is far from forlorn. Key Words: Astrobiology-Evolution-Contingency-Convergence-Complex life-SETI-Major evolutionary transitions-Selection effects-Jared Diamond. Astrobiology 18, 491-502.

  14. The need for operating guidelines and a decision making framework applicable to the discovery of non-intelligent extraterrestrial life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Race, Margaret S.; Randolph, Richard O.

    While formal principles have been adopted for the eventuality of detecting intelligent life in our galaxy (SETI Principles), no such guidelines exist for the discovery of non-intelligent extraterrestrial life within the solar system. Current scientifically based planetary protection policies for solar system exploration address how to undertake exploration, but do not provide clear guidance on what to do if and when life is detected. Considering that martian life could be detected under several different robotic and human exploration scenarios in the coming decades, it is appropriate to anticipate how detection of non-intelligent, microbial life could impact future exploration missions and activities, especially on Mars. This paper discusses a proposed set of interim guidelines based loosely on the SETI Principles and addresses issues extending from the time of discovery through future handling and treatment of extraterrestrial life on Mars or elsewhere. Based on an analysis of both scientific and ethical considerations, there is a clear need for developing operating protocols applicable at the time of discovery and a decision making framework that anticipates future missions and activities, both robotic and human. There is growing scientific confidence that the discovery of extraterrestrial life in some form is nearly inevitable. If and when life is discovered beyond Earth, non-scientific dimensions may strongly influence decisions about the nature and scope of future missions and activities. It is appropriate to encourage international discussion and consideration of the issues prior to an event of such historical significance.

  15. Teaching Planetary Science as Part of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Margot, Jean-Luc; Greenberg, Adam H.

    2017-10-01

    In Spring 2016 and 2017, UCLA offered a course titled "EPSS C179/279 - Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence: Theory and Applications". The course is designed for advanced undergraduate students and graduate students in the science, technical, engineering, and mathematical fields. Each year, students designed an observing sequence for the Green Bank telescope, observed known planetary systems remotely, wrote a sophisticated and modular data processing pipeline, analyzed the data, and presented their results. In 2016, 15 students participated in the course (9U, 5G; 11M, 3F) and observed 14 planetary systems in the Kepler field. In 2017, 17 students participated (15U, 2G; 10M, 7F) and observed 10 planetary systems in the Kepler field, TRAPPIST-1, and LHS 1140. In order to select suitable targets, students learned about planetary systems, planetary habitability, and planetary dynamics. In addition to planetary science fundamentals, students learned radio astronomy fundamentals, collaborative software development, signal processing techniques, and statistics. Evaluations indicate that the course is challenging but that students are eager to learn because of the engrossing nature of SETI. Students particularly value the teamwork approach, the observing experience, and working with their own data. The next offering of the course will be in Spring 2018. Additional information about our SETI work is available at seti.ucla.edu.

  16. AN OPPORTUNISTIC SEARCH FOR EXTRATERRESTRIAL INTELLIGENCE (SETI) WITH THE MURCHISON WIDEFIELD ARRAY

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tingay, S. J.; Tremblay, C.; Walsh, A.; Urquhart, R. [International Centre for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR), Curtin University, Bentley, WA 6102 (Australia)

    2016-08-20

    A spectral line image cube generated from 115 minutes of MWA data that covers a field of view of 400 sq, deg. around the Galactic Center is used to perform the first Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence (SETI) with the Murchison Widefield Array (MWA). Our work constitutes the first modern SETI experiment at low radio frequencies, here between 103 and 133 MHz, paving the way for large-scale searches with the MWA and, in the future, the low-frequency Square Kilometre Array. Limits of a few hundred mJy beam{sup −1} for narrowband emission (10 kHz) are derived from our data, across our 400 sq. deg. field of view. Within this field, 45 exoplanets in 38 planetary systems are known. We extract spectra at the locations of these systems from our image cube to place limits on the presence of narrow line emission from these systems. We then derive minimum isotropic transmitter powers for these exoplanets; a small handful of the closest objects (10 s of pc) yield our best limits of order 10{sup 14} W (Equivalent Isotropic Radiated Power). These limits lie above the highest power directional transmitters near these frequencies currently operational on Earth. A SETI experiment with the MWA covering the full accessible sky and its full frequency range would require approximately one month of observing time. The MWA frequency range, its southern hemisphere location on an extraordinarily radio quiet site, its very large field of view, and its high sensitivity make it a unique facility for SETI.

  17. Critical issues in the history, philosophy, and sociology of astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven J

    2012-10-01

    Fifty years after serious scientific research began in the field of exobiology, and forty years after serious historical research began on the subject of extraterrestrial life, this paper identifies and examines some of the most important issues in the history, philosophy, and sociology of what is today known as astrobiology. As in the philosophy of science in general, and in the philosophies of particular sciences, critical issues in the philosophy and sociology of astrobiology are both stimulated and illuminated by history. Among those issues are (1) epistemological issues such as the status of astrobiology as a science, the problematic nature of evidence and inference, and the limits of science; (2) metaphysical/scientific issues, including the question of defining the fundamental concepts of life, mind, intelligence, and culture in a universal context; the role of contingency and necessity in the origin of these fundamental phenomena; and whether or not the universe is in some sense fine-tuned for life and perhaps biocentric; (3) societal issues such as the theological, ethical, and worldview impacts of the discovery of microbial or intelligent life; and the question of whether the search for extraterrestrial life should be pursued at all, and with what precautions; and (4) issues related to the sociology of scientific knowledge, including the diverse attitudes and assumptions of different scientific communities and different cultures to the problem of life beyond Earth, the public "will to believe," and the formation of the discipline of astrobiology. All these overlapping issues are framed by the concept of cosmic evolution-the 13.7 billion year Master Narrative of the Universe-which may result in a physical, biological, or postbiological universe and determine the long-term destiny of humanity.

  18. Sampling the Radio Transient Universe: Studies of Pulsars and the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chennamangalam, Jayanth

    The transient radio universe is a relatively unexplored area of astronomy, offering a variety of phenomena, from solar and Jovian bursts, to flare stars, pulsars, and bursts of Galactic and potentially even cosmological origin. Among these, perhaps the most widely studied radio transients, pulsars are fast-spinning neutron stars that emit radio beams from their magnetic poles. In spite of over 40 years of research on pulsars, we have more questions than answers on these exotic compact objects, chief among them the nature of their emission mechanism. Nevertheless, the wealth of phenomena exhibited by pulsars make them one of the most useful astrophysical tools. With their high densities, pulsars are probes of the nature of ultra-dense matter. Characterized by their high timing stability, pulsars can be used to verify the predictions of general relativity, discover planets around them, study bodies in the solar system, and even serve as an interplanetary (and possibly some day, interstellar) navigation aid. Pulsars are also used to study the nature of the interstellar medium, much like a flashlight illuminating airborne dust in a dark room. Studies of pulsars in the Galactic center can help answer questions about the massive black hole in the region and the star formation history in its vicinity. Millisecond pulsars in globular clusters are long-lived tracers of their progenitors, low-mass X-ray binaries, and can be used to study the dynamical history of those clusters. Another source of interest in radio transient astronomy is the hitherto undetected engineered signal from extraterrestrial intelligence. The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) is an ongoing attempt at discovering the presence of technological life elsewhere in the Galaxy. In this work, I present my forays into two aspects of the study of the radio transient universe---pulsars and SETI. Firstly, I describe my work on the luminosity function and population size of pulsars in the globular

  19. Astrobiology, history, and society life beyond earth and the impact of discovery

    CERN Document Server

    2013-01-01

    This book addresses important current and historical topics in astrobiology and the search for life beyond Earth, including the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). The first section covers the plurality of worlds debate from antiquity through the nineteenth century, while section two covers the extraterrestrial life debate from the twentieth century to the present. The final section examines the societal impact of discovering life beyond Earth, including both cultural and religious dimensions. Throughout the book, authors draw links between their own chapters and those of other contributors, emphasizing the interconnections between the various strands of the history and societal impact of the search for extraterrestrial life. The chapters are all written by internationally recognized experts and are carefully edited by Douglas Vakoch, professor of clinical psychology at the California Institute of Integral Studies and Director of Interstellar Message Composition at the SETI Institute. This interd...

  20. A failure of serendipity: the Square Kilometre Array will struggle to eavesdrop on human-like extraterrestrial intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forgan, D. H.; Nichol, R. C.

    2011-04-01

    The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) will operate in frequency ranges often used by military radar and other communications technology. It has been shown that if extraterrestrial intelligences (ETIs) communicate using similar technology, then the SKA should be able to detect such transmissions up to distances of ~100 pc (~300 light years) from Earth. However, Mankind has greatly improved its communications technology over the last century, dramatically reducing signal leakage and making the Earth ‘radio quiet’. If ETIs follow the same pattern as the human race, will we be able to detect their signal leakage before they become radio quiet? We investigate this question using Monte Carlo realization techniques to simulate the growth and evolution of intelligent life in the Galaxy. We show that if civilizations are ‘human’ in nature (i.e. they are only ‘radio loud’ for ~100 years, and can only detect each other with an SKA-like instrument out to 100 pc, within a maximum communication time of 100 years), then the probability for such civilizations accidentally detecting each other is low (~10-7), much lower than if other, dedicated communication techniques are permissible (e.g. optical SETI or neutrino communication).

  1. Ethical issues in astrobiology: a Christian perspective (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Randolph, R. O.

    2009-12-01

    With its focus on the origin, extent, and future of life, Astrobiology raises exciting, multidisciplinary questions for science. At the same time, Astrobiology raises important questions for the humanities. For instance, the prospect of discovering extraterrestrial life - either intelligent or unintelligent - raises questions about humans’ place in the universe and our relationship with nature on planet Earth. Fundamentally, such questions are rooted in our understanding of what it means to be human. From a Christian perspective, the foundational claim about human nature is that all persons bear the "imago dei", the image of God. This concept forms the basis for how humans relate to one another (dignity) and how humans relate to nature (stewardship). For many Christians the "imago dei" also suggests that humans are at the center of the universe. The discovery of extraterrestrial life would be another scientific development - similar to evolution - that essentially de-centers humanity. For some Christian perspectives this de-centering may be problematic, but I will argue that the discovery of extraterrestrial life would actually offer a much needed theological corrective for contemporary Christians’ understanding of the "imago dei". I will make this argument by examining two clusters of ethical issues confronting Astrobiology: 1. What ethical obligations would human explorers owe to extraterrestrial life? Are there ethical obligations to protect extraterrestrial ecosystems from harm or exploitation by human explorers? Do our ethical considerations change, if the extraterrestrial life is a “second genesis;” in other words a form of life completely different and independent from the carbon-based life that we know on Earth? 2. Do we have an ethical obligation to promote life as much as we can? If human explorers discover extraterrestrial life and through examination determine that it is struggling to survive, do we have an ethical obligation to assist that

  2. Is Humanity Doomed? Insights from Astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seth D. Baum

    2010-02-01

    Full Text Available Astrobiology, the study of life in the universe, offers profound insights into human sustainability. However, astrobiology is commonly neglected in sustainability research. This paper develops three topics connecting astrobiology to sustainability: constraints on what zones in the universe are habitable, the absence of observations of extraterrestrial civilizations, and the physical fate of the universe. These topics have major implications for our thinking and action on sustainability. While we may not be doomed, we must take certain actions to sustain ourselves in this universe. The topics also suggest that our current sustainability efforts may be of literally galactic importance.

  3. If technological intelligent extraterrestrials exist, what biological traits are de rigueur

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, E. R.

    2018-05-01

    If extraterrestrials exist in the depths of cosmic space, and are capable of interstellar communications, even space flight, there is no requirement that they be humanoid in form. However, certain humanoid capabilities would be advantageous for tool fashioning and critical to operating space craft as well as functioning under the disparate extreme conditions under which they may be forced to operate. They would have to be "gas breathing". The reasonable assumption that life based upon the same elements as Earth life requiring water stems from the unique properties of water that no other similar low molecular weight nonmetal hydride offers. Only water offers the diversity of chemical properties and reactivity, including the existence of the three common physical states within a limited temperature range of service to life, avoiding the issues presented by any alternatives. They must, like us, possess a large, abstract-thinking brain, and probably possess at least all the fundamental senses that humankind possess. They would also be carbon-based life, using oxygen as the electron sink of their biochemistry for the reasons considered. They most likely are homeothermic as us, though they may not necessarily be mammalian as we are. Their biochemistry could differ some from ours, perhaps presenting contact hazards for both species as discussed.

  4. The UK Centre for Astrobiology: A Virtual Astrobiology Centre. Accomplishments and Lessons Learned, 2011-2016.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cockell, Charles S; Biller, Beth; Bryce, Casey; Cousins, Claire; Direito, Susana; Forgan, Duncan; Fox-Powell, Mark; Harrison, Jesse; Landenmark, Hanna; Nixon, Sophie; Payler, Samuel J; Rice, Ken; Samuels, Toby; Schwendner, Petra; Stevens, Adam; Nicholson, Natasha; Wadsworth, Jennifer

    2018-02-01

    The UK Centre for Astrobiology (UKCA) was set up in 2011 as a virtual center to contribute to astrobiology research, education, and outreach. After 5 years, we describe this center and its work in each of these areas. Its research has focused on studying life in extreme environments, the limits of life on Earth, and implications for habitability elsewhere. Among its research infrastructure projects, UKCA has assembled an underground astrobiology laboratory that has hosted a deep subsurface planetary analog program, and it has developed new flow-through systems to study extraterrestrial aqueous environments. UKCA has used this research backdrop to develop education programs in astrobiology, including a massive open online course in astrobiology that has attracted over 120,000 students, a teacher training program, and an initiative to take astrobiology into prisons. In this paper, we review these activities and others with a particular focus on providing lessons to others who may consider setting up an astrobiology center, institute, or science facility. We discuss experience in integrating astrobiology research into teaching and education activities. Key Words: Astrobiology-Centre-Education-Subsurface-Analog research. Astrobiology 18, 224-243.

  5. The UK Centre for Astrobiology: A Virtual Astrobiology Centre. Accomplishments and Lessons Learned, 2011–2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    Biller, Beth; Bryce, Casey; Cousins, Claire; Direito, Susana; Forgan, Duncan; Fox-Powell, Mark; Harrison, Jesse; Landenmark, Hanna; Nixon, Sophie; Payler, Samuel J.; Rice, Ken; Samuels, Toby; Schwendner, Petra; Stevens, Adam; Nicholson, Natasha; Wadsworth, Jennifer

    2018-01-01

    Abstract The UK Centre for Astrobiology (UKCA) was set up in 2011 as a virtual center to contribute to astrobiology research, education, and outreach. After 5 years, we describe this center and its work in each of these areas. Its research has focused on studying life in extreme environments, the limits of life on Earth, and implications for habitability elsewhere. Among its research infrastructure projects, UKCA has assembled an underground astrobiology laboratory that has hosted a deep subsurface planetary analog program, and it has developed new flow-through systems to study extraterrestrial aqueous environments. UKCA has used this research backdrop to develop education programs in astrobiology, including a massive open online course in astrobiology that has attracted over 120,000 students, a teacher training program, and an initiative to take astrobiology into prisons. In this paper, we review these activities and others with a particular focus on providing lessons to others who may consider setting up an astrobiology center, institute, or science facility. We discuss experience in integrating astrobiology research into teaching and education activities. Key Words: Astrobiology—Centre—Education—Subsurface—Analog research. Astrobiology 18, 224–243. PMID:29377716

  6. Robots for Astrobiology!

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope J.

    2016-01-01

    The search for life and its study is known as astrobiology. Conducting that search on other planets in our Solar System is a major goal of NASA and other space agencies, and a driving passion of the community of scientists and engineers around the world. We practice for that search in many ways, from exploring and studying extreme environments on Earth, to developing robots to go to other planets and help us look for any possible life that may be there or may have been there in the past. The unique challenges of space exploration make collaborations between robots and humans essential. The products of those collaborations will be novel and driven by the features of wholly new environments. For space and planetary environments that are intolerable for humans or where humans present an unacceptable risk to possible biologically sensitive sites, autonomous robots or telepresence offer excellent choices. The search for life signs on Mars fits within this category, especially in advance of human landed missions there, but also as assistants and tools once humans reach the Red Planet. For planetary destinations where we do not envision humans ever going in person, like bitterly cold icy moons, or ocean worlds with thick ice roofs that essentially make them planetary-sized ice caves, we will rely on robots alone to visit those environments for us and enable us to explore and understand any life that we may find there. Current generation robots are not quite ready for some of the tasks that we need them to do, so there are many opportunities for roboticists of the future to advance novel types of mobility, autonomy, and bio-inspired robotic designs to help us accomplish our astrobiological goals. We see an exciting partnership between robotics and astrobiology continually strengthening as we jointly pursue the quest to find extraterrestrial life.

  7. A web based semi automatic frame work for astrobiological researches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P.V. Arun

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Astrobiology addresses the possibility of extraterrestrial life and explores measures towards its recognition. Researches in this context are founded upon the premise that indicators of life encountered in space will be recognizable. However, effective recognition can be accomplished through a universal adaptation of life signatures without restricting solely to those attributes that represent local solutions to the challenges of survival. The life indicators should be modelled with reference to temporal and environmental variations specific to each planet and time. In this paper, we investigate a semi-automatic open source frame work for the accurate detection and interpretation of life signatures by facilitating public participation, in a similar way as adopted by SETI@home project. The involvement of public in identifying patterns can bring a thrust to the mission and is implemented using semi-automatic framework. Different advanced intelligent methodologies may augment the integration of this human machine analysis. Automatic and manual evaluations along with dynamic learning strategy have been adopted to provide accurate results. The system also helps to provide a deep public understanding about space agency’s works and facilitate a mass involvement in the astrobiological studies. It will surely help to motivate young eager minds to pursue a career in this field.

  8. A Statistical Approach to Illustrate the Challenge of Astrobiology for Public Outreach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Frédéric Foucher

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available In this study, we attempt to illustrate the competition that constitutes the main challenge of astrobiology, namely the competition between the probability of extraterrestrial life and its detectability. To illustrate this fact, we propose a simple statistical approach based on our knowledge of the Universe and the Milky Way, the Solar System, and the evolution of life on Earth permitting us to obtain the order of magnitude of the distance between Earth and bodies inhabited by more or less evolved past or present life forms, and the consequences of this probability for the detection of associated biosignatures. We thus show that the probability of the existence of evolved extraterrestrial forms of life increases with distance from the Earth while, at the same time, the number of detectable biosignatures decreases due to technical and physical limitations. This approach allows us to easily explain to the general public why it is very improbable to detect a signal of extraterrestrial intelligence while it is justified to launch space probes dedicated to the search for microbial life in the Solar System.

  9. Astrobiology and the Possibility of Life on Earth and Elsewhere…

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cottin, Hervé; Kotler, Julia Michelle; Bartik, Kristin; Cleaves, H. James; Cockell, Charles S.; de Vera, Jean Pierre P; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Leuko, Stefan; Ten Kate, Inge Loes|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/292012217; Martins, Zita; Pascal, Robert; Quinn, Richard; Rettberg, Petra; Westall, Frances

    Astrobiology is an interdisciplinary scientific field not only focused on the search of extraterrestrial life, but also on deciphering the key environmental parameters that have enabled the emergence of life on Earth. Understanding these physical and chemical parameters is fundamental knowledge

  10. Astrobiology: guidelines and future missions plan for the international community

    Science.gov (United States)

    French, L.; Miller, D.

    The search for extra-terrestrial life has been going on ever since humans realized there was more to the Universe than just the Earth. These quests have taken many forms including, but not limited to: the quest for understanding the biological origins of life on Earth; the deployment of robotic probes to other planets to look for microbial life; the analysis of meteorites for chemical and fossil remnants of extra - terrestrial life; and the search of the radio spectrum for signs of extra-solar intelligence. These searches so far have yielded hints, but no unambiguous proof of life with origins from off Earth. The emerging field of astrobiology studies the origin, distribution, and future of life in the Universe. Technical advances and new, though not conclusive, evidence of extinct microbial life on Mars have created a new enthusiasm for astrobiology in many nations. However, the next steps to take are not clear, and should a positive result be returned, the follow-on missions are yet to be defined. This paper reports on the results of an eight-week study by the students of the International Space University during the summer of 2002. The study created a source book that can be used by mission designers and policy makers to chart the next steps in astrobiology. In particular, the study addresses the following questions:1.What is the full set of dimensions along which we can search forextra-terrestrial life?2.What activities are currently underway by the internationalcommunity along each of these dimensions?3.What are the most effective next steps that can be taken by theinternational space community in order to further this search (from a policy,sociological and mission point of view)?4.What are the proper steps for eliminating possible contaminationof the Earth's biosphere?5.What are the issues with planetary quarantine with regards tounwanted contamination of other biospheres with terrestrial organisms? Integrating all the considerations affecting the search for

  11. Synthetic Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.

    2017-01-01

    "Are we alone?" is one of the primary questions of astrobiology, and whose answer defines our significance in the universe. Unfortunately, this quest is hindered by the fact that we have only one confirmed example of life, that of earth. While this is enormously helpful in helping to define the minimum envelope for life, it strains credulity to imagine that life, if it arose multiple times, has not taken other routes. To help fill this gap, our lab has begun using synthetic biology - the design and construction of new biological parts and systems and the redesign of existing ones for useful purposes - as an enabling technology. One theme, the "Hell Cell" project, focuses on creating artificial extremophiles in order to push the limits for Earth life, and to understand how difficult it is for life to evolve into extreme niches. In another project, we are re-evolving biotic functions using only the most thermodynamically stable amino acids in order to understand potential capabilities of an early organism with a limited repertoire of amino acids.

  12. Astrobiology - The New Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sik, A.; Simon, T.

    Background In connection with the complex planetology-education in Hungary [1] we have compiled an Astrobiology coursebook - as a base of its teaching in universities and perhaps in secondary schools as well. We tried to collect and assemble in a logical and thematical order the scientific breakthroughs of the last years, that made possible the fast improvement of astrobiology. The followings are a kind of summary of these. Introduction - The ultimate science Astrobiology is a young science, that search for the possibility, forms and places of extraterrestrial life. But it is not SETI, because do not search for intelligent life, just for living organisms, so SETI is a part of astrobiology. and an extremely important statement: we can search for life-forms that similar to terrestrial life in physiology so we can recognize it as life. Astrobiology is one of the most dynamical-developing sciences of the 21st century. To determine its boundaries is difficult because the complex nature of it: astrobiology melt into itself lot of other sciences, like a kind of ultimate science. The fundamental questions are very simple [2]: When, where and how converted the organic matter into life?; How does life evolve in the Universe?; Has it appeared on other planets?; How does it spread in time and space?; and What is the future of terrestrial life? However, trying to find the answers is quite difficult. So an astrobiologist has to be aware of the basics of astronomy, space research, earth and planetary sciences, and life sciences (mainly ecology, genetics, molecular and evolution biology). But it is not enough - the newest results of these at least as important as the basic knowledge. Part I. - Astro 1. Exoplanets 1995 was a particular year in astronomy: we have found the first planet out of the Solar System. Since that time the discovery of exoplanets progress fast: nowdays more than 80 examples are known and just 6 years passed [3]. The detailed analysis of these distant objects

  13. Biomolecules in Astrobiology

    OpenAIRE

    Meringer, Markus

    2013-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin, distribution and future of life in the universe, biomolecules are molecules produced by living organisms. This talk reviews known facts and open questions about biomolecules in the context of Astrobiology and introduces a research project on "Creating a Reference Set of Amino Acids Structures for Use in Multiple Astrobiology Investigations" that tries to find answers using computational methods.

  14. The Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) and Whether to send 'Messages' (METI): A Case for Conversation, Patience and Due Diligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brin, D.

    Understanding the controversy over "Messages to Extra Terrestrial Intelligence" or METI requires a grounding in the history and rationale of SETI (Search for ETI). Insights since the turn of the century have changed SETI's scientific basis. Continued null results from the radio search do not invalidate continuing effort, but they do raise questions about long-held assumptions. Modified search strategies are discussed. The Great Silence or Fermi Paradox is appraised, along with the disruptive plausibility of interstellar travel. Psychological motivations for METI are considered. With this underpinning, we consider why a small cadre of SETI-ist radio astronomers have resisted the notion of international consultations before humanity takes a brash and irreversible step into METI, shouting our presence into the cosmos.

  15. Extraterrestrial seismology

    CERN Document Server

    Tong, Vincent C H

    2015-01-01

    Seismology is a highly effective tool for investigating the internal structure of the Earth. Similar techniques have also successfully been used to study other planetary bodies (planetary seismology), the Sun (helioseismology), and other stars (asteroseismology). Despite obvious differences between stars and planetary bodies, these disciplines share many similarities and together form a coherent field of scientific research. This unique book takes a transdisciplinary approach to seismology and seismic imaging, reviewing the most recent developments in these extraterrestrial contexts. With contributions from leading scientists, this timely volume systematically outlines the techniques used in observation, data processing, and modelling for asteroseismology, helioseismology, and planetary seismology, drawing comparisons with seismic methods used in geophysics. Important recent discoveries in each discipline are presented. With an emphasis on transcending the traditional boundaries of astronomy, solar, planetary...

  16. Enhancing a Person, Enhancing a Civilization: A Research Program at the Intersection of Bioethics, Future Studies, and Astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ćirković, Milan M

    2017-07-01

    There are manifold intriguing issues located within largely unexplored borderlands of bioethics, future studies (including global risk analysis), and astrobiology. Human enhancement has for quite some time been among the foci of bioethical debates, but the same cannot be said about its global, transgenerational, and even cosmological consequences. In recent years, discussions of posthuman and, in general terms, postbiological civilization(s) have slowly gained a measure of academic respect, in parallel with the renewed interest in the entire field of future studies and the great strides made in understanding of the origin and evolution of life and intelligence in their widest, cosmic context. These developments promise much deeper synergic answers to questions regarding the long-term future of enhancement: how far can it go? Is human enhancement a further step toward building a true postbiological civilization? Should we actively participate and help shape this process? Is the future of humanity "typical" in the same Copernican sense as our location in space and time is typical in the galaxy, and if so, can we derive important insights about the evolutionary pathways of postbiological evolution from astrobiological and Search for ExtraTerrestrial Intelligence (SETI) studies? These and similar questions could be understood as parts of a possible unifying research program attempting to connect cultural and moral evolution with what we know and understand about their cosmological and biological counterparts.

  17. The 2P1/2 → 2P3/2 laser transition in atomic iodine and the problem of search for signals from extraterrestrial intelligence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kutaev, Yu F; Mankevich, S K; Nosach, O Yu; Orlov, E P

    2007-01-01

    It is proposed to search for signals from extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI) at a wavelength of 1.315 μm of the laser 2 P 1/2 → 2 P 3/2 transition in the atomic iodine, which can be used for this purpose as the natural frequency reference. The search at this wavelength is promising because active quantum filters (AQFs) with the quantum sensitivity limit have been developed for this wavelength, which are capable of receiving laser signals, consisting of only a few photons, against the background of emission from a star under study. In addition, high-power iodine lasers emitting diffraction-limited radiation at 1.315 μm have been created, which highly developed ETI also can have. If a ETI sends in our direction a diffraction-limited 10-ns, 1-kJ laser pulse with the beam diameter of 10 m, a receiver with an AQF mounted on a ten-meter extra-atmospheric optical telescope can detect this signal at a distance of up to 300 light years, irrespective of the ETI position on the celestial sphere. The realisation of the projects for manufacturing optical telescopes of diameter 30 m will increase the research range up to 2700 light years. A weak absorption of the 1.315-μm radiation in the Earth atmosphere (the signal is attenuated by less than 20%) allows the search for ETI signals by using ground telescopes equipped with adaptive optical systems. (laser applications and other topics in quantum electronics)

  18. OAST Space Theme Workshop. Volume 2: Theme summary. 3: Search for extraterrestrial intelligence (no. 9). A: Theme statement. B. 26 April 1976 presentation. C. Summary. D. Newer initiatives (form 4). E. Initiative actions (form 5)

    Science.gov (United States)

    1976-01-01

    Preliminary (1977-1983), intermediate (1982-1988), and long term (1989+) phases of the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI) program are examined as well as the benefits to be derived in radioastronomy and the problems to be surmounted in radio frequency interference. The priorities, intrinsic value, criteria, and strategy for the search are discussed for both terrestrial and lunar-based CYCLOPS and for a space SETI system located at lunar liberation point L4. New initiatives related to antenna independent technology, multichannel analyzers, and radio frequency interference shielding are listed. Projected SETI program costs are included.

  19. Make Astrobiology Yours

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domagal-Goldman, Shawn

    2012-01-01

    In this talk, I will give the AbGradCon attendees an overview of astrobiology activities ongoing at NASA as well as a brief description of the various funding programs and careers that they can pursue. After this, I will present to them the case that the future of the field is theirs to determine, and give input on how to effectively make astrobiology and NASA responsive to the needs of the community. This presentation will leverage my experiences leading various efforts in the early career astrobiology community, where I have served as a conference organizer, primer lead editor, community blogger, and unofficial liaison to NASA headquarters.

  20. Astrochemistry and astrobiology

    CERN Document Server

    Smith, Ian W M; Leach, Sydney

    2014-01-01

    This debut volume in the new Springer series Physical Chemistry in Action, composed of expert contributions, is aimed at both novice and experienced researchers, and outlines the principles of the physical chemistry deployed in astrochemistry and astrobiology.

  1. Extraterrestrial altruism evolution and ethics in the cosmos

    CERN Document Server

    2014-01-01

    Extraterrestrial Altruism examines a basic assumption of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI): that extraterrestrials will be transmitting messages to us for our benefit. This question of whether extraterrestrials will be altruistic has become increasingly important in recent years as SETI scientists have begun contemplating transmissions from Earth to make contact. Should we expect altruism to evolve throughout the cosmos, or is this only wishful thinking? Would this make biological sense? Is it dangerous to send messages to other worlds, as Stephen Hawking has suggested? Would extraterrestrial societies be based on different ethical principles? Extraterrestrial Altruism explores these and related questions about the motivations of civilizations beyond Earth, providing new insights that are critical for SETI. Chapters are authored by leading scholars from diverse disciplines—anthropology, astronomy, biology, chemistry, computer science, cosmology, engineering, history of science, law, philos...

  2. Astrobiology, discovery, and societal impact

    CERN Document Server

    Dick, Steven J

    2018-01-01

    The search for life in the universe, once the stuff of science fiction, is now a robust worldwide research program with a well-defined roadmap probing both scientific and societal issues. This volume examines the humanistic aspects of astrobiology, systematically discussing the approaches, critical issues, and implications of discovering life beyond Earth. What do the concepts of life and intelligence, culture and civilization, technology and communication mean in a cosmic context? What are the theological and philosophical implications if we find life - and if we do not? Steven J. Dick argues that given recent scientific findings, the discovery of life in some form beyond Earth is likely and so we need to study the possible impacts of such a discovery and formulate policies to deal with them. The remarkable and often surprising results are presented here in a form accessible to disciplines across the sciences, social sciences, and humanities.

  3. Encyclopedia of astrobiology

    CERN Document Server

    Irvine, William; Amils, Ricardo; Cleaves, Henderson; Pinti, Daniele; Quintanilla, José; Rouan, Daniel; Spohn, Tilman; Tirard, Stéphane; Viso, Michel

    2015-01-01

    The interdisciplinary field of Astrobiology constitutes a joint arena where provocative discoveries are coalescing concerning, e.g. the prevalence of exoplanets, the diversity and hardiness of life, and its increasingly likely chances for its emergence. Biologists, astrophysicists, biochemists, geoscientists and space scientists share this exciting mission of revealing the origin and commonality of life in the Universe. The members of the different disciplines are used to their own terminology and technical language. In the interdisciplinary environment many terms either have redundant meanings or are completely unfamiliar to members of other disciplines. The Encyclopedia of Astrobiology serves as the key to a common understanding. Each new or experienced researcher and graduate student in adjacent fields of astrobiology will appreciate this reference work in the quest to understand the big picture. The carefully selected group of active researchers contributing to this work and the expert field editors inten...

  4. Encyclopedia of astrobiology

    CERN Document Server

    Quintanilla, José Cernicharo; Cleaves, Henderson James (Jim); Irvine, William M; Pinti, Daniele L; Viso, Michel; Gargaud, Muriel

    2011-01-01

    The interdisciplinary field of Astrobiology constitutes a joint arena where provocative discoveries are coalescing concerning, e.g. the prevalence of exoplanets, the diversity and hardiness of life, and its increasingly likely chances for its emergence. Biologists, astrophysicists, biochemists, geoscientists and space scientists share this exciting mission of revealing the origin and commonality of life in the Universe. The members of the different disciplines are used to their own terminology and technical language. In the interdisciplinary environment many terms either have redundant meanings or are completely unfamiliar to members of other disciplines. The Encyclopedia of Astrobiology serves as the key to a common understanding. Each new or experienced researcher and graduate student in adjacent fields of astrobiology will appreciate this reference work in the quest to understand the big picture. The carefully selected group of active researchers contributing to this work and the expert field editors inten...

  5. Astrobiology Education and Outreach: New Interdisciplinary Initiatives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schultz, Greg

    In 1998, UCLA was selected as one of the 11 initial members (5 of which are universities) of the NASA Astrobiology Institute. Concurrently, UCLA implemented a brand new General Education cluster course, GE 70ABC: ``Evolution of the Cosmos and Life,'' which is unique for several reasons. It is (a) interdisciplinary, introducing students to both the life and physical sciences, (b) team-taught by 4 distinguished professors, and 4 advanced graduate teaching fellows, (c) offered for (150) freshmen students exclusively, and (d) a year-long sequence, incorporating lectures, laboratory/discussion sections, field trips, and in the spring quarter, small satellite seminars led by the individual instructors on topics radiating from the cluster theme. Further information about GE 70ABC can be found at the course website (http://www.ess.ucla.edu/Cluster_TOC.html) and the website for UCLA's GE cluster courses (http://www.college.ucla.edu/ge/clusters.htm). This poster will outline the GE 70 content, and describe some of the course's materials, activities, assessment, and student characteristics. Additionally, focus will be placed on the GE 70C seminar course component called ``Life In the Cosmos,'' designed and offered by the poster author for the Spring 1999 quarter. This seminar features a student-centered approach - with lecturing minimized and active learning a key objective - and addresses the extraterrestrial life debate from historical and cultural perspectives as well as the current scientific approaches in astrobiology/bioastronomy.

  6. Astrobiology in the Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brennan, Tim

    2004-01-01

    Astrobiology is a relatively new field of study in science, one that has found a home in the curriculum of many major universities. It is a multidisciplinary field that draws participants from a range of scientific specialties: geology, physics, chemistry, engineering, computer science, and of course biology and astronomy. At the middle level, it…

  7. Astrobiological Studies Plan at UCSD and the University of Buckingham

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gibson, Carl H.; Wickramasinghe, N. Chandra

    2011-10-01

    A UC-HBCU grant is requested to assist undergraduate and masters level HBCU Interns to achieve their professional and academic goals by attending summer school classes at UCSD along with graduate students in the UCSD Astrobiology Studies program, and by also attending a NASA sponsored scientific meeting in San Diego on Astrobiology organized by NASA scientist Richard Hoover (the 14th in a sequence). Hoover has recently published a paper in the Journal of Cosmology claiming extraterrestrial life fossils in three meteorites. Students will attend a workshop to prepare research publications on Astrobiological Science for the Journal of Cosmology or equivalent refereed journal, mentored by UCSD faculty and graduate students as co-authors and referees, all committed to the several months of communication usually required to complete a publishable paper. The program is intended to provide pathways to graduate admissions in the broad range of science and engineering fields, and by exposure to fundamental science and engineering disciplines needed by Astrobiologists. A three year UC-HBCU Astrobiological Studies program is proposed: 2011, 2012 and 2013. Interns would be eligible to enter this program when they become advanced graduate students. A center of excellence in astrobiology is planned for UCSD similar to that Directed by Professor Wickramasinghe for many years with Fred Hoyle at Cardiff University, http://www.astrobiology.cf.ac.uk /chandra1.html. Professor Wickramasinghe's CV is attached as Appendix 1. Figures A2-1,2 of Appendix 2 compare Astrobiology timelines of modern fluid mechanical and astrobiological models of Gibson/Wickramasinghe/Schild of the Journal of Cosmology with standard NASA- CDMHC models. NASA support will be sought to support research and educational aspects of both initiatives. Overload teaching of up to two courses a year by UCSD faculty of key astrobiology courses at either UCSD or at HBCU campuses is authorized by recent guidelines of UCSD

  8. Astrobiology: Future Perspectives

    CERN Document Server

    Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Owen, Toby; Becker, Luann; Blank, Jen; Brucato, John; Colangeli, Luigi; Derenne, Sylvie; Dutrey, Anne; Despois, Didier; Lazcano, Antonio; Robert, Francois

    2005-01-01

    Astrobiology, a new exciting interdisciplinary research field, seeks to unravel the origin and evolution of life wherever it might exist in the Universe. The current view of the origin of life on Earth is that it is strongly connected to the origin and evolution of our planet and, indeed, of the Universe as a whole. We are fortunate to be living in an era where centuries of speculation about the two ancient and fundamental problems: the origin of life and its prevalence in the Universe are being replaced by experimental science. The subject of Astrobiology can be approached from many different perspectives. This book is focused on abiogenic organic matter from the viewpoint of astronomy and planetary science and considers its potential relevance to the origins of life on Earth and elsewhere. Guided by the review papers in this book, the concluding chapter aims to identify key questions to motivate future research and stimulate astrobiological applications of current and future research facilities and space mi...

  9. Astrobiology, Evolution, and Society: Public Engagement Insights

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bertka, C. M.

    2009-12-01

    It is unavoidable that the science of astrobiology will intersect with, and inevitably challenge, many deeply held beliefs. Exploration possibilities, particularly those that may include the discovery of extraterrestrial life, will continue to challenge us to reconsider our views of nature and our connection to the rest of the universe. As a scientific discipline, astrobiology works from the assumption that the origin and evolution of life can be accounted for by natural processes, that life could emerge naturally from the physical materials that make up the terrestrial planets. The search for life on other terrestrial planets is focused on “life as we know it.” The only life we currently know of is the life found on Earth, and for the scientific community the shared common ancestry of all Earth life, and its astounding diversity, is explained by the theory of evolution. The work of astrobiology, at its very core, is fueled by the theory of evolution. However, a survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life (2005) revealed that 42% of US adults believe that “life has existed in its present form since the beginning of time”. This answer persists nearly 150 years after the publication of Charles Darwin’s "On the Origin of the Species", the landmark work in which Darwin proposed that living things share common ancestors and have “descended with modification” from these ancestors through a process of natural selection . Perhaps even more distressing is the fact that these numbers have not changed in decades, despite the astounding advancements in science that have resulted over this same time period. How will these facts bear on the usefulness of astrobiology as a tool for encouraging a US public to share in the excitement of scientific discovery and be informed participants in a public dialogue concerning next steps? When people were asked “to identify the biggest influence on your thinking about how life developed,” the response chosen most

  10. Microbiological Methodology in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abyzov, S. S.; Gerasimenko, L. M.; Hoover, R. B.; Mitskevich, I. N.; Mulyukin, A. L.; Poglazova, M. N.; Rozanov, A. Y.

    2005-01-01

    Searching for life in astromaterials to be delivered from the future missions to extraterrestrial bodies is undoubtedly related to studies of the properties and signatures of living microbial cells and microfossils on Earth. As model terrestrial analogs of Martian polar subsurface layers are often regarded the Antarctic glacier and Earth permafrost habitats where alive microbial cells preserved viability for millennia years due to entering the anabiotic state. For the future findings of viable microorganisms in samples from extraterrestrial objects, it is important to use a combined methodology that includes classical microbiological methods, plating onto nutrient media, direct epifluorescence and electron microscopy examinations, detection of the elemental composition of cells, radiolabeling techniques, PCR and FISH methods. Of great importance is to ensure authenticity of microorganisms (if any in studied samples) and to standardize the protocols used to minimize a risk of external contamination. Although the convincing evidence of extraterrestrial microbial life will may come from the discovery of living cells in astromaterials, biomorphs and microfossils must also be regarded as a target in search of life evidence bearing in mind a scenario that alive microorganisms had not be preserved and underwent mineralization. Under the laboratory conditions, processes that accompanied fossilization of cyanobacteria were reconstructed, and artificially produced cyanobacterial stromatolites resembles by their morphological properties those found in natural Earth habitats. Regarding the vital importance of distinguishing between biogenic and abiogenic signatures and between living and fossil microorganisms in analyzed samples, it is worthwhile to use some previously developed approaches based on electron microscopy examinations and analysis of elemental composition of biomorphs in situ and comparison with the analogous data obtained for laboratory microbial cultures and

  11. Extraterrestrial Nucleobases in Carbonaceous Chondrites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martins, Z.; Botta, O.; Fogel, M.; Sephton, M.; Glavin, D.; Watson, J.; Dworkin, J.; Schwartz, A.; Ehrenfreund, P.

    Nucleobases in Carbonaceous Chondrites Z. Martins (1), O. Botta (2), M. L. Fogel (3), M. A. Sephton (4), D. P. Glavin (2), J. S. Watson (5), J. P. Dworkin (2), A. W. Schwartz (6) and P. Ehrenfreund (1,6). (1) Astrobiology Laboratory, Leiden Institute of Chemistry, Leiden, The Netherlands, (2) NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Goddard Center for Astrobiology, Greenbelt, MD, USA, (3) GL, Carnegie Institution of Washington, Washington DC, USA, (4) Impacts and Astromaterials Research Centre, Department of Earth Science and Engineering, South Kensington Campus, Imperial College, London, UK, (5) Planetary and Space Sciences Research Institute, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes, UK, (6) Radboud University Nijmegen, Nijmegen, The Netherlands. E-mail: z.martins@chem.leidenuniv.nl/Phone:+31715274440 Nucleobases are crucial compounds in terrestrial biochemistry, because they are key components of DNA and RNA. Carbonaceous meteorites have been analyzed for nucleobases by different research groups [1-5]. However, significant quantitative and qualitative differences were observed, leading to the controversial about the origin of these nucleobases. In order to establish the origin of these compounds in carbonaceous chondrites and to assess the plausibility of their exogenous delivery to the early Earth, we have performed formic acid extraction of samples of the Murchison meteorite [6], followed by an extensive purification procedure, analysis and quantification by high-performance liquid chromatography with UV absorption detection and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. Our results were qualitatively consistent with previous results [3, 4], but showed significant quantitative differences. Compound specific carbon isotope values were obtained, using gas chromatography-combustion- isotope ratio mass spectrometry. A soil sample collected in the proximity of the Murchison meteorite fall site was subjected to the same extraction, purification and analysis procedure

  12. Educational Outreach for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kadooka, M.; Meech, K.

    2009-12-01

    Astrobiology, the search for life in the universe, has fascinating research areas that can excite students and teachers about science. Its integrative nature, relating to astronomy, geology, oceanography, physics, and chemistry, can be used to encourage students to pursue physical sciences careers. Since 2004, the University of Hawaii NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) team scientists have shared their research with secondary teachers at our ALI’I national teacher program to promote the inclusion of astrobiology topics into science courses. Since 2007, our NAI team has co-sponsored the HI STAR program for Hawaii’s middle and high school students to work on authentic astronomy research projects and to be mentored by astronomers. The students get images of asteroids, comets, stars, and extrasolar planets from the Faulkes Telescope North located at Haleakala Observatories on the island of Maui and owned by Las Cumbres Observatory Global Telescope network. They also do real time observing with DeKalb Observatory telescope personally owned by Donn Starkey who willing allows any student access to his telescope. Student project results include awards at the Hawaii State Science Fair and the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. We believe that research experience stimulates these students to select STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) majors upon entering college so a longitudinal study is being done. Plans are underway with California and Hawaii ALI’I teachers cooperating on a joint astronomy classroom project. International collaborations with Brazil, Portugal, and Italy astronomers have begun. We envision joint project between hemispheres and crossing time zones. The establishment of networking teachers, astronomers, students and educator liaisons will be discussed.

  13. Ethics and the Potential Conflicts between Astrobiology, Planetary Protection, and Commercial Use of Space

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Persson

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available A high standard of planetary protection is important for astrobiology, though the risk for contamination can never be zero. It is therefore important to find a balance. If extraterrestrial life has a moral standing in its own right, it will also affect what we have to do to protect it. The questions of how far we need to go to protect extraterrestrial life will be even more acute and complicated when the time comes to use habitable worlds for commercial purposes. There will also be conflicts between those who want to set a world aside for more research and those who want to give the green light for development. I believe it is important to be proactive in relation to these issues. The aim of my project is therefore to identify, elucidate, and if possible, suggest solutions to potential conflicts between astrobiology, planetary protection, and commercial use of space.

  14. Philosophy and data in astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mix, Lucas John

    2018-04-01

    Creating a unified model of life in the universe - history, extent and future - requires both scientific and humanities research. One way that humanities can contribute is by investigating the relationship between philosophical commitments and data. Making those commitments transparent allows scientists to use the data more fully. Insights in four areas - history, ethics, religion and probability - demonstrate the value of careful, astrobiology-specific humanities research for improving how we talk and think about astrobiology as a whole. First, astrobiology has a long and influential history. Second, astrobiology does not decentre humanity, either physically or ethically. Third, astrobiology is broadly compatible with major world religions. Finally, claims about the probability of life arising or existing elsewhere rest heavily on philosophical priors. In all four cases, identifying philosophical commitments clarifies the ways in which data can tell us about life.

  15. Astrobiology : is humankind ready for the next revolution ?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnould, Jacques

    2012-07-01

    The discovery of a first exoplanet, in 1995, did not revolutionize but knocked astronomical sciences over. At the same time, by opening new prospects of research, in particular in the search of planets similar to the Earth and in a possible extraterrestrial life, this discovery, since then abundantly repeated, gave a new breath to the public interest for this scientific field. But is humanity ready to learn the existence from extraterrestrial forms of life or to remain, in spite of its efforts, in ignorance? The question of the plurality of the worlds is one of the oldest interrogations conveyed by the human cultures, as testified by the multiple answers which were brought to it. In the same way, the concept of life is itself an inexhaustible source of philosophical and religious reflexions, with many consequences in moral domains. It is today necessary to accompany the scientific development in the field of astrobiology by attaching the greatest importance to this intellectual patrimony. It constitutes even one of the first stages of an ethical responsibility in astrobiology, as important as that concerning planetary protection.

  16. The NASA Astrobiology Roadmap.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J; Nuth, Joseph A; Allamandola, Louis J; Boss, Alan P; Farmer, Jack D; Hoehler, Tori M; Jakosky, Bruce M; Meadows, Victoria S; Pohorille, Andrew; Runnegar, Bruce; Spormann, Alfred M

    2008-08-01

    The NASA Astrobiology Roadmap provides guidance for research and technology development across the NASA enterprises that encompass the space, Earth, and biological sciences. The ongoing development of astrobiology roadmaps embodies the contributions of diverse scientists and technologists from government, universities, and private institutions. The Roadmap addresses three basic questions: how does life begin and evolve, does life exist elsewhere in the universe, and what is the future of life on Earth and beyond? Seven Science Goals outline the following key domains of investigation: understanding the nature and distribution of habitable environments in the universe, exploring for habitable environments and life in our own Solar System, understanding the emergence of life, determining how early life on Earth interacted and evolved with its changing environment, understanding the evolutionary mechanisms and environmental limits of life, determining the principles that will shape life in the future, and recognizing signatures of life on other worlds and on early Earth. For each of these goals, Science Objectives outline more specific high priority efforts for the next three to five years. These eighteen objectives are being integrated with NASA strategic planning.

  17. The NASA Astrobiology Roadmap

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J.; Allamandola, Louis J.; Benner, Steven A.; Boss, Alan P.; Deamer, David; Falkowski, Paul G.; Farmer, Jack D.; Hedges, S. Blair; Jakosky, Bruce M.; Knoll, Andrew H.; hide

    2003-01-01

    The NASA Astrobiology Roadmap provides guidance for research and technology development across the NASA enterprises that encompass the space, Earth, and biological sciences. The ongoing development of astrobiology roadmaps embodies the contributions of diverse scientists and technologists from government, universities, and private institutions. The Roadmap addresses three basic questions: How does life begin and evolve, does life exist elsewhere in the universe, and what is the future of life on Earth and beyond? Seven Science Goals outline the following key domains of investigation: understanding the nature and distribution of habitable environments in the universe, exploring for habitable environments and life in our own solar system, understanding the emergence of life, determining how early life on Earth interacted and evolved with its changing environment, understanding the evolutionary mechanisms and environmental limits of life, determining the principles that will shape life in the future, and recognizing signatures of life on other worlds and on early Earth. For each of these goals, Science Objectives outline more specific high-priority efforts for the next 3-5 years. These 18 objectives are being integrated with NASA strategic planning.

  18. Might Astrobiological Findings Evoke a Religious Crisis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, T.; Froehlig, J. L.

    2009-12-01

    What might be the likely impact of confirmed discovery of extraterrestrial life—microbial or intelligent life—on terrestrial religion? Many have speculated that the anthropo-centrism and earth-centrism which allegedly have characterized our religious traditions would be confronted with a crisis. Would new knowledge that we are not alone in the universe lead to a collapse of traditional religious belief? This presentation will summarize the results of the Peters Religious Crisis Survey of 1325 respondents. This survey shows that the majority of adherents to Christianity, Islam, Judaism, and Buddhism demonstrate little or no anxiety regarding the prospect of contact with extraterrestrial life, even if they express some doubts regarding their respective religious tradition and the traditions of others. This presentation will also show that theological speculation regarding other worlds has sparked lively debate beginning as far back as the middle ages and continuing into our present era. Ted Peters is a research and teaching scholar with the Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California. He is co-editor of the journal, Theology and Science, and author of the books, The Evolution of Terrestrial and Extraterrestrial Life (Pandora 2008) and Playing God? Genetic Determinism and Human Freedom (Routledge, rev. ed., 2003).

  19. Walk Through Solar System Times: An Exhibit with an Astrobiology Emphasis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheung, C. Y.

    2012-01-01

    In this astrobiology outreach project, we attempt to present the research of the Goddard Center for Astrobiology (GCA) in the context of the history of the Solar System. GCA research emphasizes the origin and formation of complex pre-biotic organic materials in extraterrestrial environments and explores whether the delivery of these primordial materials and water to the early Earth enabled the emergence and evolution of life. The content expounds on areas that are usually not touched upon in a timeline of the Earth's formation. The exhibit addresses the questions: How did our solar system form? How is the formation of our solar systems similar or different from others? How did the organic molecules we observe in space get to the Earth? What conditions are most suitable for life? We will address the issues and challenges of designing the exhibit and of explaining advanced astrobiology research topics to the public.

  20. Astrobiology of Comets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.; Wickramasinghe, Nalin C.; Wallis, Max K.; Sheldon, Robert B.

    2004-01-01

    We review the current state of knowledge concerning microbial extremophiles and comets and the potential significance of comets to Astrobiology. We model the thermal history of a cometary body, regarded as an assemblage of boulders, dust, ices and organics, as it approaches a perihelion distance of - IAU. The transfer of incident energy from sunlight into the interior leads to the melting of near surface ices, some under stable porous crust, providing possible habitats for a wide range of microorganisms. We provide data concerning new evidence for indigenous microfossils in CI meteorites, which may be the remains of extinct cometary cores. We discuss the dominant microbial communities of polar sea-ice, Antarctic ice sheet, and cryoconite environments as possible analogs for microbial ecosystems that may grow in sub-crustal pools or in ice/water films in comets.

  1. Data Sharing in Astrobiology: The Astrobiology Habitable Environments Database (AHED)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafuente, B.; Bristow, T.; Stone, N.; Pires, A.; Keller, R. M.; Downs, R. T.; Blake, D.; Fonda, M.

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is a multidisciplinary area of scientific research focused on studying the origins of life on Earth and the conditions under which life might have emerged elsewhere in the universe. NASA uses the results of Astrobiology research to help define targets for future missions that are searching for life elsewhere in the universe. The understanding of complex questions in Astrobiology requires integration and analysis of data spanning a range of disciplines including biology, chemistry, geology, astronomy and planetary science. However, the lack of a centralized repository makes it difficult for Astrobiology teams to share data and benefit from resultant synergies. Moreover, in recent years, federal agencies are requiring that results of any federally funded scientific research must be available and useful for the public and the science community. The Astrobiology Habitable Environments Database (AHED), developed with a consolidated group of astrobiologists from different active research teams at NASA Ames Research Center, is designed to help to address these issues. AHED is a central, high-quality, long-term data repository for mineralogical, textural, morphological, inorganic and organic chemical, isotopic and other information pertinent to the advancement of the field of Astrobiology.

  2. Multispectral Microimager for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sellar, R. Glenn; Farmer, Jack D.; Kieta, Andrew; Huang, Julie

    2006-01-01

    A primary goal of the astrobiology program is the search for fossil records. The astrobiology exploration strategy calls for the location and return of samples indicative of environments conducive to life, and that best capture and preserve biomarkers. Successfully returning samples from environments conducive to life requires two primary capabilities: (1) in situ mapping of the mineralogy in order to determine whether the desired minerals are present; and (2) nondestructive screening of samples for additional in-situ testing and/or selection for return to laboratories for more in-depth examination. Two of the most powerful identification techniques are micro-imaging and visible/infrared spectroscopy. The design and test results are presented from a compact rugged instrument that combines micro-imaging and spectroscopic capability to provide in-situ analysis, mapping, and sample screening capabilities. Accurate reflectance spectra should be a measure of reflectance as a function of wavelength only. Other compact multispectral microimagers use separate LEDs (light-emitting diodes) for each wavelength and therefore vary the angles of illumination when changing wavelengths. When observing a specularly-reflecting sample, this produces grossly inaccurate spectra due to the variation in the angle of illumination. An advanced design and test results are presented for a multispectral microimager which demonstrates two key advances relative to previous LED-based microimagers: (i) acquisition of actual reflectance spectra in which the flux is a function of wavelength only, rather than a function of both wavelength and illumination geometry; and (ii) increase in the number of spectral bands to eight bands covering a spectral range of 468 to 975 nm.

  3. Astrobiology, Sustainability and Ethical Perspectives

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arnould, Jacques

    2009-12-01

    Astrobiology, a new field of research associating the prospects and constraints of prebiotic chemistry, mineralogy, geochemistry, astrophysics, theoretical physics, microbial ecology, etc., is assessed in terms of sustainability through the scientific and social functions it fulfils, and the limits it encounters or strives to overcome. In the same way as sustainable development, astrobiology must also take into account the temporal dimension specific to its field of investigation and examine its underlying conception of Nature.

  4. Astrobiology, Sustainability and Ethical Perspectives

    OpenAIRE

    Jacques Arnould

    2009-01-01

    Astrobiology, a new field of research associating the prospects and constraints of prebiotic chemistry, mineralogy, geochemistry, astrophysics, theoretical physics, microbial ecology, etc., is assessed in terms of sustainability through the scientific and social functions it fulfils, and the limits it encounters or strives to overcome. In the same way as sustainable development, astrobiology must also take into account the temporal dimension specific to its field of investigation and examine ...

  5. Astrobiology, Sustainability and Ethical Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacques Arnould

    2009-12-01

    Full Text Available Astrobiology, a new field of research associating the prospects and constraints of prebiotic chemistry, mineralogy, geochemistry, astrophysics, theoretical physics, microbial ecology, etc., is assessed in terms of sustainability through the scientific and social functions it fulfils, and the limits it encounters or strives to overcome. In the same way as sustainable development, astrobiology must also take into account the temporal dimension specific to its field of investigation and examine its underlying conception of Nature.

  6. Astrobiology and the Possibility of Life on Earth and Elsewhere…

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cottin, Hervé; Kotler, Julia Michelle; Bartik, Kristin; Cleaves, H. James; Cockell, Charles S.; de Vera, Jean-Pierre P.; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Leuko, Stefan; Ten Kate, Inge Loes; Martins, Zita; Pascal, Robert; Quinn, Richard; Rettberg, Petra; Westall, Frances

    2017-07-01

    Astrobiology is an interdisciplinary scientific field not only focused on the search of extraterrestrial life, but also on deciphering the key environmental parameters that have enabled the emergence of life on Earth. Understanding these physical and chemical parameters is fundamental knowledge necessary not only for discovering life or signs of life on other planets, but also for understanding our own terrestrial environment. Therefore, astrobiology pushes us to combine different perspectives such as the conditions on the primitive Earth, the physicochemical limits of life, exploration of habitable environments in the Solar System, and the search for signatures of life in exoplanets. Chemists, biologists, geologists, planetologists and astrophysicists are contributing extensively to this interdisciplinary research field. From 2011 to 2014, the European Space Agency (ESA) had the initiative to gather a Topical Team of interdisciplinary scientists focused on astrobiology to review the profound transformations in the field that have occurred since the beginning of the new century. The present paper is an interdisciplinary review of current research in astrobiology, covering the major advances and main outlooks in the field. The following subjects will be reviewed and most recent discoveries will be highlighted: the new understanding of planetary system formation including the specificity of the Earth among the diversity of planets, the origin of water on Earth and its unique combined properties among solvents for the emergence of life, the idea that the Earth could have been habitable during the Hadean Era, the inventory of endogenous and exogenous sources of organic matter and new concepts about how chemistry could evolve towards biological molecules and biological systems. In addition, many new findings show the remarkable potential life has for adaptation and survival in extreme environments. All those results from different fields of science are guiding our

  7. Vibrational Spectroscopy and Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaban, Galina M.; Kwak, D. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Role of vibrational spectroscopy in solving problems related to astrobiology will be discussed. Vibrational (infrared) spectroscopy is a very sensitive tool for identifying molecules. Theoretical approach used in this work is based on direct computation of anharmonic vibrational frequencies and intensities from electronic structure codes. One of the applications of this computational technique is possible identification of biological building blocks (amino acids, small peptides, DNA bases) in the interstellar medium (ISM). Identifying small biological molecules in the ISM is very important from the point of view of origin of life. Hybrid (quantum mechanics/molecular mechanics) theoretical techniques will be discussed that may allow to obtain accurate vibrational spectra of biomolecular building blocks and to create a database of spectroscopic signatures that can assist observations of these molecules in space. Another application of the direct computational spectroscopy technique is to help to design and analyze experimental observations of ice surfaces of one of the Jupiter's moons, Europa, that possibly contains hydrated salts. The presence of hydrated salts on the surface can be an indication of a subsurface ocean and the possible existence of life forms inhabiting such an ocean.

  8. From Astrochemistry to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allamandola, L. J.

    2005-01-01

    Tremendous strides have been made in our understanding of interstellar material over the past twenty five years thanks to significant developments in observational astronomy and laboratory astrophysics. Twenty years ago the composition of interstellar dust was largely guessed at, the concept of ices in dense molecular clouds ignored, and the notion of large, abundant, gas phase, carbon-rich molecules widespread throughout the interstellar medium (ISM) considered impossible. Today the composition of interstellar dust is reasonably well understood. In molecular clouds, the birthplace of stars and planets, these cold dust particles are coated with mixed molecular ices whose composition is very well constrained. Lastly, the signature of carbon-rich polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), shockingly large molecules by early interstellar chemistry standards, is widespread throughout the Universe. The first part of this talk will describe how infrared spectroscopic studies of interstellar space, combined with laboratory simulations of interstellar ice chemistry, have revealed the widespread presence of interstellar PAHs and the composition of interstellar ices, the building blocks of comets. The remainder of the presentation will focus on the photochemical evolution of these materials and astrobiology. Within a molecular cloud, and especially the presolar nebula, materials frozen into the ices are photoprocessed by ultraviolet light and produce more complex molecules. As these materials are the building blocks of comets and related to carbonaceous micrometeorites, they are likely to have been important sources of complex materials delivered to the early Earth and their composition may be related to the origin of life.

  9. Extraterrestrial Metals Processing, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Extraterrestrial Metals Processing (EMP) system produces ferrosilicon, silicon monoxide, a glassy mixed oxide slag, and smaller amounts of alkali earth...

  10. The Ethical Implications for Discovery of Extraterrestrial Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stuart, Jill

    2012-05-01

    Ethical frameworks seek to normatively structure our behaviour and preconstitute expectations with regards to moral activity towards each other as well as other creatures and even non-sentient objects such as the environment. This paper considers how ongoing ethical discussions relating to earth-based interactions can be used as analogies to inform nascent conversations about potential future encounters with extraterrestrial life—while also highlighting where these geocentric conversations may fail to capture the unique dynamics of potential extraterrestrial encounters. The paper specifically considers the spectrum of ethical frameworks currently used in earth-based interactions and how they might apply outside the geocentric referent; from ethics towards non- sentient life on earth such as plants and the environment; to ethics towards sentient but ‘unintelligent' life; to intelligent life nonetheless deemed less intelligent than humans. Next the paper considers interactions that we have yet to (knowingly) have encountered here on earth: the ethics of interactions with life more intelligent than ourselves; and finally the ethics of interaction with robotic ‘post-biological' forms, which some specialists in extraterrestrial communications have speculated will likely be the form of ‘creatures' to be encountered should contact with extraterrestrials ever be made. Finally the paper will address deeper philosophical-ethical questions about the significance of such an exercise in shifting ethical frameworks from an anthropocentric perspective.

  11. Astrobiological Effects of Stellar Radiation in Circumstellar Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cuntz, Manfred; Gurdemir, Levent; Guinan, Edward F.; Kurucz, Robert L.

    2006-10-01

    The centerpiece of all life on Earth is carbon-based biochemistry. Previous scientific research has suggested that biochemistry based on carbon may also play a decisive role in extraterrestrial life forms, i.e., alien life outside of Earth, if existent. In the following, we explore if carbon-based macromolecules (such as DNA) in the environments of stars other than the Sun are able to survive the effects of energetic stellar radiation, such as UV-C in the wavelength band between 200 and 290 nm. We focus on main-sequence stars akin to the Sun, but of hotter (F-type stars) and cooler (K- and M-type stars) surface temperature. Emphasis is placed on investigating the radiative environment in stellar habitable zones (HZs). Stellar habitable zones have an important relevance in astrobiology because they constitute circumstellar regions in which a planet of suitable size can have surface temperatures for water to exist in liquid form.

  12. Is Your Gut Conscious? Is an Extraterrestrial?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vos Post, Jonathan

    2011-10-01

    This paper speculates on questions intending to be taken scientifically rather than metaphysically: "Can the human gut (enteric nervous system) be conscious?"; "Can your immune system think?"; "Could consciousness be coded in DNA?"; "What do we mean when asserting that an Extraterrestrial is Thinking, or is Conscious? We explore through reference to theory, experiment, and computational models by Christof Koch (Caltech), Barbara Wold (Caltech), and Stuart Kauffman (University of Calgary, Tampere University of Technology, Santa Fe Institute). We use a tentative new definition of thinking, designed to be applicable for humans, cetecea, corvids, artificial intelligences, and extraterrestrial intelligences of any substrate (i.e. Life as We Do Not Know It): "Thinking is the occurrence, transformation, and storage in a mind or brain (or simulation thereof) of information-bearing structures (representations) of one kind or another, such as thoughts, concept, percepts, ideas, impressions, notions, rules, schemas, images, phantasms, or subpersonal representations." We use the framework for Consciousness developed by Francis Crick and Christof Koch. We try to describe scientific goals, but discuss Philosophy sufficient to avoid naïve philosophical category errors (thus are careful not to conflate thought, consciousness, and language) Penrose, Hameroff, and Kauffman speculate (differently) that CNS consciousness is a macroscopic quantum phenomenon. Might intestinal, immune system, or genetic regulatory network dynamics exhibit emergent cooperative quantum effects? The speculations are in the context of Evolution by Natural Selection, presumed to operate throughout the Cosmos, and recent work in the foundations of Computational Biology and Quantum Mechanics.

  13. The Extraterrestrial Life Debate from Antiquity to 1900

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crowe, Michael J.; Dowd, Matthew F.

    This chapter provides an overview of the Western historical debate regarding extraterrestrial life from antiquity to the beginning of the twentieth century. Though schools of thought in antiquity differed on whether extraterrestrial life existed, by the Middle Ages, the Aristotelian worldview of a unified, finite cosmos without extraterrestrials was most influential, though there were such dissenters as Nicholas of Cusa. That would change as the Copernican revolution progressed. Scholars such as Bruno, Kepler, Galileo, and Descartes would argue for a Copernican system of a moving Earth. Cartesian and Newtonian physics would eventually lead to a view of the universe in which the Earth was one of many planets in one of many solar systems extended in space. As this cosmological model was developing, so too were notions of extraterrestrial life. Popular and scientific writings, such as those by Fontenelle and Huygens, led to a reversal of fortunes for extraterrestrials, who by the end of the century were gaining recognition. From 1700 to 1800, many leading thinkers discussed extraterrestrial intelligent beings. In doing so, they relied heavily on arguments from analogy and such broad principles and ideas as the Copernican Principle, the Principle of Plenitude, and the Great Chain of Being. Physical evidence for the existence of extraterrestrials was minimal, and was always indirect, such as the sighting of polar caps on Mars, suggesting similarities between Earth and other places in the universe. Nonetheless, the eighteenth century saw writers from a wide variety of genres—science, philosophy, theology, literature—speculate widely on extraterrestrials. In the latter half of the century, increasing research in stellar astronomy would be carried out, heavily overlapping with an interest in extraterrestrial life. By the end of the eighteenth century, belief in intelligent beings on solar system planets was nearly universal and certainly more common than it would be by

  14. A Novel Penetration System for in situ Astrobiological Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Gao

    2005-12-01

    Full Text Available Due to ultraviolet flux in the surface layers of most solar bodies, future astrobiological research is increasingly seeking to conduct subsurface penetration and drilling to detect chemical signature for extant or extinct life. To address this issue, we present a micro-penetrator concept (mass < 10 kg that is suited for extraterrestrial planetary deployment and in situ investigation of chemical and physical properties. The instrumentation in this concept is a bio-inspired drill to access material beneath sterile surface layer for biomarker detection. The proposed drill represents a novel concept of two-valve-reciprocating motion, inspired by the working mechanism of wood wasp ovipositors. It is lightweight (0.5 kg, driven at low power (3 W, and able to drill deep (1-2 m. Tests have shown that the reciprocating drill is feasible and has potential of improving drill efficiency without using any external force. The overall penetration system provides a small, light and energy efficient solution to in situ astrobiological studies, which is crucial for space engineering. Such a micro-penetrator can be used for exploration of terrestrial-type planets or other small bodies of the solar system with the minimum of modifications.

  15. A Novel Penetration System for in situ Astrobiological Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yang Gao

    2008-11-01

    Full Text Available Due to ultraviolet flux in the surface layers of most solar bodies, future astrobiological research is increasingly seeking to conduct subsurface penetration and drilling to detect chemical signature for extant or extinct life. To address this issue, we present a micro-penetrator concept (mass < 10 kg that is suited for extraterrestrial planetary deployment and in situ investigation of chemical and physical properties. The instrumentation in this concept is a bio-inspired drill to access material beneath sterile surface layer for biomarker detection. The proposed drill represents a novel concept of two-valve-reciprocating motion, inspired by the working mechanism of wood wasp ovipositors. It is lightweight (0.5 kg, driven at low power (3 W, and able to drill deep (1-2 m. Tests have shown that the reciprocating drill is feasible and has potential of improving drill efficiency without using any external force. The overall penetration system provides a small, light and energy efficient solution to in situ astrobiological studies, which is crucial for space engineering. Such a micro-penetrator can be used for exploration of terrestrial-type planets or other small bodies of the solar system with the minimum of modifications.

  16. Astrobiology: Life in Extreme Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaur, Preeti

    2011-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. It seeks to answer two important scientific questions: how did we get here and are we alone in the universe? Scientists begin by studying life on Earth and its limits. The discovery of extremophiles on Earth capable of surviving extremes encourages the…

  17. Astrobiology, space and the future age of discovery.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumberg, Baruch S

    2011-02-13

    Astrobiology is the study of the origins, evolution, distribution and future of life in the Universe, and specifically seeks to understand the origin of life and to test the hypothesis that life exists elsewhere than on Earth. There is a general mathematics, physics and chemistry; that is, scientific laws that obtain on Earth also do so elsewhere. Is there a general biology? Is the Universe life-rich or is Earth an isolated island of biology? Exploration in the Age of Enlightenment required the collection of data in unexplored regions and the use of induction and empiricism to derive models and natural laws. The current search for extra-terrestrial life has a similar goal, but with a much greater amount of data and with computers to help with management, correlations, pattern recognition and analysis. There are 60 active space missions, many of them aiding in the search for life. There is not a universally accepted definition of life, but there are a series of characteristics that can aid in the identification of life elsewhere. The study of locations on Earth with similarities to early Mars and other space objects could provide a model that can be used in the search for extra-terrestrial life.

  18. Assessing the Ecophysiology of Methanogens in the Context of Recent Astrobiological and Planetological Studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ruth-Sophie Taubner

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Among all known microbes capable of thriving under extreme and, therefore, potentially extraterrestrial environmental conditions, methanogens from the domain Archaea are intriguing organisms. This is due to their broad metabolic versatility, enormous diversity, and ability to grow under extreme environmental conditions. Several studies revealed that growth conditions of methanogens are compatible with environmental conditions on extraterrestrial bodies throughout the Solar System. Hence, life in the Solar System might not be limited to the classical habitable zone. In this contribution we assess the main ecophysiological characteristics of methanogens and compare these to the environmental conditions of putative habitats in the Solar System, in particular Mars and icy moons. Eventually, we give an outlook on the feasibility and the necessity of future astrobiological studies concerning methanogens.

  19. Extraterrestrial Metals Processing, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The Extraterrestrial Metals Processing (EMP) system produces iron, silicon, and light metals from Mars, Moon, or asteroid resources in support of advanced human...

  20. Philosophy of astrobiology: some recent developments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolb, Vera M.

    2015-09-01

    We present some recent developments in philosophy of astrobiology which illustrate usefulness of philosophy to astrobiology. We cover applications of Aristotelian views to definition of life, of Priest's dialetheism to the question if viruses are alive, and various thought experiments in regard to these and other astrobiology issues. Thought experiments about the survival of life in the Solar system and about the role of viruses at the beginning and towards the end of life are also described.

  1. Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sternberg, Robert J.

    2012-01-01

    Intelligence is the ability to learn from experience and to adapt to, shape, and select environments. Intelligence as measured by (raw scores on) conventional standardized tests varies across the lifespan, and also across generations. Intelligence can be understood in part in terms of the biology of the brain—especially with regard to the functioning in the prefrontal cortex—and also correlates with brain size, at least within humans. Studies of the effects of genes and environment suggest that the heritability coefficient (ratio of genetic to phenotypic variation) is between .4 and .8, although heritability varies as a function of socioeconomic status and other factors. Racial differences in measured intelligence have been observed, but race is a socially constructed rather than biological variable, so such differences are difficult to interpret. PMID:22577301

  2. Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sternberg, Robert J

    2012-03-01

    Intelligence is the ability to learn from experience and to adapt to, shape, and select environments. Intelligence as measured by (raw scores on) conventional standardized tests varies across the lifespan, and also across generations. Intelligence can be understood in part in terms of the biology of the brain-especially with regard to the functioning in the prefrontal cortex-and also correlates with brain size, at least within humans. Studies of the effects of genes and environment suggest that the heritability coefficient (ratio of genetic to phenotypic variation) is between .4 and .8, although heritability varies as a function of socioeconomic status and other factors. Racial differences in measured intelligence have been observed, but race is a socially constructed rather than biological variable, so such differences are difficult to interpret.

  3. Toward a new cosmic consciousness: Psychoeducational aspects of contact with extraterrestrial civilizations

    Science.gov (United States)

    De la Torre, Gabriel G.

    2014-02-01

    This study presents a new approach to the concept of cosmic consciousness integrated in current neuroscience knowledge and discusses implications for the search for extraterrestrial intelligence. It also examines different aspects related to consciousness and how it may play a key role in the understanding of the search for extraterrestrial intelligence and life in the Universe and its implications. Subjects (n=116) were college students from Spain, the United States, and Italy. Subjects responded to a questionnaire comprising five different sections: (A) religious beliefs, (B) environment and general opinion, (C) astronomy, (D) contact, and (E) attention and perception. The results showed the importance of several modular aspects that affect Space awareness in humans. Preliminary results are discussed with regard to current neuroscience, factor analysis, and possible implications for the understanding of contact with extraterrestrial intelligence. The roles of education, new search strategies, and possible contact scenarios are also discussed.

  4. Lower Secondary Students' Views in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hansson, Lena; Redfors, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Astrobiology is, on a profound level, about whether life exists outside of the planet Earth. The question of existence of life elsewhere in the universe has been of interest to many societies throughout history. Recently, the research area of astrobiology has grown at a fast rate, mainly due to the development of observational methods, and the…

  5. Laboratory for Extraterrestrial Physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vondrak, Richard R. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    The NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) Laboratory for Extraterrestrial Physics (LEP) performs experimental and theoretical research on the heliosphere, the interstellar medium, and the magnetospheres and upper atmospheres of the planets, including Earth. LEP space scientists investigate the structure and dynamics of the magnetospheres of the planets including Earth. Their research programs encompass the magnetic fields intrinsic to many planetary bodies as well as their charged-particle environments and plasma-wave emissions. The LEP also conducts research into the nature of planetary ionospheres and their coupling to both the upper atmospheres and their magnetospheres. Finally, the LEP carries out a broad-based research program in heliospheric physics covering the origins of the solar wind, its propagation outward through the solar system all the way to its termination where it encounters the local interstellar medium. Special emphasis is placed on the study of solar coronal mass ejections (CME's), shock waves, and the structure and properties of the fast and slow solar wind. LEP planetary scientists study the chemistry and physics of planetary stratospheres and tropospheres and of solar system bodies including meteorites, asteroids, comets, and planets. The LEP conducts a focused program in astronomy, particularly in the infrared and in short as well as very long radio wavelengths. We also perform an extensive program of laboratory research, including spectroscopy and physical chemistry related to astronomical objects. The Laboratory proposes, develops, fabricates, and integrates experiments on Earth-orbiting, planetary, and heliospheric spacecraft to measure the characteristics of planetary atmospheres and magnetic fields, and electromagnetic fields and plasmas in space. We design and develop spectrometric instrumentation for continuum and spectral line observations in the x-ray, gamma-ray, infrared, and radio regimes; these are flown on spacecraft to study

  6. The Role of Extraterrestrial Materials in the Origin of Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott A.

    2016-01-01

    It has been well established for some time now that C-rich organic materials are relatively common in a number of environments in space. This is known through the telescopic detection of these materials using spectroscopy techniques in the infrared and sub-millimeter wavelength ranges and through the identification of organics in extraterrestrial materials. Extraterrestrial materials in which organics have been found include collected meteorites and interplanetary dust particles, and samples returned by NASA spacecraft from comets. These organics are produced by a variety of astrochemical processes. Despite their abiotic origins, these organic materials of are considerable interest to astrobiology for several reasons. First, organic materials of any composition are important as a means of delivering the elements C, H, O, and N to the surfaces of newly formed planets, and these elements are likely critical to the origin and subsequent evolution of life (certainly for life as we know it). In addition, it is clear that at least a portion of the organics found in space are in the form of molecules that play important roles in modern biology - for example, molecules like amino acids, amphiphiles, quinones, etc. Thus, the delivery of extraterrestrial organics to planetary surfaces brings not only bulk C, H, O, and N, but also molecular complexity in forms that are potentially useful for the origin and early evolution of life. This suggests that the production and delivery of cosmic organic compounds may have played key roles in the origin of life on Earth and, by extension, on other planets in the universe.

  7. Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities PSI at DLR for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabbow, E.; Rettberg, P.; Panitz, C.; Reitz, G.

    2008-09-01

    Ground based experiments, conducted in the controlled planetary and space environment simulation facilities PSI at DLR, are used to investigate astrobiological questions and to complement the corresponding experiments in LEO, for example on free flying satellites or on space exposure platforms on the ISS. In-orbit exposure facilities can only accommodate a limited number of experiments for exposure to space parameters like high vacuum, intense radiation of galactic and solar origin and microgravity, sometimes also technically adapted to simulate extraterrestrial planetary conditions like those on Mars. Ground based experiments in carefully equipped and monitored simulation facilities allow the investigation of the effects of simulated single environmental parameters and selected combinations on a much wider variety of samples. In PSI at DLR, international science consortia performed astrobiological investigations and space experiment preparations, exposing organic compounds and a wide range of microorganisms, reaching from bacterial spores to complex microbial communities, lichens and even animals like tardigrades to simulated planetary or space environment parameters in pursuit of exobiological questions on the resistance to extreme environments and the origin and distribution of life. The Planetary and Space Simulation Facilities PSI of the Institute of Aerospace Medicine at DLR in Köln, Germany, providing high vacuum of controlled residual composition, ionizing radiation of a X-ray tube, polychromatic UV radiation in the range of 170-400 nm, VIS and IR or individual monochromatic UV wavelengths, and temperature regulation from -20°C to +80°C at the sample size individually or in selected combinations in 9 modular facilities of varying sizes are presented with selected experiments performed within.

  8. Alien life matters: reflections on cosmopolitanism, otherness, and astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andre Novoa

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available This is a synaptic paper that invites the reader to take a stroll on the edges of cross-disciplinary knowledge. We will walk the roads of anthropology, history, philosophy, astronomy and biology. It is mainly a theoretical article, where I attempt to provide links between authors and theories that were, at first sight, unrelated. In doing so, this paper is aimed at making one controversial claim: ideologically and politically speaking, cosmopolitanism may never fully transcend itself beyond a debate until and unless humankind encounters alien life forms. The argument is based on a simple equation. Despite all the quarrels and debates around the concept, it seems innocuous to assume that cosmopolitanism is the search for a certain universal identity or, at least, a search for a common culturalia, i.e. the cultural grounds wherein local and global senses of universalism come into being (section 2. In spite of the fact that identities are built in opposition and supported by difference (section 3, cosmopolitanism might only be possible as a political project (cosmopolitics when humankind is faced with life forms that are capable of providing true Otherness. I believe that this may explain why we have been fascinated by the utopias of extra-terrestrials for many centuries now (section 4. These utopias are present in a diverse array of knowledges, ranging from science to art, literature or even religion. They have been around for at least 500 years. Until now, all of them have been trapped in the realm of imagination, but there is one concrete cluster of knowledge that has attempted to transpose these imaginings into reality: the promising discipline of astrobiology. Astrobiology is mainly troubled by the de-naturalisation of Earth in order to create analogues for the study of life elsewhere in the cosmos. Provocatively, I end up this paper stating that this may well be the most cosmopolitical practice available to us (section 5.

  9. Universalist ethics in extraterrestrial encounter

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baum, Seth D.

    2010-02-01

    If humanity encounters an extraterrestrial civilization, or if two extraterrestrial civilizations encounter each other, then the outcome may depend not only on the civilizations' relative strength to destroy each other but also on what ethics are held by one or both civilizations. This paper explores outcomes of encounter scenarios in which one or both civilizations hold a universalist ethical framework. Several outcomes are possible in such scenarios, ranging from one civilization destroying the other to both civilizations racing to be the first to commit suicide. Thus, attention to the ethics of both humanity and extraterrestrials is warranted in human planning for such an encounter. Additionally, the possibility of such an encounter raises profound questions for contemporary human ethics, even if such an encounter never occurs.

  10. How likely is extraterrestrial life?

    CERN Document Server

    Halley, J Woods

    2012-01-01

    What does existing scientific knowledge about physics, chemistry, meteorology and biology tell us about the likelihood of extraterrestrial life and civilizations? And what does the fact that there is currently no credible scientific evidence for the existence of extraterrestrial biospheres or civilizations teach  us? This book reviews the various scientific issues that arise in considering the question of how common extraterrestrial life is likely to be in our galaxy and whether humans are likely to detect it. The book stands out because of its very systematic organization and relatively unbiased treatment of the main open question. It covers all relevant aspects of many disciplines required to present the different   possible answers. It has and will provide undergraduates with a stimulating introduction to many of these fields at an early stage in their university careers, when they are still choosing a specialty. The difficulties and the range of possible answers to the title question are carefully addr...

  11. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Astrobiology: Analogs and Applications to the Search for Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    The session "Astrobiology: Analogs and Applications to the Search for Life" included the folowing reports:The Search for Life on Mars Using Macroscopically Visible Microbial Mats (Stromatolites) in 3.5/3.3 Ga Cherts from the Pilbara in Australia and Barberton in South Africa as Analogues; Life in a Mars Analog: Microbial Activity Associated with Carbonate Cemented Lava Breccias from NW Spitsbergen; Groundwater-fed Iron-rich Microbial Mats in a Freshwater Creek: Growth Cycles and Fossilization Potential of Microbial Features; Episodic Fossilization of Microorganisms on an Annual Timescale in an Anthropogenically Modified Natural Environment: Geochemical Controls and Implications for Astrobiology; Proterozoic Microfossils and Their Implications for Recognizing Life on Mars; Microbial Alteration of Volcanic Glass in Modern and Ancient Oceanic Crust as a Proxy for Studies of Extraterrestrial Material ; Olivine Alteration on Earth and Mars; Searching for an Acidic Aquifer in the R!o Tinto Basin. First Geobiology Results of MARTE Project; In-Field Testing of Life Detection Instruments and Protocols in a Mars Analogue Arctic Environment; Habitability of the Shallow Subsurface on Mars: Clues from the Meteorites; Mars Analog Rio Tinto Experiment (MARTE): 2003 Drilling Campaign to Search for a Subsurface Biosphere at Rio Tinto Spain; Characterization of the Organic Matter in an Archean Chert (Warrawoona, Australia); and The Solfatara Crater, Italy: Characterization of Hydrothermal Deposits, Biosignatures and Their Astrobiological Implication.

  12. The Cuatro Ciénegas Basin in Coahuila, Mexico: An Astrobiological Precambrian Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Siefert, Janet L.; Escalante, Ana E.; Elser, James J.; Eguiarte, Luis E.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract The Cuatro Ciénegas Basin (CCB) is a rare oasis in the Chihuahuan Desert in the state of Coahuila, Mexico. It has a biological endemism similar to that of the Galapagos Islands, and its spring-fed ecosystems have very low nutrient content (nitrogen or phosphorous) and are dominated by diverse microbialites. Thus, it has proven to be a distinctive opportunity for the field of astrobiology, as the CCB can be seen as a proxy for an earlier time in Earth's history, in particular the late Precambrian, the biological frontier when prokaryotic life yielded at least partial dominance to eukaryotes and multicellular life. It is a kind of ecological time machine that provides abundant opportunities for collaborative investigations by geochemists, geologists, ecologists, and population biologists in the study of the evolutionary processes that structured Earth-based life, especially in the microbial realm. The CCB is an object of investigation for the identification of biosignatures of past and present biota that can be used in our search for extraterrestrial life. In this review, we summarize CCB research efforts that began with microbial ecology and population biology projects and have since been expanded into broader efforts that involve biogeochemistry, comparative genomics, and assessments of biosignatures. We also propose that, in the future, the CCB is sanctioned as a “Precambrian Park” for astrobiology. Key Words: Microbial mats—Stromatolites—Early Earth—Extremophilic microorganisms—Microbial ecology. Astrobiology 12, 641–647. PMID:22920514

  13. Assessment of the NASA Astrobiology Institute

    Science.gov (United States)

    2008-01-01

    Astrobiology is a scientific discipline devoted to the study of life in the universe--its origins, evolution, distribution, and future. It brings together the physical and biological sciences to address some of the most fundamental questions of the natural world: How do living systems emerge? How do habitable worlds form and how do they evolve? Does life exist on worlds other than Earth? As an endeavor of tremendous breadth and depth, astrobiology requires interdisciplinary investigation in order to be fully appreciated and examined. As part of a concerted effort to undertake such a challenge, the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) was established in 1998 as an innovative way to develop the field of astrobiology and provide a scientific framework for flight missions. Now that the NAI has been in existence for almost a decade, the time is ripe to assess its achievements. At the request of NASA's Associate Administrator for the Science Mission Directorate (SMD), the Committee on the Review of the NASA Astrobiology Institute undertook the assignment to determine the progress made by the NAI in developing the field of astrobiology. It must be emphasized that the purpose of this study was not to undertake a review of the scientific accomplishments of NASA's Astrobiology program, in general, or of the NAI, in particular. Rather, the objective of the study is to evaluate the success of the NAI in achieving its stated goals of: 1. Conducting, supporting, and catalyzing collaborative interdisciplinary research; 2. Training the next generation of astrobiology researchers; 3. Providing scientific and technical leadership on astrobiology investigations for current and future space missions; 4. Exploring new approaches, using modern information technology, to conduct interdisciplinary and collaborative research among widely distributed investigators; and 5. Supporting outreach by providing scientific content for use in K-12 education programs, teaching undergraduate classes, and

  14. The Problem of Extraterrestrial Civilizations and Extrasolar Planets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mickaelian, A. M.

    2015-07-01

    The problem of extraterrestrial intelligence is the best example of multidisciplinary science. Here philosophy and religion, astronomy, radiophysics, spectrography, space flights and astronautics, geology and planetology, astroecology, chemistry and biology, history and archaeology, psychology, sociology, linguistics, diplomacy, UFOs and peculiar phenomena are involved. Among these many-sided studies, astronomers have probably displayed the most progress by discovering thousands of extrasolar planets. At present, a number of search programs are being accomplished, including those with space telescopes, and planets in so-called "habitable zone" are considered as most important ones, for which various orbital and physical parameters are being calculated. As the discovery of extraterrestrial life is the final goal, a special attention is given to Earth-like planets, for the discovery of which most sensitive technical means are necessary.

  15. Astrobiology and Society: Building an Interdisciplinary Research Community

    OpenAIRE

    Race, Margaret; Denning, Kathryn; Bertka, Constance M.; Dick, Steven J.; Harrison, Albert A.; Impey, Christopher; Mancinelli, Rocco

    2012-01-01

    This paper reports recent efforts to gather experts from the humanities and social sciences along with astrobiologists to consider the cultural, societal, and psychological implications of astrobiology research and exploration. We began by convening a workshop to draft a research roadmap on astrobiology's societal implications and later formed a Focus Group on Astrobiology and Society under the auspices of the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI). Just as the Astrobiology Science Roadmap and var...

  16. Duties to Extraterrestrial Microscopic Organisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cockell, C. S.

    Formulating a normative axiology for the treatment of extraterrestrial microscopic organisms, should they ever be found, requires an extension of environmental ethics to beyond the Earth. Using an ethical framework for the treatment of terrestrial micro-organisms, this paper elaborates a similar ethic for the treatment of extraterrestrial microscopic organisms. An ethic of `teloempathy' allows for the moral considerability of any organism that has `interests', based on rudimentary qualities of conativism, and therefore allows for an identical treatment of all life, related or not related to life on Earth. Although, according to this ethic, individual extraterrestrial microscopic organisms have a good of their own and even `rights', at this level the ethic can only be theoretical, allowing for the inevitable destruction of many individual organisms during the course of human exploratory missions, similarly to the daily destruction of microbes by humans on Earth. A holistic teloempathy, an operative ethic, not only provides a framework for human exploration, but it also has important implications for planetary protection and proposals to implement planetary-scale atmospheric alterations on other bodies. Even prior to the discovery of extraterrestrial life, or the discovery of a complete absence of such life, this exercise yields important insights into the moral philosophy that guides our treatment of terrestrial micro-organisms.

  17. The UK Centre for Astrobiology: A Virtual Astrobiology Centre. Accomplishments and Lessons Learned, 2011–2016

    OpenAIRE

    Cockell, Charles S.; Biller, Beth; Bryce, Casey; Cousins, Claire; Direito, Susana; Forgan, Duncan; Fox-Powell, Mark; Harrison, Jesse; Landenmark, Hanna; Nixon, Sophie; Payler, Samuel J.; Rice, Ken; Samuels, Toby; Schwendner, Petra; Stevens, Adam

    2018-01-01

    Abstract The UK Centre for Astrobiology (UKCA) was set up in 2011 as a virtual center to contribute to astrobiology research, education, and outreach. After 5 years, we describe this center and its work in each of these areas. Its research has focused on studying life in extreme environments, the limits of life on Earth, and implications for habitability elsewhere. Among its research infrastructure projects, UKCA has assembled an underground astrobiology laboratory that has hosted a deep subs...

  18. Beyond the Drake Equation: On the Probability of the Nature of Extraterrestrial Life Forms in Our Galaxy Today

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geller, Harold A.

    2014-01-01

    I will discuss my research into the issues associated with the nature of any extraterrestrials that may be encountered in the future in our galaxy. This research was sparked by statements made by Stephen Hawking in 2010 regarding his fear of emitting radiation from our Earth so that an extraterrestrial intelligent civilization may be alerted to our existence in the galaxy today. While addressing issues of extraterrestrial altruism, a probabilistic equation was developed which addresses the number of extraterrestrial intelligent life forms that may exist in our galaxy today, who could use our bodies for nourishment or reproductive purposes. The equation begins with the results from a Drake Equation calculation, and proceeds by addressing such biochemical parameters as the fraction of ETIs with: dextro sugar stereo-isomers; levo amino acid stereo-isomers; similar codon interpretation; chromosomal length and, similar cell membrane structure to allow egg penetration.

  19. Terrestrial atmosphere, water and astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Coradini M.

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Primitive life, defined as a chemical system capable to transfer its molecular information via self-replication and also capable to evolve, originated about 4 billion years ago from the processing of organic molecules by liquid water. Terrestrial atmosphere played a key role in the process by allowing the permanent presence of liquid water and by participating in the production of carbon-based molecules. Water molecules exhibit specific properties mainly due to a dense network of hydrogen bonds. The carbon-based molecules were either home made in the atmosphere and/or in submarine hydrothermal systems or delivered by meteorites and micrometeorites. The search for possible places beyond the earth where the trilogy atmosphere/water/life could exist is the main objective of astrobiology. Within the Solar System, exploration missions are dedicated to Mars, Europa, Titan and the icy bodies. The discovery of several hundreds of extrasolar planets opens the quest to the whole Milky Way.

  20. Astrobiology: The Case for Venus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landis, Geoffrey A.

    2003-01-01

    The scientific discipline of astrobiology addresses one of the most fundamental unanswered questions of science: are we alone? Is there life elsewhere in the universe, or is life unique to Earth? The field of astrobiology includes the study of the chemical precursors for life in the solar system; it also includes the search for both presently existing life and fossil signs of previously existing life elsewhere in our own solar system, as well as the search for life outside the solar system. Two of the promising environments within the solar system being currently considered are the surface of the planet Mars, and the hypothesized oceans underneath the ice covering the moon Europa. Both of these environments differ in several key ways from the environments where life is found on Earth; the Mars environment in most places too cold and at too low pressure for liquid water to be stable, and the sub-ice environment of Europa lacking an abundance of free energy in the form of sunlight. The only place in the solar system where we know that life exists today is the Earth. To look for life elsewhere in the solar system, one promising search strategy would be to find and study the environment in the solar system with conditions that are most similar to the environmental conditions where life thrives on the Earth. Specifically, we would like to study a location in the solar system with atmospheric pressure near one bar; temperature in the range where water is liquid, 0 to 100 C; abundant solar energy; and with the primary materials required for life, carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, and hydrogen, present. Other than the surface of the Earth, the only other place where these conditions exist is the atmosphere of Venus, at an altitude of about fifty kilometers above the surface.

  1. The Astrobiology Field Guide in World Wind

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scalice, D. M.

    2004-12-01

    In collaboration with the Australian Centre for Astrobiology (ACA), and NASA Learning Technologies (NLT), and utilizing the powerful visualization capabilities of their "World Wind" software, the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) is crafting a prototype "Astrobiology Field Guide" to bring the field experiences and stories of astrobiology science to the public and classrooms around the world. The prototype focuses on one region in particular - The Pilbara in Western Australia. This first Field Guide "hotspot" is an internationally recognized area hosting the best known example of the earliest evidence of life on Earth - a stromatolitic chert precipitation in the 3.45 Ga Warrawoona Group. The goal of the Astrobiology Field Guide is to engage students of all ages with the ongoing field expeditions of today's astrobiologists as they explore the ends of the Earth searching for clues to life's origin, evolution, and distribution in the Universe. The NAI hopes to expand this Field Guide to include many more astrobiologically relevant areas across the globe such as Cuatro Cienegas in Mexico, the Rio Tinto in Spain, Yellowstone National Park in the US, and the Lost City hydrothermal vent field on the mid-Atlantic ridge - and possibly sites on Mars. To that end, we will be conducting feasibility studies and evaluations with informal and formal education contacts. The Astrobiology Field Guide is also serving as a cornerstone to educational materials being developed focused on the Pilbara region for use in classrooms in Australia, the UK, and potentially the US. These materials are being developed by the Australian Centre for Astrobiology, and the ICT Innovations Centre at Macquarie University in Sydney, in collaboration with the NAI and the Centre for Astronomy and Science Education at the University of Glamorgan in the UK.

  2. Science at the ends of the Earth: astrobiology field expeditions as outreach tools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Billings, Linda

    paper will report on and evaluate communication, education, and outreach initiatives conducted in conjunction with ASTEP field campaigns, addressing the costs and benefits of linking students, teachers, and other interested citizens with researchers in the field. This paper will highlight success stories, lessons learned, and promising practices regarding educational programs in scientific research environments. SUMMARY The Astrobiology Program in NASA's Science Mission Directorate studies the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe. Astrobiology research addresses three fundamental questions: How does life begin and evolve? Is there life beyond Earth and how can we detect it? What is the future of life on Earth and in the universe? Goals of the Astrobiology Program range from determining the nature and distribution of habitable environments in the Solar System and beyond to understanding the emergence of life from cosmic and planetary precursors, the interaction of past life on Earth with its changing environment, the formation and evolution of planets, links between planetary and biological evolution, the effects of climate and geology on habitability, and life's precursors and habitats in the outer solar system. Research dedicated to fulfilling these goals is conducted on Earth and in space, with a growing number of astrobiology investigations flying on planetary exploration missions. The field of astrobiology is an endeavor that brings together researchers in a broad range of disciplines including Earth and planetary science, astrophysics, heliophysics, microbiology and evolutionary biology, and cosmochemistry. Since 1995, the field of astrobiology has grown rapidly, and the pace of discovery has been brisk. The possibility of extraterrestrial life is now a serious scientific question. Research findings over the past decade that are relevant to this question include the controversial 1996 claim of fossil evidence for microbial life in a

  3. Heterocyclic anions of astrobiological interest

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cole, Callie A.; Demarais, Nicholas J.; Bierbaum, Veronica M.; Yang, Zhibo; Snow, Theodore P.

    2013-01-01

    As more complex organic molecules are detected in the interstellar medium, the importance of heterocyclic molecules to astrobiology and the origin of life has become evident. 2-Aminothiazole and 2-aminooxazole have recently been suggested as important nucleotide precursors, highlighting azoles as potential prebiotic molecules. This study explores the gas-phase chemistry of three deprotonated azoles: oxazole, thiazole, and isothiazole. For the first time, their gas-phase acidities are experimentally determined with bracketing and H/D exchange techniques, and their reactivity is characterized with several detected interstellar neutral molecules (N 2 O, O 2 , CO, OCS, CO 2 , and SO 2 ) and other reactive species (CS 2 , CH 3 Cl, (CH 3 ) 3 CCl, and (CH 3 ) 3 CBr). Rate constants and branching fractions for these reactions are experimentally measured using a modified commercial ion trap mass spectrometer whose kinetic data are in good accord with those of a flowing afterglow apparatus reported here. Last, we have examined the fragmentation patterns of these deprotonated azoles to elucidate their destruction mechanisms in high-energy environments. All experimental data are supported and complemented by electronic structure calculations at the B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p) and MP2(full)/aug-cc-pVDZ levels of theory.

  4. Heterocyclic anions of astrobiological interest

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cole, Callie A.; Demarais, Nicholas J.; Bierbaum, Veronica M. [Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, 215 UCB, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309 (United States); Yang, Zhibo [Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK 73019 (United States); Snow, Theodore P., E-mail: Callie.Cole@colorado.edu, E-mail: Nicholas.Demarais@colorado.edu, E-mail: Veronica.Bierbaum@colorado.edu, E-mail: Zhibo.Yang@ou.edu, E-mail: Theodore.Snow@colorado.edu [Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences, 391 UCB, University of Colorado, Boulder, CO 80309 (United States)

    2013-12-20

    As more complex organic molecules are detected in the interstellar medium, the importance of heterocyclic molecules to astrobiology and the origin of life has become evident. 2-Aminothiazole and 2-aminooxazole have recently been suggested as important nucleotide precursors, highlighting azoles as potential prebiotic molecules. This study explores the gas-phase chemistry of three deprotonated azoles: oxazole, thiazole, and isothiazole. For the first time, their gas-phase acidities are experimentally determined with bracketing and H/D exchange techniques, and their reactivity is characterized with several detected interstellar neutral molecules (N{sub 2}O, O{sub 2}, CO, OCS, CO{sub 2}, and SO{sub 2}) and other reactive species (CS{sub 2}, CH{sub 3}Cl, (CH{sub 3}){sub 3}CCl, and (CH{sub 3}){sub 3}CBr). Rate constants and branching fractions for these reactions are experimentally measured using a modified commercial ion trap mass spectrometer whose kinetic data are in good accord with those of a flowing afterglow apparatus reported here. Last, we have examined the fragmentation patterns of these deprotonated azoles to elucidate their destruction mechanisms in high-energy environments. All experimental data are supported and complemented by electronic structure calculations at the B3LYP/6-311++G(d,p) and MP2(full)/aug-cc-pVDZ levels of theory.

  5. Galactic Habitable Zone and Astrobiological Complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vukotic, B.

    2012-12-01

    This is a short thesis description and for the sake of brevity most things are left out. For more details, those interested are further directed to the thesis related papers in this article reference list. Thesis itself is available at the University of Belgrade library "Svetozar Markovic" (Serbian version only). In this thesis we study the astrobiological history of the Galactic habitable zone through the means of numerical modeling. First group of simulations are unidimensional (time-axis) toy models examine the influence of global regulation mechanisms (gamma-ray bursts and supernovae) on temporal evolution of Galactic astrobiological complexity. It is shown that under the assumption of global regulation classical anti SETI arguments can be undermined. Second group of simulations are more complex bidimensional probabilistic cellular automata models of the Galactic thin disk. They confirm the findings of the toy models and give some insights into the spatial clustering of astrobiological complexity. As a new emerging multidisciplinary science the basic concepts of astrobiology are poorly understood and although all the simulations present here do not include some basic physics (such as Galactic kinematics and dynamics), the input parameters are somewhat arbitrary and could use a future refinement (such as the boundaries of the Galactic habitable zone). This is the cause for low weight and high uncertainty in the output results of the simulations. However, the probabilistic cellular automata has shown as a highly adaptable modeling platform that can simulate various class of astrobiological models with great ease.

  6. The Breakthrough Listen Initiative and the Future of the Search for Intelligent Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Enriquez, J. Emilio; Siemion, Andrew; Croft, Steve; Hellbourg, Greg; Lebofsky, Matt; MacMahon, David; Price, Danny; DeBoer, David; Werthimer, Dan

    2017-05-01

    Unprecedented recent results in the fields of exoplanets and astrobiology have dramatically increased the interest in the potential existence of intelligent life elsewhere in the galaxy. Additionally, the capabilities of modern Searches for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI) have increased tremendously. Much of this improvement is due to the ongoing development of wide bandwidth radio instruments and the Moore's Law increase in computing power over the previous decades. Together, these instrumentation improvements allow for narrow band signal searches of billions of frequency channels at once.The Breakthrough Listen Initiative (BL) was launched on July 20, 2015 at the Royal Society in London, UK with the goal to conduct the most comprehensive and sensitive search for advanced life in humanity's history. Here we detail important milestones achieved during the first year and a half of the program. We describe the key BL SETI surveys and briefly describe current facilities, including the Green Bank Telescope, the Automated Planet Finder and the Parkes Observatory. We also mention the ongoing and potential collaborations focused on complementary sciences, these include pulse searches of pulsars and FRBs, as well as astrophysically powered radio emission from stars targeted by our program.We conclude with a brief view towards future SETI searches with upcoming next-generation radio facilities such as SKA and ngVLA.

  7. Astrobiology and Microbial Diversity Websites at MBL

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahr, M.; Bordenstein, S. R.

    2006-12-01

    The NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) mission is to study the origin, evolution and future of life in the Universe. The MBL Astrobiology team explores the evolution and interaction of genomes of diverse organisms that play significant roles in environmental biology over evolutionary time scales. Communication about our research includes the personal contact of teacher workshops, and the development of web-based resources. Microbial Life Educational Resources (MLER) provides an expanding internet resource about the ecology, diversity and evolution for students, K-12 teachers, university faculty, and the general public. MLER includes websites, PowerPoint presentations, teaching activities, data sets, and other useful materials for creating or enhancing courses related to astrobiology. Our second site, micro*scope (http://microscope.mbl.edu), has images of microbes, classification schemes, descriptions of organisms, talks and other educational resources to improve awareness of the biodiversity of our microbial partners.

  8. Neocatastrophism and the milky way astrobiological landscape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vukotić B.

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available The number and distribution of habitable planets in the Milky Way is one of the foremost problems of contemporary astrobiological research. We investigate the effects of applying general neocatastrophic paradigm to the evolution of the Galactic Habitable Zone. In this paper, we investigate the limits of simple, 1-dimensional astrobiological models, and consider the role of regulation mechanisms in shapening the 'astrobiological landscape'. We show that the transition from predominantly gradualist to predominantly (neocatastrophist history of our Galaxy leads to the build-up of large-scale correlations between habitable sites, offering possible keys to such important problems as Carter's 'anthropic' argument and Fermi's paradox. In addition, we consider the possibilities for extending the present class of models into spatially realistic 3-dimensional case via probabilistic cellular automata.

  9. Neocatastrophism and the Milky Way Astrobiological Landscape

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vukotić, B.

    2008-06-01

    Full Text Available The number and distribution of habitable planets in the Milky Way is one of the foremost problems of contemporary astrobiological research. We investigate the effects of applying general neocatastrophic paradigm to the evolution of the Galactic Habitable Zone. In this paper, we investigate the limits of simple, 1-dimensional astrobiological models, and consider the role of regulation mechanisms in shapening the "astrobiological landscape". We show that the transition from predominantly gradualist to predominantly (neocatastrophist history of our Galaxy leads to the build-up of large-scale correlations between habitable sites, offering possible keys to such important problems as Carter's "anthropic" argument and Fermi's paradox. In addition, we consider the possibilities for extending the present class of models into spatially realistic 3-dimensional case via probabilistic cellular automata.

  10. Are we alone: The possibility of extraterrestrial civilizations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rood, R. T.; Trefil, J. S.

    The book explores the possibility of extraterrestrial (ET) intelligence. The formation of stars and planetary systems, the evolution of planetary atmospheres and the evolution of life are reviewed. The possibilities of interstellar communication, ET colonization of other star systems, in addition to earth's colonization of near-earth space are discussed. The state of the earth's depleting energy sources and current technology are used to show why some scientists believe that earth will be colonizing in space within the next century. Current methods of searching for ET intelligence are reviewed, and preliminary designs for various space habitats, including the torus, and discussed, taking into consideration problems that would be encountered. The importance of space colonies for the existence and expansion of the human race is emphasized.

  11. Galactic punctuated equilibrium: how to undermine Carter's anthropic argument in astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cirković, Milan M; Vukotić, Branislav; Dragićević, Ivana

    2009-06-01

    A new strategy by which to defeat Carter's "anthropic" argument against extraterrestrial life and intelligence is presented. Our approach is based on relaxing hidden uniformitarian assumptions and considering instead a dynamical succession of evolutionary regimes governed by both global (Galaxy-wide) and local (planet- or planetary system-limited) regulation mechanisms. Notably, our increased understanding of the nature of supernovae, gamma-ray bursts, and strong coupling between the Solar System and the Galaxy, and the theories of "punctuated equilibria" and "macroevolutionary regimes" are in full accordance with the regulation-mechanism picture. The application of this particular strategy highlights the limits of application of Carter's argument and indicates that, in the real universe, its applicability conditions are not satisfied. We conclude that drawing far-reaching conclusions about the scarcity of extraterrestrial intelligence and the prospects of our efforts to detect it on the basis of this argument is unwarranted.

  12. The quest for extraterrestrial life: what about the viruses?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Griffin, Dale Warren

    2013-01-01

    Recently, viruses have been recognized as the most numerous entities and the primary drivers of evolution on Earth. Historically, viruses have been mostly ignored in the field of astrobiology due to the view that they are not alive in the classical sense and if encountered would not present risk due to their host-specific nature. What we currently know of viruses is that we are most likely to encounter them on other life-bearing planets; that while some are exquisitely host-specific, many viruses can utilize hundreds of different host species; that viruses are known to exist in our planet's most extreme environments; and that while many do not survive long outside their hosts, some can survive for extended periods, especially in the cold. In our quest for extraterrestrial life, we should be looking for viruses; and while any encountered may pose no risk, the possibility of an encounter with a virus capable of accessing multiple cell types exists, and any prospective contact with such an organism should be treated accordingly.

  13. Astrobiology: Life on Earth (and Elsewhere?)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J.

    2016-01-01

    Astrobiology investigates the origins, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. Scientists study how stellar systems and their planets can create planetary environments that sustain biospheres. They search for biosignatures, which are objects, substances and or patterns that indicate the presence of life. Studies of Earth's early biosphere enhance these search strategies and also provide key insights about our own origins.

  14. Astrobiology: Discovering New Worlds of Life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    James, Charles C.; Van Dover, Cindy Lee

    2001-01-01

    Emphasizes discoveries at the frontiers of science. Includes an instructional poster illustrating the hydrothermal vent communities on the deep ocean floor. Describes research activities related to the new discipline of astrobiology, a multidisciplinary approach to studying the emergence of life in the universe. Research activities include the…

  15. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2004-01-01

    The session "Astrobiology" included the following reports:The Role of Cometary and Meteoritic Delivery in the Origin and Evolution of Life: Biogeological Evidences Revisited; Hopane Biomarkers Traced from Bedrock to Recent Sediments and Ice at the Haughton Impact Structure, Devon Island: Implications for the Search for Biomarkers on Mars; and Survival of Organic Matter After High Temperature Events (Meteorite Impacts, Igneous Intrusions).

  16. AstRoMap European Astrobiology Roadmap.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horneck, Gerda; Walter, Nicolas; Westall, Frances; Grenfell, John Lee; Martin, William F; Gomez, Felipe; Leuko, Stefan; Lee, Natuschka; Onofri, Silvano; Tsiganis, Kleomenis; Saladino, Raffaele; Pilat-Lohinger, Elke; Palomba, Ernesto; Harrison, Jesse; Rull, Fernando; Muller, Christian; Strazzulla, Giovanni; Brucato, John R; Rettberg, Petra; Capria, Maria Teresa

    2016-03-01

    The European AstRoMap project (supported by the European Commission Seventh Framework Programme) surveyed the state of the art of astrobiology in Europe and beyond and produced the first European roadmap for astrobiology research. In the context of this roadmap, astrobiology is understood as the study of the origin, evolution, and distribution of life in the context of cosmic evolution; this includes habitability in the Solar System and beyond. The AstRoMap Roadmap identifies five research topics, specifies several key scientific objectives for each topic, and suggests ways to achieve all the objectives. The five AstRoMap Research Topics are • Research Topic 1: Origin and Evolution of Planetary Systems • Research Topic 2: Origins of Organic Compounds in Space • Research Topic 3: Rock-Water-Carbon Interactions, Organic Synthesis on Earth, and Steps to Life • Research Topic 4: Life and Habitability • Research Topic 5: Biosignatures as Facilitating Life Detection It is strongly recommended that steps be taken towards the definition and implementation of a European Astrobiology Platform (or Institute) to streamline and optimize the scientific return by using a coordinated infrastructure and funding system.

  17. Astrobiology: Not Just Little Green Men

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, D.

    2004-05-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe. This new (or at least newly-named) discipline responds to current opportunities to make significant progress on basic questions such as Where did we come from? Are we alone? Can we live on other planets? Every astronomer knows that these questions are frequently asked by the public, along with questions concerning the origin, dimensions, and ultimate fate of the universe itself. What makes curiosity about life in the universe so interesting is that we have some of the tools today to provide answers. Infrared and microwave telescopes characterize the complex chemistry that accompanies the birth of planetary systems. Concepts of planetary habitability emerge from exploring the extremes of life on Earth. We probe the nature of life itself through genetic and genomic insights into heredity and evolution. Our spacecraft are exploring Mars, Europa, and Titan, with the explicit goal of searching for evidence of life, past or present. And the discovery of exo-planetary systems greatly increases our opportunity to explore the diversity of planets and identify other habitable worlds. In addition to its interest as a research field, astrobiology provides an exciting medium for communicating science to students and the public. The questions studied by astrobiologists resonate with non-scientists. Astrobiology is also a popular subject for general-education college science courses. Its interdisciplinary techniques illustrate different ways of doing research such as exploration science versus hypothesis-driven science, or laboratory studies that are complementary to field work or historical science. All of these aspects make astrobiology a "cool" topic, and it will become even more exciting when we find evidence of life on Mars or discover earthlike planets beyond our solar system. (Supported by the NASA Astrobiology Program)

  18. Astrobiology undergraduate education: students' knowledge and perceptions of the field.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Jamie S; Drew, Jennifer C

    2009-04-01

    With the field of astrobiology continually evolving, it has become increasingly important to develop and maintain an educational infrastructure for the next generation of astrobiologists. In addition to developing more courses and programs for students, it is essential to monitor the learning experiences and progress of students taking these astrobiology courses. At the University of Florida, a new pilot course in astrobiology was developed that targeted undergraduate students with a wide range of scientific backgrounds. Pre- and post-course surveys along with knowledge assessments were used to evaluate the students' perceived and actual learning experiences. The class incorporated a hybrid teaching platform that included traditional in-person and distance learning technologies. Results indicate that undergraduate students have little prior knowledge of key astrobiology concepts; however, post-course testing demonstrated significant improvements in the students' comprehension of astrobiology. Improvements were not limited to astrobiology knowledge. Assessments revealed that students developed confidence in science writing as well as reading and understanding astrobiology primary literature. Overall, student knowledge of and attitudes toward astrobiological research dramatically increased during this course, which demonstrates the ongoing need for additional astrobiology education programs as well as periodic evaluations of those programs currently underway. Together, these approaches serve to improve the overall learning experiences and perceptions of future astrobiology researchers.

  19. New insights in the bacterial spore resistance to extreme terrestrial and extraterrestrial factors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moeller, Ralf; Horneck, Gerda; Reitz, Guenther

    Based on their unique resistance to various space parameters, Bacillus endospores are one of the model systems used for astrobiological studies. The extremely high resistance of bacterial endospores to environmental stress factors has intrigued researchers since long time and many characteristic spore features, especially those involved in the protection of spore DNA, have already been uncovered. The disclosure of the complete genomic sequence of Bacillus subtilis 168, one of the often used astrobiological model system, and the rapid development of tran-scriptional microarray techniques have opened new opportunities of gaining further insights in the enigma of spore resistance. Spores of B. subtilis were exposed to various extreme ter-restrial and extraterrestrial stressors to reach a better understanding of the DNA protection and repair strategies, which them to cope with the induced DNA damage. Following physical stress factors of environmental importance -either on Earth or in space -were selected for this thesis: (i) mono-and polychromatic UV radiation, (ii) ionizing radiation, (iii) exposure to ultrahigh vacuum; and (iv) high shock pressures simulating meteorite impacts. To reach a most comprehensive understanding of spore resistance to those harsh terrestrial or simulated extraterrestrial conditions, a standardized experimental protocol of the preparation and ana-lyzing methods was established including the determination of the following spore responses: (i) survival, (ii) induced mutations, (iii) DNA damage, (iv) role of different repair pathways by use of a set of repair deficient mutants, and (v) transcriptional responses during spore germi-nation by use of genome-wide transcriptome analyses and confirmation by RT-PCR. From this comprehensive set of data on spore resistance to a variety of environmental stress parameters a model of a "built-in" transcriptional program of bacterial spores in response to DNA damaging treatments to ensure DNA restoration

  20. Extremophiles: Link between earth and astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stojanović Dejan B.

    2008-01-01

    Full Text Available Astrobiology studies the origin, evolution, distribution and future of life in the universe. The most promising worlds in Solar system, beyond Earth, which may harbor life are Mars and Jovian moon Europa. Extremophiles are organisms that thrive on the edge of temperature, hypersalinity, pH extremes, pressure, dryness and so on. In this paper, some extremophile cyanobacteria have been discussed as possible life forms in a scale of astrobiology. Samples were taken from solenetz and solonchak types of soil from the Vojvodina region. The main idea in this paper lies in the fact that high percentage of salt found in solonchak and solonetz gives the possibility of comparison these types of soil with 'soil' on Mars, which is also rich in salt.

  1. An Astrobiology Microbes Exhibit and Education Module

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lindstrom, Marilyn M.; Allen, Jaclyn S.; Stocco, Karen; Tobola, Kay; Olendzenski, Lorraine

    2001-01-01

    Telling the story of NASA-sponsored scientific research to the public in exhibits is best done by partnerships of scientists and museum professionals. Likewise, preparing classroom activities and training teachers to use them should be done by teams of teachers and scientists. Here we describe how we used such partnerships to develop a new astrobiology augmentation to the Microbes! traveling exhibit and a companion education module. "Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract."

  2. Astrobiology Learning Progressions: Linking Astrobiology Concepts with the 3D Learning Paradigm of NGSS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scalice, D.; Davis, H. B.; Leach, D.; Chambers, N.

    2016-12-01

    The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) introduce a Framework for teaching and learning with three interconnected "dimensions:" Disciplinary Core Ideas (DCI's), Cross-cutting Concepts (CCC's), and Science and Engineering Practices (SEP's). This "3D" Framework outlines progressions of learning from K-12 based on the DCI's, detailing which parts of a concept should be taught at each grade band. We used these discipline-based progressions to synthesize interdisciplinary progressions for core concepts in astrobiology, such as the origins of life, what makes a world habitable, biosignatures, and searching for life on other worlds. The final product is an organizing tool for lesson plans, learning media, and other educational materials in astrobiology, as well as a fundamental resource in astrobiology education that serves both educators and scientists as they plan and carry out their programs for learners.

  3. Extraterrestrial Organic Compounds in Meteorites

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botta, Oliver; Bada, Jeffrey L.; Meyer, Michael (Technical Monitor)

    2003-01-01

    Many organic compounds or their precursors found in meteorites originated in the interstellar or circumstellar medium and were later incorporated into planetesimals during the formation of the solar system. There they either survived intact or underwent further processing to synthesize secondary products on the meteorite parent body. The most distinct feature of CI and CM carbonaceous chondrites, two types of stony meteorites, is their high carbon content (up to 3% of weight), either in the form of carbonates or of organic compounds. The bulk of the organic carbon consists of an insoluble macromolecular material with a complex structure. Also present is a soluble organic fraction, which has been analyzed by several separation and analytical procedures. Low detection limits can be achieved by derivatization of the organic molecules with reagents that allow for analysis by gas chromatography/mass spectroscopy and high performance liquid chromatography. The CM meteorite Murchison has been found to contain more than 70 extraterrestrial amino acids and several other classes of compounds including carboxylic acids, hydroxy carboxylic acids, sulphonic and phosphonic acids, aliphatic, aromatic and polar hydrocarbons, fullerenes, heterocycles as well as carbonyl compounds, alcohols, amines and amides. The organic matter was found to be enriched in deuterium, and distinct organic compounds show isotopic enrichments of carbon and nitrogen relative to terrestrial matter.

  4. Capturing Student Interest in Astrobiology through Dilemmas and Paradoxes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slater, Timothy F.

    2006-01-01

    Astrobiology is an interdisciplinary science course that combines essential questions from life, physical, and Earth sciences. An effective astrobiology course also capitalizes on students' natural curiosity about social science implications of studying the origin of life and the impact of finding life elsewhere in the universe. (Contains 2…

  5. Astrobiology and society: building an interdisciplinary research community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Race, Margaret; Denning, Kathryn; Bertka, Constance M; Dick, Steven J; Harrison, Albert A; Impey, Christopher; Mancinelli, Rocco

    2012-10-01

    This paper reports recent efforts to gather experts from the humanities and social sciences along with astrobiologists to consider the cultural, societal, and psychological implications of astrobiology research and exploration. We began by convening a workshop to draft a research roadmap on astrobiology's societal implications and later formed a Focus Group on Astrobiology and Society under the auspices of the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI). Just as the Astrobiology Science Roadmap and various astrobiology science focus groups have helped researchers orient and understand their work across disciplinary contexts, our intent was to apply the same approach to examine areas beyond the physical and life sciences and expand interdisciplinary interaction and scholarly understanding. These efforts continue as an experiment in progress, with an open invitation to interested researchers-astrobiologists as well as scholars in the humanities and social sciences-to become involved in research, analysis, and proactive discussions concerning the potential impacts of astrobiology on society as well as the possible impacts of society on progress in astrobiology.

  6. Discovery of ETI: Terrestrial and extraterrestrial legal implications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fasan, Ernst

    TheLegalSituationonEarth: The following international legal regulations seem to apply to the search for and the eventual detection of ETI: a) The "Space Treaty" of Oct. 10, 1967; b) The Liability Convention of Oct. 9, 1973; c) The Moon Agreement of Dec. 5, 1979; d) The International Telecommunication Convention. LegalRelationswithExtraterrestrials: We may expect the following characteristics of ETI: 1. life in the sense of influencing the environment by selection from more than one possibility; 2. intelligence in the sense of self-realization of free will; 3. existence in three dimensional space and a will to live. With this we can expect that each race in the universe may have the following interests regarding its own race: a) to preserve and continue its own life; b) to protect this life from damage and intrusion; c) possibly to expand the realms of its living space. Therefore, if we decide to "answer" ETI, we may want to transmit such legal-philosophical principles: 1. the principle of nonviolation; 2. the principle of equality; 3. the principle to recognize the will to live and the living space of any intelligent race.

  7. Cosmocentrism and the Active Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lupisella, M. L.

    2010-04-01

    Applies cosmocentric perspectives to the question of Active SETI, with a focus on "bootstrapped cosmocultural evolution", which has aspects of both pragmatism and cosmocentrism. Active SETI is supported along with international consultation.

  8. IRON-TOLERANT CYANOBACTERIA: IMPLICATIONS FOR ASTROBIOLOGY

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, Igor I.; Allen, Carlton C.; Mummey, Daniel L.; Sarkisova, Svetlana A.; McKay, David S.

    2006-01-01

    The review is dedicated to the new group of extremophiles - iron tolerant cyanobacteria. The authors have analyzed earlier published articles about the ecology of iron tolerant cyanobacteria and their diversity. It was concluded that contemporary iron depositing hot springs might be considered as relative analogs of Precambrian environment. The authors have concluded that the diversity of iron-tolerant cyanobacteria is understudied. The authors also analyzed published data about the physiological peculiarities of iron tolerant cyanobacteria. They made the conclusion that iron tolerant cyanobacteria may oxidize reduced iron through the photosystem of cyanobacteria. The involvement of both Reaction Centers 1 and 2 is also discussed. The conclusion that iron tolerant protocyanobacteria could be involved in banded iron formations generation is also proposed. The possible mechanism of the transition from an oxygenic photosynthesis to an oxygenic one is also discussed. In the final part of the review the authors consider the possible implications of iron tolerant cyanobacteria for astrobiology.

  9. Undergraduate Research at SETI in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kress, Monika; Phillips, C.; DeVore, E.; Hubickyj, O.

    2012-05-01

    The SETI Institute and San Jose State University (SJSU) have begun a partnership (URSA: Undergraduate Research at the SETI Institute in Astrobiology) in which undergraduate science and engineering majors from SJSU participate in research at the SETI Institute during the academic year. We are currently in our second year of the three-year NASA-funded grant. The goal of this program is to expose future scientists, engineers and educators to the science of astrobiology and to NASA in general, and by so doing, to prepare them for the transition to their future career in the Silicon Valley or beyond. The URSA students are mentored by a SETI Institute scientist who conducts research at the SETI Institute headquarters or nearby at NASA Ames Research Center. The SETI Institute is a private, nonprofit organization dedicated to scientific research, education and public outreach. Its mission is to explore, understand and explain the origin, nature and prevalence of life in the universe. SJSU is a large urban public university that serves the greater Silicon Valley area in California. Students at SJSU come from diverse ethnic, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds. Many of them face financial pressures that force them to pursue part-time work. URSA students are paid to work for 10 hours/week during the academic year, and also participate in monthly group meetings where they practice their presentation skills and discuss future plans. We encourage underserved and underrepresented students, including women, minority, and those who are the first in their family to go to college, to apply to the URSA program and provide ongoing mentoring and support as needed. While preparing students for graduate school is not a primary goal, some of our students have gone on to MS or PhD programs or plan to do so. The URSA program is funded by NASA EPOESS.

  10. The Astrobiology Habitable Environments Database (AHED)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafuente, B.; Stone, N.; Downs, R. T.; Blake, D. F.; Bristow, T.; Fonda, M.; Pires, A.

    2015-12-01

    The Astrobiology Habitable Environments Database (AHED) is a central, high quality, long-term searchable repository for archiving and collaborative sharing of astrobiologically relevant data, including, morphological, textural and contextural images, chemical, biochemical, isotopic, sequencing, and mineralogical information. The aim of AHED is to foster long-term innovative research by supporting integration and analysis of diverse datasets in order to: 1) help understand and interpret planetary geology; 2) identify and characterize habitable environments and pre-biotic/biotic processes; 3) interpret returned data from present and past missions; 4) provide a citable database of NASA-funded published and unpublished data (after an agreed-upon embargo period). AHED uses the online open-source software "The Open Data Repository's Data Publisher" (ODR - http://www.opendatarepository.org) [1], which provides a user-friendly interface that research teams or individual scientists can use to design, populate and manage their own database according to the characteristics of their data and the need to share data with collaborators or the broader scientific community. This platform can be also used as a laboratory notebook. The database will have the capability to import and export in a variety of standard formats. Advanced graphics will be implemented including 3D graphing, multi-axis graphs, error bars, and similar scientific data functions together with advanced online tools for data analysis (e. g. the statistical package, R). A permissions system will be put in place so that as data are being actively collected and interpreted, they will remain proprietary. A citation system will allow research data to be used and appropriately referenced by other researchers after the data are made public. This project is supported by the Science-Enabling Research Activity (SERA) and NASA NNX11AP82A, Mars Science Laboratory Investigations. [1] Nate et al. (2015) AGU, submitted.

  11. Habitability & Astrobiology Research in Mars Terrestrial Analogues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, Bernard

    2014-05-01

    We performed a series of field research campaigns (ILEWG EuroMoonMars) in the extreme Utah desert relevant to Mars environments, and in order to help in the interpretation of Mars missions measurements from orbit (MEX, MRO) or from the surface (MER, MSL), or Moon geochemistry (SMART-1, LRO). We shall give an update on the sample analysis in the context of habitability and astrobiology. Methods & Results: In the frame of ILEWG EuroMoonMars campaigns (2009 to 2013) we deployed at Mars Desert Research station, near Hanksville Utah, a suite of instruments and techniques [A, 1, 2, 9-11] including sample collection, context imaging from remote to local and microscale, drilling, spectrometers and life sensors. We analyzed how geological and geochemical evolution affected local parameters (mineralogy, organics content, environment variations) and the habitability and signature of organics and biota. Among the important findings are the diversity in the composition of soil samples even when collected in close proximity, the low abundances of detectable PAHs and amino acids and the presence of biota of all three domains of life with significant heterogeneity. An extraordinary variety of putative extremophiles was observed [3,4,9]. A dominant factor seems to be soil porosity and lower clay-sized particle content [6-8]. A protocol was developed for sterile sampling, contamination issues, and the diagnostics of biodiversity via PCR and DGGE analysis in soils and rocks samples [10, 11]. We compare the 2009 campaign results [1-9] to new measurements from 2010-2013 campaigns [10-12] relevant to: comparison between remote sensing and in-situ measurements; the study of minerals; the detection of organics and signs of life. Keywords: field analogue research, astrobiology, habitability, life detection, Earth-Moon-Mars, organics References [A] Foing, Stoker & Ehrenfreund (Editors, 2011) "Astrobiology field Research in Moon/Mars Analogue Environments", Special Issue of International

  12. Nitrogen Concentrations and Isotopic Compositions of Seafloor-Altered Terrestrial Basaltic Glass: Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Banerjee, N.R.; Izawa, M.R.M.; Kobayashi, K.; Lazzeri, K.; Ranieri, L.A.; Nakamura, E.

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Observed enrichments of N (and the δ15N of this N) in volcanic glasses altered on Earth's modern and ancient seafloor are relevant in considerations of modern global N subduction fluxes and ancient life on Earth, and similarly altered glasses on Mars and other extraterrestrial bodies could serve as valuable tracers of biogeochemical processes. Palagonitized glasses and whole-rock samples of volcanic rocks on the modern seafloor (ODP Site 1256D) contain 3–18 ppm N with δ15Nair values of up to +4.5‰. Variably altered glasses from Mesozoic ophiolites (Troodos, Cyprus; Stonyford volcanics, USA) contain 2–53 ppm N with δ15N of −6.3 to +7‰. All of the more altered glasses have N concentrations higher than those of fresh volcanic glass (for MORB, smectite, illite) in both the palagonitized cracks and the microtubules. These phyllosilicates (particularly illite), and possibly also zeolites, are the likely hosts for N in these glasses. Key Words: Nitrogen—Nitrogen isotope—Palagonite—Volcanic glass—Mars. Astrobiology 18, 330–342. PMID:29106312

  13. Resistance of Microorganisms to Extreme Environmental Conditions and Its Contribution to Astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pabulo Henrique Rampelotto

    2010-06-01

    Full Text Available In the last decades, substantial changes have occurred regarding what scientists consider the limits of habitable environmental conditions. For every extreme environmental condition investigated, a variety of microorganisms have shown that not only can they tolerate these conditions, but that they also often require these extreme conditions for survival. Microbes can return to life even after hundreds of millions of years. Furthermore, a variety of studies demonstrate that microorganisms can survive under extreme conditions, such as ultracentrifugation, hypervelocity, shock pressure, high temperature variations, vacuums, and different ultraviolet and ionizing radiation intensities, which simulate the conditions that microbes could experience during the ejection from one planet, the journey through space, as well as the impact in another planet. With these discoveries, our knowledge about the biosphere has grown and the putative boundaries of life have expanded. The present work examines the recent discoveries and the principal advances concerning the resistance of microorganisms to extreme environmental conditions, and analyzes its contributions to the development of the main themes of astrobiology: the origins of life, the search for extraterrestrial life, and the dispersion of life in the Universe.

  14. NASA-ESA Joint Mission to Explore Two Worlds of Great Astrobiological Interest - Titan and Enceladus

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reh, K.; Coustenis, A.; Lunine, J.; Matson, D.; Lebreton, J.-P.; Erd, C.; Beauchamp, P.

    2009-04-01

    Rugged shorelines, laced with canyons, leading to ethane/methane seas glimpsed through an organic haze, vast fields of dunes shaped by alien sciroccos… An icy moon festooned with plumes of water-ice and organics, whose warm watery source might be glimpsed through surface cracks that glow in the infrared… The revelations by Cassini-Huygens about Saturn's crown jewels, Titan and Enceladus, have rocked the public with glimpses of new worlds unimagined a decade before. The time is at hand to capitalize on those discoveries with a broad mission of exploration that combines the widest range of planetary science disciplines—Geology, Geophysics, Atmospheres, Astrobiology,Chemistry, Magnetospheres—in a single NASA/ESA collaboration. The Titan Saturn System Mission will explore these exciting new environments, flying through Enceladus' plumes and plunging deep into Titan's atmosphere with instruments tuned to find what Cassini could only hint at. Exploring Titan with an international fleet of vehicles; from orbit, from the surface of a great polar sea, and from the air with the first hot air balloon to ride an extraterrestrial breeze, TSSM will turn our snapshot gaze of these worlds into an epic film. This paper will describe a collaborative NASA-ESA Titan Saturn System Mission that will open a new phase of planetary exploration by projecting robotic presence on the land, on the sea, and in the air of an active, organic-rich world.

  15. The Astrobiological Case for Our Cosmic Ancestry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickramasinghe, Chandra

    With steadily mounting evidence that points to a cosmic origin of terrestrial life, a cultural barrier prevails against admitting that such a connection exists. Astronomy continues to reveal the presence of organic molecules and organic dust on a huge cosmic scale, amounting to a third of interstellar carbon tied up in this form. Just as the overwhelming bulk of organics on Earth stored over geological timescales are derived from the degradation of living cells, so it seems most likely that interstellar organics in large measure also derive from biology. As we enter a new decade -- the year 2010 -- a clear pronouncement of our likely alien ancestry and of the existence of extraterrestrial life on a cosmic scale would seem to be overdue.

  16. Which colors would extraterrestrial civilizations use to transmit signals?: The ;magic wavelengths; for optical SETI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Narusawa, Shin-ya; Aota, Tatusya; Kishimoto, Ryo

    2018-04-01

    In the case of radio SETI, there are predicted frequencies which extraterrestrial beings select to send messages to other civilizations. Those are called ;magic frequencies. Considering the optical region, terrestrial technologies can not transmit arbitrary wavelengths of high-power optical lasers, easily. In this article, we discuss communications among civilizations with the same level of technology as us to enhance the persuasive power. It might be possible to make a reasonable assumption about the laser wavelengths transmitted by extraterrestrial intelligences to benefit optical SETI (OSETI) methods. Therefore, we propose some ;magic wavelengths; for spectroscopic OSETI observations in this article. From the senders point of view, we argue that the most favorable wavelength used for interstellar communication would be the one of YAG lasers, at 1.064 μm or its Second Harmonic Generation (532.1 nm). On the contrary, there are basic absorption lines in the optical spectra, which are frequently observed by astrophysicists on Earth. It is possible that the extraterrestrials used lasers, which wavelengths are tuned to such absorption lines for sending messages. In that case, there is a possibility that SHG and/or Sum Frequency Generation of YAG and YLF lasers are used. We propose three lines at, 393.8 nm (near the Ca K line), 656.5 nm (near the Hα line) and 589.1 nm (Na D2 line) as the magic wavelengths.

  17. An Astrobiological View on Sustainable Life

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takeshi Naganuma

    2009-10-01

    Full Text Available Life on a global biosphere basis is substantiated in the form of organics and organisms, and defined as the intermediate forms (briefly expressed as CH2O hovering between the reduced (CH4, methane and (CO2, carbon dioxide ends, different from the classical definition of life as a complex organization maintaining ordered structure and information. Both definitions consider sustenance of life meant as protection of life against chaos through an input of external energy. The CH2O-life connection is maintained as long as the supply of H and O lasts, which is in turn are provided by the splitting of the water molecule H2O. Water is split by electricity, as well-known from school-level experiments, and by solar radiation and geothermal heat on a global scale. In other words, the Sun’s radiation and the Earth’s heat as well as radioactivity split water to supply H and O for continued existence of life on the Earth. These photochemical, radiochemical and geothermal processes have influences on the evolution and current composition of the Earth’s atmosphere, compared with those of Venus and Mars, and influences on the planetary climatology. This view of life may be applicable to the “search-for-life in space” and to sustainability assessment of astrobiological habitats.

  18. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bergin, Edwin A.

    2014-01-01

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface

  19. Astrobiology and the Human Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, Joel S.; Garvin, James B.; Drake, B. G.; Beaty, David

    2010-01-01

    In March 2007, the Mars Exploration Program Analysis Group (MEPAG) chartered the Human Exploration of Mars Science Analysis Group (HEM-SAG), co-chaired by J. B. Garvin and J. S. Levine and consisting of about 30 Mars scientists from the U.S. and Europe. HEM-SAG was one of a half dozen teams charted by NASA to consider the human exploration of Mars. Other teams included: Mars Entry, Descent and Landing, Human Health and Performance, Flight and Surface Systems, and Heliospheric/Astrophysics. The results of these Mars teams and the development of an architecture for the human exploration of Mars were summarized in two recent publications: Human Exploration of Mars Design Reference Architecture 5.0, NASA Special Publication-2009-566 (B. G. Drake, Editor), 100 pages, July 2009 and Human Exploration of Mars Design Reference Architecture 5.0, NASA Special Publication-2009-566 Addendum (B. G. Drake, Editor), 406 pages, July 2009. This presentation summarizes the HEM-SAG conclusions on astrobiology and the search for life on Mars by humans.

  20. Astrobiology: An astronomer's perspective

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bergin, Edwin A. [University of Michigan, Department of Astronomy, 500 Church Street, Ann Arbor, MI 48109 (United States)

    2014-12-08

    In this review we explore aspects of the field of astrobiology from an astronomical viewpoint. We therefore focus on the origin of life in the context of planetary formation, with additional emphasis on tracing the most abundant volatile elements, C, H, O, and N that are used by life on Earth. We first explore the history of life on our planet and outline the current state of our knowledge regarding the delivery of the C, H, O, N elements to the Earth. We then discuss how astronomers track the gaseous and solid molecular carriers of these volatiles throughout the process of star and planet formation. It is now clear that the early stages of star formation fosters the creation of water and simple organic molecules with enrichments of heavy isotopes. These molecules are found as ice coatings on the solid materials that represent microscopic beginnings of terrestrial worlds. Based on the meteoritic and cometary record, the process of planet formation, and the local environment, lead to additional increases in organic complexity. The astronomical connections towards this stage are only now being directly made. Although the exact details are uncertain, it is likely that the birth process of star and planets likely leads to terrestrial worlds being born with abundant water and organics on the surface.

  1. An Astrobiological View on Sustainable Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Naganuma, Takeshi

    2009-10-01

    Life on a global biosphere basis is substantiated in the form of organics and organisms, and defined as the intermediate forms (briefly expressed as CH2O) hovering between the reduced (CH4, methane) and (CO2, carbon dioxide) ends, different from the classical definition of life as a complex organization maintaining ordered structure and information. Both definitions consider sustenance of life meant as protection of life against chaos through an input of external energy. The CH2O-life connection is maintained as long as the supply of H and O lasts, which is in turn are provided by the splitting of the water molecule H2O. Water is split by electricity, as well-known from school-level experiments, and by solar radiation and geothermal heat on a global scale. In other words, the Sun's radiation and the Earth's heat as well as radioactivity split water to supply H and O for continued existence of life on the Earth. These photochemical, radiochemical and geothermal processes have influences on the evolution and current composition of the Earth's atmosphere, compared with those of Venus and Mars, and influences on the planetary climatology. This view of life may be applicable to the "search-for-life in space" and to sustainability assessment of astrobiological habitats.

  2. The Ĝ Infrared Search for Extraterrestrial Civilizations with Large Energy Supplies. I. Background and Justification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, J. T.; Mullan, B.; Sigurdsson, S.; Povich, M. S.

    2014-09-01

    We motivate the Ĝ infrared search for extraterrestrial civilizations with large energy supplies. We discuss some philosophical difficulties of the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI), and how communication SETI circumvents them. We review "Dysonian SETI," the search for artifacts of alien civilizations, and find that it is highly complementary to traditional communication SETI; the two together might succeed where either one alone has not. We discuss the argument of Hart that spacefaring life in the Milky Way should be either galaxy-spanning or non-existent, and examine a portion of his argument that we call the "monocultural fallacy." We discuss some rebuttals to Hart that invoke sustainability and predict long Galaxy colonization timescales. We find that the maximum Galaxy colonization timescale is actually much shorter than previous work has found (energy supplies and argue that detectably large energy supplies can plausibly be expected to exist because life has the potential for exponential growth until checked by resources or other limitations, and intelligence implies the ability to overcome such limitations. As such, if Hart's thesis is correct, then searches for large alien civilizations in other galaxies may be fruitful; if it is incorrect, then searches for civilizations within the Milky Way are more likely to succeed than Hart argued. We review some past Dysonian SETI efforts and discuss the promise of new mid-infrared surveys, such as that of WISE.

  3. Tanpopo: Astrobiology Exposure and Micrometeoroid Capture Experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamagishi, Akihiko; Yano, Hajime; Yamashita, Masamichi; Hashimoto, Hirofumi; Kobayashi, Kensei; Kawai, Hideyuki; Mita, Hajime; Yokobori, Shin-ichi; Tabata, Makoto; Yabuta, Hikaru

    2012-07-01

    There is a long history of the microbe-collection experiments at high altitude (1). Microbes have been collected using balloons, aircraft and meteorological rockets. Spore forming fungi and Bacilli, and Micrococci have been isolated in these experiments (1). It is not clear how high do microbes go up. If the microbes might have been present even at higher altitudes, the fact would endorse the possibility of interplanetary migration of life. Tanpopo, dandelion, is the name of a grass whose seeds with floss are spread by the wind. We propose the analyses of interplanetary migration of microbes, organic compounds and meteoroids on Japan Experimental Module (JEM) of the International Space Station (ISS) (2). Ultra low-density aerogel will be used to capture micrometeoroid and debris. Particles captured by aerogel will be used for several analyses after the initial inspection of the gel and tracks. Careful analysis of the tracks in the aerogel will provide the size and velocity dependence of debris flux. The particles will be analyzed for mineralogical, organic and microbiological characteristics. Aerogels are ready for production in Japan. Aerogels and trays are space proven. All the analytical techniques are ready. In this presentation, we will present the recent results related to the microbiological analyses. The results suggested that the bleaching speeds and the spectra of fluorescence are different between different origins of the fluorescence: whether it is emitted from microbe or not. It is also shown that PCR analysis of the microbe can be used to determine the species. References 1)Yang, Y., Yokobori, S. and Yamagishi, A.: Assessing panspermia hypothesis by microorganisms collected from the high altitude atmosphere. Biol. Sci. Space, 23 (2009), pp. 151-163. 2) Yamagishi, A., H. Yano, K. Kobayashi, K. Kobayashi, S. Yokobori, M. Tabata, H. Kawai, M. Yamashita, H. Hashimoto, H. Naraoka, & H. Mita (2008) TANPOPO: astrobiology exposure and micrometeoroid capture

  4. Lunar astrobiology: a review and suggested laboratory equipment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gronstal, Aaron; Cockell, Charles S; Perino, Maria Antonietta; Bittner, Tobias; Clacey, Erik; Clark, Olathe; Ingold, Olivier; Alves de Oliveira, Catarina; Wathiong, Steven

    2007-10-01

    In October of 2005, the European Space Agency (ESA) and Alcatel Alenia Spazio released a "call to academia for innovative concepts and technologies for lunar exploration." In recent years, interest in lunar exploration has increased in numerous space programs around the globe, and the purpose of our study, in response to the ESA call, was to draw on the expertise of researchers and university students to examine science questions and technologies that could support human astrobiology activity on the Moon. In this mini review, we discuss astrobiology science questions of importance for a human presence on the surface of the Moon and we provide a summary of key instrumentation requirements to support a lunar astrobiology laboratory.

  5. The Lassen Astrobiology Intern Program - Concept, Implementation and Evaluation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, D. J.; Dueck, S. L.; Davis, H. B.; Parenteau, M. N.; Kubo, M. D.

    2014-12-01

    The program goal was to provide a hands-on astrobiology learning experience to high school students by introducing astrobiology and providing opportunities to conduct field and lab research with NASA scientists. The program sought to increase interest in interdisciplinary science, technology, engineering, math and related careers. Lassen Volcanic National Park (LVNP), Red Bluff High School and the Ames Team of the NASA Astrobiology Institute led the program. LVNP was selected because it shares aspects of volcanism with Mars and it hosts thermal springs with microbial mat communities. Students documented volcanic deposits, springs and microbial mats. They analyzed waters and sampled rocks, water and microorganisms. They cultured microorganisms and studied chemical reactions between rocks and simulated spring waters. Each student prepared a report to present data and discuss relationships between volcanic rocks and gases, spring waters and microbial mats. At a "graduation" event the students presented their findings to the Red Bluff community. They visited Ames Research Center to tour the facilities and learn about science and technology careers. To evaluate program impact, surveys were given to students after lectures, labs, fieldwork and discussions with Ames scientists. Students' work was scored using rubrics (labs, progress reports, final report, presentation). Students took pre/post tests on core astrobiology concepts. Parents, teachers, rangers, Ames staff and students completed end-of-year surveys on program impact. Several outcomes were documented. Students had a unique and highly valued learning experience with NASA scientists. They understood what scientists do through authentic scientific work, and what scientists are like as individuals. Students became knowledgeable about astrobiology and how it can be pursued in the lab and in the field. The students' interest increased markedly in astrobiology, interdisciplinary studies and science generally.

  6. The Living Universe: NASA and the Development of Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven J.; Strick, James E.

    2004-01-01

    In the opening weeks of 1998 a news article in the British journal Nature reported that NASA was about to enter biology in a big way. A "virtual" Astrobiology Institute was gearing up for business, and NASA administrator Dan Goldin told his external advisory council that he would like to see spending on the new institute eventually reach $100 million per year. "You just wait for the screaming from the physical scientists (when that happens)," Goldin was quoted as saying. Nevertheless, by the time of the second Astrobiology Science Conference in 2002, attended by seven hundred scientists from many disciplines, NASA spending on astrobiology had reached nearly half that amount and was growing at a steady pace. Under NASA leadership numerous institutions around the world applied the latest scientific techniques in the service of astrobiology's ambitious goal: the study of what NASA's 1996 Strategic Plan termed the "living universe." This goal embraced nothing less than an understanding of the origin, history, and distribution of life in the universe, including Earth. Astrobiology, conceived as a broad interdisciplinary research program, held the prospect of being the science for the twenty-first century which would unlock the secrets to some of the great questions of humanity. It is no surprise that these age-old questions should continue into the twenty-first century. But that the effort should be spearheaded by NASA was not at all obvious to those - inside and outside the agency - who thought NASA's mission was human spaceflight, rather than science, especially biological science. NASA had, in fact, been involved for four decades in "exobiology," a field that embraced many of the same questions but which had stagnated after the 1976 Viking missions to Mars. In this volume we tell the colorful story of the rise of the discipline of exobiology, how and why it morphed into astrobiology at the end of the twentieth century, and why NASA was the engine for both the

  7. [Extraterrestrial influences on health and disease].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sitar, J

    1994-02-14

    As to extraterrestrial influences on man in health and disease so far only the effect of the sun and moon are known. This concerns the effect of solar radiation of different wavelengths and the effect of corpuscular solar radiation which has an impact on the condition of the terrestrial magnetic field and electric conditions in the atmosphere. Moreover there is also a question of important influences of gravitation (tides). Here the influence of the position of the moon in relation to the connecting line between sun and earth is involved. In the course of the synodic month (from new moon to the next new moon) a semilunar periodicity of different medical and geomagnetic indicators as well as meteorological ones plays a part. Based on his own research and that of others the author reaches the conclusion that extraterrestrial and terrestrial influences are interrelated and exert a mutual influence on each other and that it is not sensible to separate them strictly. Investigation of all the mentioned influences is important not only for biomedical prognosis but also for basic geophysical and meteorological research. Perspectively it would be useful to plan model experiments. The author feels it is his duty to refuse publication of different horoscopes in the mass media, whatever the intention. In the lay public this may lead to popularization of astrology which has nothing in common with serious research.

  8. Extraterrestrial Radiation Chemistry and Molecular Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hudson, Reggie L.; Moore, Marla H.

    2009-01-01

    Astronomical observations of both solar system and interstellar regions have revealed a rich chemical inventory that includes most classes of organic molecules and selected inorganics. For example, gas-phase ethylene glycol and SOz have been observed by astronomers, while solidphase detections include OCS, H2O2 , and the cyanate anion.' All of these are found in environments that are, by earthly standards, exceedingly hostile: temperatures of 10 - 100 K, miniscule densities, and near-ubiquitous ionizing-radiation fields. Beyond the simplest chemical species, these conditions have made it difficult-to-impassible to account for the observed molecular abundances using gas-phase chemistry, suggesting solid-phase reactions play an important role. In extraterrestrial environments, cosmic rays, UV photons, and magnetospheric radiation all drive chemical reactions, even at cryogenic temperatures. To study this chemistry, radiation astrochemists conduct experiments on icy materials, frozen under vacuum and exposed to sources such as keV electrons and MeV protons. Compositional changes usually are followed with IR spectroscopy and, in selected cases, more-sensitive mass-spectral techniques. This talk will review some recent results on known and suspected extraterrestrial molecules and ions. Spectra and reaction pathways will be presented, and predictions made for interstellar chemistry and the chemistry of selected solar system objects. Some past radiation-chemical contributions, and future needs, will be explored.

  9. Second Annual NASA Ames Space Science and Astrobiology Jamboree

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dotson, Jessie

    2014-01-01

    The Space Science and Astrobiology Division's researchers are pursuing investigations in a variety of fields, including exoplanets, planetary science, astrobiology, and astrophysics. In addition division personnel support a wide variety of NASA missions. With a wide variety of interesting research going on, distributed among the three branches in at least 5 buildings, it can be difficult to stay abreast of what one's fellow researchers are doing. Our goal in organizing this symposium is to facilitate communication and collaboration among the scientist within the division and to give center management and other ARC researchers and Engineers an opportunity to see what scientific missions work is being done in the division.

  10. Astrobiology Field Research in Moon/Mars Analogue Environments: Preface

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, B. H.; Stoker, C.; Ehrenfreund, P.

    2011-01-01

    Extreme environments on Earth often provide similar terrain conditions to landing/operation sites on Moon and Mars. Several field campaigns (EuroGeoMars2009 and DOMMEX/ILEWG EuroMoonMars from November 2009 to March 2010) were conducted at the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah. Some of the key astrobiology results are presented in this special issue on Astrobiology field research in Moon/Mars analogue environments relevant to investigate the link between geology, minerals, organics and biota. Preliminary results from a multidisciplinary field campaign at Rio Tinto in Spain are presented.

  11. Intelligence in Artificial Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Datta, Shoumen Palit Austin

    2016-01-01

    The elusive quest for intelligence in artificial intelligence prompts us to consider that instituting human-level intelligence in systems may be (still) in the realm of utopia. In about a quarter century, we have witnessed the winter of AI (1990) being transformed and transported to the zenith of tabloid fodder about AI (2015). The discussion at hand is about the elements that constitute the canonical idea of intelligence. The delivery of intelligence as a pay-per-use-service, popping out of ...

  12. Life in Ice: Implications to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoover, Richard B.

    2009-01-01

    During the 2008 Tawani International Expedition Schirmacher Oasis/Lake Untersee Antarctica Expedition, living and instantly motile bacteria were found in freshly thawed meltwater from ice of the Schirmacher Oasis Lakes, the Anuchin Glacier ice and samples of the that perennial ice sheet above Lake Untersee. This phenomenon of living bacteria encased in ice had previously been observed in the 32,000 year old ice of the Fox Tunnel. The bacteria found in this ice included the strain FTR1T which was isolated and published as valid new species (Carnobacterium pleistocenium) the first validly published living Pleistocene organism still alive today. Living bacteria were also extracted from ancient ice cores from Vostok, Antarctica. The discovery that many strains of bacteria are able to survive and remain alive while frozen in ice sheets for long periods of time may have direct relevance to Astrobiology. The abundance of viable bacteria in the ice sheets of Antarctica suggests that the presence of live bacteria in ice is common, rather than an isolated phenomenon. This paper will discuss the results of recent studies at NSSTC of bacteria cryopreserved in ice. This paper advances the hypothesis that cryopreserved cells, and perhaps even viable bacterial cells, may exist today--frozen in the water-ice of lunar craters, the Polar Caps or craters of Mars; or in the permafrost of Mars; ice and rocks of comets or water bearing asteroids; or in the frozen crusts of the icy moons of Jupiter and Saturn. The existence of bacterial life in ice suggests that it may not be necessary to drill through a thick ice crust to reach liquid water seas deep beneath the icy crusts of Europa, Ganymede and Enceladus. The presence of viable bacteria in the ice of the Earth s Polar Caps suggests that the possibility that cryo-panspermia (i.e., the trans-planetary transfer of microbial life by impact ejection/spallation of bacteria-rich polar ice masses) deserves serious consideration and study as a

  13. Astrobiology Science and Technology: A Path to Future Discovery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, M. A.; Lavaery, D. B.

    2001-01-01

    The Astrobiology Program is described. However, science-driven robotic exploration of extreme environments is needed for a new era of planetary exploration requiring biologically relevant instrumentation and extensive, autonomous operations on planetary surfaces. Additional information is contained in the original extended abstract.

  14. Astrobiology Courses--A Useful Framework for Teaching Interdisciplinary Science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sauterer, Roger

    2000-01-01

    Explains astrobiology and indicates the possibility of life on other planets and the interest of humankind in this possibility. Defines topics open to public misconception and their primary reinforcements by television shows. Expresses the need for students to learn the connections between different science majors. (YDS)

  15. The NASA Astrobiology Institute: early history and organization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blumberg, Baruch S.

    2003-01-01

    The NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) was established as a means to advance the field of astrobiology by providing a multidisciplinary, multi-institution, science-directed program, executed by universities, research institutes, and NASA and other government laboratories. The scientific community and NASA defined the science content at several workshops as summarized in the NASA Astrobiology Roadmap. Teams were chosen nationwide, following the recommendations of external review groups, and the research program began in 1998. There are now 16 national Teams and five international affiliated and associated astrobiology institutions. The NAI has attracted an outstanding group of scientific groups and individuals. The Institute facilitates the involvement of the scientists in its scientific and management vision. Its goal is to support basic research and allow the scientists the freedom to select their projects and alter them as indicated by new research. Additional missions include the education of the public, the involvement of students who will be the astrobiologists of future generations, and the development of a culture of collaboration in NAI, a "virtual institute," spread across many sites nationally and internationally.

  16. Applying Biomimetic Algorithms for Extra-Terrestrial Habitat Generation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birge, Brian

    2012-01-01

    The objective is to simulate and optimize distributed cooperation among a network of robots tasked with cooperative excavation on an extra-terrestrial surface. Additionally to examine the concept of directed Emergence among a group of limited artificially intelligent agents. Emergence is the concept of achieving complex results from very simple rules or interactions. For example, in a termite mound each individual termite does not carry a blueprint of how to make their home in a global sense, but their interactions based strictly on local desires create a complex superstructure. Leveraging this Emergence concept applied to a simulation of cooperative agents (robots) will allow an examination of the success of non-directed group strategy achieving specific results. Specifically the simulation will be a testbed to evaluate population based robotic exploration and cooperative strategies while leveraging the evolutionary teamwork approach in the face of uncertainty about the environment and partial loss of sensors. Checking against a cost function and 'social' constraints will optimize cooperation when excavating a simulated tunnel. Agents will act locally with non-local results. The rules by which the simulated robots interact will be optimized to the simplest possible for the desired result, leveraging Emergence. Sensor malfunction and line of sight issues will be incorporated into the simulation. This approach falls under Swarm Robotics, a subset of robot control concerned with finding ways to control large groups of robots. Swarm Robotics often contains biologically inspired approaches, research comes from social insect observation but also data from among groups of herding, schooling, and flocking animals. Biomimetic algorithms applied to manned space exploration is the method under consideration for further study.

  17. Search for extraterrestrial life: recent developments. Proceedings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Papagiannis, M D [ed.

    1985-01-01

    Seventy experts from 20 different countries discuss the many interrelated aspects of the search for extraterrestrial life, including the search for other planetary systems where life may originate and evolve, the widespread presence of complex prebiotic molecules in our Solar System and in interstellar space which could be precursors of life, and the universal aspects of the biological evolution on Earth. They also discuss the nearly 50 radio searches that were undertaken in the last 25 years, the technological progress that has occurred in this period, and the plans for the future including the comprehensive SETI search program that NASA is now preparing for the 1990's. Extensive introductions by the Editor to each of the 8 sections, make this volume friendly even to the non-specialist who has a genuine interest for this new field. 549 refs.; 84 figs.; 21 tabs.

  18. Curating NASA's Past, Present, and Future Extraterrestrial Sample Collections

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, F. M.; Allton, J. H.; Evans, C. A.; Fries, M. D.; Nakamura-Messenger, K.; Righter, K.; Zeigler, R. A.; Zolensky, M.; Stansbery, E. K.

    2016-01-01

    The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office (henceforth referred to herein as NASA Curation Office) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is responsible for curating all of NASA's extraterrestrial samples. Under the governing document, NASA Policy Directive (NPD) 7100.10E "Curation of Extraterrestrial Materials", JSC is charged with "...curation of all extra-terrestrial material under NASA control, including future NASA missions." The Directive goes on to define Curation as including "...documentation, preservation, preparation, and distribution of samples for research, education, and public outreach." Here we describe some of the past, present, and future activities of the NASA Curation Office.

  19. The biogeochemical iron cycle and astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schröder, Christian; Köhler, Inga; Muller, Francois L. L.; Chumakov, Aleksandr I.; Kupenko, Ilya; Rüffer, Rudolf; Kappler, Andreas

    2016-12-01

    Biogeochemistry investigates chemical cycles which influence or are influenced by biological activity. Astrobiology studies the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. The biogeochemical Fe cycle has controlled major nutrient cycles such as the C cycle throughout geological time. Iron sulfide minerals may have provided energy and surfaces for the first pioneer organisms on Earth. Banded iron formations document the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. To assess the potential habitability of planets other than Earth one looks for water, an energy source and a C source. On Mars, for example, Fe minerals have provided evidence for the past presence of liquid water on its surface and would provide a viable energy source. Here we present Mössbauer spectroscopy investigations of Fe and C cycle interactions in both ancient and modern environments. Experiments to simulate the diagenesis of banded iron formations indicate that the formation of ferrous minerals depends on the amount of biomass buried with ferric precursors rather than on the atmospheric composition at the time of deposition. Mössbauer spectra further reveal the mutual stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes against mineral transformation and decay of organic matter into CO2. This corresponds to observations of a `rusty carbon sink' in modern sediments. The stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes may also aid transport of particulate Fe in the water column while having an adverse effect on the bioavailability of Fe. In the modern oxic ocean, Fe is insoluble and particulate Fe represents an important source. Collecting that particulate Fe yields small sample sizes that would pose a challenge for conventional Mössbauer experiments. We demonstrate that the unique properties of the beam used in synchrotron-based Mössbauer applications can be utilized for studying such samples effectively. Reactive Fe species often occur in amorphous or nanoparticulate form in the environment and

  20. The biogeochemical iron cycle and astrobiology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schröder, Christian; Köhler, Inga; Muller, Francois L. L.; Chumakov, Aleksandr I.; Kupenko, Ilya; Rüffer, Rudolf; Kappler, Andreas

    2016-01-01

    Biogeochemistry investigates chemical cycles which influence or are influenced by biological activity. Astrobiology studies the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. The biogeochemical Fe cycle has controlled major nutrient cycles such as the C cycle throughout geological time. Iron sulfide minerals may have provided energy and surfaces for the first pioneer organisms on Earth. Banded iron formations document the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. To assess the potential habitability of planets other than Earth one looks for water, an energy source and a C source. On Mars, for example, Fe minerals have provided evidence for the past presence of liquid water on its surface and would provide a viable energy source. Here we present Mössbauer spectroscopy investigations of Fe and C cycle interactions in both ancient and modern environments. Experiments to simulate the diagenesis of banded iron formations indicate that the formation of ferrous minerals depends on the amount of biomass buried with ferric precursors rather than on the atmospheric composition at the time of deposition. Mössbauer spectra further reveal the mutual stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes against mineral transformation and decay of organic matter into CO 2 . This corresponds to observations of a ‘rusty carbon sink’ in modern sediments. The stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes may also aid transport of particulate Fe in the water column while having an adverse effect on the bioavailability of Fe. In the modern oxic ocean, Fe is insoluble and particulate Fe represents an important source. Collecting that particulate Fe yields small sample sizes that would pose a challenge for conventional Mössbauer experiments. We demonstrate that the unique properties of the beam used in synchrotron-based Mössbauer applications can be utilized for studying such samples effectively. Reactive Fe species often occur in amorphous or nanoparticulate form in the

  1. The biogeochemical iron cycle and astrobiology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schröder, Christian, E-mail: christian.schroeder@stir.ac.uk [University of Stirling, Biological and Environmental Sciences, School of Natural Sciences (United Kingdom); Köhler, Inga [Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen, Geomicrobiology, Centre for Applied Geoscience (Germany); Muller, Francois L. L. [Qatar University, Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences (Qatar); Chumakov, Aleksandr I.; Kupenko, Ilya; Rüffer, Rudolf [ESRF-The European Synchrotron (France); Kappler, Andreas [Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen, Geomicrobiology, Centre for Applied Geoscience (Germany)

    2016-12-15

    Biogeochemistry investigates chemical cycles which influence or are influenced by biological activity. Astrobiology studies the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the universe. The biogeochemical Fe cycle has controlled major nutrient cycles such as the C cycle throughout geological time. Iron sulfide minerals may have provided energy and surfaces for the first pioneer organisms on Earth. Banded iron formations document the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. To assess the potential habitability of planets other than Earth one looks for water, an energy source and a C source. On Mars, for example, Fe minerals have provided evidence for the past presence of liquid water on its surface and would provide a viable energy source. Here we present Mössbauer spectroscopy investigations of Fe and C cycle interactions in both ancient and modern environments. Experiments to simulate the diagenesis of banded iron formations indicate that the formation of ferrous minerals depends on the amount of biomass buried with ferric precursors rather than on the atmospheric composition at the time of deposition. Mössbauer spectra further reveal the mutual stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes against mineral transformation and decay of organic matter into CO{sub 2}. This corresponds to observations of a ‘rusty carbon sink’ in modern sediments. The stabilisation of Fe-organic matter complexes may also aid transport of particulate Fe in the water column while having an adverse effect on the bioavailability of Fe. In the modern oxic ocean, Fe is insoluble and particulate Fe represents an important source. Collecting that particulate Fe yields small sample sizes that would pose a challenge for conventional Mössbauer experiments. We demonstrate that the unique properties of the beam used in synchrotron-based Mössbauer applications can be utilized for studying such samples effectively. Reactive Fe species often occur in amorphous or nanoparticulate form in the

  2. Systems astrobiology for a reliable biomarker on exo-worlds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chela Flores, Julian

    2013-04-01

    Although astrobiology is a science midway between biology and astrophysics, it has surprisingly remained largely disconnected from recent trends in certain branches of both of these disciplines. Aiming at discovering how systems properties emerge has proved valuable in chemistry and in biology and should also yield insights into astrobiology. This is feasible since new large data banks in the case of astrobiology are of a geophysical/astronomical kind, rather than the also large molecular biology data that are used for questions related firstly, to genetics in a systems context and secondly, to biochemistry. The application of systems biology is illustrated for our own planetary system, where 3 Earth-like planets are within the habitable zone of a G2V star and where the process of photosynthesis has led to a single oxygenic atmosphere that was triggered during the Great Oxidation Event some 2,5 billion years before the present. The significance of the biogenic origin of a considerable fraction of our atmosphere has been discussed earlier (Kiang et al., 2007). Bonding of O2 ensures that it is stable enough to accumulate in a world's atmosphere if triggered by a living process. The reduction of F and Cl deliver energy release per e+-transfer, but unlike O2 the weaker bonding properties inhibit large atmospheric accumulation (Catling et al., 2005). The evolution of O2-producing photosynthesis is very likely on exo-worlds (Wolstencroft and Raven, 2002). With our simplifying assumption of evolutionary convergence, we show how to probe for a reliable biomarker in the exo-atmospheres of planets, or their satellites, orbiting stars of different luminosities and ages (Chela-Flores, 2013). We treat the living process as a system of exo-environments capable of radically modifying their geology and atmospheres, both for exo-planets, and especially for exo-moons, the presence of which can be extracted from the Kepler data (Kipping et al., 2012). What we are learning about the

  3. Implications of extraterrestrial material on the origin of life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pasek, Matthew A.

    Meteoritic organic material may provide the best perspective on prebiotic chemistry. Meteorites have also been invoked as a source of prebiotic material. This study suggests a caveat to extraterrestrial organic delivery: that prebiotic meteoritic organics were too dilute to promote prebiotic reactions. However, meteoritic material provides building material for endogenous synthesis of prebiotic molecules, such as by hydrolysis of extraterrestrial organic tars, and corrosion of phosphide minerals.

  4. The O/OREOS Mission - Astrobiology in Low Earth Orbit. [Astrobiology in Low Earth Orbit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ehrenfreund, P.; Ricco, A. J.; Squires, D.; Kitts, C.; Agasid, E.; Bramall, N.; Bryson, K.; Chittenden, J.; Conley, C.; Cook, A.; hide

    2014-01-01

    The O/OREOS (Organism/Organic Exposure to Orbital Stresses) nanosatellite is the first science demonstration spacecraft and flight mission of the NASA Astrobiology Small- Payloads Program (ASP). O/OREOS was launched successfully on November 19, 2010, to a high-inclination (72 deg), 650-km Earth orbit aboard a US Air Force Minotaur IV rocket from Kodiak, Alaska. O/OREOS consists of 3 conjoined cubesat (each 1000 cu cm) modules: (i) a control bus; (ii) the Space Environment Survivability of Living Organisms (SESLO) experiment; and (iii) the Space Environment Viability of Organics (SEVO) experiment. Among the innovative aspects of the O/OREOS mission are a real-time analysis of the photostability of organics and biomarkers and the collection of data on the survival and metabolic activity for microorganisms at 3 times during the 6-month mission. We report on the spacecraft characteristics, payload capabilities, and present operational phase and flight data from the O/OREOS mission. The science and technology rationale of O/OREOS supports NASA0s scientific exploration program by investigating the local space environment as well as space biology relevant to Moon and Mars missions. It also serves as a precursor for experiments on small satellites, the International Space Station (ISS), future free-flyers and lunar surface exposure facilities.

  5. Sixth Annual NASA Ames Space Science and Astrobiology Jamboree

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollingsworth, Jeffery; Howell, Steve; Fonda, Mark; Dateo, Chris; Martinez, Christine M.

    2018-01-01

    Welcome to the Sixth Annual NASA Ames Research Center, Space Science and Astrobiology Jamboree at NASA Ames Research Center (ARC). The Space Science and Astrobiology Division consists of over 60 Civil Servants, with more than 120 Cooperative Agreement Research Scientists, Post-Doctoral Fellows, Science Support Contractors, Visiting Scientists, and many other Research Associates. Within the Division there is engagement in scientific investigations over a breadth of disciplines including Astrobiology, Astrophysics, Exobiology, Exoplanets, Planetary Systems Science, and many more. The Division's personnel support NASA spacecraft missions (current and planned), including SOFIA, K2, MSL, New Horizons, JWST, WFIRST, and others. Our top-notch science research staff is spread amongst three branches in five buildings at ARC. Naturally, it can thus be difficult to remain abreast of what fellow scientific researchers pursue actively, and then what may present and/or offer regarding inter-Branch, intra-Division future collaborative efforts. In organizing this annual jamboree, the goals are to offer a wholesome, one-venue opportunity to sense the active scientific research and spacecraft mission involvement within the Division; and to facilitate communication and collaboration amongst our research scientists. Annually, the Division honors one senior research scientist with a Pollack Lecture, and one early career research scientist with an Outstanding Early Career Space Scientist Lecture. For the Pollack Lecture, the honor is bestowed upon a senior researcher who has made significant contributions within any area of research aligned with space science and/or astrobiology. This year we are pleased to honor Linda Jahnke. With the Early Career Lecture, the honor is bestowed upon an early-career researcher who has substantially demonstrated great promise for significant contributions within space science, astrobiology, and/or, in support of spacecraft missions addressing such

  6. The Implications of the Discovery of Extraterrestrial Life for Religion and Theology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peters, Ted

    2012-05-01

    This paper asks about the future of religion: (1) Will confirmation of ETI cause terrestrial religion to collapse? "No" is the answer based upon a summary of the "Peters ETI Religious Crisis Survey." Then three questions are posed to the astrotheologian: (2) What is the scope of God's creation? (3) What can we expect when we encounter ETI? (4) Will contact with more advanced ETI diminish human dignity? The paper's thesis is that contact with extraterrestrial intelligence will expand the existing Christian vision that all of creation — including the 13.7 billion year history of the universe replete with all of God's creatures — is the gift of a loving and gracious God.

  7. Inflation-Theory Implications for Extraterrestrial Visitation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deardoff, J.; Haisch, B.; Maccabee, B.; Puthoff, H. E.

    It has recently been argued that anthropic reasoning applied to inflation theory reinforces the prediction that we should find ourselves part of a large, galaxy-sized civilisation, thus strengthening Fermi's paradox concerning `Where are they?' Furthermore, superstring and M-brane theory allow for the possibility of parallel universes, some of which in principle could be habitable. In addition, discussion of such exotic transport concepts as `traversable wormholes' now appears in the rigorous physics literature. As a result, the `We are alone' solution to Fermi's paradox, based on the constraints of earlier 20th century viewpoints, appears today to be inconsistent with new developments in our best current physics and astrophysics theories. Therefore we reexamine and reevaluate the present assumption that extraterrestrials or their probes are not in the vicinity of Earth, and argue instead that some evidence of their presence might be found in certain high-quality UFO reports. This study follows up on previous arguments that (1) interstellar travel for advanced civilizations is not a priori ruled out by physical principles and therefore may be practicable, and (2) such advanced civilisations may value the search for knowledge from uncontaminated species more than direct, interspecies communication, thereby accounting for apparent covertness regarding their presence.

  8. Space nuclear power systems for extraterrestrial basing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lance, J.R.; Chi, J.W.H.

    1989-01-01

    Previous studies of nuclear and non-nuclear power systems for lunar bases are compared with recent studies by others. Power levels from tens of kW e for early base operation up to 2000 kW e for a self-sustaining base with a Closed Environment Life Support System (CELSS) are considered. Permanent lunar or Martian bases will require the use of multiple nuclear units connected to loads with a power transmission and distribution system analogous to earth-based electric utility systems. A methodology used for such systems is applied to the lunar base system to examine the effects of adding 100 kW e SP-100 class and/or larger nuclear units when a reliability criterion is imposed. The results show that resource and logistic burdens can be reduced by using 1000 kW e units early in the base growth scenario without compromising system reliability. Therefore, both technologies being developed in two current programs (SP-100 and NERVA Derivative Reactor (NDR) technology for space power) can be used effectively for extraterrestrial base power systems. Recent developments in NDR design that result in major reductions in reactor mass are also described. (author)

  9. The Search for Extraterrestrials Intercepting Alien Signals

    CERN Document Server

    Ross, Monte

    2009-01-01

    In The Search for Extraterrestrials, Monte Ross explores in detail the key problems in starting a search, the programs that have failed and those that continue. He includes the fundamental considerations and the physics of the necessary laser, UV, IR and RF technologies, as well as coding and information theory considerations. The author explores future possibilities providing the reader with a comprehensive view of the many ways signals from aliens could be sent and explains why the search using RF leaves more than 99% of the electromagnetic spectrum unexamined. He also demonstrates the many parts of the electromagnetic spectrum, considering the next likely steps in this unique enterprise. Given man’s intrinsic nature to explore, the search will continue in one form or many, until success is achieved, which may be tomorrow or a millennium away. In summary, Monte Ross proposes to get around the failure of a fruitless search at radio frequencies by developing, in a precise way, the argument for searching for...

  10. Extraterrestrial Life in the Microbial Age

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gronstal, Aaron L.

    Humankind has long been fascinated with the potential for alien civilizations within the Solar System and beyond (e.g., Crowe and Dowd 2013; Sullivan 2013). Despite the early optimism for life beyond Earth, humankind has yet to make first contact with an alien race. Historical discourse on the topic of alien life can provide some useful input into questions about how the people of Earth today might respond to contact with alien life (e.g., Dick 2013). However, this discourse is primarily devoted to understanding humankind's response to intelligent life. We must recognize that the search for life's potential beyond Earth has dramatically changed since the dawn of the Space Age. We now know that advanced civilizations are not common on planets in our solar system. The search for life on nearby worlds is now limited to non-intelligent, microbial life. Any chance we have of contacting intelligent life lies in receiving transmissions from distant worlds, and contact with such cultures would be greatly limited by the vast expanse of space. This chapter discusses the need for more attention paid to the possible social, economic, and legal ramifications that the discovery of non-intelligent, alien microbial life might bring.

  11. Exploring Astrobiology: Future and In-Service Teacher Research Experiences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cola, J.; Williams, L. D.; Snell, T.; Gaucher, E.; Harris, B.; Usselman, M. C.; Millman, R. S.

    2009-12-01

    The Georgia Tech Center for Ribosome Adaptation and Evolution, a center funded by the NASA Astrobiology Institute, developed an educational Astrobiology program titled, “Life on the Edge: Astrobiology.” The purpose of the program was to provide educators with the materials, exposure, and skills necessary to prepare our future workforce and to foster student interest in scientific discovery on Earth and throughout the universe. A one-week, non-residential summer enrichment program for high school students was conducted and tested by two high school educators, an undergraduate student, and faculty in the Schools of Biology, and Chemistry and Biochemistry at Georgia Tech. In an effort to promote and encourage entry into teaching careers, Georgia Tech paired in-service teachers in the Georgia Intern-Fellowship for Teachers (GIFT) program with an undergraduate student interested in becoming a teacher through the Tech to Teaching program. The GIFT and Tech to Teaching fellows investigated extremophiles which have adapted to life under extreme environmental conditions. As a result, extremophiles became the focus of a week-long, “Life on the Edge: Astrobiology” curriculum aligned with the Georgia Performance Standards in Biology. Twenty-five high school students explored the adaptation and survival rates for various types of extremophiles exposed to UV radiation and desiccation; students were also introduced to hands-on activities and techniques such as genomic DNA purification, gel electrophoresis, and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). The impact on everyone invested and involved in the Astrobiology program including the GIFT and Tech to Teaching fellows, high school students, and faculty are discussed.

  12. Astrobiology: Water and Life in the Solar System and beyond

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorge Alberto Quillfeldt

    2010-03-01

    Full Text Available After some methodological considerations and a brief historical background (SETI, we describe the three main impulses to the present discipline of exo / astrobiology - extremophyles, the discovery of exoplanets, and the data gathered by several unmanned probes in the solar system. An overview of recent findings concerning the presence of frozen or liquid water in our planetary system is presented, and the main trends for the following years, summarized.

  13. The Ĝ infrared search for extraterrestrial civilizations with large energy supplies. I. Background and justification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wright, J. T.; Mullan, B.; Sigurdsson, S.; Povich, M. S.

    2014-01-01

    We motivate the Ĝ infrared search for extraterrestrial civilizations with large energy supplies. We discuss some philosophical difficulties of the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI), and how communication SETI circumvents them. We review 'Dysonian SETI', the search for artifacts of alien civilizations, and find that it is highly complementary to traditional communication SETI; the two together might succeed where either one alone has not. We discuss the argument of Hart that spacefaring life in the Milky Way should be either galaxy-spanning or non-existent, and examine a portion of his argument that we call the 'monocultural fallacy'. We discuss some rebuttals to Hart that invoke sustainability and predict long Galaxy colonization timescales. We find that the maximum Galaxy colonization timescale is actually much shorter than previous work has found (<10 9 yr), and that many 'sustainability' counter-arguments to Hart's thesis suffer from the monocultural fallacy. We extend Hart's argument to alien energy supplies and argue that detectably large energy supplies can plausibly be expected to exist because life has the potential for exponential growth until checked by resources or other limitations, and intelligence implies the ability to overcome such limitations. As such, if Hart's thesis is correct, then searches for large alien civilizations in other galaxies may be fruitful; if it is incorrect, then searches for civilizations within the Milky Way are more likely to succeed than Hart argued. We review some past Dysonian SETI efforts and discuss the promise of new mid-infrared surveys, such as that of WISE.

  14. PHILOSOPHICAL-ANTROPOLOGICAL ASPECTS OF A PROBLEM OF SEARCH EXTRA-TERRESTRIAL OF CIVILIZATIONS

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. T. Tshedrin

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. The fears express, that «METI-projects», which testify to existence of mankind as technicalgeneous of a civilization for highly advanced ETC of a Galaxy, can have the extremely negative consequences, and «SETI-projects» and received radiosignals can become the information weapon aggressive ETC. The analysis of these fears as complete sociocultural of a phenomenon, them philosophical-anthropological of measurement, sociocultural of the basis, the forms of their display are the purpose of clause. Methodology. Author used the social-communicative approach, methods of system and cluster analyses. Scientific innovation. Are opened philosophical-anthropological of measurement of a problem of life extra-terrestrial intelligents (ETI, the factors of statement of a problem of contacts with ETC in the modern form connected with spacing of scientific and technical activity of mankind, influence of processes globalization on philosophical-anthropological aspects of a problem ETC, connected with changes in the fundamental relation «the Man - World» are investigated. These processes conduct to growth of fears concerning unpredictable intervention in terrestrial sociocultural system of alien reason. The persuasive fears, connected with possible consequences of contacts with ETC, take the form of hypotheses rather extra-terrestrial of artificial intelligence (ETAI as potential subject of space contact. The positive and negative scripts of dialogue with ETAI, problem «of high quality of a signal» and «SETI-hacker», connected with ETAI as by the subject of space dialogue are considered. Conclusions. The further development of a problem of search ETC and establishment of contacts with it will be connected, on the one hand to success in overcoming civilization of impasse, in which there was a mankind on a boundary ХХ – ХХI of centuries, and with another - deepening of revolution in cosmology, progress of observant astronomy, philosophical

  15. Proposed biomimetic molecular sensor array for astrobiology applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cullen, D. C.; Grant, W. D.; Piletsky, S.; Sims, M. R.

    2001-08-01

    A key objective of future astrobiology lander missions, e.g. to Mars and Europa, is the detection of biomarkers - molecules whose presence indicates the existence of either current or extinct life. To address limitations of current analytical methods for biomarker detection, we describe the methodology of a new project for demonstration of a robust molecular-recognition sensor array for astrobiology biomarkers. The sensor array will be realised by assembling components that have been demonstrated individually in previous or current research projects. The major components are (1) robust artificial molecular receptors comprised of molecular imprinted polymer (MIP) recognition systems and (2) a sensor array comprised of both optical and electrochemical sensor elements. These components will be integrated together using ink-jet printing technology coupled with in situ photo-polymerisation of MIPs. For demonstration, four model biomarkers are chosen as targets and represent various classes of potential biomarkers. Objectives of the proposed work include (1) demonstration of practical proof-of-concept, (2) identify areas for further development and (3) provide performance and design data for follow-up projects leading to astrobiology missions.

  16. Secondary School Students' Knowledge and Opinions on Astrobiology Topics and Related Social Issues

    OpenAIRE

    Oreiro Rey, Raquel; Solbes Matarredona, Jordi

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin of life on Earth and the distribution of life in the Universe. Its multidisciplinary approach, social and philosophical implications, and appeal within the discipline and beyond make astrobiology a uniquely qualified subject for general science education. In this study, student knowledge and opinions on astrobiology topics were investigated. Eighty-nine students in their last year of compulsory education (age 15) completed a written questionnaire that c...

  17. Venusians: the Planet Venus in the 18th-Century Extraterrestrial Life Debate

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duner, David

    2013-05-01

    In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries it became possible to believe in the existence of life on other planets on scientific grounds. Once the Earth was no longer the center of the universe according to Copernicus, once Galileo had aimed his telescope at the Moon and found it a rough globe with mountains and seas, the assumption of life on other planets became much less far-fetched. In general there were no actual differences between Earth and Venus, since both planets orbited the Sun, were of similar size, and possessed mountains and an atmosphere. If there is life on Earth, one may ponder why it could not also exist on Venus. In the extraterrestrial life debate of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the Moon, our closest celestial body, was the prime candidate for life on other worlds, although a number of scientists and scholars also speculated about life on Venus and on other planets, both within our solar system and beyond its frontiers. This chapter discusses the arguments for life on Venus and those scientific findings that were used to support them, which were based in particular on assumptions and claims that both mountains and an atmosphere had been found on Venus. The transits of Venus in the 1760s became especially important for the notion that life could thrive on Venus. Here, I detect two significant cognitive processes that were at work in the search for life on Venus, i.e., analogical reasoning and epistemic perception, while analogies and interpretations of sensory impressions based on prior knowledge played an important role in astrobiological theories.

  18. The limits of extremophilic life expanded under extraterrestrial environment-simulated experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lage, C.; Dalmaso, G.; Teixeira, L.; Bendia, A.; Rosado, A.

    2012-09-01

    Astrobiology is a brand new area of science that seeks to understand the origin and dynamics of life in the universe. Several hypotheses to explain life in the cosmic context have been developed throughout human history, but only now technology has allowed many of them to be tested. Laboratory experiments have been able to show how chemical elements essential to life, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and hydrogen combine in biologically important compounds. Interestingly, these compounds are found universally. As these compounds were combined to the point of originating cells and complex organisms is still a challenge to be unveiled by science. However, our 4.5 billion years-old solar system was born within a 10-billion years-old universe. Thus, simple cells like microorganisms may have had time to form in planets older than ours or other suitable molecular places in the universe. One hypothesis to explain the origin of life on Earth is called panspermia, which predicts that microbial life could have been formed in the universe billions of years ago, traveling between planets, and inseminating units of life that could have become more complex in habitable planets like ours. A project designed to test the viability of extremophile microorganisms exposed to simulated extraterrestrial environments is ongoing at the Carlos Chagas Filho Institute of Biophysics to test whether microbial life could withstand those inhospitable environments. Ultra-resistant (known or novel ones) microorganisms collected from terrestrial extreme environments, extremophiles, have been exposed to intense radiation sources simulating solar radiation (at synchrotron accelerators), capable of emitting in a few hours radiation equivalent of million years accumulated doses. The results obtained in these experiments reveal the interesting possibility of the existence of microbial life beyond Earth.

  19. Life, the universe, and everything: an education outreach proposal to build a traveling astrobiology exhibit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barge, Laura M; Pulschen, André A; Emygdio, Ana Paula Mendes; Congreve, Curtis; Kishimoto, Darío E; Bendia, Amanda G; de Morais M Teles, Antonio; DeMarines, Julia; Stoupin, Daniel

    2013-03-01

    Astrobiology is a transdisciplinary field with extraordinary potential for the scientific community. As such, it is important to educate the community at large about the growing importance of this field to increase awareness and scientific content learning and expose potential future scientists. To this end, we propose the creation of a traveling museum exhibit that focuses exclusively on astrobiology and utilizes modern museum exhibit technology and design. This exhibit (the "Astrobiology Road Show"), organized and evaluated by an international group of astrobiology students and postdocs, is planned to tour throughout the Americas.

  20. Measurement of cosmogenic nuclides in extraterrestrial material

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nishiizumi, K.; Arnold, J.R.

    1981-01-01

    Meteorites are rocks and pieces of iron-nickel alloy which fall to earth from time to time. They were formed about 4.6 billion years ago when our solar system was started. Thus it has been said that meteorites are the Rosetta stones of our solar system. We use the long-lived radioactive nuclides produced by cosmic ray bombardment, to study the history of the meteorites and also the history of the cosmic rays. When we have these historical facts in our hads, we hope we will be able to understand better how the solar system works, and how it got started. We can also learn more about the nature and origin of the cosmic rays. The accelerator mass spectrometry method helps not only reduce sample size, in most cases by two or three orders of magnitude, but opens another set of cosmogenic nuclides which have not been measured yet. Already 10 Be (t/sub 1/2 = 1.6 x 10 6 y), 36 Cl (3.0 x 10 5 y) and 129 I (1.6 x 10 7 y) in meteorites have been measured by accelerator mass spectrometry [3, 4, 7, 10]. Possible new candidates for measurement in extraterrestrial materials are 26 Al (7.2 x 10 5 y), 41 Ca (1.3 x 10 5 y), 60 Fe (approx. 10 5 y) and 59 Ni (7.6 x 10 4 y). We hope also to measure 146 Sm (1.0 x 10 8 y) and 92 Nb

  1. Searching for Extraterrestrial Amino Acids in a Contaminated Meteorite: Amino Acid Analyses of the Canakkale L6 Chondrite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, A. S.; Elsila, J. E.; Glavin, D. P.; Dworkin, J. P.; Ornek, C. Y.; Esenoglu, H. H.; Unsalan, O.; Ozturk, B.

    2016-01-01

    Amino acids can serve as important markers of cosmochemistry, as their abundances and isomeric and isotopic compositions have been found to vary predictably with changes in parent body chemistry and alteration processes. Amino acids are also of astrobiological interest because they are essential for life on Earth. Analyses of a range of meteorites, including all groups of carbonaceous chondrites, along with H, R, and LL chondrites, ureilites, and a martian shergottite, have revealed that amino acids of plausible extraterrestrial origin can be formed in and persist after a wide range of parent body conditions. However, amino acid analyses of L6 chondrites to date have not provided evidence for indigenous amino acids. In the present study, we performed amino acid analysis on larger samples of a different L6 chondite, Canakkale, to determine whether or not trace levels of indigenous amino acids could be found. The Canakkale meteor was an observed fall in late July, 1964, near Canakkale, Turkey. The meteorite samples (1.36 and 1.09 g) analyzed in this study were allocated by C. Y. Ornek, along with a soil sample (1.5 g) collected near the Canakkale recovery site.

  2. Astrobiology and the Chemistry of the Early Solar System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Jamie Elsila

    2011-01-01

    The field of astrochemistry investigates the origin of the chemicals necessary for the formation of life. Astrochemists use remote observations, laboratory simulations, and analysis of extraterrestrial samples to understand the inventory of pre biotic chemicals present on the early Earth. Among the problems investigated by astrochemists is the origin of homo chirality in terrestrial life. Analysis of meteorites shows that they may have delivered an excess of L-amino acids to the Earth's surface, perhaps leading to homochirality.

  3. Emphasizing Astrobiology: Highlighting Communication in an Elective Course for Science Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Offerdahl, Erika G.; Prather, Edward E.; Slater, Timothy F.

    2004-01-01

    The project described here involved the design, implementation, and evaluation of an upper level, undergraduate elective course for science majors. Specific course goals were to help students gain an appreciation of the interdisciplinary nature of astrobiology, understand key ideas in astrobiology, and develop the skills necessary to communicate…

  4. Brazilian research on extremophiles in the context of astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duarte, Rubens T. D.; Nóbrega, Felipe; Nakayama, Cristina R.; Pellizari, Vivian H.

    2012-10-01

    Extremophiles are organisms adapted to grow at extreme ranges of environmental variables, such as high or low temperatures, acid or alkaline medium, high salt concentration, high pressures and so forth. Most extremophiles are micro-organisms that belong to the Archaea and Bacteria domains, and are widely spread across the world, which include the polar regions, volcanoes, deserts, deep oceanic sediments, hydrothermal vents, hypersaline lakes, acid and alkaline water bodies, and other extreme environments considered hostile to human life. Despite the tropical climate, Brazil has a wide range of ecosystems which include some permanent or seasonally extreme environments. For example, the Cerrado is a biome with very low soil pH with high Al+3 concentration, the mangroves in the Brazilian coast are anaerobic and saline, Pantanal has thousands of alkaline-saline lakes, the Caatinga arid and hot soils and the deep sea sediments in the Brazilian ocean shelf. These environments harbour extremophilic organisms that, coupled with the high natural biodiversity in Brazil, could be explored for different purposes. However, only a few projects in Brazil intended to study the extremophiles. In the frame of astrobiology, for example, these organisms could provide important models for defining the limits of life and hypothesize about life outside Earth. Brazilian microbiologists have, however, studied the extremophilic micro-organisms inhabiting non-Brazilian environments, such as the Antarctic continent. The experience and previous results obtained from the Brazilian Antarctic Program (PROANTAR) provide important results that are directly related to astrobiology. This article is a brief synopsis of the Brazilian experience in researching extremophiles, indicating the most important results related to astrobiology and some future perspectives in this area.

  5. Astrobiology at Arizona State University: An Overview of Accomplishments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmer, Jack

    2005-01-01

    During our five years as an NAI charter member, Arizona State University sponsored a broadly-based program of research and training in Astrobiology to address the origin, evolution and distribution of life in the Solar System. With such a large, diverse and active team, it is not possible in a reasonable space, to cover all details of progress made over the entire five years. The following paragraphs provide an overview update of the specific research areas pursued by the Arizona State University (ASU) Astrobiology team at the end of Year 5 and at the end of the 4 month and subsequent no cost month extensions. for a more detailed review, the reader is referred to the individual annual reports (and Executive Summaries) submitted to the NAI at the end of each of our five years of membership. Appended in electronic form is our complete publication record for all five years, plus a tabulation of undergraduates, graduate students and post-docs supported by our program during this time. The overarching theme of ASU s Astrobiology program was "Exploring the Living Universe: Studies of the Origin, Evolution and Distribution of Life in the Solar System". The NAi-funded research effort was organized under three basic sub- themes: 1. Origins of the Basic Building Blocks of Life. 2. Early Biosphere Evolution. and 3. Exploring for Life in the Solar System. These sub-theme areas were in turn, subdivided into Co-lead research modules. In the paragraphs that follow, accomplishments for individual research modules are briefly outlined, and the key participants presented in tabular form. As noted, publications for each module are appended in hard copy and digital formats, under the name(s) of lead co-Is.

  6. 3rd Annual NASA Ames Space Science and Astrobiology Jamboree

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dotson, Jessie

    2015-01-01

    The Space Science and Astrobiology Division at NASA Ames Research Center consists of over 50 civil servants and more than 110 contractors, co-­-ops, post-­-docs and associates. Researchers in the division are pursuing investigations in a variety of fields including exoplanets, planetary science, astrobiology and astrophysics. In addition, division personnel support a wide variety of NASA missions including (but not limited to) Kepler, SOFIA, LADEE, JWST, and New Horizons. With such a wide variety of interesting research going on, distributed among three branches in at least 5 different buildings, it can be difficult to stay abreast of what one's fellow researchers are doing. Our goal in organizing this symposium is to facilitate communication and collaboration among the scientists within the division, and to give center management and other ARC researchers and engineers an opportunity to see what scientific research and science mission work is being done in the division. We are also continuing the tradition within the Space Science and Astrobiology Division to honor one senior and one early career scientist with the Pollack Lecture and the Early Career Lecture, respectively. With the Pollack Lecture, our intent is to select a senior researcher who has made significant contributions to any area of research within the space sciences, and we are pleased to honor Dr. William Borucki this year. With the Early Career Lecture, our intent is to select a young researcher within the division who, by their published scientific papers, shows great promise for the future in any area of space science research, and we are pleased to honor Dr. Melinda Kahre this year

  7. A possible first use of the word astrobiology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Briot, Danielle

    2012-12-01

    The word astrobiology was possibly first used in 1935, in an article published in a French popular science magazine. The author was Ary J. Sternfeld (1905-1980), a pioneer of astronautics who wrote numerous scientific books and papers. The article is remarkable because his portrayal of the concept is very similar to the way it is used today. Here I review the 1935 article and provide a brief history of Sternfeld's life, which was heavily influenced by the tragic events of 20(th) century history.

  8. The Astrobiology in Secondary Classrooms (ASC) curriculum: focusing upon diverse students and teachers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arino de la Rubia, Leigh S

    2012-09-01

    The Minority Institution Astrobiology Collaborative (MIAC) began working with the NASA Goddard Center for Astrobiology in 2003 to develop curriculum materials for high school chemistry and Earth science classes based on astrobiology concepts. The Astrobiology in Secondary Classrooms (ASC) modules emphasize interdisciplinary connections in astronomy, biology, chemistry, geoscience, physics, mathematics, and ethics through hands-on activities that address national educational standards. Field-testing of the Astrobiology in Secondary Classrooms materials occurred over three years in eight U.S. locations, each with populations that are underrepresented in the career fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Analysis of the educational research upon the high school students participating in the ASC project showed statistically significant increases in students' perceived knowledge and science reasoning. The curriculum is in its final stages, preparing for review to become a NASA educational product.

  9. Intelligible Artificial Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Weld, Daniel S.; Bansal, Gagan

    2018-01-01

    Since Artificial Intelligence (AI) software uses techniques like deep lookahead search and stochastic optimization of huge neural networks to fit mammoth datasets, it often results in complex behavior that is difficult for people to understand. Yet organizations are deploying AI algorithms in many mission-critical settings. In order to trust their behavior, we must make it intelligible --- either by using inherently interpretable models or by developing methods for explaining otherwise overwh...

  10. Space Biology Meets Astrobiology: Critical Synergies and Concerns

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope J.; Kirven-Brooks, Melissa

    2016-01-01

    The broad fields of space biology and astrobiology share much in common in terms of science questions, approaches, and goals. However, historical circumstances and funding agency practices have frequently resulted in a wide separation between the two related areas. Is this a good thing? We believe that it is not, and that much is to be gained in each field from sharing ideas, resources, and perhaps projects between investigators traditionally working in one discipline or the other. Some of the strengths that the Space Biology community offers include sophistication and experience in flying experiments on space missions. In turn, Astrobiology has focused heavily on ground-based and field research. Challenging physical and chemical conditions experienced in space and on other planets partially overlap, and much can be gleaned from the body of work of each community along these topical lines. A combination of these areas of expertise and experience could result in major advances to all involved. When possible, avoiding having to reinvent methods or approaches already used by a sister community can result in greater efficiencies of resource use. We will discuss some case studies where we believe there are significant overlaps including adaptation to a variety of environmental stresses, extremophiles as potential flight organisms, microfluidics as applied to planetary environment simulations, and others.

  11. Aliens are us. An innovative course in astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Carlos F.; Barufaldi, James P.

    2009-01-01

    We live in a scientific world; paradoxically, the scientific literacy of the population is minimal at best. Science is an ongoing process, a human endeavour; paradoxically, students tend to believe that science is a finished enterprise. Many non-science major students are not motivated in science classes; paradoxically, there is a public fascination with the possibility of life in the Universe, which is nowadays a scientific endeavour. An astrobiology course was developed at the Center for Science and Mathematics Education at The University of Texas at Austin to address these paradoxes and includes the following objectives: (a) to improve scientific literacy; (b) to demonstrate that science is a work in progress; (c) to enhance the inherent interdisciplinary aspect of science; (d) to demonstrate that science is embedded in society and relates with several social sciences; (e) to improve the content knowledge about the nature of science; (f) to illustrate how engaging learning science can be; and (g) to draw from the intrinsic motivation already incorporated in the general population. The course has been offered, taught and revised for the past three years. The informal course student feedback has been very positive and encouraging. The purpose of this paper is to provide a general overview of the course. In addition, the course's background, content, themes and mode of delivery are outlined, discussed and analysed in this paper. This paper subscribes to an educational philosophy that focuses on the multidisciplinary nature of science and includes critical thinking-based teaching strategies using the dynamic discipline of astrobiology.

  12. The AstroBiology Explorer (ABE) Mission Concept

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott A.

    2004-01-01

    Infrared spectroscopy in the 2.5-16 micron range is a principle means by which organic compounds can be detected and identified in space via their vibrational transitions. Ground-based, airborne, and spaceborne IR spectral studies have already demonstrated that a significant fraction of the carbon in the interstellar medium (ISM) resides in the form of complex organic molecular species. Unfortunately, neither the distribution of these materials nor their genetic and evolutionary relationships with each other or their environments are well understood. The Astrobiology Explorer (ABE) is a MIDEX mission concept currently under study by a team of partners: NASA's Ames Research Center, Ball Aerospace and Technologies Corporation, and the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. ABE will conduct IR spectroscopic observations to address outstanding important problems in astrobiology, astrochemistry, and astrophysics. The core observational program would make fundamental scientific progress in understanding (1) The evolution of ices and organic matter in dense molecular clouds and young forming stellar systems, (2) The chemical evolution of organic molecules in the ISM as they transition from AGB outflows to planetary nebulae to the general diffuse ISM to HII regions and dense clouds, (3) The distribution of organics in the diffuse ISM, (4) The nature of organics in the Solar System (in comets, asteroids, satellites), and (5) The nature and distribution of organics in local galaxies. The technical considerations of achieving these science objectives in a MIDEX-sized mission will be presented.

  13. Secondary School Students' Knowledge and Opinions on Astrobiology Topics and Related Social Issues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oreiro, Raquel; Solbes, Jordi

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin of life on Earth and the distribution of life in the Universe. Its multidisciplinary approach, social and philosophical implications, and appeal within the discipline and beyond make astrobiology a uniquely qualified subject for general science education. In this study, student knowledge and opinions on astrobiology topics were investigated. Eighty-nine students in their last year of compulsory education (age 15) completed a written questionnaire that consisted of 10 open questions on the topic of astrobiology. The results indicate that students have significant difficulties understanding the origin of life on Earth, despite exposure to the topic by way of the assigned textbooks. The students were often unaware of past or present achievements in the search for life within the Solar System and beyond, topics that are far less commonly seen in textbooks. Student questionnaire answers also indicated that students had problems in reasoning and critical thinking when asked for their opinions on issues such as the potential for life beyond Earth, the question of whether UFOs exist, or what our place is in the Universe. Astrobiology might help initiate student awareness as to current thinking on these matters and should be considered for general science education. Key Words: Astrobiology-Students' views-Science education. Astrobiology 17, 91-99.

  14. Artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Hunt, Earl B

    1975-01-01

    Artificial Intelligence provides information pertinent to the fundamental aspects of artificial intelligence. This book presents the basic mathematical and computational approaches to problems in the artificial intelligence field.Organized into four parts encompassing 16 chapters, this book begins with an overview of the various fields of artificial intelligence. This text then attempts to connect artificial intelligence problems to some of the notions of computability and abstract computing devices. Other chapters consider the general notion of computability, with focus on the interaction bet

  15. Intelligent mechatronics; Intelligent mechatronics

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hashimoto, H. [The University of Tokyo, Tokyo (Japan). Institute of Industrial Science

    1995-10-01

    Intelligent mechatronics (IM) was explained as follows: a study of IM essentially targets realization of a robot namely, but in the present stage the target is a creation of new values by intellectualization of machine, that is, a combination of the information infrastructure and the intelligent machine system. IM is also thought to be constituted of computers positively used and micromechatronics. The paper next introduces examples of IM study, mainly those the author is concerned with as shown below: sensor gloves, robot hands, robot eyes, tele operation, three-dimensional object recognition, mobile robot, magnetic bearing, construction of remote controlled unmanned dam, robot network, sensitivity communication using neuro baby, etc. 27 figs.

  16. Vanguard: A New Science Mission For Experimental Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ellery, A.; Wynn-Williams, D.; Edwards, H.; Dickensheets, D.; Welch, C.; Curley, A.

    As an alternative to technically and financially problemat ic sample return missions, a rover-mounted laser Raman spectrometer sensitive to biomolecules and their mineral substrata is a promising alternative in the search for evidence of former life on Mars. We presented a new remote in situ analysis package being designed for experimental astrobiology on terrestrial-type planetary surfaces. The science is based on the hypothesis that if life arose on Mars, the selective pressure of solar radiation would have led to the evolution of pigmented systems to harness the energy of sunlight and to protect cells from concurrent UV stress. Microbial communities would have therefore become stratified by the light gradient, and our remote system would penetrate the near-subsurface profile in a vertical transect of horizontal strata in ancient sediments (such as palaeolake beds). The system will include an extensive array of robotic support to translocate and deploy a Raman spectrometer detectors beneath the surface of Mars ­ it will comprise of a base station lander to support communications, a robotic micro-rover to permit well- separated triplicate profiles made by three ground-penetrating moles mounted in a vertical configuration. Each mole will deploy a tether carrying fibre optic cables coupling the Raman spectrometer onboard the rover and the side-scanning sensor head on the mole. The complete system has been named Vanguard, and it represents a close collaboration between a space robotics engineer (Ellery), an astrobiologist (Wynn-Williams), a molecular spectroscopist (Edwards), an opto-electronic technologist (Dickensheets), a spacecraft engineer (Welch) and a robotic vision specialist (Curley). The autonomy requirement for the Vanguard instrument requires that significant scientific competence is imparted to the instrument through an expert system to ensure that quick-look analysis is performed onboard in real-time as the mole penetrates beneath the surface. Onboard

  17. AstroBiology Explorer Mission Concepts (ABE/ASPIRE)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott; Ennico, Kimberly A.

    2006-01-01

    The AstroBiology Explorer (ABE) and the Astrobiology Space InfraRed Explorer (ASPIRE) Mission Concepts are two missions designed to address the questions (1) Where do we come from? and (2) Are we alone? as outlined in NASA s Origins Program using infrared spectroscopy to explore the identity, abundance, and distribution of molecules of astrobiological importance throughout the Universe. The ABE mission s observational program is focused on six tasks to: (1) Investigate the evolution of ice and organics in dense clouds and star formation regions, and the young stellar/planetary systems that form in them; (2) Measure the evolution of complex organic molecules in stellar outflows; (3) Study the organic composition of a wide variety of solar system objects including asteroids, comets, and the planets and their satellites; (4) Identify organic compounds in the diffuse interstellar medium and determine their distribution , abundance, and change with environment; (5) Detect and identify organic compounds in other galaxies and determine their dependence on galactic type; and (6) Measure deuterium enrichments in interstellar organics and use them as tracers of chemical processes. The ASPIRE mission s observational program expands upon ABE's core mission and adds tasks that (7) Address the role of silicates in interstellar organic chemistry; and (8) Use different resolution spectra to assess the relative roles and abundances of gas- and solid-state materials. ABE (ASPIRE) achieves these goals using a highly sensitive, cryogenically-cooled telescope in an Earth drift-away heliocentric orbit, armed with a suite of infrared spectrometers that cover the 2.5-20(40) micron spectral region at moderate spectral resolution (R>2000). ASPIRE's spectrometer complement also includes a high-resolution (R>25,000) module over the 4-8 micron spectral region. Both missions target lists are chosen to observe a statistically significant sample of a large number of objects of varied types in

  18. Hacia una filosofía de la astrobiología

    OpenAIRE

    Roberto Aretxaga-Burgos

    2016-01-01

    Tomando como fundamento la historia y literatura astrobiológicas, exploramos la posibilidad y necesidad de una Filosofía de la Astrobiología, proponemos una definición de Filosofía de la Astrobiología y su consideración como subdisciplina de la Filosofía de la Ciencia, distinta de la Filosofía de la Biología. Incluimos una bibliografía para una Filosofía de la Astrobiología.

  19. Identification and Characterization of Extremophile Microorganisms with Significance to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bej, Asim K.

    2003-01-01

    It is now well recognized that microorganisms thrive in extreme ecological conditions such as geothermal vents, polar region, acid and alkaline lakes, and the cold pressurized depth of the ocean floor of this planet. Morphological, physiological, biochemical and genetic adaptations to extreme environments by these extremophile microorganisms have generated immense interest amongst astrobiologists who increasingly believe in the existence of extraterrestrial life. The evidence collected by NASA's space probe Galileo suggested the presence of liquid water and volcanic activity on Mars and Jupiter's satellite Europa. Volcanic activity provides some of the heat necessary to keep the water on Europa from freezing that could provide important dissolved chemicals needed by living organisms. The possibility of the existence of hypersaline alkaline lakes and evaporites confined within closed volcanic basins and impact craters on Mars, and a layer of liquid water under the ice on Europa provide sufficient 'raison d'etre' to study microorganisms in similar extreme environments on Earth, which could provide us with a model that would help establish the existence of extraterrestrial life on other planetary bodies. The objectives of the summer research project were as follows: (1) application of molecular approaches to help establish new species of extremophile microorganisms isolated from a hypersaline alkaline lake; and (2) identification of a major cold-shock gene (cspA) homolog from a psychrotolerant microorganism, PmagG1.

  20. The extreme environments and their microbes as models for extraterrestrial life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seckbach, J.; Oren, A.; Chela-Flores, J.

    2008-09-01

    Bacteria such as the aerobic Salinibacter ruber and the anaerobic members of the Halanaerobiales) use KCl to provide the necessary osmotic balance. Some of these extreme halophiles possess light-driven proton pumps (bacteriorhodopsin, xanthorhodopsin) and chloride pumps (halorhodopsin) that enable them to use photons to drive energetically expensive reactions (Oren, 2002; Oren, 2008). Extremophiles can serve as models for extraterrestrial microbes that may live in celestial bodies. The most promising among these to contain habitable areas are Mars (where the Phoenix Lander recently discovered water) and the Jovian satellite Europa; also Titan (the moon of Saturn) has some features that resemble those that may have existed on Earth during its earliest stages. From the characteristics of extremophilic microorganisms found on the present-day Earth, we can derive some insights on the question of habitability of other planets, and learn about possible bioindicators that may be suitable when searching for extraterrestrial life (Seckbach and Chela-Flores, 2007). Compounds such as methane on Mars or traces of sulfur on Jupiter's moon Europa may have been of biogenic origin and may possibly have been endogenic (Chela-Flores, 2006; Chela-Flores and Kumar, 2008). Biogeochemical tests have been proposed for missions that are in the planning stages, such as LAPLACE (Blanc et al., 2008), a mission to Europa and the Jupiter system by ESA's Cosmic Vision Programme. The finding of elemental sulfur on Europa may be of special interest. One possibility is that such traces of sulfur might have originated from the metabolism of extremophilic sulfurreducing microorganisms. Radiation may damage traces of biogenic sulfur deposited on the surface. The stopping depth for ionic radiation in the Jovian magnetosphere is expected not to exceed 1 cm (Greenberg, 2005; Dudeja et al., 2008). Thus, organic molecules would not be destroyed below such a thin layer. Based on to the preliminary results of the

  1. Artificial Intelligence and Moral intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Laura Pana

    2008-01-01

    We discuss the thesis that the implementation of a moral code in the behaviour of artificial intelligent systems needs a specific form of human and artificial intelligence, not just an abstract intelligence. We present intelligence as a system with an internal structure and the structural levels of the moral system, as well as certain characteristics of artificial intelligent agents which can/must be treated as 1- individual entities (with a complex, specialized, autonomous or selfdetermined,...

  2. planetaria como de la astrobiología

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miguel Alcíbar-Cuello

    2007-01-01

    Full Text Available En este artículo se exponen algunos de los recursos didácticos que han sido concebidos para facilitar el aprendizaje de distintos aspectos de la Exploración Planetaria y, en concreto, de la Astrobiología como área transdisciplinar de conocimientos. El interés más evidente que presentan estos materiales didácticos, además de tener una vocación interactiva, es que combinan contenidos científicotecnológicos con cuestiones de índole metodológica, lo que proporciona al estudiante una visión más reflexiva del modus operandi de la investigación científica.

  3. A concept for NASA's Mars 2016 astrobiology field laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beegle, Luther W; Wilson, Michael G; Abilleira, Fernando; Jordan, James F; Wilson, Gregory R

    2007-08-01

    The Mars Program Plan includes an integrated and coordinated set of future candidate missions and investigations that meet fundamental science objectives of NASA and the Mars Exploration Program (MEP). At the time this paper was written, these possible future missions are planned in a manner consistent with a projected budget profile for the Mars Program in the next decade (2007-2016). As with all future missions, the funding profile depends on a number of factors that include the exact cost of each mission as well as potential changes to the overall NASA budget. In the current version of the Mars Program Plan, the Astrobiology Field Laboratory (AFL) exists as a candidate project to determine whether there were (or are) habitable zones and life, and how the development of these zones may be related to the overall evolution of the planet. The AFL concept is a surface exploration mission equipped with a major in situ laboratory capable of making significant advancements toward the Mars Program's life-related scientific goals and the overarching Vision for Space Exploration. We have developed several concepts for the AFL that fit within known budget and engineering constraints projected for the 2016 and 2018 Mars mission launch opportunities. The AFL mission architecture proposed here assumes maximum heritage from the 2009 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL). Candidate payload elements for this concept were identified from a set of recommendations put forth by the Astrobiology Field Laboratory Science Steering Group (AFL SSG) in 2004, for the express purpose of identifying overall rover mass and power requirements for such a mission. The conceptual payload includes a Precision Sample Handling and Processing System that would replace and augment the functionality and capabilities provided by the Sample Acquisition Sample Processing and Handling system that is currently part of the 2009 MSL platform.

  4. Astrobiology, Mars Exploration and Lassen Volcanic National Park

    Science.gov (United States)

    Des Marais, David J.

    2015-01-01

    The search for evidence of life beyond Earth illustrates how the charters of NASA and the National Park Service share common ground. The mission of NPS is to preserve unimpaired the natural and cultural resources of the National Park System for the enjoyment, education and inspiration of this and future generations. NASA's Astrobiology program seeks to understand the origins, evolution and distribution of life in the universe, and it abides by the principles of planetary stewardship, public outreach, and education. We cannot subject planetary exploration destinations to Earthly biological contamination both for ethical reasons and to preserve their scientific value for astrobiology. We respond to the public's interest in the mysteries of life and the cosmos by honoring their desire to participate in the process of discovery. We involve youth in order to motivate career choices in science and technology and to perpetuate space exploration. The search for evidence of past life on Mars illustrates how the missions of NASA and NPS can become synergistic. Volcanic activity occurs on all rocky planets in our Solar System and beyond, and it frequently interacts with water to create hydrothermal systems. On Earth these systems are oases for microbial life. The Mars Exploration Rover Spirit has found evidence of extinct hydrothermal system in Gusev crater, Mars. Lassen Volcanic National Park provides a pristine laboratory for investigating how microorganisms can both thrive and leave evidence of their former presence in hydrothermal systems. NASA scientists, NPS interpretation personnel and teachers can collaborate on field-oriented programs that enhance Mars mission planning, engage students and the public in science and technology, and emphasize the ethics of responsible exploration.

  5. The search for extraterrestrial life: Recent developments; Proceedings of the Symposium, Boston University, MA, June 18-21, 1984

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papagiannis, M. D.

    The conference presents papers on the history of the search for extraterrestrial life, the scientific rationale and methods used in the search for other planetary systems, the detection of distant planets with the Space Telescope, planetary searches using optical astrometric interferometers, and infrared spectral identification of complex organic molecules in interstellar grains. Also considered are universal protein ancestors from hydrogen cyanide and water, astronomical sources of polarized light and their role in determining molecular chirality on earth, the universal diagrams and life in the universe, the precambrian evolution of terrestrial life and a thermodynamic approach to the occurrance and appearance of galactic life forms. Papers are also presented on the Ohio Seti program, lunar reflections of terrestrial radio leakage, the multichannel spectrum analyzer, software implementation of detection algorithms for the MCSA, the Serendip II design, galactic colonization and competition in a young galactic disk, implications of ancient and future migrations, extraterrestrial intelligence, the inevitability and the possible structures of supercivilizations, planetary, interplanetary and interstellar organic matter, and universal aspects of biological evolution.

  6. Discrimination of Pigments of Microalgae, Bacteria and Yeasts Using Lightweight Handheld Raman Spectrometers: Prospects for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jehlicka, J.; Osterrothova, K.; Nedbalova, L.; Gunde-Cimerman, N.; Oren, A.

    2014-06-01

    Handheld Raman instrumentation with 532 nm lasers can be used to distinguish carotenoids of autotrophic microalgae, purple sulfur bacteria, halophilic Archaea and pigmented yeasts. Pigments are proposed as biomarkers for astrobiology of Mars.

  7. Multidisciplinary integrated field campaign to an acidic Martian Earth analogue with astrobiological interest: Rio Tinto

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Gómez, F.; Walter, N.; Amils, R.; Rull, F.; Klingelhöfer, G.; Kvíderová, Jana; Sarrazin, P.; Foing, B.; Behar, A.; Fleischer, I.; Parro, V.; Garcia-Villadangos, M.; Blake, D.; Martin-Ramos, J. D.; Direito, S.; Mahapatra, P.; Stam, C.; Venkateswaran, K.; Voytek, M.

    2011-01-01

    Roč. 10, č. 3 (2011), 291-305 ISSN 1473-5504 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z60050516 Keywords : astrobiology * extreme environments * Earth analogue Subject RIV: EF - Botanics Impact factor: 1.723, year: 2011

  8. Survey on astrobiology research and teaching activities within the United kingdom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dartnell, Lewis R; Burchell, Mark J

    2009-10-01

    While astrobiology is apparently growing steadily around the world, in terms of the number of researchers drawn into this interdisciplinary area and teaching courses provided for new students, there have been very few studies conducted to chart this expansion quantitatively. To address this deficiency, the Astrobiology Society of Britain (ASB) conducted a questionnaire survey of universities and research institutions nationwide to ascertain the current extent of astrobiology research and teaching in the UK. The aim was to provide compiled statistics and an information resource for those who seek research groups or courses of study, and to facilitate new interdisciplinary collaborations. The report here summarizes details gathered on 33 UK research groups, which involved 286 researchers (from undergraduate project students to faculty members). The survey indicates that around 880 students are taking university-level courses, with significant elements of astrobiology included, every year in the UK. Data are also presented on the composition of astrobiology students by their original academic field, which show a significant dominance of physics and astronomy students. This survey represents the first published systematic national assessment of astrobiological academic activity and indicates that this emerging field has already achieved a strong degree of penetration into the UK academic community.

  9. Sample Handling and Processing on Mars for Future Astrobiology Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beegle, Luther; Kirby, James P.; Fisher, Anita; Hodyss, Robert; Saltzman, Alison; Soto, Juancarlos; Lasnik, James; Roark, Shane

    2011-01-01

    In most analytical investigations, there is a need to process complex field samples for the unique detection of analytes especially when detecting low concentration organic molecules that may identify extraterrestrial life. Sample processing for analytical instruments is time, resource and manpower consuming in terrestrial laboratories. Every step in this laborious process will have to be automated for in situ life detection. We have developed, and are currently demonstrating, an automated wet chemistry preparation system that can operate autonomously on Earth and is designed to operate under Martian ambient conditions. This will enable a complete wet chemistry laboratory as part of future missions. Our system, namely the Automated Sample Processing System (ASPS) receives fines, extracts organics through solvent extraction, processes the extract by removing non-organic soluble species and delivers sample to multiple instruments for analysis (including for non-organic soluble species).

  10. Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Information Technology Quarterly, 1985

    1985-01-01

    This issue of "Information Technology Quarterly" is devoted to the theme of "Artificial Intelligence." It contains two major articles: (1) Artificial Intelligence and Law" (D. Peter O'Neill and George D. Wood); (2) "Artificial Intelligence: A Long and Winding Road" (John J. Simon, Jr.). In addition, it contains two sidebars: (1) "Calculating and…

  11. Competitive Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergeron, Pierrette; Hiller, Christine A.

    2002-01-01

    Reviews the evolution of competitive intelligence since 1994, including terminology and definitions and analytical techniques. Addresses the issue of ethics; explores how information technology supports the competitive intelligence process; and discusses education and training opportunities for competitive intelligence, including core competencies…

  12. Astrobiological Aspects of Radiation Chemistry in Europa's Icy Regolith

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carlson, R. W.; Hand, K. P.

    2006-05-01

    Jupiter's moon Europa, with its likely subsurface ocean and young, active surface, is a promising habitat for life. Europa orbits in the heart of Jupiter's powerful magnetosphere and suffers intense energetic particle bombardment, producing both positive and negative aspects for astrobiology at Europa. Ionizing radiation can produce oxidants that could support a radiation-driven ecology as proposed by Chyba. On the other hand, biomolecular evidence for life that may be upwelled to the surface is rapidly altered by irradiation, complicating astrobiological searches for evidence of life. We present an overview of laboratory work performed at JPL and elsewhere and observational results related to these two aspects. The oxidants hydrogen peroxide and molecular oxygen are known to exist on Europa and the radiolytic production of these species has been studied in the laboratory for both electron and ion irradiation. Laboratory- measured equilibrium concentrations of H2O2, where production and destruction rates are equal, are in general agreement with the observed 0.1% molar abundance on Europa. The shape of Europa's peroxide band is consistent with the line shapes observed in radiolysis and with H2O2 dispersed in water ice rather than occurring as H2O2 aggregates. Surprisingly, molecular oxygen may be even more abundant on Europa even though O2 is extremely volatile ande would be expected to escape from the ice surface. Radiolysis can produce molecular oxygen and appears to simultaneously alter the ice matrix, trapping the O2. Other species observed on Europa are CO2 and SO2, and laboratory radiolysis of these species in H2O ice produces carbonic and sulfuric acid, respectively. We are studying the radiolytic degradation of biomarkers in ice at Europa temperatures by studying both simple organics and more complex biomolecules, including microorganisms. Hydrocarbon radiolysis yields carbon dioxide and methane, which can escape the system and results in loss of carbon. In

  13. Intelligence Ethics:

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rønn, Kira Vrist

    2016-01-01

    Questions concerning what constitutes a morally justified conduct of intelligence activities have received increased attention in recent decades. However, intelligence ethics is not yet homogeneous or embedded as a solid research field. The aim of this article is to sketch the state of the art...... of intelligence ethics and point out subjects for further scrutiny in future research. The review clusters the literature on intelligence ethics into two groups: respectively, contributions on external topics (i.e., the accountability of and the public trust in intelligence agencies) and internal topics (i.......e., the search for an ideal ethical framework for intelligence actions). The article concludes that there are many holes to fill for future studies on intelligence ethics both in external and internal discussions. Thus, the article is an invitation – especially, to moral philosophers and political theorists...

  14. Intelligence Naturelle et Intelligence Artificielle

    OpenAIRE

    Dubois, Daniel

    2011-01-01

    Cet article présente une approche systémique du concept d’intelligence naturelle en ayant pour objectif de créer une intelligence artificielle. Ainsi, l’intelligence naturelle, humaine et animale non-humaine, est une fonction composée de facultés permettant de connaître et de comprendre. De plus, l'intelligence naturelle reste indissociable de la structure, à savoir les organes du cerveau et du corps. La tentation est grande de doter les systèmes informatiques d’une intelligence artificielle ...

  15. First Light from Extrasolar Planets and Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richardson, L. Jeremy; Seager, Sara; Harrington, Joseph; Deming, Drake

    2005-01-01

    The first light from an extrasolar planet was recently detected. These results, obtained for two transiting extrasolar planets at different infrared wavelengths, open a new era in the field of extrasolar planet detection and characterization because for the first time we can now detect planets beyond the solar system directly. Using the Spitzer Space Telescope at 24 microns, we observed the modulation of combined light (star plus planet) from the HD 209458 system as the planet disappeared behind the star during secondary eclipse and later re-emerged, thereby isolating the light from the planet. We obtained a planet-to-star ratio of 0.26% at 24 microns, corresponding to a brightness temperature of 1130 + / - 150 K. We will describe this result in detail, explain what it can tell us about the atmosphere of HD 209458 b, and discuss implications for the field of astrobiology. These results represent a significant step on the path to detecting terrestrial planets around other stars and in understanding their atmospheres in terms of composition and temperature.

  16. Automating X-ray Fluorescence Analysis for Rapid Astrobiology Surveys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, David R; Flannery, David T; Lanka, Ravi; Allwood, Abigail C; Bue, Brian D; Clark, Benton C; Elam, W Timothy; Estlin, Tara A; Hodyss, Robert P; Hurowitz, Joel A; Liu, Yang; Wade, Lawrence A

    2015-11-01

    A new generation of planetary rover instruments, such as PIXL (Planetary Instrument for X-ray Lithochemistry) and SHERLOC (Scanning Habitable Environments with Raman Luminescence for Organics and Chemicals) selected for the Mars 2020 mission rover payload, aim to map mineralogical and elemental composition in situ at microscopic scales. These instruments will produce large spectral cubes with thousands of channels acquired over thousands of spatial locations, a large potential science yield limited mainly by the time required to acquire a measurement after placement. A secondary bottleneck also faces mission planners after downlink; analysts must interpret the complex data products quickly to inform tactical planning for the next command cycle. This study demonstrates operational approaches to overcome these bottlenecks by specialized early-stage science data processing. Onboard, simple real-time systems can perform a basic compositional assessment, recognizing specific features of interest and optimizing sensor integration time to characterize anomalies. On the ground, statistically motivated visualization can make raw uncalibrated data products more interpretable for tactical decision making. Techniques such as manifold dimensionality reduction can help operators comprehend large databases at a glance, identifying trends and anomalies in data. These onboard and ground-side analyses can complement a quantitative interpretation. We evaluate system performance for the case study of PIXL, an X-ray fluorescence spectrometer. Experiments on three representative samples demonstrate improved methods for onboard and ground-side automation and illustrate new astrobiological science capabilities unavailable in previous planetary instruments. Dimensionality reduction-Planetary science-Visualization.

  17. Life and the Universe: From Astrochemistry to Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allamandola, Louis J.

    2013-01-01

    Great strides have been made in our understanding of interstellar material thanks to advances in infrared astronomy and laboratory astrophysics. Ionized polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), shockingly large molecules by earlier astrochemical standards, are widespread and very abundant throughout much of the cosmos. In cold molecular clouds, the birthplace of planets and stars, interstellar atoms and molecules freeze onto extremely cold dust and ice particles forming mixed molecular ices dominated by simple species such as water, methanol, ammonia, and carbon monoxide. Within these clouds, and especially in the vicinity of star and planet forming regions, these ices and PAHs are processed by ultraviolet light and cosmic rays forming hundreds of far more complex species, some of biogenic interest. Eventually, these are delivered to primordial planets by comets and meteorites. As these materials are the building blocks of comets and related to carbonaceous micrometeorites, they are likely to be important sources of complex organic materials delivered to habitable planets (including the primordial Earth) and their composition may be related to the origin of life. This talk will focus on the chemical evolution of these cosmic materials and their relevance to astrobiology.

  18. A Micro Fluorescent Activated Cell Sorter for Astrobiology Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Platt, Donald W.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2009-01-01

    A micro-scale Fluorescent Activated Cell Sorter (microFACS) for astrobiology applications is under development. This device is designed to have a footprint of 7 cm x 7 cm x 4 cm and allow live-dead counts and sorting of cells that have fluorescent characteristics from staining. The FACS system takes advantage of microfluidics to create a cell sorter that can fit in the palm of the hand. A micron-scale channel allows cells to pass by a blue diode which causes emission of marker-expressed cells which are detected by a filtered photodetector. A small microcontroller then counts cells and operates high speed valves to select which chamber the cell is collected in (a collection chamber or a waste chamber). Cells with the expressed characteristic will be collected in the collection chamber. This system has been built and is currently being tested. We are also designing a system with integrated MEMS-based pumps and valves for a small and compact unit to fly on small satellite-based biology experiments.

  19. Planetary Protection Knowledge Gaps for Human Extraterrestrial Missions: Workshop Report

    Science.gov (United States)

    Race, Margaret S. (Editor); Johnson, James E. (Editor); Spry, James A. (Editor); Siegel, Bette; Conley, Catharine A.

    2015-01-01

    This report on Planetary Protection Knowledge Gaps for Human Extraterrestrial Missions summarizes the presentations, deliberations and findings of a workshop at NASA Ames Research Center, March 24-26, 2015, which was attended by more than 100 participants representing a diverse mix of science, engineering, technology, and policy areas. The main objective of the three-day workshop was to identify specific knowledge gaps that need to be addressed to make incremental progress towards the development of NASA Procedural Requirements (NPRs) for Planetary Protection during human missions to Mars.

  20. Energy use, entropy and extra-terrestrial civilizations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hetesi, Zsolt

    2010-01-01

    The possible number of extra-terrestrial civilizations is estimated by the Drake-equation. Many articles pointed out that there are missing factors and over-estimations in the original equation. In this article we will point out that assuming some axioms there might be several limits for a technical civilization. The key role of the energy use and the problem of the centres and periphery strongly influence the value of the Llifetime of a civilization. Our development have several edifications of the investigations of the growth of an alien civilization.

  1. Extraterrestrial materials examined by mean of nuclear microprobe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khodja, H.; Smith, T.; Engrand, C.; Herzog, G.; Raepsaet, C.

    2013-07-01

    Comet fragments, micrometeorites, and Interplanetary Dust Particles (IDPs) are small objects (purpose, we need instruments and methods that provide both microanalysis and detailed imaging. In these respects, the nuclear microprobe offers many potential advantages: (i) the spatial resolution, ∼1 μm is well-matched to the typical object dimensions, (ii) with some reservations, it is non-destructive when carefully conducted, (iii) it is quantitative, and especially sensitive for light elements. At the Saclay nuclear microprobe, we have been performing analyses of extraterrestrial objects for many years. We review some of these studies, emphasizing the specific requirements for successful analyses. We also discuss the potential pitfalls that may be encountered.

  2. Energy use, entropy and extra-terrestrial civilizations

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hetesi, Zsolt, E-mail: zs.hetesi@astro.elte.h [Eoetvoes University, Department of Astronomy, Budapest, H-1518, PO Box 32 (Hungary)

    2010-03-01

    The possible number of extra-terrestrial civilizations is estimated by the Drake-equation. Many articles pointed out that there are missing factors and over-estimations in the original equation. In this article we will point out that assuming some axioms there might be several limits for a technical civilization. The key role of the energy use and the problem of the centres and periphery strongly influence the value of the Llifetime of a civilization. Our development have several edifications of the investigations of the growth of an alien civilization.

  3. Secondary School Students' Knowledge and Opinions on Astrobiology Topics and Related Social Issues

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oreiro, Raquel; Solbes, Jordi

    2017-01-01

    Astrobiology is the study of the origin of life on Earth and the distribution of life in the Universe. Its multidisciplinary approach, social and philosophical implications, and appeal within the discipline and beyond make astrobiology a uniquely qualified subject for general science education. In this study, student knowledge and opinions on astrobiology topics were investigated. Eighty-nine students in their last year of compulsory education (age 15) completed a written questionnaire that consisted of 10 open questions on the topic of astrobiology. The results indicate that students have significant difficulties understanding the origin of life on Earth, despite exposure to the topic by way of the assigned textbooks. The students were often unaware of past or present achievements in the search for life within the Solar System and beyond, topics that are far less commonly seen in textbooks. Student questionnaire answers also indicated that students had problems in reasoning and critical thinking when asked for their opinions on issues such as the potential for life beyond Earth, the question of whether UFOs exist, or what our place is in the Universe. Astrobiology might help initiate student awareness as to current thinking on these matters and should be considered for general science education.

  4. Summer Research Experiences for Science and Art Teachers to Explore Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cola, J.; Gaucher, E.; Snell, T.; Greenwood, J.; Angra, A.; Zimmerman, C.; Williams, L. D.

    2012-12-01

    The Georgia Tech Center for Ribosomal Origins and Evolution, a center funded by the NASA Astrobiology Institute, developed an educational program titled, "Life on the Edge: Astrobiology." The purpose of the program was to provide high school educators with the exposure, materials, and skills necessary to prepare our future workforce and to foster student interest in scientific discovery on Earth and throughout the universe. In an effort to promote and encourage entry into teaching careers, Georgia Tech paired teachers in the Georgia Intern-Fellowship for Teachers (GIFT) program with undergraduate students interested in becoming a teacher through the NSF Pre-Teaching REU program. The GIFT and Pre-Teaching fellows investigated extremophiles, which became the focus of a week-long, "Life on the Edge: Astrobiology " summer program developed by three high school educators, two undergraduate students and faculty in the Schools of Biology, and Chemistry and Biochemistry at Georgia Tech. Twenty high school students were introduced to hands-on activities, such as astrobiology inspired art and techniques such as genomic DNA purification, gel electrophoresis, and Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR). The impact of the Astrobiology program on the GIFT researchers, Pre-Teaching REU students, high school students, and faculty are discussed.

  5. Data management in astrobiology: challenges and opportunities for an interdisciplinary community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aydinoglu, Arsev Umur; Suomela, Todd; Malone, Jim

    2014-06-01

    Data management and sharing are growing concerns for scientists and funding organizations throughout the world. Funding organizations are implementing requirements for data management plans, while scientists are establishing new infrastructures for data sharing. One of the difficulties is sharing data among a diverse set of research disciplines. Astrobiology is a unique community of researchers, containing over 110 different disciplines. The current study reports the results of a survey of data management practices among scientists involved in the astrobiology community and the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) in particular. The survey was administered over a 2-month period in the first half of 2013. Fifteen percent of the NAI community responded (n=114), and additional (n=80) responses were collected from members of an astrobiology Listserv. The results of the survey show that the astrobiology community shares many of the same concerns for data sharing as other groups. The benefits of data sharing are acknowledged by many respondents, but barriers to data sharing remain, including lack of acknowledgement, citation, time, and institutional rewards. Overcoming technical, institutional, and social barriers to data sharing will be a challenge into the future.

  6. Religions and extraterrestrial life how will we deal with it?

    CERN Document Server

    Weintraub, David A

    2014-01-01

    In the twenty-first century, the debate about life on other worlds is quickly changing from the realm of speculation to the domain of hard science. Within a few years, as a consequence of the rapid discovery by astronomers of planets around other stars, astronomers very likely will have discovered clear evidence of life beyond the Earth. Such a discovery of extraterrestrial life will change everything.  Knowing the answer as to whether humanity has company in the universe will trigger one of the greatest intellectual revolutions in history, not the least of which will be a challenge for at least some terrestrial religions. Which religions will handle the discovery of extraterrestrial life with ease and which will struggle to assimilate this new knowledge about our place in the universe? Some religions as currently practiced appear to only be viable on Earth. Other religions could be practiced on distant worlds but nevertheless identify both Earth as a place and humankind as a species of singular spiritual re...

  7. Extraterrestrial cause for the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alvarez, L.W.; Alvarez, W.; Asaro, F.; Michel, H.V.

    1980-01-01

    Platinum metals are depleted in the earth's crust relative to their cosmic abundance; concentrations of these elements in deep-sea sediments may thus indicate influxes of extraterrestrial material. Deep-sea limestones exposed in Italy, Denmark, and New Zealand show iridium increases of about 30, 160, and 20 times, respectively, above the background level at precisely the time of the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinctions, 65 million years ago. Reasons are given to indicate that this iridium is of extraterrestrial origin, but did not come from a nearby supernova. A hypothesis is suggested which accounts for the extinctions and the iridium observations. Impact of a large earth-crossing asteroid would inject about 60 times the object's mass into the atmosphere as pulverized rock; a fraction of this dust would stay in the stratosphere for several years and be distributed worldwide. The resulting darkness would suppress photosynthesis, and the expected biological consequences match quite closely the extinctions observed in the paleontological record. One prediction of this hypothesis has been verified: the chemical composition of the boundary clay, which is thought to come from the stratospheric dust, is markedly different from that of clay mixed with the Cretaceous and Tertiary limestones, which are chemically similar to each other. Four different independent estimates of the diameter of the asteroid give values that lie in the range 10 +- 4 kilometers

  8. Infrared Spectroscopy of Parent Volatiles in Comets: Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    DiSanti, Michael A.

    2010-01-01

    Current cometary orbits provide information on their recent dynamical history. However, determining a given comet's formation region from its current dynamical state alone is complicated by radial migration in the proto-planetary disk and by dynamical interactions with the growing giant planets. Because comets reside for long periods of time in the outer Solar System, the ices contained in their nuclei (native ices) retain a relatively well-preserved footprint of when and where they formed, and this in turn can provide clues to conditions in the formation epoch. As a comet approaches the Sun, sublimation of its native ices releases parent volatiles into the coma where they can be measured spectroscopically. The past to - 15 years have seen the advent of infrared spectrometers with high sensitivity between about 2.8 and 5.0 micron, enabling a taxonomy among comets based on abundances of parent volatiles (e.g., H2O, CO, CH4, C2H6, HCN, CH30H, H2CO, NH3). Such molecules are of keen interest to Astrobiology, as they include important pre-biotic species that likely were required for the emergence of life on Earth and perhaps elsewhere. Approximately 20 comets have thus far been characterized, beginning with C/1996 82 (Hyakutake) in 1996. Molecular production rates are established through comparison of observed emission line intensities with those predicted by quantum mechanical fluorescence models. Abundances of parent volatiles (relative to H2O) vary among even the relatively small number of comets sampled, with the most volatile species (CO and CH4) displaying the largest variations. Techniques developed for measuring parent volatile abundances in comets will be discussed, as will possible implications for their formation.

  9. Search for extraterrestrial intelligence/high resolution microwave survey team member

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steffes, Paul G.

    1993-01-01

    This semiannual status report describes activities conducted by the Principal Investigator during the first half of this third year of the NASA High Resolution Microwave Survey (HRMS) Investigator Working Group (IWG). As a (HRMS) Team Member with primary interest in the Sky Survey activity, this investigator attended IWG meetings at NASA/Ames and U.C.-Santa Cruz in Apr. and Aug. 1992, and has traveled independently to NRAO/Kitt Peak, Arizona (April 1993) and Woodbury, Georgia (July 1993). During the July 1993 visit to the Georgia Tech Research Corporation/Woodbury Research Facility, an experiment was conducted to study the effects of interference from C-band (3.7 - 4.2 GHz) geostationary spacecraft on the Sky Survey operation in that band. At the first IWG meeting in April of this year, results of a SETI observation conducted at the 203 GHz positronium hyperfine resonance using the NRAO facility at Kitt Peak, AZ, were presented, as well as updates on the development of the spaceborne RFI data bases developed for the project. At the second meeting, results of the study of interference from C-band geostationary spacecraft were presented. Likewise, a presentation was made at the accompanying 1993 Bioastronomy Symposium describing the SETI observation at the positronium hyperfine resonance.

  10. Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wash, Darrel Patrick

    1989-01-01

    Making a machine seem intelligent is not easy. As a consequence, demand has been rising for computer professionals skilled in artificial intelligence and is likely to continue to go up. These workers develop expert systems and solve the mysteries of machine vision, natural language processing, and neural networks. (Editor)

  11. Intelligent Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hjorth, Poul G.

    2005-01-01

    Forestillingen om at naturen er designet af en guddommelig 'intelligens' er et smukt filosofisk princip. Teorier om Intelligent Design som en naturvidenskabeligt baseret teori er derimod helt forfærdelig.......Forestillingen om at naturen er designet af en guddommelig 'intelligens' er et smukt filosofisk princip. Teorier om Intelligent Design som en naturvidenskabeligt baseret teori er derimod helt forfærdelig....

  12. Astrobiology as an Interdisciplinary Starting Point to Natural Sciences for High-potential Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leitner, J. J.; Firneis, M. G.; Hitzenberger, R.

    2013-09-01

    One of the corner stones of the Research Platform on ExoLife, University of Vienna, Austria is public outreach and education with respect to astrobiology, exoplanets, and planetary sciences. Since 2009 several initiatives have been started by the Research Platform to concentrate the interest of students in and outside the University onto natural sciences. Astrobiology as a very interdisciplinary scientific discipline with questions like "Are we alone in the Universe?," "How unique is Earth as a planet?" or "How did life originate?" will fascinate youngsters and junior scientists (see [1]).

  13. Siderophilic Cyanobacteria for the Development of Extraterrestrial Photoautotrophic Biotechnologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, I. I.; McKay, D. S.

    2010-01-01

    In-situ production of consumables (mainly oxygen) using local resources (In-Situ Resource Utilization-ISRU) will significantly facilitate current plans for human exploration and settlement of the solar system, starting with the Moon. With few exceptions, nearly all technologies developed to date have employed an approach based on inorganic chemistry. None of these technologies include concepts for integrating the ISRU system with a bioregenerative life support system and a food production system. Therefore, a new concept based on the cultivation of cyanobacteria (CB) in semi-closed biogeoreactor, linking ISRU, a biological life support system, and food production, has been proposed. The key feature of the biogeoreactor is to use lithotrophic CB to extract many needed elements such as Fe directly from the dissolved regolith and direct them to any technological loop at an extraterrestrial outpost. Our studies showed that siderophilic (Fe-loving) CB are capable to corrode lunar regolith stimulants because they secrete chelating agents and can tolerate [Fe] up to 1 mM. However, lunar and Martian environments are very hostile (very high UV and gamma-radiation, extreme temperatures, deficit of water). Thus, the selection of CB species with high potential for extraterrestrial biotechnologies that may be utilized in 15 years must be sponsored by NASA as soon as possible. The study of the genomes of candidate CB species and the metagenomes of the terrestrial environments which they inhabit is critical to make this decision. Here we provide preliminary results about peculiarities of the genomes of siderophilic CB revealed by analyzing the genome of siderophilic cyanobacterium JSC-1 and the metagenome of iron depositing hot spring (IDHS) Chocolate Pots (Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA). It has been found that IDHS are richer with ferrous iron than the majority of hot springs around the world. Fe2+ is known to increase the magnitude of oxidative stress in prokaryotes

  14. Extraterrestrial Life: Life on Mars - Then and Now

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arrhenius, Gustaf; Mojzsis, Stephen

    1996-01-01

    The recent claim to have identified possible signs of ancient life on Mars has been widely publicized and discussed. The authors conceded that none of the half-dozen pieces of evidence adduced in their paper individually provided strong support for extraterrestrial life, though they argued that the pieces added up to a case worth considering. Most - perhaps all - of the observed phenomena have counterparts in the inorganic world, so even the combination does not make a compelling case that there was ever life on Mars. Nevertheless, the importance of the problem has justified bringing the results to general attention. The paper has focussed interest on the origin and possible ubiquity of life, and on how we can design techniques capable of giving a more definitive answer to the question of whether there is, or has ever been, life elsewhere in the Universe.

  15. Psychrophiles and astrobiology: microbial life of frozen worlds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pikuta, Elena V.; Hoover, Richard B.

    2003-01-01

    consider the Astrobiological significance of the Fox Tunnel with its rich assemblage of frozen microbes as proxy for developing techniques that may help optimize the search for evidence of life in the permafrost of Mars. We provide images of a novel anaerobic, heterotrophic, psychrotrophic bacterium (str.FTR1) isolated in pure culture from the Fox Tunnel. We also describe novel psychrotrophs isolated from guano of the Magellanic penguin (Spheniscus magellanicus) from the southern tip of Patagonia. These strains PmagG1 and PPP2) represent new species and genera of anaerobic microbes that grow at very low temperatures. The lowest limit for growth without morphological changes of str.PmagG1 is -4°C.

  16. Astrobiological aspects of Mars and human presence: pros and cons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horneck, G

    2008-08-01

    After the realization of the International Space Station, human exploratory missions to Moon or Mars, i.e. beyond low Earth orbit, are widely considered as the next logical step of peaceful cooperation in space on a global scale. Besides the human desire to extend the window of habitability, human exploratory missions are driven by several aspects of science, technology, culture and economy. Mars is currently considered as a major target in the search for life beyond the Earth. Understanding the history of water on Mars appears to be one of the clues to the puzzle on the probability of life on Mars. On Earth microorganisms have flourished for more than 3.5 Ga and have developed strategies to cope with so-called extreme conditions (e.g., hot vents, permafrost, subsurface regions, rocks or salt crystals). Therefore, in search for life on Mars, microorganisms are the most likely candidates for a putative biota on Mars and the search for morphological or chemical signatures of life or its relics is one of the primary and most exciting goals of Mars exploration. The presence of humans on the surface of Mars will substantially increase this research potential, e.g., by supporting deep subsurface drilling and by allowing intellectual collection and sophisticated in situ analysis of samples of astrobiological interest. On the other hand, such long-duration missions beyond LEO will add a new dimension to human space flight, concerning the distance of travel, the radiation environment, the gravity levels, the duration of the mission, and the level of confinement and isolation the crew will be exposed to. This will raise the significance of several health issues, above all radiation protection, gravity related effects as well as psychological issues. Furthermore, the import of internal and external microorganisms inevitably accompanying any human mission to Mars, or brought purposely to Mars as part of a bioregenerative life support system needs careful consideration with

  17. EVA Swab Tool to Support Planetary Protection and Astrobiology Evaluations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rucker, Michelle A.; Hood, Drew; Walker, Mary; Venkateswaran, Kasthuri J.; Schuerger, Andrew C.

    2018-01-01

    various pressure environments. To further minimize cost, the design team acquired extensive ground test experience in a relevant flight environment by piggy-backing onto suited crew training runs. These training runs allowed the project to validate tool interfaces with pressurized EVA gloves and collect user feedback on the tool design and function, as well as characterize baseline microbial data for different types of spacesuits. In general, test subjects found the EVA Swab Kit relatively straightforward to operate, but identified a number of design improvements that will be incorporated into the final design. Although originally intended to help characterize human forward contaminants, this tool has other potential applications, such as for collecting and preserving space-exposed materials to support astrobiology experiments.

  18. Analytical SuperSTEM for extraterrestrial materials research

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bradley, J P; Dai, Z R

    2009-09-08

    Electron-beam studies of extraterrestrial materials with significantly improved spatial resolution, energy resolution and sensitivity are enabled using a 300 keV SuperSTEM scanning transmission electron microscope with a monochromator and two spherical aberration correctors. The improved technical capabilities enable analyses previously not possible. Mineral structures can be directly imaged and analyzed with single-atomic-column resolution, liquids and implanted gases can be detected, and UV-VIS optical properties can be measured. Detection limits for minor/trace elements in thin (<100 nm thick) specimens are improved such that quantitative measurements of some extend to the sub-500 ppm level. Electron energy-loss spectroscopy (EELS) can be carried out with 0.10-0.20 eV energy resolution and atomic-scale spatial resolution such that variations in oxidation state from one atomic column to another can be detected. Petrographic mapping is extended down to the atomic scale using energy-dispersive x-ray spectroscopy (EDS) and energy-filtered transmission electron microscopy (EFTEM) imaging. Technical capabilities and examples of the applications of SuperSTEM to extraterrestrial materials are presented, including the UV spectral properties and organic carbon K-edge fine structure of carbonaceous matter in interplanetary dust particles (IDPs), x-ray elemental maps showing the nanometer-scale distribution of carbon within GEMS (glass with embedded metal and sulfides), the first detection and quantification of trace Ti in GEMS using EDS, and detection of molecular H{sub 2}O in vesicles and implanted H{sub 2} and He in irradiated mineral and glass grains.

  19. Curating NASA's Future Extraterrestrial Sample Collections: How Do We Achieve Maximum Proficiency?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, Francis; Evans, Cynthia; Zeigler, Ryan; Allton, Judith; Fries, Marc; Righter, Kevin; Zolensky, Michael

    2016-01-01

    The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office (henceforth referred to herein as NASA Curation Office) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is responsible for curating all of NASA's extraterrestrial samples. Under the governing document, NASA Policy Directive (NPD) 7100.10E "Curation of Extraterrestrial Materials", JSC is charged with "The curation of all extraterrestrial material under NASA control, including future NASA missions." The Directive goes on to define Curation as including "... documentation, preservation, preparation, and distribution of samples for research, education, and public outreach." Here we describe some of the ongoing efforts to ensure that the future activities of the NASA Curation Office are working towards a state of maximum proficiency.

  20. Intelligent playgrounds

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Larsen, Lasse Juel

    2009-01-01

    This paper examines play, gaming and learning in regard to intelligent playware developed for outdoor use. The key questions are how does these novel artefacts influence the concept of play, gaming and learning. Up until now play and game have been understood as different activities. This paper...... examines if the sharp differentiation between the two can be uphold in regard to intelligent playware for outdoor use. Play and game activities will be analysed and viewed in conjunction with learning contexts. This paper will stipulate that intelligent playware facilitates rapid shifts in contexts...

  1. Artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Ennals, J R

    1987-01-01

    Artificial Intelligence: State of the Art Report is a two-part report consisting of the invited papers and the analysis. The editor first gives an introduction to the invited papers before presenting each paper and the analysis, and then concludes with the list of references related to the study. The invited papers explore the various aspects of artificial intelligence. The analysis part assesses the major advances in artificial intelligence and provides a balanced analysis of the state of the art in this field. The Bibliography compiles the most important published material on the subject of

  2. Artificial Intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Warwick, Kevin

    2011-01-01

    if AI is outside your field, or you know something of the subject and would like to know more then Artificial Intelligence: The Basics is a brilliant primer.' - Nick Smith, Engineering and Technology Magazine November 2011 Artificial Intelligence: The Basics is a concise and cutting-edge introduction to the fast moving world of AI. The author Kevin Warwick, a pioneer in the field, examines issues of what it means to be man or machine and looks at advances in robotics which have blurred the boundaries. Topics covered include: how intelligence can be defined whether machines can 'think' sensory

  3. Applicability of cryoconite consortia of microorganisms and glacier-dwelling animals in astrobiological studies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zawierucha Krzysztof

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available For several years it has been of interest to astrobiologists to focus on Earth’s glaciers as a habitat that can be similar to glaciers on other moons and planets. Microorganisms on glaciers form consortia – cryoconite granules (cryoconites. They are granular/spherical mineral particles connected with archaea, cyanobacteria, heterotrophic bacteria, algae, fungi, and micro animals (mainly Tardigrada and Rotifera. Cryophilic organisms inhabiting glaciers have been studied in different aspects: from taxonomy, ecology and biogeography, to searching of biotechnological potentials and physiological strategies to survive in extreme glacial habitats. However, they have never been used in astrobiological experiments. The main aim of this paper is brief review of literature and supporting assumptions that cryoconite granules and microinvertebrates on glaciers, are promising models in astrobiology for looking for analogies and survival strategies in terms of icy planets and moons. So far, astrobiological research have been conducted on single strains of prokaryotes or microinvertebrates but never on a consortium of them. Due to the hypothetical similarity of glaciers on the Earth to those on other planets these cryoconites consortia of microorganisms and glacier microinvertebrates may be applied in astrobiological experiments instead of the limno-terrestrial ones used currently. Those consortia and animals have qualities to use them in such studies and they may be the key to understanding how organisms are able to survive, reproduce and remain active at low temperatures.

  4. Field astrobiology research instruments and methods in moon-mars analogue site.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Foing, B.H.; Stoker, C.; Zavaleta, J.; Ehrenfreund, P.; Sarrazin, P.; Blake, D.; Page, J.; Pletser, V.; Hendrikse, J.; Oliveira Lebre Direito, M.S.; Kotler, M.; Martins, Z.; Orzechowska, G.; Thiel, C.S.; Clarke, J.; Gross, J.; Wendt, L.; Borst, A.; Peters, S.; Wilhelm, M.-B.; Davies, G.R.; EuroGeoMars 2009 Team, ILEWG

    2011-01-01

    We describe the field demonstration of astrobiology instruments and research methods conducted in and from the Mars Desert Research Station (MDRS) in Utah during the EuroGeoMars campaign 2009 coordinated by ILEWG, ESA/ESTEC and NASA Ames, with the contribution of academic partners. We discuss the

  5. Intelligent Advertising

    OpenAIRE

    Díaz Pinedo, Edilfredo Eliot

    2012-01-01

    Intelligent Advertisement diseña e implementa un sistema de publicidad para dispositivos móviles en un centro comercial, donde los clientes reciben publicidad de forma pasiva en sus dispositivos mientras están dentro.

  6. BUSINESS INTELLIGENCE

    OpenAIRE

    Bogdan Mohor Dumitrita

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of this work is to present business intelligence systems. These systems can be extremely complex and important in modern market competition. Its effectiveness also reflects in price, so we have to exlore their financial potential before investment. The systems have 20 years long history and during that time many of such tools have been developed, but they are rarely still in use. Business intelligence system consists of three main areas: Data Warehouse, ETL tools and tools f...

  7. Intelligent indexing

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farkas, J.

    1992-01-01

    In this paper we discuss the relevance of artificial intelligence to the automatic indexing of natural language text. We describe the use of domain-specific semantically-based thesauruses and address the problem of creating adequate knowledge bases for intelligent indexing systems. We also discuss the relevance of the Hilbert space ι 2 to the compact representation of documents and to the definition of the similarity of natural language texts. (author). 17 refs., 2 figs

  8. Intelligent indexing

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Farkas, J

    1993-12-31

    In this paper we discuss the relevance of artificial intelligence to the automatic indexing of natural language text. We describe the use of domain-specific semantically-based thesauruses and address the problem of creating adequate knowledge bases for intelligent indexing systems. We also discuss the relevance of the Hilbert space {iota}{sup 2} to the compact representation of documents and to the definition of the similarity of natural language texts. (author). 17 refs., 2 figs.

  9. Understanding the nineteenth century origins of disciplines: lessons for astrobiology today?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brazelton, William J.; Sullivan, Woodruff T., III

    2009-10-01

    Astrobiology's goal of promoting interdisciplinary research is an attempt to reverse a trend that began two centuries ago with the formation of the first specialized scientific disciplines. We have examined this era of discipline formation in order to make a comparison with the situation today in astrobiology. Will astrobiology remain interdisciplinary or is it becoming yet another specialty? As a case study, we have investigated effects on the scientific literature when a specialized community is formed by analyzing the citations within papers published during 1802-1856 in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society (Phil. Trans.), the most important ‘generalist’ journal of its day, and Transactions of the Geological Society of London (Trans. Geol. Soc.), the first important disciplinary journal in the sciences. We find that these two journals rarely cited each other, and papers published in Trans. Geol. Soc. cited fewer interdisciplinary sources than did geology papers in Phil. Trans. After geology had become established as a successful specialized discipline, geologists returned to publishing papers in Phil. Trans., but they wrote in the new, highly specialized style developed in Trans. Geol. Soc. They had succeeded in not only creating a new scientific discipline, but also a new way of doing science with its own modes of research and communication. A similar citation analysis was applied to papers published over the period 2001-2008 in the contemporary journals Astrobiology and the International Journal of Astrobiology to test the hypothesis that astrobiologists are in the early stages of creating their own specialized community. Although still too early to reliably detect any but the largest trends, there is no evidence yet that astrobiologists are drifting into their own isolated discipline. Instead, to date they appear to remain interdisciplinary.

  10. Miniature Time of Flight Mass Spectrometer for Space and Extraterrestrial Applications, Phase II

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — The PI has developed a miniature time-of-flight mass spectrometer (TOF-MS), which can be op-timized for space and extraterrestrial applications, by using a...

  11. Insights from Cyanobacterial Genomes for the Development of Extraterrestrial Photoautotrophic Biotechnologies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brown, I. I.; Bryant, D. A.; Tringe, S. G.; Malley, K.; Sosa, O.; Sarkisova, S. A.; Garrison, D. H.; McKay, D. S.

    2010-04-01

    Using genomic and metagenomic analysis, Fe-tolerant cyanobacterial species with a large and diverse set of stress-tolerant genes, were identified as prime candidates for in situ resource utilization in a biogeoreactor at extraterrestrial outposts.

  12. Synthetic Biology and the Search for Extraterrestrial Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.

    2015-01-01

    "Are we alone?" is one of the primary questions of astrobiology, and whose answer defines our significance in the universe. Unfortunately, this quest is hindered by the fact that we have only one confirmed example of life, that of earth. While this is enormously helpful in helping to define the minimum envelope for life, it strains credulity to imagine that life, if it arose multiple times, has not taken other routes. To help fill this gap, our lab has begun using synthetic biology - the design and construction of new biological parts and systems and the redesign of existing ones for useful purposes - as an enabling technology. One theme, the "Hell Cell" project, focuses on creating artificial extremophiles in order to push the limits for Earth life, and to understand how difficult it is for life to evolve into extreme niches. In another project, we are re-evolving biotic functions using only the most thermodynamically stable amino acids in order to understand potential capabilities of an early organism with a limited repertoire of amino acids.

  13. Extra-terrestrial construction processes - Advancements, opportunities and challenges

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lim, Sungwoo; Prabhu, Vibha Levin; Anand, Mahesh; Taylor, Lawrence A.

    2017-10-01

    Government space agencies, including NASA and ESA, are conducting preliminary studies on building alternative space-habitat systems for deep-space exploration. Such studies include development of advanced technologies for planetary surface exploration, including an in-depth understanding of the use of local resources. Currently, NASA plans to land humans on Mars in the 2030s. Similarly, other space agencies from Europe (ESA), Canada (CSA), Russia (Roscosmos), India (ISRO), Japan (JAXA) and China (CNSA) have already initiated or announced their plans for launching a series of lunar missions over the next decade, ranging from orbiters, landers and rovers for extended stays on the lunar surface. As the Space Odyssey is one of humanity's oldest dreams, there has been a series of research works for establishing temporary or permanent settlement on other planetary bodies, including the Moon and Mars. This paper reviews current projects developing extra-terrestrial construction, broadly categorised as: (i) ISRU-based construction materials; (ii) fabrication methods; and (iii) construction processes. It also discusses four categories of challenges to developing an appropriate construction process: (i) lunar simulants; (ii) material fabrication and curing; (iii) microwave-sintering based fabrication; and (iv) fully autonomous and scaled-up construction processes.

  14. A Review of Extra-Terrestrial Mining Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, R. P.; van Susante, P. J.

    2012-01-01

    Outer space contains a vast amount of resources that offer virtually unlimited wealth to the humans that can access and use them for commercial purposes. One of the key technologies for harvesting these resources is robotic mining of regolith, minerals, ices and metals. The harsh environment and vast distances create challenges that are handled best by robotic machines working in collaboration with human explorers. Humans will benefit from the resources that will be mined by robots. They will visit outposts and mining camps as required for exploration, commerce and scientific research, but a continuous presence is most likely to be provided by robotic mining machines that are remotely controlled by humans. There have been a variety of extra-terrestrial robotic mining concepts proposed over the last 40 years and this paper will attempt to summarize and review concepts in the public domain (government, industry and academia) to serve as an informational resource for future mining robot developers and operators. The challenges associated with these concepts will be discussed and feasibility will be assessed. Future needs associated with commercial efforts will also be investigated.

  15. A Review of Extra-Terrestrial Mining Robot Concepts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mueller, Robert P.; Van Susante, Paul J.

    2011-01-01

    Outer space contains a vast amount of resources that offer virtually unlimited wealth to the humans that can access and use them for commercial purposes. One of the key technologies for harvesting these resources is robotic mining of regolith, minerals, ices and metals. The harsh environment and vast distances create challenges that are handled best by robotic machines working in collaboration with human explorers. Humans will benefit from the resources that will be mined by robots. They will visit outposts and mining camps as required for exploration, commerce and scientific research, but a continuous presence is most likely to be provided by robotic mining machines that are remotely controlled by humans. There have been a variety of extra-terrestrial robotic mining concepts proposed over the last 100 years and this paper will attempt to summarize and review concepts in the public domain (government, industry and academia) to serve as an informational resource for future mining robot developers and operators. The challenges associated with these concepts will be discussed and feasibility will be assessed. Future needs associated with commercial efforts will also be investigated.

  16. Thermal Design for Extra-Terrestrial Regenerative Fuel Cell System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilligan, R.; Guzik, M.; Jakupca, I.; Bennett, W.; Smith, P.; Fincannon, J.

    2017-01-01

    The Advanced Exploration Systems (AES) Advanced Modular Power Systems (AMPS) Project is investigating different power systems for various lunar and Martian mission concepts. The AMPS Fuel Cell (FC) team has created two system-level models to evaluate the performance of regenerative fuel cell (RFC) systems employing different fuel cell chemistries. Proton Exchange Membrane fuel cells PEMFCs contain a polymer electrolyte membrane that separates the hydrogen and oxygen cavities and conducts hydrogen cations (protons) across the cell. Solid Oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) operate at high temperatures, using a zirconia-based solid ceramic electrolyte to conduct oxygen anions across the cell. The purpose of the modeling effort is to down select one fuel cell chemistry for a more detailed design effort. Figures of merit include the system mass, volume, round trip efficiency, and electrolyzer charge power required. PEMFCs operate at around 60 C versus SOFCs which operate at temperatures greater than 700 C. Due to the drastically different operating temperatures of the two chemistries the thermal control systems (TCS) differ. The PEM TCS is less complex and is characterized by a single pump cooling loop that uses deionized water coolant and rejects heat generated by the system to the environment via a radiator. The solid oxide TCS has its own unique challenges including the requirement to reject high quality heat and to condense the steam produced in the reaction. This paper discusses the modeling of thermal control systems for an extraterrestrial RFC that utilizes either a PEM or solid oxide fuel cell.

  17. New Fiber Reinforced Waterless Concrete for Extraterrestrial Structural Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toutanji, H.; Tucker, D.; Ethridge, E.

    2005-01-01

    Commercial use of sulfur concrete on Earth is well established, particularly in corrosive, e.g., acid and salt, environments. Having found troilite (FeS) on the Moon raises the question of using extracted sulfur as a lunar construction mate: iii an attractive alternative to conventional concrete as it does not require water For the purpose of this paper it is assumed that lunar ore is mined, refined, and the raw sulfur processed with appropriate lunar regolith to form, for example, brick and beam elements. Glass fibers produced from regolith were used as a reinforcement to improve the mechanical properties of the sulfur concrete. Glass fibers and glass rebar were produced by melting the lunar regolith simulant. Lunar regolith stimulant was melted in a 25 cc Pt-Rh crucible in a Sybron Thermoline 46100 high temperature MoSi2 furnace at melting temperatures of 1450 to 1600G. The glass melt wets the ceramic rod and long continuous glass fibers were easily hand drawn. The glass fibers were immediately coated with a protective polymer to maintain the mechanical strength. The viability of sulfur concrete as a construction material for extraterrestrial application is presented. The mechanical properties of the glass fiber reinforced sulfur concrete were investigated.

  18. Is the "Star trek" concept of aliens really naive?: A comment on Duric and Field

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ćirković Milan M.

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Several assumptions used in the recent review paper on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI by Duric and Field (2003 are critically discussed. New astrobiological results-in particular those on the age distribution of terrestrial planets-enable relaxing of some of these assumptions, which gives further justification to optimism regarding SETI projects.

  19. Intelligent systems

    CERN Document Server

    Irwin, J David

    2011-01-01

    Technology has now progressed to the point that intelligent systems are replacing humans in the decision making processes as well as aiding in the solution of very complex problems. In many cases intelligent systems are already outperforming human activities. Artificial neural networks are not only capable of learning how to classify patterns, such images or sequence of events, but they can also effectively model complex nonlinear systems. Their ability to classify sequences of events is probably more popular in industrial applications where there is an inherent need to model nonlinear system

  20. Intelligent Universe

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hoyle, F

    1983-01-01

    The subject is covered in chapters, entitled: chance and the universe (synthesis of proteins; the primordial soup); the gospel according to Darwin (discussion of Darwin theory of evolution); life did not originate on earth (fossils from space; life in space); the interstellar connection (living dust between the stars; bacteria in space falling to the earth; interplanetary dust); evolution by cosmic control (microorganisms; genetics); why aren't the others here (a cosmic origin of life); after the big bang (big bang and steady state); the information rich universe; what is intelligence up to; the intelligent universe.

  1. Artificial intelligence

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perret-Galix, D.

    1992-01-01

    A vivid example of the growing need for frontier physics experiments to make use of frontier technology is in the field of artificial intelligence and related themes. This was reflected in the second international workshop on 'Software Engineering, Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems in High Energy and Nuclear Physics' which took place from 13-18 January at France Telecom's Agelonde site at La Londe des Maures, Provence. It was the second in a series, the first having been held at Lyon in 1990

  2. Artificial Intelligence and Moral intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Pana

    2008-07-01

    Full Text Available We discuss the thesis that the implementation of a moral code in the behaviour of artificial intelligent systems needs a specific form of human and artificial intelligence, not just an abstract intelligence. We present intelligence as a system with an internal structure and the structural levels of the moral system, as well as certain characteristics of artificial intelligent agents which can/must be treated as 1- individual entities (with a complex, specialized, autonomous or selfdetermined, even unpredictable conduct, 2- entities endowed with diverse or even multiple intelligence forms, like moral intelligence, 3- open and, even, free-conduct performing systems (with specific, flexible and heuristic mechanisms and procedures of decision, 4 – systems which are open to education, not just to instruction, 5- entities with “lifegraphy”, not just “stategraphy”, 6- equipped not just with automatisms but with beliefs (cognitive and affective complexes, 7- capable even of reflection (“moral life” is a form of spiritual, not just of conscious activity, 8 – elements/members of some real (corporal or virtual community, 9 – cultural beings: free conduct gives cultural value to the action of a ”natural” or artificial being. Implementation of such characteristics does not necessarily suppose efforts to design, construct and educate machines like human beings. The human moral code is irremediably imperfect: it is a morality of preference, of accountability (not of responsibility and a morality of non-liberty, which cannot be remedied by the invention of ethical systems, by the circulation of ideal values and by ethical (even computing education. But such an imperfect morality needs perfect instruments for its implementation: applications of special logic fields; efficient psychological (theoretical and technical attainments to endow the machine not just with intelligence, but with conscience and even spirit; comprehensive technical

  3. Spectroscopic Studies of Molecular Systems relevant in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fornaro, Teresa

    2016-01-01

    In the Astrobiology context, the study of the physico-chemical interactions involving "building blocks of life" in plausible prebiotic and space-like conditions is fundamental to shed light on the processes that led to emergence of life on Earth as well as to molecular chemical evolution in space. In this PhD Thesis, such issues have been addressed both experimentally and computationally by employing vibrational spectroscopy, which has shown to be an effective tool to investigate the variety of intermolecular interactions that play a key role in self-assembling mechanisms of nucleic acid components and their binding to mineral surfaces. In particular, in order to dissect the contributions of the different interactions to the overall spectroscopic signals and shed light on the intricate experimental data, feasible computational protocols have been developed for the characterization of the spectroscopic properties of such complex systems. This study has been carried out through a multi-step strategy, starting the investigation from the spectroscopic properties of the isolated nucleobases, then studying the perturbation induced by the interaction with another molecule (molecular dimers), towards condensed phases like the molecular solid, up to the case of nucleic acid components adsorbed on minerals. A proper modeling of these weakly bound molecular systems has required, firstly, a validation of dispersion-corrected Density Functional Theory methods for simulating anharmonic vibrational properties. The isolated nucleobases and some of their dimers have been used as benchmark set for identifying a general, reliable and effective computational procedure based on fully anharmonic quantum mechanical computations of the vibrational wavenumbers and infrared intensities within the generalized second order vibrational perturbation theory (GVPT2) approach, combined with the cost-effective dispersion-corrected density functional B3LYP-D3, in conjunction with basis sets of

  4. Astrobiological Field Campaign to a Volcanosedimentary Mars Analogue Methane Producing Subsurface Protected Ecosystem: Imuruk Lake (Alaska

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    F. Gómez

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Viking missions reported adverse conditions for life in Mars surface. High hydrogen signal obtained by Mars orbiters has increased the interest in subsurface prospection as putative protected Mars environment with life potential. Permafrost has attracted considerable interest from an astrobiological point of view due to the recently reported results from the Mars exploration rovers. Considerable studies have been developed on extreme ecosystems and permafrost in particular, to evaluate the possibility of life on Mars and to test specific automated life detection instruments for space missions. The biodiversity of permafrost located on the Bering Land Bridge National Preserve has been studied as an example of subsurface protected niche of astrobiological interest. Different conventional (enrichment and isolation and molecular ecology techniques (cloning, fluorescence “in situ” probe hybridization, FISH have been used for isolation and bacterial identification.

  5. Space as a Tool for Astrobiology: Review and Recommendations for Experimentations in Earth Orbit and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cottin, Hervé; Kotler, Julia Michelle; Billi, Daniela; Cockell, Charles; Demets, René; Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Elsaesser, Andreas; d'Hendecourt, Louis; van Loon, Jack J. W. A.; Martins, Zita; Onofri, Silvano; Quinn, Richard C.; Rabbow, Elke; Rettberg, Petra; Ricco, Antonio J.; Slenzka, Klaus; de la Torre, Rosa; de Vera, Jean-Pierre; Westall, Frances; Carrasco, Nathalie; Fresneau, Aurélien; Kawaguchi, Yuko; Kebukawa, Yoko; Nguyen, Dara; Poch, Olivier; Saiagh, Kafila; Stalport, Fabien; Yamagishi, Akihiko; Yano, Hajime; Klamm, Benjamin A.

    2017-07-01

    The space environment is regularly used for experiments addressing astrobiology research goals. The specific conditions prevailing in Earth orbit and beyond, notably the radiative environment (photons and energetic particles) and the possibility to conduct long-duration measurements, have been the main motivations for developing experimental concepts to expose chemical or biological samples to outer space, or to use the reentry of a spacecraft on Earth to simulate the fall of a meteorite. This paper represents an overview of past and current research in astrobiology conducted in Earth orbit and beyond, with a special focus on ESA missions such as Biopan, STONE (on Russian FOTON capsules) and EXPOSE facilities (outside the International Space Station). The future of exposure platforms is discussed, notably how they can be improved for better science return, and how to incorporate the use of small satellites such as those built in cubesat format.

  6. Miniature GC: Minicell ion mobility spectrometer (IMS) for astrobiology planetary missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojiro, Daniel R.; Holland, Paul M.; Stimac, Robert M.; Kaye, William J.; Takeuchi, Norishige

    2006-01-01

    Astrobiology flight experiments require highly sensitive instrumentation for in situ analysis of volatile chemical species and minerals present in the atmospheres and surfaces of planets, moons, and asteroids. The complex mixtures encountered place a heavy burden on the analytical instrumentation to detect and identify all species present. The use of land rovers and balloon aero-rovers place additional emphasis on miniaturization of the analytical instrumentation. In addition, smaller instruments, using tiny amounts of consumables, allow the use of more instrumentation and/or longer mission life for stationary landers/laboratories. We describe here the development of a miniature GC - Minicell Ion Mobility Spectrometer (IMS) under development through NASA's Astrobiology Science and Technology Instrument Development (ASTID) Program and NASA's Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Program.

  7. Plant intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lipavská, Helena; Žárský, Viktor

    2009-01-01

    The concept of plant intelligence, as proposed by Anthony Trewavas, has raised considerable discussion. However, plant intelligence remains loosely defined; often it is either perceived as practically synonymous to Darwinian fitness, or reduced to a mere decorative metaphor. A more strict view can be taken, emphasizing necessary prerequisites such as memory and learning, which requires clarifying the definition of memory itself. To qualify as memories, traces of past events have to be not only stored, but also actively accessed. We propose a criterion for eliminating false candidates of possible plant intelligence phenomena in this stricter sense: an “intelligent” behavior must involve a component that can be approximated by a plausible algorithmic model involving recourse to stored information about past states of the individual or its environment. Re-evaluation of previously presented examples of plant intelligence shows that only some of them pass our test. “You were hurt?” Kumiko said, looking at the scar. Sally looked down. “Yeah.” “Why didn't you have it removed?” “Sometimes it's good to remember.” “Being hurt?” “Being stupid.”—(W. Gibson: Mona Lisa Overdrive) PMID:19816094

  8. Speech Intelligibility

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brand, Thomas

    Speech intelligibility (SI) is important for different fields of research, engineering and diagnostics in order to quantify very different phenomena like the quality of recordings, communication and playback devices, the reverberation of auditoria, characteristics of hearing impairment, benefit using hearing aids or combinations of these things.

  9. Mud Volcanoes - A New Class of Sites for Geological and Astrobiological Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, C.C.; Oehler, D.Z.; Baker, D.M.

    2009-01-01

    Mud volcanoes provide a unique low-temperature window into the Earth s subsurface - including the deep biosphere - and may prove to be significant sources of atmospheric methane. The identification of analogous features on Mars would provide an important new class of sites for geological and astrobiological exploration. We report new work suggesting that features in Acidalia Planitia are most consistent with their being mud volcanoes.

  10. Miniature GC-Minicell Ion Mobility Spectrometer (IMS) for In Situ Measurements in Astrobiology Planetary Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kojiro, Daniel R.; Stimac, Robert M.; Kaye, William J.; Holland, Paul M.; Takeuchi, Norishige

    2006-01-01

    Astrobiology flight experiments require highly sensitive instrumentation for in situ analysis of volatile chemical species and minerals present in the atmospheres and surfaces of planets, moons, and asteroids. The complex mixtures encountered place a heavy burden on the analytical instrumentation to detect and identify all species present. The use of land rovers and balloon aero-rovers place additional emphasis on miniaturization of the analytical instrumentation. In addition, smaller instruments, using tiny amounts of consumables, allow the use of more instrumentation and/or ionger mission life for stationary landers/laboratories. The miniCometary Ice and Dust Experiment (miniCIDEX), which combined Gas Chromatography (GC) with helium Ion Mobility Spectrometry (IMS), was capable of providing the wide range of analytical information required for Astrobiology missions. The IMS used here was based on the PCP model 111 IMS. A similar system, the Titan Ice and Dust Experiment (TIDE), was proposed as part of the Titan Orbiter Aerorover Mission (TOAM). Newer GC systems employing Micro Electro- Mechanical System (MEMS) based technology have greatly reduced both the size and resource requirements for space GCs. These smaller GCs, as well as the continuing miniaturization of Astrobiology analytical instruments in general, has highlighted the need for smaller, dry helium IMS systems. We describe here the development of a miniature, MEMS GC-IMS system (MEMS GC developed by Thorleaf Research Inc.), employing the MiniCell Ion Mobility Spectrometer (IMS), from Ion Applications Inc., developed through NASA's Astrobiology Science and Technology Instrument Development (ASTID) Program and NASA s Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Program.

  11. Astrobiology Outreach and the Nature of Science: The Role of Creativity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliver, Carol; Walter, Malcolm R.

    2012-01-01

    Abstract There is concern in many developed countries that school students are turning away from science. However, students may be choosing not to study science and dismissing the possibility of a scientific career because, in the junior secondary years, they gain a false view of science and the work of scientists. There is a disparity between science as it is portrayed at school and science as it is practiced. This paper describes a study to explore whether engaging in science through astrobiology outreach activities may improve students' understanding of the nature and processes of science, and how this may influence their interest in a career in science. The results suggest that the students attending these Mars research–related outreach activities are more interested in science than the average student but are lacking in understanding of aspects of the nature of science. A significant difference was detected between pre- and posttest understandings of some concepts of the nature of science. Key Words: Science education—School science—Creativity—Nature and processes of science—Attitudes—Astrobiology. Astrobiology 12, 1143–1153. PMID:23134090

  12. Role of the observer in the scientific process in astrobiology and in defining life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kolb, Vera M.

    2010-09-01

    The role of the observer in the scientific process has been studied in various contexts, including philosophical. It is notorious that the experiments are theory-loaded, that the observers pick and choose what they consider important based on their scientific and cultural backgrounds, and that the same phenomenon may be studied by different observers from different angles. In this paper we critically review various authors' views of the role of the observer in the scientific process, as they apply to astrobiology. Astrobiology is especially vulnerable to the role of the observer, since it is an interdisciplinary science. Thus, the backgrounds of the observers in the astrobiology field are even more heterogeneous than in the other sciences. The definition of life is also heavily influenced by the observer of life who injects his/her own prejudices in the process of observing and defining life. Such prejudices are often dictated by the state of science, instrumentation, and the science politics at the time, as well as the educational, scientific, cultural and other background of the observer.

  13. STARLIFE - An International Campaign to Study the Role of Galactic Cosmic Radiation in Astrobiological Model Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moeller, Ralf; Raguse, Marina; Leuko, Stefan; Berger, Thomas; Hellweg, Christine Elisabeth; Fujimori, Akira; Okayasu, Ryuichi; Horneck, Gerda

    2017-02-01

    In-depth knowledge regarding the biological effects of the radiation field in space is required for assessing the radiation risks in space. To obtain this knowledge, a set of different astrobiological model systems has been studied within the STARLIFE radiation campaign during six irradiation campaigns (2013-2015). The STARLIFE group is an international consortium with the aim to investigate the responses of different astrobiological model systems to the different types of ionizing radiation (X-rays, γ rays, heavy ions) representing major parts of the galactic cosmic radiation spectrum. Low- and high-energy charged particle radiation experiments have been conducted at the Heavy Ion Medical Accelerator in Chiba (HIMAC) facility at the National Institute of Radiological Sciences (NIRS) in Chiba, Japan. X-rays or γ rays were used as reference radiation at the German Aerospace Center (DLR, Cologne, Germany) or Beta-Gamma-Service GmbH (BGS, Wiehl, Germany) to derive the biological efficiency of different radiation qualities. All samples were exposed under identical conditions to the same dose and qualities of ionizing radiation (i) allowing a direct comparison between the tested specimens and (ii) providing information on the impact of the space radiation environment on currently used astrobiological model organisms.

  14. Microbes in the upper atmosphere and unique opportunities for astrobiology research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, David J

    2013-10-01

    Microbial taxa from every major biological lineage have been detected in Earth's upper atmosphere. The goal of this review is to communicate (1) relevant astrobiology questions that can be addressed with upper atmosphere microbiology studies and (2) available sampling methods for collecting microbes at extreme altitudes. Precipitation, mountain stations, airplanes, balloons, rockets, and satellites are all feasible routes for conducting aerobiology research. However, more efficient air samplers are needed, and contamination is also a pervasive problem in the field. Measuring microbial signatures without false positives in the upper atmosphere might contribute to sterilization and bioburden reduction methods for proposed astrobiology missions. Intriguingly, environmental conditions in the upper atmosphere resemble the surface conditions of Mars (extreme cold, hypobaria, desiccation, and irradiation). Whether terrestrial microbes are active in the upper atmosphere is an area of intense research interest. If, in fact, microbial metabolism, growth, or replication is achievable independent of Earth's surface, then the search for habitable zones on other worlds should be broadened to include atmospheres (e.g., the high-altitude clouds of Venus). Furthermore, viable cells in the heavily irradiated upper atmosphere of Earth could help identify microbial genes or enzymes that bestow radiation resistance. Compelling astrobiology questions on the origin of life (if the atmosphere synthesized organic aerosols), evolution (if airborne transport influenced microbial mutation rates and speciation), and panspermia (outbound or inbound) are also testable in Earth's upper atmosphere.

  15. Developing the critical thinking skills of astrobiology students through creative and scientific inquiry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foster, Jamie S; Lemus, Judith D

    2015-01-01

    Scientific inquiry represents a multifaceted approach to explore and understand the natural world. Training students in the principles of scientific inquiry can help promote the scientific learning process as well as help students enhance their understanding of scientific research. Here, we report on the development and implementation of a learning module that introduces astrobiology students to the concepts of creative and scientific inquiry, as well as provide practical exercises to build critical thinking skills. The module contained three distinct components: (1) a creative inquiry activity designed to introduce concepts regarding the role of creativity in scientific inquiry; (2) guidelines to help astrobiology students formulate and self-assess questions regarding various scientific content and imagery; and (3) a practical exercise where students were allowed to watch a scientific presentation and practice their analytical skills. Pre- and post-course surveys were used to assess the students' perceptions regarding creative and scientific inquiry and whether this activity impacted their understanding of the scientific process. Survey results indicate that the exercise helped improve students' science skills by promoting awareness regarding the role of creativity in scientific inquiry and building their confidence in formulating and assessing scientific questions. Together, the module and survey results confirm the need to include such inquiry-based activities into the higher education classroom, thereby helping students hone their critical thinking and question asking skill set and facilitating their professional development in astrobiology.

  16. The astrobiology primer: an outline of general knowledge--version 1, 2006.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Billings, L; Cameron, V; Claire, M; Dick, G J; Domagal-Goldman, S D; Javaux, E J; Johnson, O J; Laws, C; Race, M S; Rask, J; Rummel, J D; Schelble, R T; Vance, S

    2006-10-01

    The Astrobiology Primer has been created as a reference tool for those who are interested in the interdisciplinary field of astrobiology. The field incorporates many diverse research endeavors, but it is our hope that this slim volume will present the reader with all he or she needs to know to become involved and to understand, at least at a fundamental level, the state of the art. Each section includes a brief overview of a topic and a short list of readable and important literature for those interested in deeper knowledge. Because of the great diversity of material, each section was written by a different author with a different expertise. Contributors, authors, and editors are listed at the beginning, along with a list of those chapters and sections for which they were responsible. We are deeply indebted to the NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI), in particular to Estelle Dodson, David Morrison, Ed Goolish, Krisstina Wilmoth, and Rose Grymes for their continued enthusiasm and support. The Primer came about in large part because of NAI support for graduate student research, collaboration, and inclusion as well as direct funding. We have entitled the Primer version 1 in hope that it will be only the first in a series, whose future volumes will be produced every 3-5 years. This way we can insure that the Primer keeps up with the current state of research. We hope that it will be a great resource for anyone trying to stay abreast of an ever-changing field.

  17. On the abundance of extraterrestrial life after the Kepler mission

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wandel, Amri

    2015-07-01

    The data recently accumulated by the Kepler mission have demonstrated that small planets are quite common and that a significant fraction of all stars may have an Earth-like planet within their habitable zone. These results are combined with a Drake-equation formalism to derive the space density of biotic planets as a function of the relatively modest uncertainty in the astronomical data and of the (yet unknown) probability for the evolution of biotic life, F b. I suggest that F b may be estimated by future spectral observations of exoplanet biomarkers. If F b is in the range 0.001-1, then a biotic planet may be expected within 10-100 light years from Earth. Extending the biotic results to advanced life I derive expressions for the distance to putative civilizations in terms of two additional Drake parameters - the probability for evolution of a civilization, F c, and its average longevity. For instance, assuming optimistic probability values (F b~F c~1) and a broadcasting longevity of a few thousand years, the likely distance to the nearest civilizations detectable by searching for intelligent electromagnetic signals is of the order of a few thousand light years. The probability of detecting intelligent signals with present and future radio telescopes is calculated as a function of the Drake parameters. Finally, I describe how the detection of intelligent signals would constrain the Drake parameters.

  18. Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lawrence, David R; Palacios-González, César; Harris, John

    2016-04-01

    It seems natural to think that the same prudential and ethical reasons for mutual respect and tolerance that one has vis-à-vis other human persons would hold toward newly encountered paradigmatic but nonhuman biological persons. One also tends to think that they would have similar reasons for treating we humans as creatures that count morally in our own right. This line of thought transcends biological boundaries-namely, with regard to artificially (super)intelligent persons-but is this a safe assumption? The issue concerns ultimate moral significance: the significance possessed by human persons, persons from other planets, and hypothetical nonorganic persons in the form of artificial intelligence (AI). This article investigates why our possible relations to AI persons could be more complicated than they first might appear, given that they might possess a radically different nature to us, to the point that civilized or peaceful coexistence in a determinate geographical space could be impossible to achieve.

  19. The Societal Impact of Extraterrestrial Life: The Relevance of History and the Social Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven J.

    This chapter reviews past studies on the societal impact of extraterrestrial life and offers four related ways in which history is relevant to the subject: the history of impact thus far, analogical reasoning, impact studies in other areas of science and technology, and studies on the nature of discovery and exploration. We focus particularly on the promise and peril of analogical arguments, since they are by necessity widespread in the field. This chapter also summarizes the relevance of the social sciences, particularly anthropology and sociology, and concludes by taking a closer look at the possible impact of the discovery of extraterrestrial life on theology and philosophy. In undertaking this study we emphasize three bedrock principles: (1) we cannot predict the future; (2) society is not monolithic, implying many impacts depending on religion, culture and worldview; (3) the impact of any discovery of extraterrestrial life is scenario-dependent.

  20. Who owns the Moon? extraterrestrial aspects of land and mineral resources ownership

    CERN Document Server

    Pop, Virgiliu

    2008-01-01

    This work investigates the permissibility and viability of property rights on the celestial bodies, particularly the extraterrestrial aspects of land and mineral resources ownership. In lay terms, it aims to find an answer to the question "Who owns the Moon?" After critically analyzing and dismantling with legal arguments the trivial issue of sale of extraterrestrial real estate, the book addresses the apparent silence of the law in the field of landed property in outer space, scrutinizing whether the factual situation on the extraterrestrial realms calls for legal regulations. The legal status of asteroids and the relationship between appropriation under international law and civil law appropriation are duly examined, as well as different property patterns – such as the commons regime, the Common Heritage of the Mankind, and the Frontier paradigm. Virgiliu Pop is one of world's specialists in the area of space property rights. A member of the International Institute of Space Law, Virgiliu has authored seve...

  1. Intelligent Tutor

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-01-01

    NASA also seeks to advance American education by employing the technology utilization process to develop a computerized, artificial intelligence-based Intelligent Tutoring System (ITS) to help high school and college physics students. The tutoring system is designed for use with the lecture and laboratory portions of a typical physics instructional program. Its importance lies in its ability to observe continually as a student develops problem solutions and to intervene when appropriate with assistance specifically directed at the student's difficulty and tailored to his skill level and learning style. ITS originated as a project of the Johnson Space Center (JSC). It is being developed by JSC's Software Technology Branch in cooperation with Dr. R. Bowen Loftin at the University of Houston-Downtown. Program is jointly sponsored by NASA and ACOT (Apple Classrooms of Tomorrow). Other organizations providing support include Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, the National Research Council, Pennzoil Products Company and the George R. Brown Foundation. The Physics I class of Clear Creek High School, League City, Texas are providing the classroom environment for test and evaluation of the system. The ITS is a spinoff product developed earlier to integrate artificial intelligence into training/tutoring systems for NASA astronauts flight controllers and engineers.

  2. Carl Sagan and Joseph Shklovsky: Intelligent Life in the Universe

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kurt, Vladimir

    J. S. Shklovsky and Carl Sagan played an outstanding role in modern astronomy. Their names are well known not only to professional astronomers, but also to millions of educated people in many countries, which are interested in modern state of science research. Among these trends of modern science, which are difficult to define, are such problems, as the creation of Solar system, the origin of life on Earth, the evolution of living organisms on Earth from the simplest viruses to Homo Sapiens, the evolution of intelligence and technology. Finally, both outstanding scientists were deeply interested in the problem of SETI (Search Extraterrestrial Intelligence), i.e. search of extraterrestrial civilizations and methods of making contacts with them. And both scientists were high professionals in their fields. Joseph Shklovsky was a theoretical astronomer in all fields of modern astronomy (geophysics and physics of the upper atmosphere of the Earth, Sun and Solar Corona, Interplanetary Medium and Solar Wind, Interstellar Medium, Supernova and their remnants, the Galaxy and galaxies, Quasars and Cosmology). There is hardly a field in modern astrophysics (except perhaps the theory of the interior structure of stars), where Joseph Shklovsky has not l a bright stamp of his talent…

  3. Study of extraterrestrial material by means of a high sensitive mass spectrometer, 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Arai, O.; Kaneko, K.; Kobayashi, K.; Shimamura, T.

    1975-01-01

    In this report it is described about a high sensitive mass spectrometer for measurement of isotopic abundance of extraterrestrial material. Detecting isotopic anomalies in extraterrestrial matter induced by cosmic ray or solar wind irradiation, we can obtain many informations about interplanetary and/or intersteller space. For this purpose we reform the mass spectrometer of Low Energy Physics Division of INS to improve the sensitivity and the resolution. In section I--VI some improvements of the mass spectrometer (vacuum system, ion source, collector etc.) are described. In section VII--X newly developed ion counting system is discussed. (auth.)

  4. Intelligent Design and Intelligent Failure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jerman, Gregory

    2015-01-01

    Good Evening, my name is Greg Jerman and for nearly a quarter century I have been performing failure analysis on NASA's aerospace hardware. During that time I had the distinct privilege of keeping the Space Shuttle flying for two thirds of its history. I have analyzed a wide variety of failed hardware from simple electrical cables to cryogenic fuel tanks to high temperature turbine blades. During this time I have found that for all the time we spend intelligently designing things, we need to be equally intelligent about understanding why things fail. The NASA Flight Director for Apollo 13, Gene Kranz, is best known for the expression "Failure is not an option." However, NASA history is filled with failures both large and small, so it might be more accurate to say failure is inevitable. It is how we react and learn from our failures that makes the difference.

  5. Advanced Curation Activities at NASA: Implications for Astrobiological Studies of Future Sample Collections

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, F. M.; Evans, C. A.; Fries, M. D.; Harrington, A. D.; Regberg, A. B.; Snead, C. J.; Zeigler, R. A.

    2017-01-01

    The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office (henceforth referred to herein as NASA Curation Office) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is responsible for curating all of NASA's extraterrestrial samples. Under the governing document, NASA Policy Directive (NPD) 7100.10F JSC is charged with curation of all extraterrestrial material under NASA control, including future NASA missions. The Directive goes on to define Curation as including documentation, preservation, preparation, and distribution of samples for re-search, education, and public outreach. Here we briefly describe NASA's astromaterials collections and our ongoing efforts related to enhancing the utility of our current collections as well as our efforts to prepare for future sample return missions. We collectively refer to these efforts as advanced curation.

  6. The Impact of Discovering Life beyond Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Steven J.

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: astrobiology and society Steven J. Dick; Part I. Motivations and Approaches. How Do We Frame the Problems of Discovery and Impact?: Introduction; 1. Current approaches to finding life beyond earth, and what happens if we do Seth Shostak; 2. The philosophy of astrobiology: the Copernican and Darwinian presuppositions Iris Fry; 3. History, discovery, analogy: three approaches to the impact of discovering life beyond earth Steven J. Dick; 4. Silent impact: why the discovery of extraterrestrial life should be silent Clément Vidal; Part II. Transcending Anthropocentrism. How Do We Move beyond our Own Preconceptions of Life, Intelligence and Culture?: Introduction; 5. The landscape of life Dirk Schulze-Makuch; 6. The landscape of intelligence Lori Marino; 7. Universal biology: assessing universality from a single example Carlos Mariscal; 8. Equating culture, civilization, and moral development in imagining extraterrestrial intelligence: anthropocentric assumptions? John Traphagan; 9. Communicating with the other: infinity, geometry, and universal math and science Douglas Vakoch; Part III. Philosophical, Theological, and Moral Impact. How Do We Comprehend the Cultural Challenges Raised by Discovery?: Introduction; 10. Life, intelligence and the pursuit of value in cosmic evolution Mark Lupisella; 11. 'Klaatu barada nikto' - or, do they really think like us? Michael Ruse; 12. Alien minds Susan Schneider; 13. The moral subject of astrobiology: guideposts for exploring our ethical and political responsibilities towards extraterrestrial life Elspeth Wilson and Carol Cleland; 14. Astrobiology and theology Robin Lovin; 15. Would you baptize an extraterrestrial? Guy Consolmagno, SJ; Part IV. Practical Considerations: How Should Society Prepare for Discovery - and Non-Discovery?: Introduction; 16. Is there anything new about astrobiology and society? Jane Maienschein; 17. Evaluating preparedness for the discovery of extraterrestrial life: considering potential

  7. Planetary Atmosphere and Surfaces Chamber (PASC: A Platform to Address Various Challenges in Astrobiology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eva Mateo-Marti

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available The study of planetary environments of astrobiological interest has become a major challenge. Because of the obvious technical and economical limitations on in situ planetary exploration, laboratory simulations are one of the most feasible research options to make advances both in planetary science and in developing a consistent description of the origin of life. With this objective in mind, we applied vacuum technology to the design of versatile vacuum chambers devoted to the simulation of planetary atmospheres’ conditions. These vacuum chambers are able to simulate atmospheres and surface temperatures representative of the majority of planetary objects, and they are especially appropriate for studying the physical, chemical and biological changes induced in a particular sample by in situ irradiation or physical parameters in a controlled environment. Vacuum chambers are a promising potential tool in several scientific and technological fields, such as engineering, chemistry, geology and biology. They also offer the possibility of discriminating between the effects of individual physical parameters and selected combinations thereof. The implementation of our vacuum chambers in combination with analytical techniques was specifically developed to make feasible the in situ physico-chemical characterization of samples. Many wide-ranging applications in astrobiology are detailed herein to provide an understanding of the potential and flexibility of these experimental systems. Instruments and engineering technology for space applications could take advantage of our environment-simulation chambers for sensor calibration. Our systems also provide the opportunity to gain a greater understanding of the chemical reactivity of molecules on surfaces under different environments, thereby leading to a greater understanding of interface processes in prebiotic chemical reactions and facilitating studies of UV photostability and photochemistry on surfaces

  8. Science Applications of a Multispectral Microscopic Imager for the Astrobiological Exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Farmer, Jack D.; Sellar, R. Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A.; Blaney, Diana L.

    2014-01-01

    Abstract Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars. Key Words: Mars—Microscopic imager—Multispectral imaging

  9. The cosmic gorilla effect or the problem of undetected non terrestrial intelligent signals

    Science.gov (United States)

    G. De la Torre, Gabriel; Garcia, Manuel A.

    2018-05-01

    This article points to a long lasting problem in space research and cosmology, the problem of undetected signs of non terrestrial life and civilizations. We intentionally avoid the term extraterrestrial as we consider other possibilities that may arise but not fall strictly within the extraterrestrial scope. We discuss the role of new physics including dark matter and string theory in the search for life and other non terrestrial intelligence. A new classification for non terrestrial civilizations with three types and five dimensions is also provided. We also explain how our own neurophysiology, psychology and consciousness can play a major role in this search of non terrestrial civilizations task and how they have been neglected up to this date. To test this, 137 adults were evaluated using the cognitive reflection test, an attention/awareness questionnaire and a visuospatial searching task with aerial view images to determine the presence of inattentional blindness.

  10. Finding Extraterrestrial Life Using Ground-based High-dispersion Spectroscopy

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Snellen, I.A.G.; Kok, R.; Poole, le R.S.; Brogi, M.; Birkby, J.L.

    2013-01-01

    Exoplanet observations promise one day to unveil the presence of extraterrestrial life. Atmospheric compounds in strong chemical disequilibrium would point to large-scale biological activity just as oxygen and methane do in the Earth's atmosphere. The cancellation of both the Terrestrial Planet

  11. SPE (tm) regenerative hydrogen/oxygen fuel cells for extraterrestrial surface and microgravity applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mcelroy, J. F.

    1990-01-01

    Viewgraphs on SPE regenerative hydrogen/oxygen fuel cells for extraterrestrial surface and microgravity applications are presented. Topics covered include: hydrogen-oxygen regenerative fuel cell energy storage system; electrochemical cell reactions; SPE cell voltage stability; passive water removal SPE fuel cell; fuel cell performance; SPE water electrolyzers; hydrophobic oxygen phase separator; hydrophilic/electrochemical hydrogen phase separator; and unitized regenerative fuel cell.

  12. The Younger Dryas climate change: was it caused by an extraterrestrial impact?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Hoesel, A.

    2014-01-01

    The Younger Dryas is an abrupt cooling event at the end of the last Glacial associated to a change in ocean circulation. According to the Younger Dryas impact hypothesis, however, one or more extraterrestrial airbursts or impacts occuring around 12.8 ka caused the Younger Dryas cooling, extensive

  13. An Astrobiological Experiment to Explore the Habitability of Tidally Locked M-Dwarf Planets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Angerhausen, Daniel; Sapers, Haley; Simoncini, Eugenio; Lutz, Stefanie; Alexandre, Marcelo da Rosa; Galante, Douglas

    2014-04-01

    We present a summary of a three-year academic research proposal drafted during the Sao Paulo Advanced School of Astrobiology (SPASA) to prepare for upcoming observations of tidally locked planets orbiting M-dwarf stars. The primary experimental goal of the suggested research is to expose extremophiles from analogue environments to a modified space simulation chamber reproducing the environmental parameters of a tidally locked planet in the habitable zone of a late-type star. Here we focus on a description of the astronomical analysis used to define the parameters for this climate simulation.

  14. Geology of McLaughlin Crater, Mars: A Unique Lacustrine Setting with Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michalski, J. R.; Niles, P. B.; Rogers, A. D.; Johnson, S. S.; Ashley, J. W.; Golombek, M. P.

    2016-01-01

    McLaughlin crater is a 92-kmdiameter Martian impact crater that contained an ancient carbonate- and clay mineral-bearing lake in the Late Noachian. Detailed analysis of the geology within this crater reveals a complex history with important implications for astrobiology [1]. The basin contains evidence for, among other deposits, hydrothermally altered rocks, delta deposits, deep water (>400 m) sediments, and potentially turbidites. The geology of this basin stands in stark contrast to that of some ancient basins that contain evidence for transient aqueous processes and airfall sediments (e.g. Gale Crater [2-3]).

  15. Micro-XRF : Elemental Analysis for In Situ Geology and Astrobiology Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allwood, Abigail; Hodyss, Robert; Wade, Lawrence

    2012-01-01

    The ability to make close-up measurements of rock chemistry is one of the most fundamental tools for astrobiological exploration of Mars and other rocky bodies of the solar system. When conducting surface-based exploration, lithochemical measurements provide critical data that enable interpretation of the local geology, which in turn is vital for determining habitability and searching for evidence of life. The value of lithochemical measurements for geological interpretations has been repeatedly demonstrated with virtually every landed Mars mission over the past four decades.

  16. Lunar Radio Telescopes: A Staged Approach for Lunar Science, Heliophysics, Astrobiology, Cosmology, and Exploration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lazio, Joseph; Bowman, Judd D.; Burns, Jack O.; Farrell, W. M.; Jones, D. L.; Kasper, J. C.; MacDowall, R. J.; Stewart, K. P.; Weiler, K.

    2012-01-01

    Observations with radio telescopes address key problems in cosmology, astrobiology, heliophysics, and planetary science including the first light in the Universe (Cosmic Dawn), magnetic fields of extrasolar planets, particle acceleration mechanisms, and the lunar ionosphere. The Moon is a unique science platform because it allows access to radio frequencies that do not penetrate the Earth's ionosphere and because its far side is shielded from intense terrestrial emissions. The instrument packages and infrastructure needed for radio telescopes can be transported and deployed as part of Exploration activities, and the resulting science measurements may inform Exploration (e.g., measurements of lunar surface charging). An illustrative roadmap for the staged deployment of lunar radio telescopes

  17. Report on a NASA astrobiology institute-funded workshop without walls: stellar stoichiometry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Desch, Steven J; Young, Patrick A; Anbar, Ariel D; Hinkel, Natalie; Pagano, Michael; Truitt, Amanda; Turnbull, Margaret

    2014-04-01

    We report on the NASA Astrobiology Institute-funded Workshop Without Walls entitled "Stellar Stoichiometry," hosted by the "Follow the Elements" team at Arizona State University in April 2013. We describe several innovative practices we adopted that made effective use of the Workshop Without Walls videoconferencing format, including use of information technologies, assignment of scientific tasks before the workshop, and placement of graduate students in positions of authority. A companion article will describe the scientific results arising from the workshop. Our intention here is to suggest best practices for future Workshops Without Walls.

  18. Business Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Petersen, Anders

    2001-01-01

    Cílem této bakalářské práce je seznámení s Business Intelligence a zpracování vývojového trendu, který ovlivňuje podobu řešení Business Intelligence v podniku ? Business Activity Monitoring. Pro zpracování tohoto tématu byla použita metoda studia odborných pramenů, a to jak v českém, tak v anglickém jazyce. Hlavním přínosem práce je ucelený, v českém jazyce zpracovaný materiál pojednávající o Business Activity Monitoring. Práce je rozdělena do šesti hlavních kapitol. Prvních pět je věnováno p...

  19. Web Intelligence and Artificial Intelligence in Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devedzic, Vladan

    2004-01-01

    This paper surveys important aspects of Web Intelligence (WI) in the context of Artificial Intelligence in Education (AIED) research. WI explores the fundamental roles as well as practical impacts of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and advanced Information Technology (IT) on the next generation of Web-related products, systems, services, and…

  20. Tracers of the Extraterrestrial Component in Sediments and Inferences for Earth's Accretion History

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kyte, Frank T.

    2003-01-01

    The study of extraterrestrial matter in sediments began with the discovery of cosmic spherules during the HMS Challenger Expedition (1873-1876), but has evolved into a multidisciplinary study of the chemical, physical, and isotopic study of sediments. Extraterrestrial matter in sediments comes mainly from dust and large impactors from the asteroid belt and comets. What we know of the nature of these source materials comes from the study of stratospheric dust particles, cosmic spherules, micrometeorites, meteorites, and astronomical observations. The most common chemical tracers of extraterrestrial matter in sediments are the siderophile elements, most commonly iridium and other platinum group elements. Physical tracers include cosmic and impact spherules, Ni-rich spinels, meteorites, fossil meteorites, and ocean-impact melt debris. Three types of isotopic systems have been used to trace extraterrestrial matter. Osmium isotopes cannot distinguish chondritic from mantle sources, but provide a useful tool in modeling long-term accretion rates. Helium isotopes can be used to trace the long-term flux of the fine fraction of the interplanetary dust complex. Chromium isotopes can provide unequivocal evidence of an extraterrestrial source for sediments with high concentrations of meteoritic Cr. The terrestrial history of impacts, as recorded in sediments, is still poorly understood. Helium isotopes, multiple Ir anomalies, spherule beds, and craters all indicate a comet shower in the late Eocene. The Cretaceous-Tertiary boundary impact event appears to have been caused by a single carbonaceous chondrite projectile, most likely of asteroid origin. Little is known of the impact record in sediments from the rest of the Phanerozoic. Several impact deposits are known in the Precambrian, including several possible mega-impacts in the Early Archean.

  1. Intelligence and negotiating

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    George, D.G.

    1990-01-01

    This paper discusses the role of US intelligence during arms control negotiations between 1982 and 1987. It also covers : the orchestration of intelligence projects; an evaluation of the performance of intelligence activities; the effect intelligence work had on actual arms negotiations; and suggestions for improvements in the future

  2. Intelligent products : A survey

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Meyer, G.G.; Främling, K.; Holmström, J.

    This paper presents an overview of the field of Intelligent Products. As Intelligent Products have many facets, this paper is mainly focused on the concept behind Intelligent Products, the technical foundations, and the achievable practical goals of Intelligent Products. A novel classification of

  3. Intelligence Issues for Congress

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-04-23

    open source information— osint (newspapers...by user agencies. Section 1052 of the Intelligence Reform Act expressed the sense of Congress that there should be an open source intelligence ...center to coordinate the collection, analysis, production, and dissemination of open source intelligence to other intelligence agencies. An Open Source

  4. Intelligent Governmentality

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Willem de Lint

    2008-10-01

    Full Text Available Recently, within liberal democracies, the post-Westphalian consolidation of security and intelligence has ushered in the normalization not only of security in ‘securitization’ but also of intelligence in what is proposed here as ‘intelligencification.’ In outlining the features of intelligencified governance, my aim is to interrogate the view that effects or traces, and productivity rather than negation is as persuasive as commonly thought by the constructivists. After all, counter-intelligence is both about purging and reconstructing the archive for undisclosed values. In practice, what is being normalized is the authorized and legalized use of release and retention protocols of politically actionable information. The intelligencification of governmentality affords a sovereignty shell-game or the instrumentalization of sovereign power by interests that are dependent on, yet often inimical to, the power of state, national, and popular sovereignty. On voit le politique et le social comme dépendant de contingences exclusives. Récemment, au sein des démocraties libérales, la consolidation de la sécurité et des services de renseignements de sécurité qui a suivi les traités de la Westphalie a donné lieu à la normalisation non seulement de la sécurité en «sécurisation» mais aussi des services de renseignements de sécurité en ce qui est proposé ici comme «intelligencification» [terme anglais créé par l’auteur, dérivé du mot anglais «intelligence» dans le sens de renseignements des écurité]. En particulier, ce que l’on normalise dans le but de contourner des contingences exclusives est l’utilisation autorisée et légalisée de protocoles de communication et de rétention d’information qui, politiquement, pourrait mener à des poursuites. En esquissant les traits de la gouvernance «intelligencifiée», mon but est d’interroger le point de vue que les effets ou les traces, et la productivité plutôt que la

  5. Pathogen intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael eSteinert

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Different species inhabit different sensory worlds and thus have evolved diverse means of processing information, learning and memory. In the escalated arms race with host defense, each pathogenic bacterium not only has evolved its individual cellular sensing and behaviour, but also collective sensing, interbacterial communication, distributed information processing, joint decision making, dissociative behaviour, and the phenotypic and genotypic heterogeneity necessary for epidemiologic success. Moreover, pathogenic populations take advantage of dormancy strategies and rapid evolutionary speed, which allow them to save co-generated intelligent traits in a collective genomic memory. This review discusses how these mechanisms add further levels of complexity to bacterial pathogenicity and transmission, and how mining for these mechanisms could help to develop new anti-infective strategies.

  6. Intelligent Routines

    CERN Document Server

    Anastassiou, George A

    Intelligent Routines II: Solving Linear Algebra and Differential Geometry with Sage” contains numerous of examples and problems as well as many unsolved problems. This book extensively applies the successful software Sage, which can be found free online http://www.sagemath.org/. Sage is a recent and popular software for mathematical computation, available freely and simple to use. This book is useful to all applied scientists in mathematics, statistics and engineering, as well for late undergraduate and graduate students of above subjects. It is the first such book in solving symbolically with Sage problems in Linear Algebra and Differential Geometry. Plenty of SAGE applications are given at each step of the exposition.

  7. Life Out There: An Astrobiological Multimedia Experience for the Digital Planetarium

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, K. C.; Grinspoon, D.

    2013-04-01

    Planetariums have a long history of experimentation with audio and visuals to create new multimedia experiences. We report on a series of innovative experiences in the Gates Planetarium at the Denver Museum of Nature & Science in 2009-2011 combining live performances of music and navigation through scientific visualizations. The Life Out There productions featured a story showcasing astrobiology concepts at scales ranging from galactic to molecular, and told using VJ-ing of immersive visualizations and musical performances from the House Band to the Universe. Funded by the NASA Astrobiology Institute's JPL-Titan Team, these hour-long shows were broken into four separate themed musical movements, with an improvisatory mix of music, dome visuals, and spoken science narrative which resulted in no two performances being exactly alike. Post-performance dissemination is continuing via a recorded version of the performance available as a DVD and online streaming video. Written evaluations from visitors who were present at the live shows reveal high satisfaction, while one of the Life Out There concerts was used to inaugurate a new evening program to draw in a younger audience demographic to DMNS.

  8. From Extremophiles to Star Trek, The Use of Synthetic Biology in Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rothschild, Lynn J.; Fujishima, Kosuke; Lima, Ivan Paulino; Gentry, Diana; Phan, Samson; Navarette, Jesica; Palmer, Jesse; Burnier, Andre

    2012-01-01

    Synthetic biology – the design and construction of new biological parts and systems and the redesign of existing ones for useful purposes – has the potential to transform fields from pharmaceuticals to fuels. Our lab has focused on the potential of synthetic biology to revolutionize all three major parts of astrobiology: Where do we come from? Where are we going? and Are we alone? For the first and third, synthetic biology is allowing us to answer whether the evolutionary narrative that has played out on planet earth is likely to have been unique or universal. For example, in our lab we are re-evolving biotic functions using only the most thermodynamically stable amino acids in order to understand potential capabilities of an early organism with a limited repertoire of amino acids. In the future synthetic biology will play an increasing role in human activities both on earth, in fields as diverse as bio-mining, human health and the industrial production of novel bio-composites. Beyond earth, we will rely increasingly on biologically-provided life support, as we have throughout our evolutionary history. In order to do this, the field will build on two of the great contributions of astrobiology: studies of the origin of life and life in extreme environments.

  9. The Aouda.X space suit simulator and its applications to astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groemer, Gernot E; Hauth, Stefan; Luger, Ulrich; Bickert, Klaus; Sattler, Birgit; Hauth, Eva; Föger, Daniel; Schildhammer, Daniel; Agerer, Christian; Ragonig, Christoph; Sams, Sebastian; Kaineder, Felix; Knoflach, Martin

    2012-02-01

    We have developed the space suit simulator Aouda.X, which is capable of reproducing the physical and sensory limitations a flight-worthy suit would have on Mars. Based upon a Hard-Upper-Torso design, it has an advanced human-machine interface and a sensory network connected to an On-Board Data Handling system to increase the situational awareness in the field. Although the suit simulator is not pressurized, the physical forces that lead to a reduced working envelope and physical performance are reproduced with a calibrated exoskeleton. This allows us to simulate various pressure regimes from 0.3-1 bar. Aouda.X has been tested in several laboratory and field settings, including sterile sampling at 2800 m altitude inside a glacial ice cave and a cryochamber at -110°C, and subsurface tests in connection with geophysical instrumentation relevant to astrobiology, including ground-penetrating radar, geoacoustics, and drilling. The communication subsystem allows for a direct interaction with remote science teams via telemetry from a mission control center. Aouda.X as such is a versatile experimental platform for studying Mars exploration activities in a high-fidelity Mars analog environment with a focus on astrobiology and operations research that has been optimized to reduce the amount of biological cross contamination. We report on the performance envelope of the Aouda.X system and its operational limitations.

  10. The Astrobiology of the Subsurface: Caves and Rock Fracture Habitats on Earth, Mars and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope J.

    2017-01-01

    The Astrobiology of the Subsurface: Exploring Cave Habitats on Earth, Mars and Beyond. We are using the spectacular underground landscapes of Earth caves as models for the subsurfaces of other planets. Caves have been detected on the Moon and Mars and are strongly suspected for other bodies in the Solar System including some of the ice covered Ocean Worlds that orbit gas giant planets. The caves we explore and study include many extreme conditions of relevance to planetary astrobiology exploration including high and low temperatures, gas atmospheres poisonous to humans but where exotic microbes can fluorish, highly acidic or salty fluids, heavy metals, and high background radiation levels. Some cave microorganisms eat their way through bedrock, some live in battery acid conditions, some produce unusual biominerals and rare cave formations, and many produce compounds of potential pharmaceutical and industrial significance. We study these unique lifeforms and the physical and chemical biosignatures that they leave behind. Such traces can be used to provide a Field Guide to Unknown Organisms for developing life detection space missions.

  11. EXPOSE-E: an ESA astrobiology mission 1.5 years in space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rabbow, Elke; Rettberg, Petra; Barczyk, Simon; Bohmeier, Maria; Parpart, André; Panitz, Corinna; Horneck, Gerda; von Heise-Rotenburg, Ralf; Hoppenbrouwers, Tom; Willnecker, Rainer; Baglioni, Pietro; Demets, René; Dettmann, Jan; Reitz, Guenther

    2012-05-01

    The multi-user facility EXPOSE-E was designed by the European Space Agency to enable astrobiology research in space (low-Earth orbit). On 7 February 2008, EXPOSE-E was carried to the International Space Station (ISS) on the European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF) platform in the cargo bay of Space Shuttle STS-122 Atlantis. The facility was installed at the starboard cone of the Columbus module by extravehicular activity, where it remained in space for 1.5 years. EXPOSE-E was returned to Earth with STS-128 Discovery on 12 September 2009 for subsequent sample analysis. EXPOSE-E provided accommodation in three exposure trays for a variety of astrobiological test samples that were exposed to selected space conditions: either to space vacuum, solar electromagnetic radiation at >110 nm and cosmic radiation (trays 1 and 3) or to simulated martian surface conditions (tray 2). Data on UV radiation, cosmic radiation, and temperature were measured every 10 s and downlinked by telemetry. A parallel mission ground reference (MGR) experiment was performed on ground with a parallel set of hardware and samples under simulated space conditions. EXPOSE-E performed a successful 1.5-year mission in space.

  12. Intelligence: Real or artificial?

    OpenAIRE

    Schlinger, Henry D.

    1992-01-01

    Throughout the history of the artificial intelligence movement, researchers have strived to create computers that could simulate general human intelligence. This paper argues that workers in artificial intelligence have failed to achieve this goal because they adopted the wrong model of human behavior and intelligence, namely a cognitive essentialist model with origins in the traditional philosophies of natural intelligence. An analysis of the word “intelligence” suggests that it originally r...

  13. Innovation in Extraterrestrial Service Systems - A Challenge for Service Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bergner, David

    2010-01-01

    This presentation was prepared at the invitation of Professor Yukio Ohsawa, Department of Systems Innovation, School of Engineering, The University of Tokyo, for delivery at the International Workshop on Innovating Service Systems, sponsored by the Japanese Society of Artificial Intelligence (JSAI) as part of the JSAI Internation Symposium on AI, 2010. It offers several challenges for Service Science and Service Innovation. the goal of the presentation is to stimulate thinking about how service systems viII evolve in the future, as human society advances from its terrestrial base toward a permanent presence in space. First we will consider the complexity of the International Space Station (ISS) as it is today, with particular emphasis of its research facilities, and focus on a current challenge - to maximize the utilization of ISS research facilities for the benefit of society. After briefly reviewing the basic principles of Service Science, we will discuss the potential application of Service Innovation methodology to this challenge. Then we viII consider how game-changing technologies - in particular Synthetic Biology - could accelerate the pace of sociocultural evolution and consequently, the progression of human society into space. We will use this provocative vision to advance thinking about how the emerging field of Service Science, Management, and Engineering (SSME) might help us anticipate and better handle the challenges of this inevitable evolutionary process.

  14. Study of extraterrestrial disposal of radioactive wastes. Part 1: Space transportation and destination considerations for extraterrestrial disposal of radioactive wastes. [feasibility of using space shuttle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thompson, R. L.; Ramler, J. R.; Stevenson, S. M.

    1974-01-01

    A feasibility study of extraterrestrial disposal of radioactive waste is reported. This report covers the initial work done on only one part of the NASA study, that evaluates and compares possible space destinations and space transportation systems. The currently planned space shuttle was found to be more cost effective than current expendable launch vehicles by about a factor of 2. The space shuttle requires a third stage to perform the waste disposal missions. Depending on the particular mission, this third stage could be either a reusable space tug or an expendable stage such as a Centaur.

  15. Origin of spherule samples recovered from antarctic ice sheet-Terrestrial or extraterrestrial?

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Sekimoto, Shun; Takamiya, Koichi; Shibata, Seiichi [Research Reactor Institute, Kyoto University, Osaka (Japan); Kobayashi, Takayuki [College of Humanities and Sciences, Nihon University, Tokyo (Japan); Ebihara, Mitsuru [Dept. of Chemistry, Tokyo Metropolitan University, Tokyo (Japan)

    2016-04-15

    Thirty-eight spherules from the Antarctic ice sheet were analyzed using neutron activation analysis under two different conditions to investigate their origin. In almost all of these spherules, the contents of iron, cobalt, and manganese were determined to be 31% to 88%, 17 mg/kg to 810 mg/kg, and 0.017% to 7%, respectively. A detectable iridium content of 0.84 mg/kg was found in only one spherule, which was judged to be extraterrestrial in origin. A comparison of elemental compositions of the Antarctic spherules analyzed in this study with those of deep-sea sediment spherules and those of terrestrial materials revealed that most of the Antarctic spherules except for the sample in which iridium was detected could not be identified as extraterrestrial in origin.

  16. Limits on diffuse fluxes of high energy extraterrestrial neutrinos with the AMANDA-B10 detector

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ahrens, J.; Bai, X.; Barwick, S.W.; Bay, R.C.; Becka, T.; Becker, K.-H.; Bernardini, E.; Bertrand, D.; Binon, F.; Boeser, S.; Botner, O.; Bouchta, A.; Bouhali, O.; Burgess, T.; Carius, S.; Castermans, T.; Chirkin, D.; Conrad, J.; Cooley, J.; Cowen, D.F.; Davour, A.; De Clercq, C.; DeYoung, T.; Desiati, P.; Doksus, P.; Ekstrom, P.; Feser, T.; Gaisser, T.K.; Ganugapati, R.; Gaug, M.; Geenen, H.; Gerhardt, L.; Goldschmidt, A.; Hallgren, A.; Halzen, F.; Hanson, K.; Hardtke, R.; Hauschildt, T.; Hellwig, M.; Herquet, P.; Hill, G.C.; Hulth, P.O.; Hughey, B.; Hultqvist, K.; Hundertmark, S.; Jacobsen, J.; Karle, A.; Kuehn, K.; Kim, J.; Kopke, L.; Kowalski, M.; Lamoureux, J.I.; Leich, H.; Leuthold, M.; Lindahl, P.; Liubarsky, I.; Madsen, J.; Mandli, K.; Marciniewski, P.; Matis, H.S.; McParland, C.P.; Messarius, T.; Miller, T.C.; Minaeva, Y.; Miocinovic, P.; Mock, P.C.; Morse, R.; Neunhoffer, T.; Niessen, P.; Nygren, D.R.; Ogelman, H.; Olbrechts, P.; Perez de los Heros, C.; Pohl, A.C.; Porrata, R.; Price, P.B.; Przybylski, G.T.; Rawlins, K.; Resconi, E.; Rhode, W.; Ribordy, M.; Richter, S.; Rodriguez Martino, J.; Romenesko, P.; Ross, D.; Sander, H.-G.; Schlenstedt, S.; Schinarakis, K.; Schmidt, T.; Schneider, D.; Schwarz, R.; Silvestri, A.; Solarz, M.; Stamatikos, M.; Spiczak, G.M.; Spiering, C.; Steele, D.; Steffen, P.; Stokstad, R.G.; Sulanke, K.-H.; Taboada, I.; Tilav, S.; Wagner, W.; Walck, C.; Wang, Y.-R.; Wiebusch, C.H.; Wiedemann, C.; Wischnewski, R.; Wissing, H.; Woschnagg, K.; Wu, W.; Yodh, G.; Young, S.

    2003-01-01

    Data from the AMANDA-B10 detector taken during the austral winter of 1997 have been searched for a diffuse flux of high energy extraterrestrial muon-neutrinos, as predicted from, e.g., the sum of all active galaxies in the universe. This search yielded no excess events above those expected from the background atmospheric neutrinos, leading to upper limits on the extraterrestrial neutrino flux. For an assumed E -2 spectrum, a 90 percent classical confidence level upper limit has been placed at a level E 2 Phi(E) = 8.4 x 10 -7 GeV cm -2 s -1 1 sr -1 (for a predominant neutrino energy range 6-1000 TeV) which is the most restrictive bound placed by any neutrino detector. When specific predicted spectral forms are considered, it is found that some are excluded

  17. Life from the stars?. [extraterrestrial sources contributing to chemical evolution on Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pendleton, Yvonne J.; Cruikshank, Dale P.

    1994-01-01

    Scientists are now seriously considering the possibility that organic matter from interstellar space could have influenced, or even spurred, the origin of life on Earth. Various aspects of chemical evolution are discussed along with possible extraterrestrial sources responsible for contributing to Earth's life-producing, chemical composition. Specific topics covered include the following: interstellar matter, molecular clouds, asteroid dust, organic molecules in our solar system, interplanetary dust and comets, meteoritic composition, and organic-rich solar-system bodies.

  18. The weak force and SETH: The search for Extra-Terrestrial Homochirality

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    MacDermott, A.J.

    1996-01-01

    We propose that a search for extra-terrestrial life can be approached as a Search for Extra-Terrestrial Homochirality emdash SETH. Homochirality is probably a pre-condition for life, so a chiral influence may be required to get life started. We explain how the weak force mediated by the Z 0 boson gives rise to a small parity-violating energy difference (PVED) between enantiomers, and discuss how the resulting small excess of the more stable enantiomer may be amplified to homochirality. Titan and comets are good places to test for emerging pre-biotic homochirality, while on Mars there may be traces of homochirality as a relic of extinct life. Our calculations of the PVED show that the natural L-amino acids are indeed more stable than their enantiomers, as are several key D-sugars and right-hand helical DNA. Thiosubstituted DNA analogues show particularly large PVEDs. L-quartz is also more stable than D-quartz, and we believe that further crystal counts should be carried out to establish whether reported excesses of L quartz are real. Finding extra-terrestrial molecules of the same hand as on Earth would lend support to the universal chiral influence of the weak force. We describe a novel miniaturized space polarimeter, called the SETH Cigar, which we hope to use to detect optical rotation on other planets. Moving parts are avoided by replacing the normal rotating polarizer by multiple fixed polarizers at different angles as in the eye of the bee. Even if we do not find the same hand as on Earth, finding extra-terrestrial optical rotation would be of enormous importance as it would still be the homochiral signature of life. copyright 1996 American Institute of Physics

  19. The weak force and SETH: The search for Extra-Terrestrial Homochirality

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacDermott, Alexandra J.

    1996-07-01

    We propose that a search for extra-terrestrial life can be approached as a Search for Extra-Terrestrial Homochirality-SETH. Homochirality is probably a pre-condition for life, so a chiral influence may be required to get life started. We explain how the weak force mediated by the Z0 boson gives rise to a small parity-violating energy difference (PVED) between enantiomers, and discuss how the resulting small excess of the more stable enantiomer may be amplified to homochirality. Titan and comets are good places to test for emerging pre-biotic homochirality, while on Mars there may be traces of homochirality as a relic of extinct life. Our calculations of the PVED show that the natural L-amino acids are indeed more stable than their enantiomers, as are several key D-sugars and right-hand helical DNA. Thiosubstituted DNA analogues show particularly large PVEDs. L-quartz is also more stable than D-quartz, and we believe that further crystal counts should be carried out to establish whether reported excesses of L quartz are real. Finding extra-terrestrial molecules of the same hand as on Earth would lend support to the universal chiral influence of the weak force. We describe a novel miniaturized space polarimeter, called the SETH Cigar, which we hope to use to detect optical rotation on other planets. Moving parts are avoided by replacing the normal rotating polarizer by multiple fixed polarizers at different angles as in the eye of the bee. Even if we do not find the same hand as on Earth, finding extra-terrestrial optical rotation would be of enormous importance as it would still be the homochiral signature of life.

  20. Educational Programs for Intelligence Professionals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Jerry P.

    1994-01-01

    Discusses the need for education programs for competitive intelligence professionals. Highlights include definitions of intelligence functions, focusing on business intelligence; information utilization by decision makers; information sources; competencies for intelligence professionals; and the development of formal education programs. (38…

  1. A New Dimension of Business Intelligence: Location-based Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Zeljko Panian

    2012-01-01

    Through the course of this paper we define Locationbased Intelligence (LBI) which is outgrowing from process of amalgamation of geolocation and Business Intelligence. Amalgamating geolocation with traditional Business Intelligence (BI) results in a new dimension of BI named Location-based Intelligence. LBI is defined as leveraging unified location information for business intelligence. Collectively, enterprises can transform location data into business intelligence applic...

  2. Extraterrestrial Organic Chemistry: From the Interstellar Medium to the Origins of Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohorille, Andrew; DeVincenzi, Donald L. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    Extraterrestrially delivered organics in the origin of cellular life. Various processes leading to the emergence of cellular life from organics delivered from space to earth or other planetary bodies in the solar system will be reviewed. The focus will be on: (1) self-assembly of amphiphilic material to vesicles and other structures, such as micelles and multilayers, and its role in creating environments suitable for chemical catalysis, (2) a possible role of extraterrestrial delivery of organics in the formation of the simplest bioenergetics (3) mechanisms leading from amino acids or their precursors to simple peptides and, subsequently, to the evolution of metabolism. These issues will be discussed from two opposite points of view: (1) Which molecules could have been particularly useful in the protobiological evolution; this may provide focus for searching for these molecules in interstellar media. (2) Assuming that a considerable part of the inventory of organic matter on the early earth was delivered extraterrestrially, what does relative abundance of different organics in space tell us about the scenario leading to the origin of life.

  3. Intelligent Extruder

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    AlperEker; Mark Giammattia; Paul Houpt; Aditya Kumar; Oscar Montero; Minesh Shah; Norberto Silvi; Timothy Cribbs

    2003-04-24

    ''Intelligent Extruder'' described in this report is a software system and associated support services for monitoring and control of compounding extruders to improve material quality, reduce waste and energy use, with minimal addition of new sensors or changes to the factory floor system components. Emphasis is on process improvements to the mixing, melting and de-volatilization of base resins, fillers, pigments, fire retardants and other additives in the :finishing'' stage of high value added engineering polymer materials. While GE Plastics materials were used for experimental studies throughout the program, the concepts and principles are broadly applicable to other manufacturers materials. The project involved a joint collaboration among GE Global Research, GE Industrial Systems and Coperion Werner & Pleiderer, USA, a major manufacturer of compounding equipment. Scope of the program included development of a algorithms for monitoring process material viscosity without rheological sensors or generating waste streams, a novel detection scheme for rapid detection of process upsets and an adaptive feedback control system to compensate for process upsets where at line adjustments are feasible. Software algorithms were implemented and tested on a laboratory scale extruder (50 lb/hr) at GE Global Research and data from a production scale system (2000 lb/hr) at GE Plastics was used to validate the monitoring and detection software. Although not evaluated experimentally, a new concept for extruder process monitoring through estimation of high frequency drive torque without strain gauges is developed and demonstrated in simulation. A plan to commercialize the software system is outlined, but commercialization has not been completed.

  4. Astrobiology outreach and the nature of science: the role of creativity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fergusson, Jennifer; Oliver, Carol; Walter, Malcolm R

    2012-12-01

    There is concern in many developed countries that school students are turning away from science. However, students may be choosing not to study science and dismissing the possibility of a scientific career because, in the junior secondary years, they gain a false view of science and the work of scientists. There is a disparity between science as it is portrayed at school and science as it is practiced. This paper describes a study to explore whether engaging in science through astrobiology outreach activities may improve students' understanding of the nature and processes of science, and how this may influence their interest in a career in science. The results suggest that the students attending these Mars research-related outreach activities are more interested in science than the average student but are lacking in understanding of aspects of the nature of science. A significant difference was detected between pre- and posttest understandings of some concepts of the nature of science.

  5. The Formation of Organic Compounds of Astrobiological Interest by the Irradiation Processing of Astrophysical Ices

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott A.

    2015-01-01

    Many environments in space contain very low temperature mixed molecular ices that are exposed to ionizing radiation in the form of cosmic rays and high-energy photons. While traditional chemistry would not be expected to occur at the temperatures typical of these ices (T compounds. Many of these new products are of direct interest to astrobiology. For example, the irradiation of mixed molecular ices has been shown to produce amino acids, amphiphiles, quinones, sugars, heterocyclic compounds, and nucleobases, all molecular building blocks used by terrestrial life. Insofar as the presence of these materials plays a role in the origin of life on planets, this has profound implications for the potential abundance of life in the universe since these experiments simulate universal conditions that are expected to be found wherever new stars and planets form.

  6. The Astrobiology of the Subsurface: Exploring Cave Habitats on Earth, Mars and Beyond

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boston, Penelope Jane

    2016-01-01

    We are using the spectacular underground landscapes of Earth caves as models for the subsurfaces of other planets. Caves have been detected on the Moon and Mars and are strongly suspected for other bodies in the Solar System including some of the ice covered Ocean Worlds that orbit gas giant planets. The caves we explore and study include many extreme conditions of relevance to planetary astrobiology exploration including high and low temperatures, gas atmospheres poisonous to humans but where exotic microbes can flourish, highly acidic or salty fluids, heavy metals, and high background radiation levels. Some cave microorganisms eat their way through bedrock, some live in battery acid conditions, some produce unusual biominerals and rare cave formations, and many produce compounds of potential pharmaceutical and industrial significance. We study these unique lifeforms and the physical and chemical biosignatures that they leave behind. Such traces can be used to provide a "Field Guide to Unknown Organisms" for developing life detection space missions.

  7. Tumbleweed: Wind-propelled Surficial Measurements for Astrobiology and Planetary Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuhlman, K. R.; Behar, A. E.; Jones, J. A.; Carsey, F.; Coleman, M.; Bearman, G.; Buehler, M.; Boston, P. J.; McKay, C. P.; Rothschild, L.

    2004-01-01

    Tumbleweed is a wind-propelled long-range vehicle based on well-developed and tested technology, instrumented to perform surveys Mars analog environments for habitability and suitable for a variety of missions on Mars. Tumbleweeds are light-weight and relatively inexpensive, making it very attractive for multiple deployments or piggy-backing on a larger mission. Tumbleweeds with rigid structures are also being developed for similar applications. Modeling and testing have shown that a 6 meter diameter Tumbleweed is capable of climbing 25 hills, traveling over 1 meter diameter boulders, and ranging over a thousand kilometers. Tumbleweeds have a potential payload capability of about 10 kilograms with approximately 10-20 Watts of power. Stopping for science investigations can also be accomplished using partial deflation or other braking mechanisms. Surveys for Astrobiology and other applications of tumbleweeds are shown.

  8. Pulsed neutron generator system for astrobiological and geochemical exploration of planetary bodies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Akkurt, Hatice; Groves, Joel L.; Trombka, Jacob; Starr, Richard; Evans, Larry; Floyd, Samuel; Hoover, Richard; Lim, Lucy; McClanahan, Timothy; James, Ralph; McCoy, Timothy; Schweitzer, Jeffrey

    2005-01-01

    A pulsed neutron/gamma-ray detection system for use on rovers to survey the elemental concentrations of Martian and Lunar surface and subsurface materials is evaluated. A robotic survey system combining a pulsed neutron generator (PNG) and detectors (gamma ray and neutron) can measure the major constituents to a depth of about 30 cm. Scanning mode measurements can give the major elemental concentrations while the rover is moving; analyzing mode measurements can give a detailed elemental analysis of the adjacent material when the rover is stationary. A detailed map of the subsurface elemental concentrations will provide invaluable information relevant to some of the most fundamental astrobiological questions including the presence of water, biogenic activity, life habitability and deposition processes

  9. The Formation of Complex Organic Compounds in Astrophysical Ices and their Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sandford, Scott A.

    2015-01-01

    Ices in astrophysical environments are generally dominated by very simple molecules like H2O, CH3OH, CH4, NH3, CO, CO2, etc, although they likely contain PAHs as well. These molecules, particularly H2O, are of direct interest to astrobiology in-and-of themselves since they represent some of the main carriers of the biogenic elements C, H, O, and N. In addition, these compounds are present in the dense interstellar clouds in which new stars and planetary systems are formed and may play a large role in the delivery of volatiles and organics to the surfaces of new planets. However, these molecules are all far simpler than the more complex organic compounds found in living systems.

  10. The Argyre Region as a Prime Target for in situ Astrobiological Exploration of Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fairén, Alberto G; Dohm, James M; Rodríguez, J Alexis P; Uceda, Esther R; Kargel, Jeffrey; Soare, Richard; Cleaves, H James; Oehler, Dorothy; Schulze-Makuch, Dirk; Essefi, Elhoucine; Banks, Maria E; Komatsu, Goro; Fink, Wolfgang; Robbins, Stuart; Yan, Jianguo; Miyamoto, Hideaki; Maruyama, Shigenori; Baker, Victor R

    2016-02-01

    At the time before ∼3.5 Ga that life originated and began to spread on Earth, Mars was a wetter and more geologically dynamic planet than it is today. The Argyre basin, in the southern cratered highlands of Mars, formed from a giant impact at ∼3.93 Ga, which generated an enormous basin approximately 1800 km in diameter. The early post-impact environment of the Argyre basin possibly contained many of the ingredients that are thought to be necessary for life: abundant and long-lived liquid water, biogenic elements, and energy sources, all of which would have supported a regional environment favorable for the origin and the persistence of life. We discuss the astrobiological significance of some landscape features and terrain types in the Argyre region that are promising and accessible sites for astrobiological exploration. These include (i) deposits related to the hydrothermal activity associated with the Argyre impact event, subsequent impacts, and those associated with the migration of heated water along Argyre-induced basement structures; (ii) constructs along the floor of the basin that could mark venting of volatiles, possibly related to the development of mud volcanoes; (iii) features interpreted as ice-cored mounds (open-system pingos), whose origin and development could be the result of deeply seated groundwater upwelling to the surface; (iv) sedimentary deposits related to the formation of glaciers along the basin's margins, such as evidenced by the ridges interpreted to be eskers on the basin floor; (v) sedimentary deposits related to the formation of lakes in both the primary Argyre basin and other smaller impact-derived basins along the margin, including those in the highly degraded rim materials; and (vi) crater-wall gullies, whose morphology points to a structural origin and discharge of (wet) flows.

  11. Science applications of a multispectral microscopic imager for the astrobiological exploration of Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Núñez, Jorge I; Farmer, Jack D; Sellar, R Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A; Blaney, Diana L

    2014-02-01

    Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars. Mars-Microscopic imager-Multispectral imaging-Spectroscopy-Habitability-Arm instrument.

  12. Science applications of a multispectral microscopic imager for the astrobiological exploration of Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nunez, Jorge; Farmer, Jack; Sellar, R. Glenn; Swayze, Gregg A.; Blaney, Diana L.

    2014-01-01

    Future astrobiological missions to Mars are likely to emphasize the use of rovers with in situ petrologic capabilities for selecting the best samples at a site for in situ analysis with onboard lab instruments or for caching for potential return to Earth. Such observations are central to an understanding of the potential for past habitable conditions at a site and for identifying samples most likely to harbor fossil biosignatures. The Multispectral Microscopic Imager (MMI) provides multispectral reflectance images of geological samples at the microscale, where each image pixel is composed of a visible/shortwave infrared spectrum ranging from 0.46 to 1.73 μm. This spectral range enables the discrimination of a wide variety of rock-forming minerals, especially Fe-bearing phases, and the detection of hydrated minerals. The MMI advances beyond the capabilities of current microimagers on Mars by extending the spectral range into the infrared and increasing the number of spectral bands. The design employs multispectral light-emitting diodes and an uncooled indium gallium arsenide focal plane array to achieve a very low mass and high reliability. To better understand and demonstrate the capabilities of the MMI for future surface missions to Mars, we analyzed samples from Mars-relevant analog environments with the MMI. Results indicate that the MMI images faithfully resolve the fine-scale microtextural features of samples and provide important information to help constrain mineral composition. The use of spectral endmember mapping reveals the distribution of Fe-bearing minerals (including silicates and oxides) with high fidelity, along with the presence of hydrated minerals. MMI-based petrogenetic interpretations compare favorably with laboratory-based analyses, revealing the value of the MMI for future in situ rover-mediated astrobiological exploration of Mars.

  13. Astrobiology Sample Analysis Program (ASAP) for Advanced Life Detection Instrumentation Development and Calibration

    Science.gov (United States)

    Glavin, Daniel; Brinkerhoff, Will; Dworkin, Jason; Eigenbrode, Jennifer; Franz, Heather; Mahaffy, Paul; Stern, Jen; Blake, Daid; Sandford, Scott; Fries, marc; hide

    2008-01-01

    Scientific ground-truth measurements for near-term Mars missions, such as the 2009 Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission, are essential for validating current in situ flight instrumentation and for the development of advanced instrumentation technologies for life-detection missions over the next decade. The NASA Astrobiology Institute (NAI) has recently funded a consortium of researchers called the Astrobiology Sample Analysis Program (ASAP) to analyze an identical set of homogenized martian analog materials in a "round-robin" style using both state-of-the-art laboratory techniques as well as in-situ flight instrumentation including the SAM gas chromatograph mass spectrometer and CHEMIN X-ray diffraction/fluorescence instruments on MSL and the Urey and MOMA organic analyzer instruments under development for the 2013 ExoMars missions. The analog samples studied included an Atacama Desert soil from Chile, the Murchison meteorite, a gypsum sample from the 2007 AMASE Mars analog site, jarosite from Panoche Valley, CA, a hydrothermal sample from Rio Tinto, Spain, and a "blind" sample collected during the 2007 MSL slow-motion field test in New Mexico. Each sample was distributed to the team for analysis to: (1) determine the nature and inventory of organic compounds, (2) measure the bulk carbon and nitrogen isotopic composition, (3) investigate elemental abundances, mineralogy and matrix, and (4) search for biological activity. The experimental results obtained from the ASAP Mars analog research consortium will be used to build a framework for understanding the biogeochemistry of martian analogs, help calibrate current spaceflight instrumentation, and enhance the scientific return from upcoming missions.

  14. Intelligent Mission Controller Node

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Perme, David

    2002-01-01

    The goal of the Intelligent Mission Controller Node (IMCN) project was to improve the process of translating mission taskings between real-world Command, Control, Communications, Computers, and Intelligence (C41...

  15. Algorithms in ambient intelligence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aarts, E.H.L.; Korst, J.H.M.; Verhaegh, W.F.J.; Verhaegh, W.F.J.; Aarts, E.H.L.; Korst, J.H.M.

    2004-01-01

    In this chapter, we discuss the new paradigm for user-centered computing known as ambient intelligence and its relation with methods and techniques from the field of computational intelligence, including problem solving, machine learning, and expert systems.

  16. Advanced intelligent systems

    CERN Document Server

    Ryoo, Young; Jang, Moon-soo; Bae, Young-Chul

    2014-01-01

    Intelligent systems have been initiated with the attempt to imitate the human brain. People wish to let machines perform intelligent works. Many techniques of intelligent systems are based on artificial intelligence. According to changing and novel requirements, the advanced intelligent systems cover a wide spectrum: big data processing, intelligent control, advanced robotics, artificial intelligence and machine learning. This book focuses on coordinating intelligent systems with highly integrated and foundationally functional components. The book consists of 19 contributions that features social network-based recommender systems, application of fuzzy enforcement, energy visualization, ultrasonic muscular thickness measurement, regional analysis and predictive modeling, analysis of 3D polygon data, blood pressure estimation system, fuzzy human model, fuzzy ultrasonic imaging method, ultrasonic mobile smart technology, pseudo-normal image synthesis, subspace classifier, mobile object tracking, standing-up moti...

  17. Astrobiology Results from ILEWG EuroMoonMars Analogue Field Research

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foing, Bernard H.

    We give an update on the astrobiology results from a series of field research campaigns (ILEWG EuroMoonMars) in the extreme environment of the Utah desert. These are relevant to prepare future lunar landers and polar sample return missions, interpret Moon-Mars data (eg SMART1, LRO, Mars Express, MRO, MER, MSL), study habitability and astrobiology in Moon-Mars environments, or to test human-robotic surface EVA or base operations. In the frame of ILEWG EuroMoonMars campaigns (2009 to 2013) we deployed at Mars Desert Research station near Hanksville Utah, a suite of instruments and techniques [0, 1, 2, 9-11] including sample collection, context imaging from re-mote to local and microscale, drilling, spectrometers and life sensors. We analyzed how geological and geo-chemical evolution affected local parameters (mineralogy, organics content, environment variations) and the habitability and signature of organics and biota. Results: Among the important findings are the diversity in the composition of soil samples even when collected in close proximity, the low abundances of detectable PAHs and amino acids and the presence of biota of all three domains of life with significant heterogeneity. An extraordinary variety of putative extremophiles was observed [3,4,9]. A dominant factor seems to be soil porosity and lower clay-sized particle content [6-8]. A protocol was developed for sterile sampling, contamination issues, and the diagnostics of biodiversity via PCR and DGGE analysis in soils and rocks samples [10, 11]. We compare the 2009 campaign results [0-9] to new measurements from 2010-2013 campaigns relevant to: comparison between remote sensing and in-situ measurements; the study of minerals; the detection of organics and signs of life. We acknowledge team members and supporting institutes: B.H. Foing (1, 2, 6), C. Stoker (3), P. Ehrenfreund (4, 5), I. Rammos (2), L. Rodrigues (2), A. Svendsen (2), D. Oltheten (2), I. Schlacht (2), K. Nebergall (6), M. Battler (6, 7), H

  18. Communication with extraterrestrial intelligences - Possibilities, chances, and perspectives with special attention given to the leaky-embargo hypothesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fiebag, Johannes

    1989-12-01

    Present SETI projects are described, emphasizing search methods alternative to investigations in the radio range. The possibility that the human race is being studied by alien presences within the solar system is addressed in the context of the 'zoo hypothesis' and the 'leaky embargo' hypothesis. In the former, the aliens prevent any contact with humans, while in the latter occasional contact is permitted.

  19. Artificial Intelligence Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    1990-01-01

    Symposium on Aritificial Intelligence and Software Engineering Working Notes, March 1989. Blumenthal, Brad, "An Architecture for Automating...Artificial Intelligence Project Final Technical Report ARO Contract: DAAG29-84-K-OGO Artificial Intelligence LaboratO"ry The University of Texas at...Austin N>.. ~ ~ JA 1/I 1991 n~~~ Austin, Texas 78712 ________k A,.tificial Intelligence Project i Final Technical Report ARO Contract: DAAG29-84-K-0060

  20. Orchestrating Multiple Intelligences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moran, Seana; Kornhaber, Mindy; Gardner, Howard

    2006-01-01

    Education policymakers often go astray when they attempt to integrate multiple intelligences theory into schools, according to the originator of the theory, Howard Gardner, and his colleagues. The greatest potential of a multiple intelligences approach to education grows from the concept of a profile of intelligences. Each learner's intelligence…

  1. Algorithms in ambient intelligence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Aarts, E.H.L.; Korst, J.H.M.; Verhaegh, W.F.J.; Weber, W.; Rabaey, J.M.; Aarts, E.

    2005-01-01

    We briefly review the concept of ambient intelligence and discuss its relation with the domain of intelligent algorithms. By means of four examples of ambient intelligent systems, we argue that new computing methods and quantification measures are needed to bridge the gap between the class of

  2. Designing with computational intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Lopes, Heitor; Mourelle, Luiza

    2017-01-01

    This book discusses a number of real-world applications of computational intelligence approaches. Using various examples, it demonstrates that computational intelligence has become a consolidated methodology for automatically creating new competitive solutions to complex real-world problems. It also presents a concise and efficient synthesis of different systems using computationally intelligent techniques.

  3. Reflection on robotic intelligence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bartneck, C.

    2006-01-01

    This paper reflects on the development or robots, both their physical shape as well as their intelligence. The later strongly depends on the progress made in the artificial intelligence (AI) community which does not yet provide the models and tools necessary to create intelligent robots. It is time

  4. Social intelligence, human intelligence and niche construction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sterelny, Kim

    2007-04-29

    This paper is about the evolution of hominin intelligence. I agree with defenders of the social intelligence hypothesis in thinking that externalist models of hominin intelligence are not plausible: such models cannot explain the unique cognition and cooperation explosion in our lineage, for changes in the external environment (e.g. increasing environmental unpredictability) affect many lineages. Both the social intelligence hypothesis and the social intelligence-ecological complexity hybrid I outline here are niche construction models. Hominin evolution is hominin response to selective environments that earlier hominins have made. In contrast to social intelligence models, I argue that hominins have both created and responded to a unique foraging mode; a mode that is both social in itself and which has further effects on hominin social environments. In contrast to some social intelligence models, on this view, hominin encounters with their ecological environments continue to have profound selective effects. However, though the ecological environment selects, it does not select on its own. Accidents and their consequences, differential success and failure, result from the combination of the ecological environment an agent faces and the social features that enhance some opportunities and suppress others and that exacerbate some dangers and lessen others. Individuals do not face the ecological filters on their environment alone, but with others, and with the technology, information and misinformation that their social world provides.

  5. Quality control of intelligence research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lu Yan; Xin Pingping; Wu Jian

    2014-01-01

    Quality control of intelligence research is the core issue of intelligence management, is a problem in study of information science This paper focuses on the performance of intelligence to explain the significance of intelligence research quality control. In summing up the results of the study on the basis of the analysis, discusses quality control methods in intelligence research, introduces the experience of foreign intelligence research quality control, proposes some recommendations to improve quality control in intelligence research. (authors)

  6. ON THE INTERACTION OF ADENINE WITH IONIZING RADIATION: MECHANISTICAL STUDIES AND ASTROBIOLOGICAL IMPLICATIONS

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Evans, Nicholas L.; Ullrich, Susanne; Bennett, Chris J.; Kaiser, Ralf I.

    2011-01-01

    The molecular inventory available on the prebiotic Earth was likely derived from both terrestrial and extraterrestrial sources. A complete description of which extraterrestrial molecules may have seeded early Earth is therefore necessary to fully understand the prebiotic evolution which led to life. Galactic cosmic rays (GCRs) are expected to cause both the formation and destruction of important biomolecules-including nucleic acid bases such as adenine-in the interstellar medium within the ices condensed on interstellar grains. The interstellar ultraviolet (UV) component is expected to photochemically degrade gas-phase adenine on a short timescale of only several years. However, the destruction rate is expected to be significantly reduced when adenine is shielded in dense molecular clouds or even within the ices of interstellar grains. Here, biomolecule destruction by the energetic charged particle component of the GCR becomes important as it is not fully attenuated. Presented here are results on the destruction rate of the nucleobase adenine in the solid state at 10 K by energetic electrons, as generated in the track of cosmic ray particles as they penetrate ices. When both UV and energetic charged particle destructive processes are taken into account, the half-life of adenine within dense interstellar clouds is found to be ∼6 Myr, which is on the order of a star-forming molecular cloud. We also discuss chemical reaction pathways within the ices to explain the production of observed species, including the formation of nitriles (R-C≡N), epoxides (C-O-C), and carbonyl functions (R-C=O).

  7. Extremotolerance and resistance of lichens: comparative studies on five species used in astrobiological research II. Secondary lichen compounds.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meessen, J; Sánchez, F J; Sadowsky, A; de la Torre, R; Ott, S; de Vera, J-P

    2013-12-01

    Lichens, which are symbioses of a fungus and one or two photoautotrophs, frequently tolerate extreme environmental conditions. This makes them valuable model systems in astrobiological research to fathom the limits and limitations of eukaryotic symbioses. Various studies demonstrated the high resistance of selected extremotolerant lichens towards extreme, non-terrestrial abiotic factors including space exposure, hypervelocity impact simulations as well as space and Martian parameter simulations. This study focusses on the diverse set of secondary lichen compounds (SLCs) that act as photo- and UVR-protective substances. Five lichen species used in present-day astrobiological research were compared: Buellia frigida, Circinaria gyrosa, Rhizocarpon geographicum, Xanthoria elegans, and Pleopsidium chlorophanum. Detailed investigation of secondary substances including photosynthetic pigments was performed for whole lichen thalli but also for axenically cultivated mycobionts and photobionts by methods of UV/VIS-spectrophotometry and two types of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Additionally, a set of chemical tests is presented to confirm the formation of melanic compounds in lichen and mycobiont samples. All investigated lichens reveal various sets of SLCs, except C. gyrosa where only melanin was putatively identified. Such studies will help to assess the contribution of SLCs on lichen extremotolerance, to understand the adaptation of lichens to prevalent abiotic stressors of the respective habitat, and to form a basis for interpreting recent and future astrobiological experiments. As most of the identified SLCs demonstrated a high capacity in absorbing UVR, they may also explain the high resistance of lichens towards non-terrestrial UVR.

  8. Extremotolerance and Resistance of Lichens: Comparative Studies on Five Species Used in Astrobiological Research II. Secondary Lichen Compounds

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meeßen, J.; Sánchez, F. J.; Sadowsky, A.; de la Torre, R.; Ott, S.; de Vera, J.-P.

    2013-12-01

    Lichens, which are symbioses of a fungus and one or two photoautotrophs, frequently tolerate extreme environmental conditions. This makes them valuable model systems in astrobiological research to fathom the limits and limitations of eukaryotic symbioses. Various studies demonstrated the high resistance of selected extremotolerant lichens towards extreme, non-terrestrial abiotic factors including space exposure, hypervelocity impact simulations as well as space and Martian parameter simulations. This study focusses on the diverse set of secondary lichen compounds (SLCs) that act as photo- and UVR-protective substances. Five lichen species used in present-day astrobiological research were compared: Buellia frigida, Circinaria gyrosa, Rhizocarpon geographicum, Xanthoria elegans, and Pleopsidium chlorophanum. Detailed investigation of secondary substances including photosynthetic pigments was performed for whole lichen thalli but also for axenically cultivated mycobionts and photobionts by methods of UV/VIS-spectrophotometry and two types of high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Additionally, a set of chemical tests is presented to confirm the formation of melanic compounds in lichen and mycobiont samples. All investigated lichens reveal various sets of SLCs, except C. gyrosa where only melanin was putatively identified. Such studies will help to assess the contribution of SLCs on lichen extremotolerance, to understand the adaptation of lichens to prevalent abiotic stressors of the respective habitat, and to form a basis for interpreting recent and future astrobiological experiments. As most of the identified SLCs demonstrated a high capacity in absorbing UVR, they may also explain the high resistance of lichens towards non-terrestrial UVR.

  9. Mainstream Media and Social Media Reactions to the Discovery of Extraterrestrial Life

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Morris

    The rise of online social media (such as Facebook and Twitter) has overturned traditional top-down and stovepiped channels for mass communications. As social media have risen, traditional media sources have been steadily crippled by economic problems, resulting in a loss of capabilities and credibility. Information can propagate rapidly without the inclusion of traditional editorial checks and controls. Mass communications strategies for any type of major announcement must account for this new media landscape. Scientists announcing the discovery of extraterrestrial life will trigger a multifaceted and unpredictable percolation of the story through the public sphere. They will also potentially struggle with misinformation, rumours and hoaxes. The interplay of official announcements with the discussions of an extraterrestrial discovery on social media has parallels with traditional theories of mass communications. A wide spectrum of different messages is likely to be received by different segments of the community, based on their usage patterns of various media and online communications. The presentation and interpretation of a discovery will be hotly debated and contested within online media environments. In extreme cases, this could lead to "editorial wars" on collaborative media projects as well as cyber-attacks on certain online services and individuals. It is unlikely that a clear and coherent message can be propagated to a near-universal level. This has the potential to contribute to inappropriate reactions in some sectors of the community. Preventing unnecessary panic will be a priority. In turn, the monitoring of online and social media will provide a useful tool for assessing public reactions to a discovery of extraterrestrial life. This will help to calibrate public communications strategies following in the wake of an initial announcement.

  10. Finding Near-Earth Asteroid (NEA) Destinations for Human Exploration: Implications for Astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Landis, Rob; Abell, Paul; Barbee, Brent; Johnson, Lindley

    2012-01-01

    The current number of known potential NEA targets for HSF is limited to those objects whose orbital characteristics are similar to that of the Earth. This is due to the projected capabilities of the exploration systems currently under consideration and development at NASA. However, NEAs with such orbital characteristics often have viewing geometries that place them at low solar elongations and thus are difficult to detect from the vicinity of Earth. While ongoing ground-based surveys and data archives maintained by the NEO Program Observation Program Office and the Minor Planet Center (MPC) have provided a solid basis upon which to build, a more complete catalog of the NEO population is required to inform a robust and sustainable HSF exploration program. Since all the present NEO observing assets are currently confined to the vicinity of the Earth, additional effort must be made to provide capabilities for detection of additional HSF targets via assets beyond Earth orbit. A space-based NEO survey telescope located beyond the vicinity of the Earth, has considerable implications for planetary science and astrobiology. Such a telescope will provide foundational knowledge of our Solar System small body population and detect targets of interest for both the HSF and scientific communities. Data from this asset will yield basic characterization data on the NEOs observed (i.e., albedo, size determination, potential for volatiles and organics, etc.) and help down select targets for future HSF missions. Ideally, the most attractive targets from both HSF and astrobiology perspectives are those NEAs that may contain organic and volatile materials, and which could be effectively sampled at a variety of locations and depths. Presented here is an overview of four space-based survey concepts; any one of which after just a few years of operation will discover many highly accessible NEO targets suitable for robotic and human exploration. Such a space-based survey mission will reveal

  11. Amino Acids from Icy Amines: A Radiation-Chemical Approach to Extraterrestrial Synthesis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dworkin, J. P.; Moore, M. H.

    2010-01-01

    Detections of amino acids in meteorites go back several decades, with at least 100 such compounds being reported for the Murchison meteorite alone. The presence of these extraterrestrial molecules raises questions as to their formation, abundance, thermal stability, racemization, and possible subsequent reactions. Although all of these topics have been studied in laboratories, such work often involves many variables and unknowns. This has led us to seek out model systems with which to uncover reaction products, test chemical predictions, and sited light on underlying reaction mechanisms. This presentation will describe one such study, focusing on amino-acid formation in ices.

  12. Sediment of a Central European Mountain Lake Implies an Extraterrestrial Impact at the Younger Dryas Onset

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Vondrák, D.; Kletetschka, G.; Hrubá, J.; Nábělek, L.; Procházka, V.; Svitavská-Svobodová, Helena; Bobek, Přemysl; Hořická, Zuzana; Kadlec, Jaroslav; Takáč, M.; Stuchlík, Evžen

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 52, S1 (2017), A373-A373, č. článku 6230. ISSN 1086-9379. [Annual Meeting of the Meteoritical Society /80./. 23.07.2017-28.07.2017, Santa Fe] R&D Projects: GA ČR(CZ) GA17-05935S Institutional support: RVO:67985939 ; RVO:60077344 ; RVO:67985530 Keywords : Younger Dryas * Extraterrestrial Impact * Central Europe Subject RIV: DG - Athmosphere Sciences, Meteorology; DA - Hydrology ; Limnology (BC-A); DE - Earth Magnetism, Geodesy, Geography (GFU-E) OBOR OECD: Plant sciences, botany

  13. Brain Intelligence: Go Beyond Artificial Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Lu, Huimin; Li, Yujie; Chen, Min; Kim, Hyoungseop; Serikawa, Seiichi

    2017-01-01

    Artificial intelligence (AI) is an important technology that supports daily social life and economic activities. It contributes greatly to the sustainable growth of Japan's economy and solves various social problems. In recent years, AI has attracted attention as a key for growth in developed countries such as Europe and the United States and developing countries such as China and India. The attention has been focused mainly on developing new artificial intelligence information communication ...

  14. Quo Vadis, Artificial Intelligence?

    OpenAIRE

    Berrar, Daniel; Sato, Naoyuki; Schuster, Alfons

    2010-01-01

    Since its conception in the mid 1950s, artificial intelligence with its great ambition to understand and emulate intelligence in natural and artificial environments alike is now a truly multidisciplinary field that reaches out and is inspired by a great diversity of other fields. Rapid advances in research and technology in various fields have created environments into which artificial intelligence could embed itself naturally and comfortably. Neuroscience with its desire to understand nervou...

  15. Principles of artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Nilsson, Nils J

    1980-01-01

    A classic introduction to artificial intelligence intended to bridge the gap between theory and practice, Principles of Artificial Intelligence describes fundamental AI ideas that underlie applications such as natural language processing, automatic programming, robotics, machine vision, automatic theorem proving, and intelligent data retrieval. Rather than focusing on the subject matter of the applications, the book is organized around general computational concepts involving the kinds of data structures used, the types of operations performed on the data structures, and the properties of th

  16. Intelligence of programs

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Novak, D

    1982-01-01

    A general discussion about the level of artificial intelligence in computer programs is presented. The suitability of various languages for the development of complex, intelligent programs is discussed, considering fourth-generation language as well as the well established structured COBOL language. It is concluded that the success of automation in many administrative fields depends to a large extent on the development of intelligent programs.

  17. Intelligence analysis – the royal discipline of Competitive Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    František Bartes

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this article is to propose work methodology for Competitive Intelligence teams in one of the intelligence cycle’s specific area, in the so-called “Intelligence Analysis”. Intelligence Analysis is one of the stages of the Intelligence Cycle in which data from both the primary and secondary research are analyzed. The main result of the effort is the creation of added value for the information collected. Company Competiitve Intelligence, correctly understood and implemented in busines...

  18. The importance of the Maillard-metal complexes and their silicates in astrobiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liesch, Patrick J.; Kolb, Vera M.

    2007-09-01

    The Maillard reaction occurs when sugars and amino acids are mixed together in the solid state or in the aqueous solution. Since both amino acids and sugar-like compounds are found on meteorites, we hypothesized that they would also undergo the Maillard reaction. Our recent work supports this idea. We have shown previously that the water-insoluble Maillard products have substantial similarities with the insoluble organic materials from the meteorites. The Maillard organic materials are also part of the desert varnish on Earth, which is a dark, shiny, hard rock coating that contains iron and manganese and is glazed in silicate. Rocks that are similar in appearance to the desert varnish have been observed on the Martian surface. They may also contain the organic materials. We have undertaken study of the interactions between the Maillard products, iron and other metals, and silicates, to elucidate the role of the Maillard products in the chemistry of desert varnish and meteorites. Specifically, we have synthesized a series of the Maillard-metal complexes, and have tested their reactivity towards silicates. We have studied the properties of these Maillard-metal-silicate products by the IR spectroscopy. The astrobiological potential of the Maillard-metal complexes is assessed.

  19. Reduced and oxidised scytonemin: theoretical protocol for Raman spectroscopic identification of potential key biomolecules for astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Varnali, Tereza; Edwards, Howell G M

    2014-01-03

    Scytonemin is an important UV-radiation protective biomolecule synthesised by extremophilic cyanobacteria in stressed terrestrial environments. Scytonemin and its reduced form have been both isolated experimentally and the Raman spectrum for scytonemin has been assigned and characterised experimentally both in extracts and in living extremophilic cyanobacterial colonies. Scytonemin is recognised as a key biomarker molecule for terrestrial organisms in stressed environments. We propose a new, theoretically plausible structure for oxidised scytonemin which has not been mentioned in the literature hitherto. DFT calculations for scytonemin, reduced scytonemin and the new structure modelled and proposed for oxidised scytonemin are reported along with their Raman spectroscopic data and λmax UV-absorption data obtained theoretically. Comparison of the vibrational spectroscopic assignments allows the three forms of scytonemin to be detected and identified and assist not only in the clarification of the major features in the experimentally observed Raman spectral data for the parent scytonemin but also support a protocol proposed for their analytical discrimination. The results of this study provide a basis for the search for molecules of this type in future astrobiological missions of exploration and the search for extinct and extant life terrestrially. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Machine listening intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cella, C. E.

    2017-05-01

    This manifesto paper will introduce machine listening intelligence, an integrated research framework for acoustic and musical signals modelling, based on signal processing, deep learning and computational musicology.

  1. STANFORD ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE PROJECT.

    Science.gov (United States)

    ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE , GAME THEORY, DECISION MAKING, BIONICS, AUTOMATA, SPEECH RECOGNITION, GEOMETRIC FORMS, LEARNING MACHINES, MATHEMATICAL MODELS, PATTERN RECOGNITION, SERVOMECHANISMS, SIMULATION, BIBLIOGRAPHIES.

  2. Intelligent Optics Laboratory

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — The Intelligent Optics Laboratory supports sophisticated investigations on adaptive and nonlinear optics; advancedimaging and image processing; ground-to-ground and...

  3. Intelligence and childlessness.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanazawa, Satoshi

    2014-11-01

    Demographers debate why people have children in advanced industrial societies where children are net economic costs. From an evolutionary perspective, however, the important question is why some individuals choose not to have children. Recent theoretical developments in evolutionary psychology suggest that more intelligent individuals may be more likely to prefer to remain childless than less intelligent individuals. Analyses of the National Child Development Study show that more intelligent men and women express preference to remain childless early in their reproductive careers, but only more intelligent women (not more intelligent men) are more likely to remain childless by the end of their reproductive careers. Controlling for education and earnings does not at all attenuate the association between childhood general intelligence and lifetime childlessness among women. One-standard-deviation increase in childhood general intelligence (15 IQ points) decreases women's odds of parenthood by 21-25%. Because women have a greater impact on the average intelligence of future generations, the dysgenic fertility among women is predicted to lead to a decline in the average intelligence of the population in advanced industrial nations. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Routledge companion to intelligence studies

    CERN Document Server

    Dover, Robert; Hillebrand, Claudia

    2013-01-01

    The Routledge Companion to Intelligence Studies provides a broad overview of the growing field of intelligence studies. The recent growth of interest in intelligence and security studies has led to an increased demand for popular depictions of intelligence and reference works to explain the architecture and underpinnings of intelligence activity. Divided into five comprehensive sections, this Companion provides a strong survey of the cutting-edge research in the field of intelligence studies: Part I: The evolution of intelligence studies; Part II: Abstract approaches to intelligence; Part III: Historical approaches to intelligence; Part IV: Systems of intelligence; Part V: Contemporary challenges. With a broad focus on the origins, practices and nature of intelligence, the book not only addresses classical issues, but also examines topics of recent interest in security studies. The overarching aim is to reveal the rich tapestry of intelligence studies in both a sophisticated and accessible way. This Companion...

  5. The G-HAT Search for Advanced Extraterrestrial Civilizations: The Reddest Extended WISE Sources

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maldonado, Jessica; Povich, Matthew S.; Wright, Jason; Griffith, Roger; Sigurdsson, Steinn; Mullan, Brendan L.

    2015-01-01

    Freeman Dyson (1960) theorized how to identify possible signatures of advanced extra-terrestrial civilizations by their waste heat, an inevitable byproduct of a civilization using a significant fraction of the luminosity from their host star. If a civilizations could tap the starlight throughout their host galaxy their waste heat would be easily detectable by recent infrared surveys. The Glimpsing Heat from Alien Technologies (G-HAT) pilot project aims to place limits on the existence of extraterrestrial civilizations at pan-galactic scales. We present results from the G-HAT cleaned catalog of 563 extremely red, extended high Galactic latitude (|b| ≥ 10) sources from the WISE All-Sky Catalog. Our catalog includes sources new to the scientific literature along with well-studied objects (e.g. starburst galaxies, AGN, and planetary nebulae) that exemplify extreme WISE colors. Objects of particular interest include a supergiant Be star (48 Librae) surrounded by a resolved, mid-infrared nebula, possibly indicating dust in the stellar wind ejecta, and a curious cluster of seven extremely red WISE sources (associated with IRAS 04287+6444) that have no optical counterparts.

  6. Habitability and the Possibility of Extraterrestrial Life in the Early Telescope Era

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reynolds, Sarah

    2014-01-01

    Early telescopic observations of the Moon and planets prompted great interest in the already-existing debate about the possibility of life on the Moon and other worlds. New observations of the lunar surface, revealing an apparently Earth-like terrain and possibly the presence of bodies of water, were often considered in relation to their implications for the existence of lunar inhabitants. This depended upon establishing what constituted the fundamental requirements for life and the boundaries of habitability. The growing support for the heliocentric Copernican astronomy was also changing perceptions of the relationships between the Earth, the Moon, and the planets. Works such as Johannes Kepler’s Somnium and John Wilkins’ The Discovery of a World in the Moone presented views of extraterrestrial life that were shifting from the supernatural to the natural, in correspondence with the celestial bodies’ new positions in the cosmos. This paper considers how these and other works from the early telescope era reveal changes in the nature of astronomical speculation about extraterrestrial life and the conditions construed as “habitability,” and what significance that history has for us today in the new era of extrasolar planet discovery.

  7. Exploring the Human Ecology of the Younger Dryas Extraterrestrial Impact Event

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennett, D. J.; Erlandson, J. M.; Braje, T. J.; Culleton, B. J.

    2007-05-01

    Several lines of evidence now exist for a major extraterrestrial impact event in North America at 12.9 ka (the YDB). This impact partially destabilized the Laurentide and Cordilleran ice sheets, triggered abrupt Younger Dryas cooling and extensive wildfires, and contributed to megafaunal extinction. This event also occurred soon after the well established colonization of the Americas by anatomically modern humans. Confirmation of this event would represent the first near-time extraterrestrial impact with significant effects on human populations. These likely included widespread, abrupt human mortality, population displacement, migration into less effected or newly established habitats, loss of cultural traditions, and resource diversification in the face of the massive megafaunal extinction and population reductions in surviving animal populations. Ultimately, these transformations established the context for the special character of plant and animal domestication and the emergence of agricultural economies in North America. We explore the Late Pleistocene archaeological record in North America within the context of documented major biotic changes associated with the YDB in North America and of the massive ecological affects hypothesized for this event.

  8. Inscribed matter as an energy-efficient means of communication with an extraterrestrial civilization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, Christopher; Wright, Gregory

    2004-09-02

    It is well known that electromagnetic radiation-radio waves-can in principle be used to communicate over interstellar distances. By contrast, sending physical artefacts has seemed extravagantly wasteful of energy, and imagining human travel between the stars even more so. The key consideration in earlier work, however, was the perceived need for haste. If extraterrestrial civilizations existed within a few tens of light years, radio could be used for two-way communication on timescales comparable to human lifetimes (or at least the longevities of human institutions). Here we show that if haste is unimportant, sending messages inscribed on some material can be strikingly more energy efficient than communicating by electromagnetic waves. Because messages require protection from cosmic radiation and small messages could be difficult to find among the material clutter near a recipient, 'inscribed matter' is most effective for long archival messages (as opposed to potentially short "we exist" announcements). The results suggest that our initial contact with extraterrestrial civilizations may be more likely to occur through physical artefacts-essentially messages in a bottle-than via electromagnetic communication.

  9. FINDING EXTRATERRESTRIAL LIFE USING GROUND-BASED HIGH-DISPERSION SPECTROSCOPY

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Snellen, I. A. G.; Le Poole, R.; Brogi, M.; Birkby, J.; De Kok, R. J.

    2013-01-01

    Exoplanet observations promise one day to unveil the presence of extraterrestrial life. Atmospheric compounds in strong chemical disequilibrium would point to large-scale biological activity just as oxygen and methane do in the Earth's atmosphere. The cancellation of both the Terrestrial Planet Finder and Darwin missions means that it is unlikely that a dedicated space telescope to search for biomarker gases in exoplanet atmospheres will be launched within the next 25 years. Here we show that ground-based telescopes provide a strong alternative for finding biomarkers in exoplanet atmospheres through transit observations. Recent results on hot Jupiters show the enormous potential of high-dispersion spectroscopy to separate the extraterrestrial and telluric signals, making use of the Doppler shift of the planet. The transmission signal of oxygen from an Earth-twin orbiting a small red dwarf star is only a factor of three smaller than that of carbon monoxide recently detected in the hot Jupiter τ Boötis b, albeit such a star will be orders of magnitude fainter. We show that if Earth-like planets are common, the planned extremely large telescopes can detect oxygen within a few dozen transits. Ultimately, large arrays of dedicated flux-collector telescopes equipped with high-dispersion spectrographs can provide the large collecting area needed to perform a statistical study of life-bearing planets in the solar neighborhood.

  10. Terrestrial and extraterrestrial superresonators as drivers for an inertial confinement fusion reactor

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Seifritz, W.; Vath, W.

    1992-01-01

    This paper reports on the recirculating power fraction of a laser-driven inertial confinement fusion (ICF) reactor which can be reduced by using laser diodes to pump a neodymium solid-state laser. To overcome the high costs of two-dimensional arrays of laser diodes, two types of superresonators are proposed: a terrestrially based one and an extraterrestrially based one on a geostationary orbit. Both are designed in such a way that a sequence of short laser pulses (10 to 20 ns wide), each with an energy of 5 to 10 MJ and a frequency of 10 Hz, are produced to trigger a deuterium-tritium ICF reactor. The terrestrial superresonator needs a much smaller number of two-dimensional laser diode arrays than a conventionally pumped once-through solid-state laser system, and the extraterrestrial resonator is pumped by means of concentrated solar radiation. In practice, at least an order of magnitude fewer laser diodes and crystalline calcium fluoride gain media are needed to meet the requirements of a laser driver for an ICF reactor. If, finally, a liquid neodymium laser system could be used for an ICF reactor, the cooling of the gain slabs would be facilitated substantially

  11. Isotopic evidence for extraterrestrial non- racemic amino acids in the Murchison meteorite

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engel, M. H.; Macko, S. A.

    1997-09-01

    Many amino acids contain an asymmetric centre, occurring as laevorotatory, L, or dextrorotatory, D, compounds. It is generally assumed that abiotic synthesis of amino acids on the early Earth resulted in racemic mixtures (L- and D-enantiomers in equal abundance). But the origin of life required, owing to conformational constraints, the almost exclusive selection of either L- or D-enantiomers, and the question of why living systems on the Earth consist of L-enantiomers rather than D-enantiomers is unresolved. A substantial fraction of the organic compounds on the early Earth may have been derived from comet and meteorite impacts. It has been reported previously that amino acids in the Murchison meteorite exhibit an excess of L-enantiomers, raising the possibility that a similar excess was present in the initial inventory of organic compounds on the Earth. The stable carbon isotope compositions of individual amino acids in Murchison support an extraterrestrial origin-rather than a terrestrial overprint of biological amino acids-although reservations have persisted (see, for example, ref. 9). Here we show that individual amino-acid enantiomers from Murchison are enriched in 15N relative to their terrestrial counterparts, so confirming an extraterrestrial source for an L-enantiomer excess in the Solar System that may predate the origin of life on the Earth.

  12. Extraterrestrial amino acids in Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary sediments at Stevns Klint, Denmark

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Meixun; Bada, Jeffrey L.

    1989-06-01

    SINCE the discovery1 nearly a decade ago that Cretaceous/Tertiary (K/T) boundary layers are greatly enriched in iridium, a rare element in the Earth's crust, there has been intense controversy on the relationship between this Ir anomaly and the massive extinction of organisms ranging from dinosaurs to marine plankton that characterizes the K/T boundary. Convincing evidence suggests that both the Ir spike and the extinction event were caused by the collision of a large bolide (>10 km in diameter) with the Earth1-11. Alternative explanations claim that extensive, violent volcanism12-14 can account for the Ir, and that other independent causes were responsible for the mass extinctions15,16. We surmise that the collision of a massive extraterrestrial object with the Earth may have produced a unique organic chemical signature because certain meteorites, and probably comets, contain organic compounds which are either rare or non-existent on the Earth17. In contrast, no organic compounds would be expected to be associated with volcanic processes. Here we find that K/T boundary sediments at Stevns Klint, Denmark, contain both α-amino-isobutyric acid [AIB, (CH3)2CNH2COOH] and racemic isovaline [ISOVAL, CH3CH2(CH3)CNH2COOH], two amino acids that are exceedingly rare on the Earth but which are major amino acids in carbonaceous chondrites17,18. An extraterrestrial source is the most reasonable explanation for the presence of these amino acids.

  13. Artificial Consciousness or Artificial Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Spanache Florin

    2017-01-01

    Artificial intelligence is a tool designed by people for the gratification of their own creative ego, so we can not confuse conscience with intelligence and not even intelligence in its human representation with conscience. They are all different concepts and they have different uses. Philosophically, there are differences between autonomous people and automatic artificial intelligence. This is the difference between intelligence and artificial intelligence, autonomous versus a...

  14. 2015 Chinese Intelligent Systems Conference

    CERN Document Server

    Du, Junping; Li, Hongbo; Zhang, Weicun; CISC’15

    2016-01-01

    This book presents selected research papers from the 2015 Chinese Intelligent Systems Conference (CISC’15), held in Yangzhou, China. The topics covered include multi-agent systems, evolutionary computation, artificial intelligence, complex systems, computation intelligence and soft computing, intelligent control, advanced control technology, robotics and applications, intelligent information processing, iterative learning control, and machine learning. Engineers and researchers from academia, industry and the government can gain valuable insights into solutions combining ideas from multiple disciplines in the field of intelligent systems.

  15. Extraterrestrial hydrogeology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baker, Victor R.; Dohm, James M.; Fairén, Alberto G.; Ferré, Ty P. A.; Ferris, Justin C.; Miyamoto, Hideaki; Schulze-Makuch, Dirk

    2005-03-01

    Subsurface water processes are common for planetary bodies in the solar system and are highly probable for exoplanets (planets outside the solar system). For many solar system objects, the subsurface water exists as ice. For Earth and Mars, subsurface saturated zones have occurred throughout their planetary histories. Earth is mostly clement with the recharge of most groundwater reservoirs from ample precipitation during transient ice- and hot-house conditions, as recorded through the geologic and fossilized records. On the other hand, Mars is mostly in an ice-house stage, which is interrupted by endogenic-driven activity. This activity catastrophically drives short-lived hydrological cycling and associated climatic perturbations. Regional aquifers in the Martian highlands that developed during past, more Earth-like conditions delivered water to the northern plains. Water was also cycled to the South Polar Region during changes in climate induced by endogenic activity and/or by changes in Mars' orbital parameters. Venus very likely had a warm hydrosphere for hundreds of millions of years, before the development of its current extremely hot atmosphere and surface. Subsequently, Venus lost its hydrosphere as solar luminosity increased and a run-away moist greenhouse took effect. Subsurface oceans of water or ammonia-water composition, induced by tidal forces and radiogenic heating, probably occur on the larger satellites Europa, Ganymede, Callisto, Titan, and Triton. Tidal forces operating between some of the small bodies of the outer solar system could also promote the fusion of ice and the stability of inner liquid-water oceans. Les processus de subsurface impliquant l'eau sont communs pour les corps planétaires du système solaire et sont très probables sur les exoplanètes (planètes en dehors du système solaire). Pour plusieurs objets du systèmes solaire, l'eau de subsurface est présente sous forme de glace. Pour la Terre et Mars, les zones saturées de subsurface apparaissent à travers toute leur histoire planétaire. La Terre est particulièrement clémente avec la recharge des réservoirs, avec de amples précipitations, des conditions glaciaires et de fortes chaleurs, comme l'atteste les enregistrements géologiques et paléontologiques. D'un autre côté, Mars se trouve dans une phase essentiellement glaciaire, qui est interrompue par des activités contraintes par les phénomènes endogéniques. Cette activité conduit de manière catastrophique à des cycles hydrologiques et à des perturbations climatiques brutaux. Les aquifères régionaux dans les haute terres martiennes qui se sont formés dans des conditions similaires aux conditions terrestres, alimentent les plaines du Nord. L'eau a également été déplacée vers le Pôle Sud martien durant des changements marqués par une forte activité endogénique et une modification des paramètres de l'orbite de Mars. Venus possèdait vrais emblablement une hydrosphère chaude durant des millions d'année, avant le développement de son atmosphère et sa surface particulièrement chaude. Par après Venus a perdit son hydrosphère alors que la luminosité solaire augmentait et qu'une humidité liée à un effet de serre s'installait. Les océans de subsurface d'eau ou d'eau ammoniacale, induits par les forces de marée et le chauffage radiogénique, apparaissent probablement sur les satellites les plus importants (Europa, Ganymede, Callisto, Titan, Triton). Les forces de marée entre les petits corps externes du système solaire peuvent également occasionner la fusion de glace et la stabilité des océans internes d'eau liquide. Los procesos hídricos subsuperficiales son comunes en cuerpos planetarios del sistema solar y son altamente probables para exoplanetas (planetas fuera del sistema solar). Para muchos cuerpos del sistema solar, el agua subsuperficial existe como hielo. Para la Tierra y Marte han ocurrido zonas saturadas subsuperficiales a través de sus historias planetarias. La Tierra es principalmente generosa con la recarga de la mayoría de reservorios de aguas subterráneas a partir de amplia precipitación reconocida en condiciones transitorias calientes y heladas, tal y como aparece en los registros fósiles y geológicos. Por otro lado, Marte se encuentra principalmente en una etapade cámara de hielo la cual es interrumpida por actividad de tipo endogénico. Esta actividad pone en funcionamiento catastróficamente ciclos hidrológicos de vida corta y perturbaciones climáticas asociadas. Acuíferos regionales en las montañas de Marte que se desarrollaron en el pasado en condiciones similares a la Tierra distribuyen agua a las planicies del norte. El agua ha sido transportada hacia el sur de la región polar durante cambios en el clima inducidos por actividad endogénica y/o cambios en los parámetros orbitales de Marte. Venus muy probablemente tuvo una hidrósfera caliente durante cientos de millones de años, antes de que se desarrollara su atmósfera y superficie actual extremadamente caliente. Subsecuentemente, Venus perdió su hidrósfera a medida que la luminosidad solar aumentó y un efecto de invernadero húmedo escapatorio se llevó a cabo. Océanos subsuperficiales de composición agua o amoniaco-agua, inducidos por fuerzas de marea y calentamiento radiogénico, probablemente ocurren en los satélites más grandes como Europa, Ganimeda, Callisto, Titan y Triton. Las fuerzas de marea que operan entre los cuerpos pequeños del sistema solar externo podrían también promover la fusión de hielo y la estabilidad de líquido interno-aguas de los océanos.

  16. Distributed intelligence in CAMAC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kunz, P.F.

    1977-01-01

    The CAMAC digital interface standard has served us well since 1969. During this time there have been enormous advances in digital electronics. In particular, low cost microprocessors now make it feasible to consider use of distributed intelligence even in simple data acquisition systems. This paper describes a simple extension of the CAMAC standard which allows distributed intelligence at the crate level

  17. Intelligent design som videnskab?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klausen, Søren Harnow

    2007-01-01

    Diskuterer hvorvidt intelligent design kan betegnes som videnskab; argumenterer for at dette grundet fraværet af klare demarkationskriterier næppe kan afvises.......Diskuterer hvorvidt intelligent design kan betegnes som videnskab; argumenterer for at dette grundet fraværet af klare demarkationskriterier næppe kan afvises....

  18. Distributed intelligence in CAMAC

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kunz, P.F.

    1977-01-01

    A simple extension of the CAMAC standard is described which allows distributed intelligence at the crate level. By distributed intelligence is meant that there is more than one source of control in a system. This standard is just now emerging from the NIM Dataway Working Group and its European counterpart. 1 figure

  19. Intelligence and treaty ratification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cahn, A.H.

    1990-01-01

    This paper reports that there are two sets of questions applicable to the ratification phase: what is the role of intelligence in the ratification process? What effect did intelligence have on that process. The author attempts to answer these and other questions

  20. Applying Multiple Intelligences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Christodoulou, Joanna A.

    2009-01-01

    The ideas of multiple intelligences introduced by Howard Gardner of Harvard University more than 25 years ago have taken form in many ways, both in schools and in other sometimes-surprising settings. The silver anniversary of Gardner's learning theory provides an opportunity to reflect on the ways multiple intelligences theory has taken form and…

  1. Next generation Emotional Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    J. Saveland

    2012-01-01

    Emotional Intelligence has been a hot topic in leadership training since Dan Goleman published his book on the subject in 1995. Emotional intelligence competencies are typically focused on recognition and regulation of emotions in one's self and social situations, yielding four categories: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and relationship...

  2. Intelligence by consent

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Diderichsen, Adam; Rønn, Kira Vrist

    2017-01-01

    This article contributes to the current discussions concerning an adequate framework for intelligence ethics. The first part critically scrutinises the use of Just War Theory in intelligence ethics with specific focus on the just cause criterion. We argue that using self-defence as justifying cau...

  3. Intelligence and Physical Attractiveness

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kanazawa, Satoshi

    2011-01-01

    This brief research note aims to estimate the magnitude of the association between general intelligence and physical attractiveness with large nationally representative samples from two nations. In the United Kingdom, attractive children are more intelligent by 12.4 IQ points (r=0.381), whereas in the United States, the correlation between…

  4. Intelligence and treaty ratification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Naftzinger, J.E.

    1990-01-01

    This paper describes the atmosphere leading up to the Senate INF hearings and then surveys the broad issues they raised. After that, the author highlights several aspects of the intelligence community's involvement and discusses the specific intelligence-related issues as the Senate committees saw them, notes their impact on the outcome, and finally draws several conclusions and lessons pertinent to the future

  5. Intelligence, Race, and Genetics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sternberg, Robert J.; Grigorenko, Elena L.; Kidd, Kenneth K.

    2005-01-01

    In this article, the authors argue that the overwhelming portion of the literature on intelligence, race, and genetics is based on folk taxonomies rather than scientific analysis. They suggest that because theorists of intelligence disagree as to what it is, any consideration of its relationships to other constructs must be tentative at best. They…

  6. Multiple Intelligences in Action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Campbell, Bruce

    1992-01-01

    Describes the investigation of the effects of a four-step model program used with third through fifth grade students to implement Gardener's concepts of seven human intelligences--linguistic, logical/mathematical, visual/spatial, musical, kinesthetic, intrapersonal, and interpersonal intelligence--into daily learning. (BB)

  7. The Reproduction of Intelligence

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meisenberg, Gerhard

    2010-01-01

    Although a negative relationship between fertility and education has been described consistently in most countries of the world, less is known about the relationship between intelligence and reproductive outcomes. Also the paths through which intelligence influences reproductive outcomes are uncertain. The present study uses the NLSY79 to analyze…

  8. Intelligent robot action planning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Vamos, T; Siegler, A

    1982-01-01

    Action planning methods used in intelligent robot control are discussed. Planning is accomplished through environment understanding, environment representation, task understanding and planning, motion analysis and man-machine communication. These fields are analysed in detail. The frames of an intelligent motion planning system are presented. Graphic simulation of the robot's environment and motion is used to support the planning. 14 references.

  9. Computational Intelligence in Intelligent Data Analysis

    CERN Document Server

    Nürnberger, Andreas

    2013-01-01

    Complex systems and their phenomena are ubiquitous as they can be found in biology, finance, the humanities, management sciences, medicine, physics and similar fields. For many problems in these fields, there are no conventional ways to mathematically or analytically solve them completely at low cost. On the other hand, nature already solved many optimization problems efficiently. Computational intelligence attempts to mimic nature-inspired problem-solving strategies and methods. These strategies can be used to study, model and analyze complex systems such that it becomes feasible to handle them. Key areas of computational intelligence are artificial neural networks, evolutionary computation and fuzzy systems. As only a few researchers in that field, Rudolf Kruse has contributed in many important ways to the understanding, modeling and application of computational intelligence methods. On occasion of his 60th birthday, a collection of original papers of leading researchers in the field of computational intell...

  10. Intelligence and Prosocial Behavior

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Han, Ru; Shi, Jiannong; Yong, W.

    2012-01-01

    Results of prev ious studies of the relationship between prosocial behav ior and intelligence hav e been inconsistent. This study attempts to distinguish the dif f erences between sev eral prosocial tasks, and explores the way s in which cognitiv e ability inf luences prosocial behav ior. In Study...... One and Two, we reexamined the relationship between prosocial behav ior and intelligence by employ ing a costly signaling theory with f our games. The results rev ealed that the prosocial lev el of smarter children is higher than that of other children in more complicated tasks but not so in simple...... tasks. In Study Three, we tested the moderation ef f ect of the av erage intelligence across classes, and the results did not show any group intelligence ef f ect on the relationship between intelligence and prosocial behav ior....

  11. Business Intelligence Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bogdan NEDELCU

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this article is to show the importance of business intelligence and its growing influence. It also shows when the concept of business intelligence was used for the first time and how it evolved over time. The paper discusses the utility of a business intelligence system in any organization and its contribution to daily activities. Furthermore, we highlight the role and the objectives of business intelligence systems inside an organization and the needs to grow the incomes and reduce the costs, to manage the complexity of the business environment and to cut IT costs so that the organization survives in the current competitive climate. The article contains information about architectural principles of a business intelligence system and how such a system can be achieved.

  12. An Earth-Based Equivalent Low Stretch Apparatus to Assess Material Flammability for Microgravity and Extraterrestrial Fire-Safety Applications

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olson, S. L.; Beeson, H.; Haas, J. P.

    2003-01-01

    The objective of this project is to modify the standard oxygen consumption (cone) calorimeter (described in ASTM E 1354 and NASA STD 6001 Test 2) to provide a reproducible bench-scale test environment that simulates the buoyant or ventilation flow that would be generated by or around a burning surface in a spacecraft or extraterrestrial gravity level. This apparatus will allow us to conduct normal gravity experiments that accurately and quantitatively evaluate a material's flammability characteristics in the real-use environment of spacecraft or extra-terrestrial gravitational acceleration. The Equivalent Low Stretch Apparatus (ELSA) uses an inverted cone geometry with the sample burning in a ceiling fire configuration that provides a reproducible bench-scale test environment that simulates the buoyant or ventilation flow that would be generated by a flame in a spacecraft or extraterrestrial gravity level. Prototype unit testing results are presented in this paper. Ignition delay times and regression rates for PMMA are presented over a range of radiant heat flux levels and equivalent stretch rates which demonstrate the ability of ELSA to simulate key features of microgravity and extraterrestrial fire behavior.

  13. Backward Planetary Protection Issues and Possible Solutions for Icy Plume Sample Return Missions from Astrobiological Targets

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yano, Hajime; McKay, Christopher P.; Anbar, Ariel; Tsou, Peter

    The recent report of possible water vapor plumes at Europa and Ceres, together with the well-known Enceladus plume containing water vapor, salt, ammonia, and organic molecules, suggests that sample return missions could evolve into a generic approach for outer Solar System exploration in the near future, especially for the benefit of astrobiology research. Sampling such plumes can be accomplished via fly-through mission designs, modeled after the successful Stardust mission to capture and return material from Comet Wild-2 and multiple, precise trajectory controls of the Cassini mission to fly through Enceladus’ plume. The proposed LIFE (Life Investigation For Enceladus) mission to Enceladus, which would sample organic molecules from the plume of that apparently habitable world, provides one example of the appealing scientific return of such missions. Beyond plumes, the upper atmosphere of Titan could also be sampled in this manner. The SCIM mission to Mars, also inspired by Stardust, would sample and return aerosol dust in the upper atmosphere of Mars and thus extends this concept even to other planetary bodies. Such missions share common design needs. In particular, they require large exposed sampler areas (or sampler arrays) that can be contained to the standards called for by international planetary protection protocols that COSPAR Planetary Protection Policy (PPP) recommends. Containment is also needed because these missions are driven by astrobiologically relevant science - including interest in organic molecules - which argues against heat sterilization that could destroy scientific value of samples. Sample containment is a daunting engineering challenge. Containment systems must be carefully designed to appropriate levels to satisfy the two top requirements: planetary protection policy and the preserving the scientific value of samples. Planning for Mars sample return tends to center on a hermetic seal specification (i.e., gas-tight against helium escape

  14. Extraterrestrial material analysis: loss of amino acids during liquid-phase acid hydrolysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buch, Arnaud; Brault, Amaury; Szopa, Cyril; Freissinet, Caroline

    2015-04-01

    Searching for building blocks of life in extraterrestrial material is a way to learn more about how life could have appeared on Earth. With this aim, liquid-phase acid hydrolysis has been used, since at least 1970 , in order to extract amino acids and other organic molecules from extraterrestrial materials (e.g. meteorites, lunar fines) or Earth analogues (e.g. Atacama desert soil). This procedure involves drastic conditions such as heating samples in 6N HCl for 24 h, either under inert atmosphere/vacuum, or air. Analysis of the hydrolyzed part of the sample should give its total (free plus bound) amino acid content. The present work deals with the influence of the 6N HCl hydrolysis on amino acid degradation. Our experiments have been performed on a standard solution of 17 amino acids. After liquid-phase acid hydrolysis (6N HCl) under argon atmosphere (24 h at 100°C), the liquid phase was evaporated and the dry residue was derivatized with N-Methyl-N-(t-butyldimethylsilyl)trifluoroacetamide (MTBSTFA) and dimethylformamide (DMF), followed by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry analysis. After comparison with derivatized amino acids from the standard solution, a significant reduction of the chromatographic peak areas was observed for most of the amino acids after liquid-phase acid hydrolysis. Furthermore, the same loss pattern was observed when the amino acids were exposed to cold 6N HCl for a short amount of time. The least affected amino acid, i.e. glycine, was found to be 73,93% percent less abundant compared to the non-hydrolyzed standard, while the most affected, i.e. histidine, was not found in the chromatograms after hydrolysis. Our experiments thereby indicate that liquid-phase acid hydrolysis, even under inert atmosphere, leads to a partial or total loss of all of the 17 amino acids present in the standard solution, and that a quick cold contact with 6N HCl is sufficient to lead to a loss of amino acids. Therefore, in the literature, the reported increase

  15. EXPOSE-R2: The Astrobiological ESA Mission on Board of the International Space Station

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elke Rabbow

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available On July 23, 2014, the Progress cargo spacecraft 56P was launched from Baikonur to the International Space Station (ISS, carrying EXPOSE-R2, the third ESA (European Space Agency EXPOSE facility, the second EXPOSE on the outside platform of the Russian Zvezda module, with four international astrobiological experiments into space. More than 600 biological samples of archaea, bacteria (as biofilms and in planktonic form, lichens, fungi, plant seeds, triops eggs, mosses and 150 samples of organic compounds were exposed to the harsh space environment and to parameters similar to those on the Mars surface. Radiation dosimeters distributed over the whole facility complemented the scientific payload. Three extravehicular activities later the chemical samples were returned to Earth on March 2, 2016, with Soyuz 44S, having spent 588 days in space. The biological samples arrived back later, on June 18, 2016, with 45S, after a total duration in space of 531 days. The exposure of the samples to Low Earth Orbit vacuum lasted for 531 days and was divided in two parts: protected against solar irradiation during the first 62 days, followed by exposure to solar radiation during the subsequent 469 days. In parallel to the space mission, a Mission Ground Reference (MGR experiment with a flight identical Hardware and a complete flight identical set of samples was performed at the premises of DLR (German Aerospace Center in Cologne by MUSC (Microgravity User Support Center, according to the mission data either downloaded from the ISS (temperature data, facility status, inner pressure status or provided by RedShift Design and Engineering BVBA, Belgium (calculated ultra violet radiation fluence data. In this paper, the EXPOSE-R2 facility, the experimental samples, mission parameters, environmental parameters, and the overall mission and MGR sequences are described, building the background for the research papers of the individual experiments, their analysis and results.

  16. The Lost City Hydrothermal Field: A Spectroscopic and Astrobiological Analogue for Nili Fossae, Mars.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Amador, Elena S; Bandfield, Joshua L; Brazelton, William J; Kelley, Deborah

    2017-11-01

    Low-temperature serpentinization is a critical process with respect to Earth's habitability and the Solar System. Exothermic serpentinization reactions commonly produce hydrogen as a direct by-product and typically produce short-chained organic compounds indirectly. Here, we present the spectral and mineralogical variability in rocks from the serpentine-driven Lost City Hydrothermal Field on Earth and the olivine-rich region of Nili Fossae on Mars. Near- and thermal-infrared spectral measurements were made from a suite of Lost City rocks at wavelengths similar to those for instruments collecting measurements of the martian surface. Results from Lost City show a spectrally distinguishable suite of Mg-rich serpentine, Ca carbonates, talc, and amphibole minerals. Aggregated detections of low-grade metamorphic minerals in rocks from Nili Fossae were mapped and yielded a previously undetected serpentine exposure in the region. Direct comparison of the two spectral suites indicates similar mineralogy at both Lost City and in the Noachian (4-3.7 Ga) bedrock of Nili Fossae, Mars. Based on mapping of these spectral phases, the implied mineralogical suite appears to be extensive across the region. These results suggest that serpentinization was once an active process, indicating that water and energy sources were available, as well as a means for prebiotic chemistry during a time period when life was first emerging on Earth. Although the mineralogical assemblages identified on Mars are unlikely to be directly analogous to rocks that underlie the Lost City Hydrothermal Field, related geochemical processes (and associated sources of biologically accessible energy) were once present in the subsurface, making Nili Fossae a compelling candidate for a once-habitable environment on Mars. Key Words: Mars-Habitability-Serpentinization-Analogue. Astrobiology 17, 1138-1160.

  17. The Mojave Desert: A Martian Analog Site for Future Astrobiology Themed Missions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salas, E.; Abbey, W.; Bhartia, R.; Beegle, L. W.

    2011-01-01

    Astrobiological interest in Mars is highlighted by evidence that Mars was once warm enough to have liquid water present on its surface long enough to create geologic formations that could only exist in the presense of extended fluvial periods. These periods existed at the same time life on Earth arose. If life began on Mars as well during this period, it is reasonable to assume it may have adapted to the subsurface as environments at the surface changed into the inhospitable state we find today. If the next series of Mars missions (Mars Science Laboratory, the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter proposed for launch in 2016, and potential near surface sample return) fail to discover either extinct or extant life on Mars, a subsurface mission would be necessary to attempt to "close the book" on the existence of martian life. Mars is much colder and drier than Earth, with a very low pressure CO2 environment and no obvious habitats. Terrestrial regions with limited precipitation, and hence reduced active biota, are some of the best martian low to mid latitude analogs to be found on Earth, be they the Antarctic dry valleys, the Atacama or Mojave Deserts. The Mojave Desert/Death Valley region is considered a Mars analog site by the Terrestrial Analogs Panel of the NSF-sponsored decadal survey; a field guide was even developed and a workshop was held on its applicability as a Mars analog. This region has received a great deal of attention due to its accessibility and the variety of landforms and processes observed relevant to martian studies.

  18. Extending Galactic Habitable Zone Modeling to Include the Emergence of Intelligent Life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrison, Ian S; Gowanlock, Michael G

    2015-08-01

    Previous studies of the galactic habitable zone have been concerned with identifying those regions of the Galaxy that may favor the emergence of complex life. A planet is deemed habitable if it meets a set of assumed criteria for supporting the emergence of such complex life. In this work, we extend the assessment of habitability to consider the potential for life to further evolve to the point of intelligence--termed the propensity for the emergence of intelligent life, φI. We assume φI is strongly influenced by the time durations available for evolutionary processes to proceed undisturbed by the sterilizing effects of nearby supernovae. The times between supernova events provide windows of opportunity for the evolution of intelligence. We developed a model that allows us to analyze these window times to generate a metric for φI, and we examine here the spatial and temporal variation of this metric. Even under the assumption that long time durations are required between sterilizations to allow for the emergence of intelligence, our model suggests that the inner Galaxy provides the greatest number of opportunities for intelligence to arise. This is due to the substantially higher number density of habitable planets in this region, which outweighs the effects of a higher supernova rate in the region. Our model also shows that φI is increasing with time. Intelligent life emerged at approximately the present time at Earth's galactocentric radius, but a similar level of evolutionary opportunity was available in the inner Galaxy more than 2 Gyr ago. Our findings suggest that the inner Galaxy should logically be a prime target region for searches for extraterrestrial intelligence and that any civilizations that may have emerged there are potentially much older than our own.

  19. Astronomía y Astrobiología con internet : recursos informáticos y material multimedia interactivo

    OpenAIRE

    Ruiz Rey, Francisco José

    2006-01-01

    El artículo de Francisco José Ruiz Rey presenta información sobre diversos recursos didácticos de Astronomía y Astrobiología disponibles en Internet. Previamente, el autor hace una reflexión sobre Internet como un elemento que favorece el aprendizaje significativo constructivo y que modifica el patrón de escuela tradicional que requiere la presencia física del profesor y de los alumnos. Partiendo de esta reflexión, Francisco José Ruiz ofrece una selección amplia de sitios Web comentados divid...

  20. Business Intelligence & Analytical Intelligence: hou het zakelijk

    OpenAIRE

    Van Nieuwenhuyse, Dries

    2013-01-01

    Technologie democratiseert, de markt consolideert, terwijl de hoeveelheid data explodeert. Het lijkt een ideale voedingsbodem voor projecten rond business intelligence en analytics. “Hoe minder de technologie het verschil zal maken, hoe prominenter de business aanwezig zal zijn.”

  1. Social Intelligence Design in Ambient Intelligence

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nijholt, Antinus; Stock, Oliviero; Stock, O.; Nishida, T.; Nishida, Toyoaki

    2009-01-01

    This Special Issue of AI and Society contains a selection of papers presented at the 6th Social Intelligence Design Workshop held at ITC-irst, Povo (Trento, Italy) in July 2007. Being the 6th in a series means that there now is a well-established and also a growing research area. The interest in

  2. Spiritual Intelligence, Emotional Intelligence and Auditor’s Performance

    OpenAIRE

    Hanafi, Rustam

    2010-01-01

    The objective of this research was to investigate empirical evidence about influence audi-tor spiritual intelligence on the performance with emotional intelligence as a mediator variable. Linear regression models are developed to examine the hypothesis and path analysis. The de-pendent variable of each model is auditor performance, whereas the independent variable of model 1 is spiritual intelligence, of model 2 are emotional intelligence and spiritual intelligence. The parameters were estima...

  3. Naturalist Intelligence Among the Other Multiple Intelligences [In Bulgarian

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Genkov

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available The theory of multiple intelligences was presented by Gardner in 1983. The theory was revised later (1999 and among the other intelligences a naturalist intelligence was added. The criteria for distinguishing of the different types of intelligences are considered. While Gardner restricted the analysis of the naturalist intelligence with examples from the living nature only, the present paper considered this problem on wider background including objects and persons of the natural sciences.

  4. Intelligence and treaty ratification

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sojka, G.L.

    1990-01-01

    What did the intelligence community and the Intelligence Committee di poorly in regard to the treaty ratification process for arms control? We failed to solve the compartmentalization problem/ This is a second-order problem, and, in general, analysts try to be very open; but there are problems nevertheless. There are very few, if any, people within the intelligence community who are cleared for everything relevant to our monitoring capability emdash short of probably the Director of Central Intelligence and the president emdash and this is a major problem. The formal monitoring estimates are drawn up by individuals who do not have access to all the information to make the monitoring judgements. This paper reports that the intelligence community did not present a formal document on either Soviet incentives of disincentives to cheat or on the possibility of cheating scenarios, and that was a mistake. However, the intelligence community was very responsive in producing those types of estimates, and, ultimately, the evidence behind them in response to questions. Nevertheless, the author thinks the intelligence community would do well to address this issue up front before a treaty is submitted to the Senate for advice and consent

  5. An Intelligent Pinger Network for Solid Glacier Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schönitz, S.; Reuter, S.; Henke, C.; Jeschke, S.; Ewert, D.; Eliseev, D.; Heinen, D.; Linder, P.; Scholz, F.; Weinstock, L.; Wickmann, S.; Wiebusch, C.; Zierke, S.

    2016-12-01

    This talk presents a novel approach for an intelligent, agent-based pinger network in an extraterrestrial glacier environment. Because of recent findings of the Cassini spacecraft, a mission to Saturn's moon Enceladus is planned in order search for extraterrestrial life within the ocean beneath Enceladus' ice crust. Therefore, a maneuverable melting probe, the EnEx probe, was developed to melt into Enceladus' ice and take liquid samples from water-filled crevasses. Hence, the probe collecting the samples has to be able to navigate in ice which is a hard problem, because neither visual nor gravitational methods can be used. To enhance the navigability of the probe, a network of autonomous pinger units (APU) is in development that is able to extract a map of the ice environment via ultrasonic soundwaves. A network of these APUs will be deployed on the surface of Enceladus, melt into the ice and form a network to help guide the probe safely to its destination. The APU network is able to form itself fully autonomously and to compensate system failures of individual APUs. The agents controlling the single APU are realized by rule-based expert systems implemented in CLIPS. The rule-based expert system evaluates available information of the environment, decides for actions to take to achieve the desired goal (e.g. a specific network topology), and executes and monitors such actions. In general, it encodes certain situations that are evaluated whenever an APU is currently idle, and then decides for a next action to take. It bases this decision on its internal world model that is shared with the other APUs. The optimal network topology that defines each agents position is iteratively determined by mixed-integer nonlinear programming. Extensive simulations studies show that the proposed agent design enables the APUs to form a robust network topology that is suited to create a reliable 3D map of the ice environment.

  6. The Epistemic Status of Intelligence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rønn, Kira Vrist; Høffding, Simon

    2012-01-01

    We argue that the majority of intelligence definitions fail to recognize that the normative epistemic status of intelligence is knowledge and not an inferior alternative. We refute the counter-arguments that intelligence ought not to be seen as knowledge because of 1) its action-oriented scope...... and robustness of claims to intelligence-knowledge can be assessed....

  7. Moral Intelligence in the Schools

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clarken, Rodney H.

    2009-01-01

    Moral intelligence is newer and less studied than the more established cognitive, emotional and social intelligences, but has great potential to improve our understanding of learning and behavior. Moral intelligence refers to the ability to apply ethical principles to personal goals, values and actions. The construct of moral intelligence consists…

  8. Space transportation and destination considerations for extraterrestrial disposal of radioactive waste

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zimmerman, A. V.; Thompson, R. L.; Lubick, R. J.

    1973-01-01

    A feasibility study is summarized of extraterrestrial (space) disposal of radioactive waste. The initial work on the evaluation and comparison of possible space destinations and launch vehicles is reported. Only current or planned space transportation systems were considered. The currently planned space shuttle was found to be more cost effective than current expendable launch vehicles, by about a factor of two. The space shuttle will require a third stage to perform the disposal missions. Depending on the particular mission this could be either a reusable space tug or an expendable stage such as a Centaur. Of the destinations considered, high earth orbits (between geostationary and lunar orbit altitudes), solar orbits (such as a 0.90 AU circular solar orbit) or a direct injection to solar system escape appear to be the best candidates. Both earth orbits and solar orbits have uncertainties regarding orbit stability and waste package integrity for times on the order of a million years.

  9. Detection of /sup 4/He in stratospheric particles gives evidence of extraterrestrial origin

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rajan, R S [Carnegie Institution of Washington, D.C. (USA). Dept. of Terrestrial Magnetism; Brownlee, D E; Tomandl, D; Hodge, P W; Farrar, H; Britten, R A

    1977-05-12

    The detection of large concentrations of /sup 4/He in some ..mu..m size stratospheric particles collected during the past 2 years is here reported. The final /sup 4/He concentrations ranged from 0.002 to 0.25 cc/gm. Such high concentrations confirm that the particles were extraterrestrial and that some of them were exposed to solar wind for at least 10 to 100 years; also, since solar wind ions are implanted only to depths of approximately 500 A, the measurements also indicate that the particles existed as small particles in space and were not produced in the atmosphere by fragmentation of larger meteoroids. The possibility that the observed He could have been the product of decaying U appears remote. Since micrometeorites probably have cometary origin, they are potentially a valuable source of primitive Solar System matter.

  10. Accurate computations of monthly average daily extraterrestrial irradiation and the maximum possible sunshine duration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jain, P.C.

    1985-12-01

    The monthly average daily values of the extraterrestrial irradiation on a horizontal plane and the maximum possible sunshine duration are two important parameters that are frequently needed in various solar energy applications. These are generally calculated by solar scientists and engineers each time they are needed and often by using the approximate short-cut methods. Using the accurate analytical expressions developed by Spencer for the declination and the eccentricity correction factor, computations for these parameters have been made for all the latitude values from 90 deg. N to 90 deg. S at intervals of 1 deg. and are presented in a convenient tabular form. Monthly average daily values of the maximum possible sunshine duration as recorded on a Campbell Stoke's sunshine recorder are also computed and presented. These tables would avoid the need for repetitive and approximate calculations and serve as a useful ready reference for providing accurate values to the solar energy scientists and engineers

  11. Table for monthly average daily extraterrestrial irradiation on horizontal surface and the maximum possible sunshine duration

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jain, P.C.

    1984-01-01

    The monthly average daily values of the extraterrestrial irradiation on a horizontal surface (H 0 ) and the maximum possible sunshine duration are two important parameters that are frequently needed in various solar energy applications. These are generally calculated by scientists each time they are needed and by using the approximate short-cut methods. Computations for these values have been made once and for all for latitude values of 60 deg. N to 60 deg. S at intervals of 1 deg. and are presented in a convenient tabular form. Values of the maximum possible sunshine duration as recorded on a Campbell Stoke's sunshine recorder are also computed and presented. These tables should avoid the need for repetition and approximate calculations and serve as a useful ready reference for solar energy scientists and engineers. (author)

  12. The Ĝ Infrared Search for Extraterrestrial Civilizations with Large Energy Supplies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wright, Jason Thomas; Povich, Matthew; Griffith, Roger; Maldonado, Jessica; Sigurdsson, Steinn; Star Cartier, Kimberly

    2015-08-01

    The WISE and Spitzer large-area surveys of the mid-infrared sky bring a new opportunity to search for evidence of the energy supplies of very large extraterrestrial civilizations. If these energy supplies rival the output of a civilization's parent star (Kardashev Type II), or if a galaxy-spanning supercivilization's use rivals that of the total galactic luminosity (Type III), they would be detectable as anomolously mid-infrared-bright stars and galaxies, respectively. We have already performed the first search for this emission from Type III civilizations using the WISE all-sky survey, and put the first upper limits on them in the local universe, and discuss ways to improve on these limits. We also discuss some detectable forms of and limits on Type II civilizations in the Mliky Way.

  13. Preliminary limits on the flux of muon neutrinos from extraterrestrial point sources

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bionta, R.M.; Blewitt, G.; Bratton, C.B.

    1985-01-01

    We present the arrival directions of 117 upward-going muon events collected with the IMB proton lifetime detector during 317 days of live detector operation. The rate of upward-going muons observed in our detector was found to be consistent with the rate expected from atmospheric neutrino production. The upper limit on the total flux of extraterrestrial neutrinos >1 GeV is 2 -sec. Using our data and a Monte Carlo simulation of high energy muon production in the earth surrounding the detector, we place limits on the flux of neutrinos from a point source in the Vela X-2 system of 2 -sec with E > 1 GeV. 6 refs., 5 figs

  14. Extraterrestrial Amino Acids Identified in Metal-Rich CH and CB Carbonaceous Chondrites from Antarctica

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burton, Aaron S.; Elsila, Jamie E.; Hein, Jason E.; Glavin, Daniel P.; Dworkin, Jason P.

    2013-01-01

    Carbonaceous chondrites contain numerous indigenous organic compounds and could have been an important source of prebiotic compounds required for the origin of life on Earth or elsewhere. Extraterrestrial amino acids have been reported in five of the eight groups of carbonaceous chondrites and are most abundant in CI, CM, and CR chondritesbut are also present in the more thermally altered CV and CO chondrites. We report the abundance, distribution, and enantiomeric and isotopic compositions of simple primary amino acids in six metal-rich CH and CB carbonaceous chondrites that have not previously been investigated for amino acids: Allan Hills (ALH) 85085 (CH3), Pecora Escarpment(PCA) 91467 (CH3), Patuxent Range (PAT) 91546 (CH3), MacAlpine Hills (MAC) 02675(CBb), Miller Range (MIL) 05082 (CB), and Miller Range (MIL) 07411 (CB). Amino acid abundances and carbon isotopic values were obtained by using both liquid chromatography time-of-flight mass spectrometry and fluorescence, and gas chromatography isotope ratiomass spectrometry. The (delta D, delta C-13, delta N-15) ratios of multiple amino acids fall outside of the terrestrial range and support their extraterrestrial origin. Extracts of CH chondrites were found to be particularly rich in amino acids (1316 parts per million, ppm) while CB chondrite extracts had much lower abundances (0.22 ppm). The amino acid distributions of the CH and CB chondrites were distinct from the distributions observed in type 2 and 3 CM and CR chondrites and contained elevated levels of beta-, gamma-, and delta-amino acids compared to the corresponding alpha-amino acids, providing evidence that multiple amino acid formation mechanisms were important in CH and CB chondrites.

  15. Comparison of the Raman spectra of ion irradiated soot and collected extraterrestrial carbon

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brunetto, R.; Pino, T.; Dartois, E.; Cao, A.-T.; d'Hendecourt, L.; Strazzulla, G.; Bréchignac, Ph.

    2009-03-01

    We use a low pressure flame to produce soot by-products as possible analogues of the carbonaceous dust present in diverse astrophysical environments, such as circumstellar shells, diffuse interstellar medium, planetary disks, as well as in our own Solar System. Several soot samples, displaying an initial chemical diversity from aromatic to aliphatic dominated material, are irradiated with 200-400 keV H +, He +, and Ar ++ ions, with fluences comprised between 10 14 and 10 16 ions/cm 2, to simulate expected radiation induced modification on extraterrestrial carbon. The evolution of the samples is monitored using Raman spectroscopy, before, during, and after irradiation. A detailed analysis of the first- and second-order Raman spectra is performed, using a fitting combination of Lorentzian and/or Gaussian-shaped bands. Upon irradiation, the samples evolve toward an amorphous carbon phase. The results suggest that the observed variations are more related to vacancy formation than ionization processes. A comparison with Raman spectra of extraterrestrial organic matter and other irradiation experiments of astrophysically relevant carbonaceous materials is presented. The results are consistent with previous experiments showing mostly amorphization of various carbonaceous materials. Irradiated soots have Raman spectra similar to those of some meteorites, IDPs, and Comet Wild 2 grains collected by the Stardust mission. Since the early-Sun expected irradiation fluxes sufficient for amorphization are compatible with accretion timescales, our results support the idea that insoluble organic matter (IOM) observed in primitive meteorites has experienced irradiation-induced amorphization prior to the accretion of the parent bodies, emphasizing the important role played by early solar nebula processing.

  16. Advanced intelligence and mechanism approach

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    ZHONG Yixin

    2007-01-01

    Advanced intelligence will feature the intelligence research in next 50 years.An understanding of the concept of advanced intelligence as well as its importance will be provided first,and detailed analysis on an approach,the mechanism approach.suitable to the advanced intelligence research will then be flolowed.And the mutual relationship among mechanism approach,traditional approaches existed in artificial intelligence research,and the cognitive informatics will be discussed.It is interesting to discover that mechanism approach is a good one to the Advanced Intelligence research and a tmified form of the existed approaches to artificial intelligence.

  17. Intelligent environmental sensing

    CERN Document Server

    Mukhopadhyay, Subhas

    2015-01-01

    Developing environmental sensing and monitoring technologies become essential especially for industries that may cause severe contamination. Intelligent environmental sensing uses novel sensor techniques, intelligent signal and data processing algorithms, and wireless sensor networks to enhance environmental sensing and monitoring. It finds applications in many environmental problems such as oil and gas, water quality, and agriculture. This book addresses issues related to three main approaches to intelligent environmental sensing and discusses their latest technological developments. Key contents of the book include:   Agricultural monitoring Classification, detection, and estimation Data fusion Geological monitoring Motor monitoring Multi-sensor systems Oil reservoirs monitoring Sensor motes Water quality monitoring Wireless sensor network protocol  

  18. Is Intelligence Artificial?

    OpenAIRE

    Greer, Kieran

    2014-01-01

    Our understanding of intelligence is directed primarily at the level of human beings. This paper attempts to give a more unifying definition that can be applied to the natural world in general. The definition would be used more to verify a degree of intelligence, not to quantify it and might help when making judgements on the matter. A version of an accepted test for AI is then put forward as the 'acid test' for Artificial Intelligence itself. It might be what a free-thinking program or robot...

  19. Until the sun dies. [Book on origin of universe, life and intelligence on earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jastrow, R.

    1977-01-01

    This book gives a popular account of the forces that have shaped human beings into their present form and created the power of human intelligence, and considers the prospects for intelligent life on other planets in the solar system and elsewhere in the universe. The chain of events leading from the big bang to the origin of life on earth is reviewed together with the observations that established the expansion of the universe. Philosophical difficulties with the concept of a universe that has both a beginning and an end are pondered, steady-state cosmology is briefly explained, and the discovery of the relict microwave background is discussed. The formation of the solar system is recounted along with the scientific view of the origin of terrestrial life. Attention is given to the origin of cells and the evolution of oxygen-breathing life, multicelled creatures, armored animals, fishes, amphibians, early reptiles, dinosaurs, and mammals. The development of mammalian intelligence is traced from the early tree dwellers through monkeys, apes, ape men, humanoid tool makers, and primitive members of the genus Homo, to Homo sapiens. Possible evidence for the existence of life on Mars is evaluated together with prospects for communication or other contact with extraterrestrial intelligence.

  20. Multiple Intelligences and quotient spaces

    OpenAIRE

    Malatesta, Mike; Quintana, Yamilet

    2006-01-01

    The Multiple Intelligence Theory (MI) is one of the models that study and describe the cognitive abilities of an individual. In [7] is presented a referential system which allows to identify the Multiple Intelligences of the students of a course and to classify the level of development of such Intelligences. Following this tendency, the purpose of this paper is to describe the model of Multiple Intelligences as a quotient space, and also to study the Multiple Intelligences of an individual in...

  1. Business Intelligence using Software Agents

    OpenAIRE

    Ana-Ramona BOLOGA; Razvan BOLOGA

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents some ideas about business intelligence today and the importance of developing real time business solutions. The authors make an exploration of links between business intelligence and artificial intelligence and focuses specifically on the implementation of software agents-based systems in business intelligence. There are briefly presented some of the few solutions proposed so far that use software agents properties for the benefit of business intelligence. The authors then...

  2. Engineering general intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Goertzel, Ben; Geisweiller, Nil

    2014-01-01

    The work outlines a novel conceptual and theoretical framework for understanding Artificial General Intelligence and based on this framework outlines a practical roadmap for the development of AGI with capability at the human level and ultimately beyond.

  3. Understanding US National Intelligence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Leander, Anna

    2014-01-01

    In July 2010, the Washington Post (WP) published the results of a project on “Top Secret America” on which twenty investigative journalists had been working for two years. The project drew attention to the change and growth in National Intelligence following 9/11 (Washington Post 2010a......). The initial idea had been to work on intelligence generally, but given that this proved overwhelming, the team narrowed down to focus only on intelligence qualified as “top secret.” Even so, the growth in this intelligence activity is remarkable. This public is returning, or in this case expanding...... at an impressive speed confirming the general contention of this volume. Between 2001 and 2010 the budget had increased by 250 percent, reaching $75 billion (the GDP of the Czech Republic). Thirty-three building complexes for top secret work had been or were under construction in the Washington area; 1...

  4. Engineering general intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Goertzel, Ben; Geisweiller, Nil

    2014-01-01

    The work outlines a detailed blueprint for the creation of an Artificial General Intelligence system with capability at the human level and ultimately beyond, according to the Cog Prime AGI design and the Open Cog software architecture.

  5. Intelligence Issues for Congress

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Best, Jr, Richard A

    2007-01-01

    To address the challenges facing the U.S. Intelligence Community in the 21st century, congressional and executive branch initiatives have sought to improve coordination among the different agencies and to encourage better analysis...

  6. Intelligence Issues for Congress

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Best, Jr, Richard A

    2006-01-01

    To address the challenges facing the U.S. Intelligence Community in the 21st Century, congressional and executive branch initiatives have sought to improve coordination among the different agencies and to encourage better analysis...

  7. Intelligence Issues for Congress

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Best, Jr, Richard A

    2008-01-01

    To address the challenges facing the U.S. Intelligence Community in the 21st century, congressional and executive branch initiatives have sought to improve coordination among the different agencies and to encourage better analysis...

  8. Intelligent Information Systems Institute

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Gomes, Carla

    2004-01-01

    ...) at Cornell during the first three years of operation. IISI's mandate is threefold: To perform and stimulate research in computational and data-intensive methods for intelligent decision making systems...

  9. Quo vadis, Intelligent Machine?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rosemarie Velik

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Artificial Intelligence (AI is a branch of computer science concerned with making computers behave like humans. At least this was the original idea. However, it turned out that this is no task easy to be solved. This article aims to give a comprehensible review on the last 60 years of artificial intelligence taking a philosophical viewpoint. It is outlined what happened so far in AI, what is currently going on in this research area, and what can be expected in future. The goal is to mediate an understanding for the developments and changes in thinking in course of time about how to achieve machine intelligence. The clear message is that AI has to join forces with neuroscience and other brain disciplines in order to make a step towards the development of truly intelligent machines.

  10. Bibliography: Artificial Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Richard L.

    1986-01-01

    Annotates reference material on artificial intelligence, mostly at an introductory level, with applications to education and learning. Topics include: (1) programing languages; (2) expert systems; (3) language instruction; (4) tutoring systems; and (5) problem solving and reasoning. (JM)

  11. Handbook of Intelligent Vehicles

    CERN Document Server

    2012-01-01

    The Handbook of Intelligent Vehicles provides a complete coverage of the fundamentals, new technologies, and sub-areas essential to the development of intelligent vehicles; it also includes advances made to date, challenges, and future trends. Significant strides in the field have been made to date; however, so far there has been no single book or volume which captures these advances in a comprehensive format, addressing all essential components and subspecialties of intelligent vehicles, as this book does. Since the intended users are engineering practitioners, as well as researchers and graduate students, the book chapters do not only cover fundamentals, methods, and algorithms but also include how software/hardware are implemented, and demonstrate the advances along with their present challenges. Research at both component and systems levels are required to advance the functionality of intelligent vehicles. This volume covers both of these aspects in addition to the fundamentals listed above.

  12. Genes, evolution and intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bouchard, Thomas J

    2014-11-01

    I argue that the g factor meets the fundamental criteria of a scientific construct more fully than any other conception of intelligence. I briefly discuss the evidence regarding the relationship of brain size to intelligence. A review of a large body of evidence demonstrates that there is a g factor in a wide range of species and that, in the species studied, it relates to brain size and is heritable. These findings suggest that many species have evolved a general-purpose mechanism (a general biological intelligence) for dealing with the environments in which they evolved. In spite of numerous studies with considerable statistical power, we know of very few genes that influence g and the effects are very small. Nevertheless, g appears to be highly polygenic. Given the complexity of the human brain, it is not surprising that that one of its primary faculties-intelligence-is best explained by the near infinitesimal model of quantitative genetics.

  13. Modelling intelligent behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Green, H. S.; Triffet, T.

    1993-01-01

    An introductory discussion of the related concepts of intelligence and consciousness suggests criteria to be met in the modeling of intelligence and the development of intelligent materials. Methods for the modeling of actual structure and activity of the animal cortex have been found, based on present knowledge of the ionic and cellular constitution of the nervous system. These have led to the development of a realistic neural network model, which has been used to study the formation of memory and the process of learning. An account is given of experiments with simple materials which exhibit almost all properties of biological synapses and suggest the possibility of a new type of computer architecture to implement an advanced type of artificial intelligence.

  14. Emotional Intelligence: Requiring Attention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monica Tudor

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available This article aims to highlight the need for emotional intelligence. Two methods of measurementare presented in this research, in order to better understand the necessity of a correct result. Theresults of research can lead to recommendations for improving levels of emotional intelligence andare useful for obtaining data to better compare past and present result. The papers presented inthis research are significant for future study of this subject. The first paper presents the evolutionof emotional intelligence in the past two years, more specifically its decrease concerning certaincharacteristics. The second one presents a research on the differences between generations. Thethird one shows a difference in emotional intelligence levels of children from rural versus urbanenvironments and the obstacles that they encounter in their own development.

  15. Intelligence Issues for Congress

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Best. Jr, Richard A

    2006-01-01

    To address the challenges facing the U.S. Intelligence Community in the 21st century, congressional and executive branch initiatives have sought to improve coordination among the different agencies and to encourage better analysis...

  16. Towards Intelligent Supply Chains

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Siurdyban, Artur; Møller, Charles

    2012-01-01

    applied to the context of organizational processes can increase the success rate of business operations. The framework is created using a set of theoretical based constructs grounded in a discussion across several streams of research including psychology, pedagogy, artificial intelligence, learning...... of deploying inapt operations leading to deterioration of profits. To address this problem, we propose a unified business process design framework based on the paradigm of intelligence. Intelligence allows humans and human-designed systems cope with environmental volatility, and we argue that its principles......, business process management and supply chain management. It outlines a number of system tasks combined in four integrated management perspectives: build, execute, grow and innovate, put forward as business process design propositions for Intelligent Supply Chains....

  17. Establishment of a rearing system of the extremotolerant tardigrade Ramazzottius varieornatus: a new model animal for astrobiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Horikawa, Daiki D; Kunieda, Takekazu; Abe, Wataru; Watanabe, Masahiko; Nakahara, Yuichi; Yukuhiro, Fumiko; Sakashita, Tetsuya; Hamada, Nobuyuki; Wada, Seiichi; Funayama, Tomoo; Katagiri, Chihiro; Kobayashi, Yasuhiko; Higashi, Seigo; Okuda, Takashi

    2008-06-01

    Studies on the ability of multicellular organisms to tolerate specific environmental extremes are relatively rare compared to those of unicellular microorganisms in extreme environments. Tardigrades are extremotolerant animals that can enter an ametabolic dry state called anhydrobiosis and have high tolerance to a variety of extreme environmental conditions, particularly while in anhydrobiosis. Although tardigrades have been expected to be a potential model animal for astrobiological studies due to their excellent anhydrobiotic and extremotolerant abilities, few studies of tolerance with cultured tardigrades have been reported, possibly due to the absence of a model species that can be easily maintained under rearing conditions. We report the successful rearing of the herbivorous tardigrade, Ramazzottius varieornatus, by supplying the green alga Chlorella vulgaris as food. The life span was 35 +/- 16.4 d, deposited eggs required 5.7 +/- 1.1 d to hatch, and animals began to deposit eggs 9 d after hatching. The reared individuals of this species had an anhydrobiotic capacity throughout their life cycle in egg, juvenile, and adult stages. Furthermore, the reared adults in an anhydrobiotic state were tolerant of temperatures of 90 degrees C and -196 degrees C, and exposure to 99.8% acetonitrile or irradiation with 4000 Gy (4)He ions. Based on their life history traits and tolerance to extreme stresses, R. varieornatus may be a suitable model for astrobiological studies of multicellular organisms.

  18. Business Intelligence Integrated Solutions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cristescu Marian Pompiliu

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper shows how businesses make decisions better and faster in terms of customers, partners and operations by turning data into valuable business information. The paper describes how to bring together people's and business intelligence information to achieve successful business strategies. There is the possibility of developing business intelligence projects in large and medium-sized organizations only with the Microsoft product described in the paper, and possible alternatives can be discussed according to the required features.

  19. Artificial intelligence in medicine.

    OpenAIRE

    Ramesh, A. N.; Kambhampati, C.; Monson, J. R. T.; Drew, P. J.

    2004-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Artificial intelligence is a branch of computer science capable of analysing complex medical data. Their potential to exploit meaningful relationship with in a data set can be used in the diagnosis, treatment and predicting outcome in many clinical scenarios. METHODS: Medline and internet searches were carried out using the keywords 'artificial intelligence' and 'neural networks (computer)'. Further references were obtained by cross-referencing from key articles. An overview of ...

  20. Artificial Intelligence Study (AIS).

    Science.gov (United States)

    1987-02-01

    ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGNECE HARDWARE ....... 2-50 AI Architecture ................................... 2-49 AI Hardware ....................................... 2...ftf1 829 ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE STUDY (RIS)(U) MAY CONCEPTS 1/3 A~NLYSIS AGENCY BETHESA RD R B NOJESKI FED 6? CM-RP-97-1 NCASIFIED /01/6 M |K 1.0...p/ - - ., e -- CAA- RP- 87-1 SAOFŔ)11 I ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE STUDY (AIS) tNo DTICFEBRUARY 1987 LECT 00 I PREPARED BY RESEARCH AND ANALYSIS

  1. Artificial Intelligence in Astronomy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Devinney, E. J.; Prša, A.; Guinan, E. F.; Degeorge, M.

    2010-12-01

    From the perspective (and bias) as Eclipsing Binary researchers, we give a brief overview of the development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications, describe major application areas of AI in astronomy, and illustrate the power of an AI approach in an application developed under the EBAI (Eclipsing Binaries via Artificial Intelligence) project, which employs Artificial Neural Network technology for estimating light curve solution parameters of eclipsing binary systems.

  2. Minimally Naturalistic Artificial Intelligence

    OpenAIRE

    Hansen, Steven Stenberg

    2017-01-01

    The rapid advancement of machine learning techniques has re-energized research into general artificial intelligence. While the idea of domain-agnostic meta-learning is appealing, this emerging field must come to terms with its relationship to human cognition and the statistics and structure of the tasks humans perform. The position of this article is that only by aligning our agents' abilities and environments with those of humans do we stand a chance at developing general artificial intellig...

  3. Artificial intelligence in cardiology

    OpenAIRE

    Bonderman, Diana

    2017-01-01

    Summary Decision-making is complex in modern medicine and should ideally be based on available data, structured knowledge and proper interpretation in the context of an individual patient. Automated algorithms, also termed artificial intelligence that are able to extract meaningful patterns from data collections and build decisions upon identified patterns may be useful assistants in clinical decision-making processes. In this article, artificial intelligence-based studies in clinical cardiol...

  4. Intelligent distributed computing

    CERN Document Server

    Thampi, Sabu

    2015-01-01

    This book contains a selection of refereed and revised papers of the Intelligent Distributed Computing Track originally presented at the third International Symposium on Intelligent Informatics (ISI-2014), September 24-27, 2014, Delhi, India.  The papers selected for this Track cover several Distributed Computing and related topics including Peer-to-Peer Networks, Cloud Computing, Mobile Clouds, Wireless Sensor Networks, and their applications.

  5. The intelligent data recorder

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kojima, Mamoru; Hidekuma, Sigeru.

    1985-01-01

    The intelligent data recorder has been developed to data acquisition for a microwave interferometer. The 'RS-232C' which is the standard interface is used for data transmission to the host computer. Then, it's easy to connect with any computer which has general purpose serial port. In this report, the charcteristics of the intelligent data recorder and the way of developing the software are described. (author)

  6. Intelligent Lighting Control System

    OpenAIRE

    García, Elena; Rodríguez González, Sara; de Paz Santana, Juan F.; Bajo Pérez, Javier

    2014-01-01

    This paper presents an adaptive architecture that allows centralized control of public lighting and intelligent management, in order to economise on lighting and maintain maximum comfort status of the illuminated areas. To carry out this management, architecture merges various techniques of artificial intelligence (AI) and statistics such as artificial neural networks (ANN), multi-agent systems (MAS), EM algorithm, methods based on ANOVA and a Service Oriented Aproach (SOA). It performs optim...

  7. Professionalizing Intelligence Analysis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    James B. Bruce

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available This article examines the current state of professionalism in national security intelligence analysis in the U.S. Government. Since the introduction of major intelligence reforms directed by the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act (IRTPA in December, 2004, we have seen notable strides in many aspects of intelligence professionalization, including in analysis. But progress is halting, uneven, and by no means permanent. To consolidate its gains, and if it is to continue improving, the U.S. intelligence community (IC should commit itself to accomplishing a new program of further professionalization of analysis to ensure that it will develop an analytic cadre that is fully prepared to deal with the complexities of an emerging multipolar and highly dynamic world that the IC itself is forecasting. Some recent reforms in intelligence analysis can be assessed against established standards of more fully developed professions; these may well fall short of moving the IC closer to the more fully professionalized analytical capability required for producing the kind of analysis needed now by the United States.

  8. GABA predicts visual intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cook, Emily; Hammett, Stephen T; Larsson, Jonas

    2016-10-06

    Early psychological researchers proposed a link between intelligence and low-level perceptual performance. It was recently suggested that this link is driven by individual variations in the ability to suppress irrelevant information, evidenced by the observation of strong correlations between perceptual surround suppression and cognitive performance. However, the neural mechanisms underlying such a link remain unclear. A candidate mechanism is neural inhibition by gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), but direct experimental support for GABA-mediated inhibition underlying suppression is inconsistent. Here we report evidence consistent with a global suppressive mechanism involving GABA underlying the link between sensory performance and intelligence. We measured visual cortical GABA concentration, visuo-spatial intelligence and visual surround suppression in a group of healthy adults. Levels of GABA were strongly predictive of both intelligence and surround suppression, with higher levels of intelligence associated with higher levels of GABA and stronger surround suppression. These results indicate that GABA-mediated neural inhibition may be a key factor determining cognitive performance and suggests a physiological mechanism linking surround suppression and intelligence. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  9. Alzheimer's disease and intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeo, R A; Arden, R; Jung, R E

    2011-06-01

    A significant body of evidence has accumulated suggesting that individual variation in intellectual ability, whether assessed directly by intelligence tests or indirectly through proxy measures, is related to risk of developing Alzheimer's disease (AD) in later life. Important questions remain unanswered, however, such as the specificity of risk for AD vs. other forms of dementia, and the specific links between premorbid intelligence and development of the neuropathology characteristic of AD. Lower premorbid intelligence has also emerged as a risk factor for greater mortality across myriad health and mental health diagnoses. Genetic covariance contributes importantly to these associations, and pleiotropic genetic effects may impact diverse organ systems through similar processes, including inefficient design and oxidative stress. Through such processes, the genetic underpinnings of intelligence, specifically, mutation load, may also increase the risk of developing AD. We discuss how specific neurobiologic features of relatively lower premorbid intelligence, including reduced metabolic efficiency, may facilitate the development of AD neuropathology. The cognitive reserve hypothesis, the most widely accepted account of the intelligence-AD association, is reviewed in the context of this larger literature.

  10. 78 FR 90 - Defense Intelligence Agency National Intelligence University Board of Visitors Closed Meeting

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-02

    ... DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE Office of the Secretary Defense Intelligence Agency National Intelligence University Board of Visitors Closed Meeting AGENCY: National Intelligence University, Defense Intelligence... hereby given that a closed meeting of the National Intelligence University Board of Visitors has been...

  11. New Extraterrestrial Signature of the Insoluble Organic Matter of the Orgueil, Murchison and Tagish Lake Meteorites as Revealed by Electron Paramagnetic Resonance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Binet, L.; Gourier, D.; Derenne, S.; Robert, F.; Ciofini, I.

    2003-03-01

    EPR of the insoluble organic matter (IOM) of three chondrites revealed heterogeneously spread radicals including diradicaloids. These features not observed in terrestrial kerogens appear as an extraterrestrial signature of the chondritic IOM.

  12. Business Intelligence using Software Agents

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana-Ramona BOLOGA

    2011-12-01

    Full Text Available This paper presents some ideas about business intelligence today and the importance of developing real time business solutions. The authors make an exploration of links between business intelligence and artificial intelligence and focuses specifically on the implementation of software agents-based systems in business intelligence. There are briefly presented some of the few solutions proposed so far that use software agents properties for the benefit of business intelligence. The authors then propose some basic ideas for developing real-time agent-based software system for business intelligence in supply chain management, using Case Base Reasoning Agents.

  13. Fluid intelligence: A brief history.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kent, Phillip

    2017-01-01

    The concept of fluid and crystallized intelligence was introduced to the psychological community approximately 75 years ago by Raymond B. Cattell, and it continues to be an area of active research and controversy. The purpose of this paper is to provide a brief overview of the origin of the concept, early efforts to define intelligence and uses of intelligence tests to address pressing social issues, and the ongoing controversies associated with fluid intelligence and the structure of intelligence. The putative neuropsychological underpinnings and neurological substrates of fluid intelligence are discussed.

  14. New Perspectives on Intelligence Collection and Processing

    Science.gov (United States)

    2016-06-01

    MASINT Measurement and Signature Intelligence NPS Naval Postgraduate School OSINT Open Source Intelligence pdf Probability Density Function SIGINT...MASINT): different types of sensors • Open Source Intelligence ( OSINT ): from all open sources • Signals Intelligence (SIGINT): intercepting the

  15. Trends in ambient intelligent systems the role of computational intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Khan, Mohammad; Abraham, Ajith

    2016-01-01

    This book demonstrates the success of Ambient Intelligence in providing possible solutions for the daily needs of humans. The book addresses implications of ambient intelligence in areas of domestic living, elderly care, robotics, communication, philosophy and others. The objective of this edited volume is to show that Ambient Intelligence is a boon to humanity with conceptual, philosophical, methodical and applicative understanding. The book also aims to schematically demonstrate developments in the direction of augmented sensors, embedded systems and behavioral intelligence towards Ambient Intelligent Networks or Smart Living Technology. It contains chapters in the field of Ambient Intelligent Networks, which received highly positive feedback during the review process. The book contains research work, with in-depth state of the art from augmented sensors, embedded technology and artificial intelligence along with cutting-edge research and development of technologies and applications of Ambient Intelligent N...

  16. Investigations in space-related molecular biology. [cryo-electron microscopic and diffraction studies on terrestrial and extraterrestrial specimens

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandez-Moran, H.; Pritzker, A. N.

    1974-01-01

    Improved instrumentation and preparation techniques for high resolution, high voltage cryo-electron microscopic and diffraction studies on terrestrial and extraterrestrial specimens are reported. Computer correlated ultrastructural and biochemical work on hydrated and dried cell membranes and related biological systems provided information on membrane organization, ice crystal formation and ordered water, RNA virus linked to cancer, lunar rock samples, and organometallic superconducting compounds. Apollo 11, 12, 14, and 15 specimens were analyzed

  17. Detection of Extraterrestrial Civilizations via the Spectral Signature of Advanced Interstellar Spacecraft

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zubrin, Robert

    1994-07-01

    This paper examines the possibility of detecting extraterrestrial civilizations by means of searching for the spectral signature of their interstellar transportation systems. The advantage of such an approach is that the characteristic power levels associated with interstellar transportation systems are many orders of magnitude greater than those required for communication, and so the signal strength may be much greater. Furthermore, unlike communication which is governed by a fairly arbitrary selection of technology and mutually agreed upon conventions, interstellar transportation systems are governed much more stringently by the laws of physics. For purposes of the present analysis we consider 4 methods of interstellar propulsion, the principles of which are fairly well understood. These are anti-matter rockets, fusion rockets, fission rockets, all of which can be used to either accelerate or decelerate a spacecraft, and magnetic sails, which can be used to decelerate a spacecraft by creating drag against the interstellar medium. The types of radiation emitted by each of these propulsion systems is described, and the signal strength for starships of a characteristic mass of 1 million tonnes traveling at speeds and acceleration levels characteristic of the various propulsion systems is estimated. It is shown that for the power level of ships considered, the high energy gamma radiation emitted by the anti-matter, fusion and fission propulsion systems would be undetectable at interstellar distances. Better opportunities for detection would be the bremsstrahlung radiation from the plasma confinement systems of fusion devices, which might be detectable at distances of about 1 light year, and visible light emitted from the radiators of anti-matter driven photon rocket, which might be detectable by the Hubble Space Telescope at a distance of several hundred light years provided the rocket nozzle is oriented towards the Earth. The most detectable form of starship

  18. An alternative origin for extraterrestrial biomolecules from the hot and ionized photosphere of the protosolar nebula.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bekaert, D. V.; Derenne, S.; Tissandier, L.; Marrocchi, Y.; Anquetil, C.; Marty, B.

    2017-12-01

    Organic matter (OM) synthesized from plasma experiments (so-called Nebulotron) can provide an insight into the processes of organosynthesis within the ionized gas phase of the protosolar nebula (PSN). Organic materials recovered from Nebulotron experiments have a record of success in reproducing key features of chondritic insoluble organic matter (IOM), including the aromatic/aliphatic and soluble/insoluble ratios [1], the occurrence of D/H hot and cold spots [2], spectral features as well as elementary and isotopic patterns observed in trapped noble gases [3]. However, up until now little attention has been paid to the soluble fraction of the recovered OM (SOM). In this study, a high-vacuum plasma setting was designed to produce organic condensates from a CO-N2-H2 gas mixture reminiscent of the PSN. The chemical diversity of the synthetized SOM has been investigated by gas chromatography - mass spectrometry. Our results show that a large range of biomolecules detected in meteorites and comets could have been directly synthetized from the gas phase of the PSN under high ionization rates and temperatures > 800 K. Among other molecules, urea, formamide, glycerol, hydantoin, carboxylic acids, as well as amino acid and nucleobase derivatives are reported. While photochemical processing of interstellar icy grains or asteroidal aqueous alteration are often advocated for the origin of biomolecules in extraterrestrial samples, our results suggest that biomolecule production was also effective in the hot and ionized photosphere of the PSN. Interestingly, solid-state 13C Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectra of the Nebulotron IOM, indicates that they are very low in aromatics relative to extraterrestrial samples. Given that aromatic units in meteoritic IOM likely result from the cyclization/aromatization of aliphatic chains in the gas [1], Nebulotron-like aliphatic materials could represent the initial precursors of meteoritic OM [4]. These materials would be widespread in the

  19. Social Representations of Intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena Zubieta

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The article stresses the relationship between Explicit and Implicit theories of Intelligence. Following the line of common sense epistemology and the theory of Social Representations, a study was carried out in order to analyze naive’s explanations about Intelligence Definitions. Based on Mugny & Carugati (1989 research, a self-administered questionnaire was designed and filled in by 286 subjects. Results are congruent with the main hyphotesis postulated: A general overlap between explicit and implicit theories showed up. According to the results Intelligence appears as both, a social attribute related to social adaptation and as a concept defined in relation with contextual variables similar to expert’s current discourses. Nevertheless, conceptions based on “gifted ideology” still are present stressing the main axes of Intelligence debate: biological and sociological determinism. In the same sense, unfamiliarity and social identity are reaffirmed as organizing principles of social representation. The distance with the object -measured as the belief in intelligence differences as a solve/non solve problem- and the level of implication with the topic -teachers/no teachers- appear as discriminating elements at the moment of supporting specific dimensions. 

  20. Modelling traffic flows with intelligent cars and intelligent roads

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Arem, Bart; Tampere, Chris M.J.; Malone, Kerry

    2003-01-01

    This paper addresses the modeling of traffic flows with intelligent cars and intelligent roads. It will describe the modeling approach MIXIC and review the results for different ADA systems: Adaptive Cruise Control, a special lane for Intelligent Vehicles, cooperative following and external speed

  1. Intelligence analysis – the royal discipline of Competitive Intelligence

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    František Bartes

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this article is to propose work methodology for Competitive Intelligence teams in one of the intelligence cycle’s specific area, in the so-called “Intelligence Analysis”. Intelligence Analysis is one of the stages of the Intelligence Cycle in which data from both the primary and secondary research are analyzed. The main result of the effort is the creation of added value for the information collected. Company Competiitve Intelligence, correctly understood and implemented in business practice, is the “forecasting of the future”. That is forecasting about the future, which forms the basis for strategic decisions made by the company’s top management. To implement that requirement in corporate practice, the author perceives Competitive Intelligence as a systemic application discipline. This approach allows him to propose a “Work Plan” for Competitive Intelligence as a fundamental standardized document to steer Competitive Intelligence team activities. The author divides the Competitive Intelligence team work plan into five basic parts. Those parts are derived from the five-stage model of the intelligence cycle, which, in the author’s opinion, is more appropriate for complicated cases of Competitive Intelligence.

  2. A geoethical approach to the geological and astrobiological exploration and research of the Moon and Mars

    Science.gov (United States)

    Martinez-Frias, Jesus; Horneck, Gerda; de La Torre Noetzel, Rosa; Rull, Fernando

    Lunar and Mars exploration and research require not only scientific and technological inter-disciplinary cooperation, but also the consideration of budding ethical and scientific integrity issues. COSPAR's planetary protection policy (in coordination with the United Nations Com-mittee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space as well as various other bilateral and multilateral organizations) serves as the consensus standard for biological contamination prevention under the 1967 Outer Space Treaty1 . Space agencies Planetary Protection Policies are mostly consis-tent with the COSPAR policy. Geoethics was formerly promoted in 1991 as a new discipline, involving scientific and societal aspects2 , and its institutionalization was officially established in 2004 with the backing of the Association of Geoscientists for International Development, AGID3 (IUGS/ICSU). Recently, it has been proposed that the integration of geoethical issues in studies on planetary geology and astrobiology would enrich their methodological and con-ceptual character4-6 . The incorporation through geoethics of new questions and approaches associated to the "abiotic world" would involve: 1) extrapolating to space the recently defined and approved IUCN/UNESCO guidelines and recommendations on geodiversity7 as "planetary geodiversity", and 2) widening the classical concept of Planetary Protection, giving an addi-tional "abiotic" dimension to the exploration and research of the Moon and Mars. Given the geological characteristics and planetary evolution of the Moon and Mars, it is obvious that they require tailored geoethical approaches. Some fundamental aspects include, among others: the interrelation with bioethics and organics vs. inorganic contamination in Planetary Protection, the appropriate regulations of some necessary natural disturbances (e.g. on the Moon) dur-ing robotic and manned planetary missions, wilderness/planetary parks8,9 , the correct use of mineralogical and geochemical analytical

  3. The Literature of Competitive Intelligence.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walker, Thomas D.

    1994-01-01

    Describes competitive intelligence (CI) literature in terms of its location, quantity, authorship, length, and problems of bibliographic access. Highlights include subject access; competitive intelligence research; espionage and security; monographs; and journals. (21 references) (LRW)

  4. Artificial intelligence in nanotechnology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sacha, G M; Varona, P

    2013-11-15

    During the last decade there has been increasing use of artificial intelligence tools in nanotechnology research. In this paper we review some of these efforts in the context of interpreting scanning probe microscopy, the study of biological nanosystems, the classification of material properties at the nanoscale, theoretical approaches and simulations in nanoscience, and generally in the design of nanodevices. Current trends and future perspectives in the development of nanocomputing hardware that can boost artificial-intelligence-based applications are also discussed. Convergence between artificial intelligence and nanotechnology can shape the path for many technological developments in the field of information sciences that will rely on new computer architectures and data representations, hybrid technologies that use biological entities and nanotechnological devices, bioengineering, neuroscience and a large variety of related disciplines.

  5. Artificial intelligence in nanotechnology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sacha, G. M.; Varona, P.

    2013-11-01

    During the last decade there has been increasing use of artificial intelligence tools in nanotechnology research. In this paper we review some of these efforts in the context of interpreting scanning probe microscopy, the study of biological nanosystems, the classification of material properties at the nanoscale, theoretical approaches and simulations in nanoscience, and generally in the design of nanodevices. Current trends and future perspectives in the development of nanocomputing hardware that can boost artificial-intelligence-based applications are also discussed. Convergence between artificial intelligence and nanotechnology can shape the path for many technological developments in the field of information sciences that will rely on new computer architectures and data representations, hybrid technologies that use biological entities and nanotechnological devices, bioengineering, neuroscience and a large variety of related disciplines.

  6. Intelligent environmental data warehouse

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ekechukwu, B.

    1998-01-01

    Making quick and effective decisions in environment management are based on multiple and complex parameters, a data warehouse is a powerful tool for the over all management of massive environmental information. Selecting the right data from a warehouse is an important factor consideration for end-users. This paper proposed an intelligent environmental data warehouse system. It consists of data warehouse to feed an environmental researchers and managers with desire environmental information needs to their research studies and decision in form of geometric and attribute data for study area, and a metadata for the other sources of environmental information. In addition, the proposed intelligent search engine works according to a set of rule, which enables the system to be aware of the environmental data wanted by the end-user. The system development process passes through four stages. These are data preparation, warehouse development, intelligent engine development and internet platform system development. (author)

  7. Intelligent control systems 1990

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shoureshi, R.

    1991-01-01

    The field of artificial intelligence (Al) has generated many useful ideas and techniques that can be integrated into the design of control systems. It is believed and, for special cases, has been demonstrated, that integration of Al into control systems would provide the necessary tools for solving many of the complex problems that present control techniques and Al algorithms are unable to do, individually. However, this integration requires the development of basic understanding and new fundamentals to provide scientific bases for achievement of its potential. This book presents an overview of some of the latest research studies in the area of intelligent control systems. These papers present techniques for formulation of intelligent control, and development of the rule-based control systems. Papers present applications of control systems in nuclear power plants and HVAC systems

  8. Artificial Intelligence in Cardiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Kipp W; Torres Soto, Jessica; Glicksberg, Benjamin S; Shameer, Khader; Miotto, Riccardo; Ali, Mohsin; Ashley, Euan; Dudley, Joel T

    2018-06-12

    Artificial intelligence and machine learning are poised to influence nearly every aspect of the human condition, and cardiology is not an exception to this trend. This paper provides a guide for clinicians on relevant aspects of artificial intelligence and machine learning, reviews selected applications of these methods in cardiology to date, and identifies how cardiovascular medicine could incorporate artificial intelligence in the future. In particular, the paper first reviews predictive modeling concepts relevant to cardiology such as feature selection and frequent pitfalls such as improper dichotomization. Second, it discusses common algorithms used in supervised learning and reviews selected applications in cardiology and related disciplines. Third, it describes the advent of deep learning and related methods collectively called unsupervised learning, provides contextual examples both in general medicine and in cardiovascular medicine, and then explains how these methods could be applied to enable precision cardiology and improve patient outcomes. Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Artificial intelligence in nanotechnology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sacha, G M; Varona, P

    2013-01-01

    During the last decade there has been increasing use of artificial intelligence tools in nanotechnology research. In this paper we review some of these efforts in the context of interpreting scanning probe microscopy, the study of biological nanosystems, the classification of material properties at the nanoscale, theoretical approaches and simulations in nanoscience, and generally in the design of nanodevices. Current trends and future perspectives in the development of nanocomputing hardware that can boost artificial-intelligence-based applications are also discussed. Convergence between artificial intelligence and nanotechnology can shape the path for many technological developments in the field of information sciences that will rely on new computer architectures and data representations, hybrid technologies that use biological entities and nanotechnological devices, bioengineering, neuroscience and a large variety of related disciplines. (topical review)

  10. Understanding the Globalization of Intelligence

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Svendsen, Adam David Morgan

    "This book provides an introduction to the complexities of contemporary Western Intelligence and its dynamics during an era of globalization. Towards an understanding of the globalization of intelligence process, Svendsen focuses on the secretive phenomenon of international or foreign intelligence...... cooperation ('liaison'), as it occurs in both theory and practice. Reflecting a complex coexistence plurality of several different and overlapping concepts in action, the challenging process of the globalization of intelligence emerges as essential for complex issue management purposes during a globalized era...

  11. Artificial Intelligence and Economic Theories

    OpenAIRE

    Marwala, Tshilidzi; Hurwitz, Evan

    2017-01-01

    The advent of artificial intelligence has changed many disciplines such as engineering, social science and economics. Artificial intelligence is a computational technique which is inspired by natural intelligence such as the swarming of birds, the working of the brain and the pathfinding of the ants. These techniques have impact on economic theories. This book studies the impact of artificial intelligence on economic theories, a subject that has not been extensively studied. The theories that...

  12. Fluid-induced organic synthesis in the solar nebula recorded in extraterrestrial dust from meteorites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vollmer, Christian; Kepaptsoglou, Demie; Leitner, Jan; Busemann, Henner; Spring, Nicole H; Ramasse, Quentin M; Hoppe, Peter; Nittler, Larry R

    2014-10-28

    Isotopically anomalous carbonaceous grains in extraterrestrial samples represent the most pristine organics that were delivered to the early Earth. Here we report on gentle aberration-corrected scanning transmission electron microscopy investigations of eight (15)N-rich or D-rich organic grains within two carbonaceous Renazzo-type (CR) chondrites and two interplanetary dust particles (IDPs) originating from comets. Organic matter in the IDP samples is less aromatic than that in the CR chondrites, and its functional group chemistry is mainly characterized by C-O bonding and aliphatic C. Organic grains in CR chondrites are associated with carbonates and elemental Ca, which originate either from aqueous fluids or possibly an indigenous organic source. One distinct grain from the CR chondrite NWA 852 exhibits a rim structure only visible in chemical maps. The outer part is nanoglobular in shape, highly aromatic, and enriched in anomalous nitrogen. Functional group chemistry of the inner part is similar to spectra from IDP organic grains and less aromatic with nitrogen below the detection limit. The boundary between these two areas is very sharp. The direct association of both IDP-like organic matter with dominant C-O bonding environments and nanoglobular organics with dominant aromatic and C-N functionality within one unique grain provides for the first time to our knowledge strong evidence for organic synthesis in the early solar system activated by an anomalous nitrogen-containing parent body fluid.

  13. Nuclear reactor closed Brayton cycle power conversion system optimization trends for extra-terrestrial applications

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ashe, T.L.; Baggenstoss, W.G.; Bons, R.

    1990-01-01

    Extra-terrestrial exploration and development missions of the next century will require reliable, low-mass power generation modules of 100 kW e and more. These modules will be required to support both fixed-base and manned rover/explorer power needs. Low insolation levels at and beyond Mars and long periods of darkness on the moon make solar conversion less desirable for surface missions. For these missions, a closed Brayton cycle energy conversion system coupled with a reactor heat source is a very attractive approach. The authors conducted parametric studies to assess optimized system design trends for nuclear-Brayton systems as a function of operating environment and user requirements. The inherent design flexibility of the closed Brayton cycle energy conversion system permits ready adaptation of the system to future design constraints. This paper describes a dramatic contrast between system designs requiring man-rated shielding. The paper also considers the ramification of using indigenous materials to provide reactor shielding for a fixed-base power source

  14. Curating NASA's future extraterrestrial sample collections: How do we achieve maximum proficiency?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCubbin, Francis; Evans, Cynthia; Allton, Judith; Fries, Marc; Righter, Kevin; Zolensky, Michael; Zeigler, Ryan

    2016-07-01

    Introduction: The Astromaterials Acquisition and Curation Office (henceforth referred to herein as NASA Curation Office) at NASA Johnson Space Center (JSC) is responsible for curating all of NASA's extraterrestrial samples. Under the governing document, NASA Policy Directive (NPD) 7100.10E "Curation of Extraterrestrial Materials", JSC is charged with "The curation of all extraterrestrial material under NASA control, including future NASA missions." The Directive goes on to define Curation as including "…documentation, preservation, preparation, and distribution of samples for research, education, and public outreach." Here we describe some of the ongoing efforts to ensure that the future activities of the NASA Curation Office are working to-wards a state of maximum proficiency. Founding Principle: Curatorial activities began at JSC (Manned Spacecraft Center before 1973) as soon as design and construction planning for the Lunar Receiving Laboratory (LRL) began in 1964 [1], not with the return of the Apollo samples in 1969, nor with the completion of the LRL in 1967. This practice has since proven that curation begins as soon as a sample return mission is conceived, and this founding principle continues to return dividends today [e.g., 2]. The Next Decade: Part of the curation process is planning for the future, and we refer to these planning efforts as "advanced curation" [3]. Advanced Curation is tasked with developing procedures, technology, and data sets necessary for curating new types of collections as envisioned by NASA exploration goals. We are (and have been) planning for future curation, including cold curation, extended curation of ices and volatiles, curation of samples with special chemical considerations such as perchlorate-rich samples, curation of organically- and biologically-sensitive samples, and the use of minimally invasive analytical techniques (e.g., micro-CT, [4]) to characterize samples. These efforts will be useful for Mars Sample Return

  15. CENTAR code for extended nonlinear transient analysis of extraterrestrial reactor systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nassersharif, B.; Peer, J.S.; DeHart, M.D.

    1987-01-01

    Current interest in the application of nuclear reactor-driven power systems to space missions has generated a need for a systems simulation code to model and analyze space reactor systems; such a code has been initiated at Texas A and M, and the first version is nearing completion; release was anticipated in the fall of 1987. This code, named CENTAR (Code for Extended Nonlinear Transient Analysis of Extraterrestrial Reactor Systems), is designed specifically for space systems and is highly vectorizable. CENTAR is composed of several specialized modules. A fluids module is used to model fluid behavior throughout the system. A wall heat transfer module models the heat transfer characteristics of all walls, insulation, and structure around the system. A fuel element thermal analysis module is used to predict the temperature behavior and heat transfer characteristics of the reactor fuel rods. A kinetics module uses a six-group point kinetics formulation to model reactivity feedback and control and the ANS 5.1 decay-heat curve to model shutdown decay-heat production. A pump module models the behavior of thermoelectric-electromagnetic pumps, and a heat exchanger module models not only thermal effects in thermoelectric heat exchangers, but also predicts electrical power production for a given configuration. Finally, an accumulator module models coolant expansion/contraction accumulators

  16. Collective Intelligence in Crises

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Büscher, Monika; Liegl, Michael; Thomas, Vanessa

    2014-01-01

    New practices of social media use in emergency response seem to enable broader `situation awareness' and new forms of crisis management. The scale and speed of innovation in this field engenders disruptive innovation or a reordering of social, political, economic practices of emergency response....... By examining these dynamics with the concept of social collective intelligence, important opportunities and challenges can be examined. In this chapter we focus on socio-technical aspects of social collective intelligence in crises to discuss positive and negative frictions and avenues for innovation...

  17. Artificial intelligence executive summary

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wamsley, S.J.; Purvis, E.E. III

    1984-01-01

    Artificial intelligence (AI) is a high technology field that can be used to provide problem solving diagnosis, guidance and for support resolution of problems. It is not a stand alone discipline, but can also be applied to develop data bases for retention of the expertise that is required for its own knowledge base. This provides a way to retain knowledge that otherwise may be lost. Artificial Intelligence Methodology can provide an automated construction management decision support system, thereby restoring the manager's emphasis to project management

  18. Artificial intelligence in cardiology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bonderman, Diana

    2017-12-01

    Decision-making is complex in modern medicine and should ideally be based on available data, structured knowledge and proper interpretation in the context of an individual patient. Automated algorithms, also termed artificial intelligence that are able to extract meaningful patterns from data collections and build decisions upon identified patterns may be useful assistants in clinical decision-making processes. In this article, artificial intelligence-based studies in clinical cardiology are reviewed. The text also touches on the ethical issues and speculates on the future roles of automated algorithms versus clinicians in cardiology and medicine in general.

  19. Intelligent Freigth Transport Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Overø, Helene Martine; Larsen, Allan; Røpke, Stefan

    2009-01-01

    is to enhance the efficiency and lower the environmental impact in freight transport. In this paper, a pilot project involving real-time waste collection at a Danish waste collection company is described, and a solution approach is proposed. The problem corresponds to the dynamic version of the waste collection......The Danish innovation project entitled “Intelligent Freight Transport Systems” aims at developing prototype systems integrating public intelligent transport systems (ITS) with the technology in vehicles and equipment as well as the IT-systems at various transport companies. The objective...

  20. Bayesian artificial intelligence

    CERN Document Server

    Korb, Kevin B

    2003-01-01

    As the power of Bayesian techniques has become more fully realized, the field of artificial intelligence has embraced Bayesian methodology and integrated it to the point where an introduction to Bayesian techniques is now a core course in many computer science programs. Unlike other books on the subject, Bayesian Artificial Intelligence keeps mathematical detail to a minimum and covers a broad range of topics. The authors integrate all of Bayesian net technology and learning Bayesian net technology and apply them both to knowledge engineering. They emphasize understanding and intuition but also provide the algorithms and technical background needed for applications. Software, exercises, and solutions are available on the authors' website.