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Hubble Service Prize

Posted by: rpspeck - Thu Apr 07, 2005 6:33 pm
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Post    Posted on: Mon May 02, 2005 12:17 pm
Dr_Keith_H wrote:
...I've just managed to get a bunch of new posters in a frappe elsewhere here in the space cafe...

:lol: :roll:

Nice one. Never heard somebody being described as "in a frappe" before.


Dr_Keith_H wrote:
Where is the evidence that prompts people to think that Europa has life?


Ooh! Ooh! Let me answer! Let me answer! ( :D Sorry, still kinda goofy over that "frappe" deal -- I don't care who you are, folks, that's funny right there!)

Anyways, the idea that Europa has life is based off of the fact that a) it's one big snowball, and b) the inside part of the snowball is melted. In our experience here on Earth (the only experience we have to go by), wherever there's water, there's life. Thus, with so much water in one place, Europa seems a logical place to look to find ET life.

....Ah, well, now on to the frappe topic.

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Post    Posted on: Mon May 02, 2005 1:37 pm
spacecowboy wrote:
Anyways, the idea that Europa has life is based off of the fact that a) it's one big snowball, and b) the inside part of the snowball is melted. In our experience here on Earth (the only experience we have to go by), wherever there's water, there's life. Thus, with so much water in one place, Europa seems a logical place to look to find ET life.

Well done. However, where is it written that "wherever ye have water so ye shall also have life" ... having water is a good pre-requisite though, at least as far as we understand the concept of life.

However, Europa is not the only body out there with lots of water.

Mars. Which is closer and for whom we have abundant (and costly) experience with regards to getting there. Mars has a f%*king ocean of water frozen at the surface ... we just discovered that in the last few months right?

So the case for Europa as a "first hard target" still needs work. Publiusr?

DKH

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Post    Posted on: Mon May 02, 2005 2:16 pm
Hello, Dr_keith_H,

from my point of view you are completely right for the simple reason that there are martian meteorites but no meteorites from Europa. Although the meteorites are not seen as showing evidence of ancient martian life anymore they provide an advantage of Mars over Europa concerning life because the structure found in ALH00084 look very similar to structures left by microbes - which caused the current exploration of Mars.

And there are scientists who think that some structures and gases found in the venusian atmosphere could mena that they are caused by venusian atmospheric life -which too would be a reason to claim missions to Venus. And there really has been such a claim. But the mission has been reduced and/or cancelled because of lack of financial ressources.

So - if Europe to be researched because of the chance of europian life then Venus too because of the chance of venusian life.

You are completely right - the evidences are pointing to Mars and not to Europa.



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Post    Posted on: Mon May 02, 2005 3:28 pm
Ekkehard Augustin wrote:
if Europe to be researched because of the chance of europian life ...

There is life in Europe, but I had to bring it with me. :lol:

Sorry Ekke, I know you meant Europa ... but I just couldn't resist. Red rag to a bull and all that.

DKH

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Post    Posted on: Mon May 02, 2005 3:33 pm
I was tempted to pick up the same mistake as Dr Keith but resisted the temptation, hence proving they I am made of stronger stuff. :)

Oh Damn, now that I've mentioned it, I've proved myself as weak. Curses. :)

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Post    Posted on: Wed May 04, 2005 5:45 pm
Ah! But Europa will likely have a lot of liquid water and geologic activity.

I still think the best description of Mars is "the Moon with bad weather"

A dead/dying, dusty world.


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Post    Posted on: Fri May 06, 2005 9:34 am
publiusr wrote:
Ah! But Europa will likely have a lot of liquid water and geologic activity.

I still think the best description of Mars is "the Moon with bad weather"

A dead/dying, dusty world.

Ok, so you're determined to go to Europa ... ditch Mars now ... but we are still only taking baby steps with many necessary technologies and no steps at all with technologies anticipated to be needed for environments like Europa. Do you really think we should just drop our current testbed (Mars) and go straight to Europa (where we will still be forced to test stuff that we can - and do - rough out on Mars).

Even if there IS life on Europa ... I still don't understand the urgency of such a strategy.

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Post    Posted on: Fri May 06, 2005 9:32 pm
I don't understand the urgency of sending toys to Mars either--it isn't going anywhere.

And neither will spaceflight as long as we keep using the Delta II as a crutch.


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Post    Posted on: Sat May 07, 2005 11:11 am
If you would have read most of the news concerning Mars during the last decade at least you would know that there are much more hints to ancient life on Mars than hints to current life on Europa.

And there are chances that currently there is life at Mars too because there are large amounts of water ice on Mars.

And even there are more hints for possible life in the high atmosphere of Venus than hints to life on Europa.

There are sufficient reasons to prefer Mars and I assist NASA and Griffin explicitly. And I want to see a mission to Venus which includes an analysis of phenomenons that explicitly could mean microbian life in the high venusian atmosphere. There has been a Venus mission but it has been cancelled due to budget problems - I seem to remember that it was a project of ESA.



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Last edited by Ekkehard Augustin on Mon May 09, 2005 7:09 am, edited 1 time in total.



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Post    Posted on: Sat May 07, 2005 1:29 pm
I think that one of the problems associated with sending probes to Europa is the time it takes. When the Martian probes (Beagle 2 and Mars Polar Orbiter) failed there was a lot of dissappointment that an opportunity had been lost and the year flight had been for nothing. Because the distance to Europa is so much more a mission has to be much more robust and less likely to fail or a whole decade could go by before the next mission.

It makes sense to test out technology on Mars and the Moon so that the chances of failure are much less for a Europa mission.

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Post    Posted on: Sun May 08, 2005 10:07 am
Andy Hill wrote:
I think that one of the problems associated with sending probes to Europa is the time it takes. When the Martian probes (Beagle 2 and Mars Polar Orbiter) failed there was a lot of dissappointment that an opportunity had been lost and the year flight had been for nothing. Because the distance to Europa is so much more a mission has to be much more robust and less likely to fail or a whole decade could go by before the next mission.

I think Andy deserves a prize for pointing this out ... in the end, taking the time to flesh out the necessary technologies on heavenly bodies nearer to Earth is surely going to save more time than trying to do the same thing much further out.

DKH

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Post    Posted on: Mon May 09, 2005 11:54 am
Not to mention the idea of establishing a research outpost on Mars or in the Belt, and then sending probes from there to the Outer Planets.

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