Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Science: Life On Mars

OK, maybe not quite on Mars, and maybe not quite life (yet), but close enough...

A quick list of stuff that is unusual on Titan: liquid hydrocarbon rains, various surface features, and some sort of mountains and dunes - and all that is just on the surface. But now, there's even more evidence of it having an ocean - below the solid surface (original paper here, human readable account here). Of course, being serious publications (both, really) neither have mentioned anything about any sort of life being made possible by all these quirks. Yours truly, however, not being overly concerned by tarnishing his reputation (after all, to tarnish one one has to have one in the first place, and a good one at that), decided to stretch the customary Wednesday's science post into something more like science fiction. And why not. Fiction is usually much prettier than reality, plus it always stands a chance, however slim, of that same reality proving to be much weirder. So, without further ado, here's what I hope/suspect will eventually be found on Titan: some sort of life in an underground ocean fuelled by the combination of seismic energy from below, thermal energy of friction between the liquid, core, and the surface, and what little sunlight reaches that far into the Solar system.

Wouldn't that be just cool, eh? Eh?