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Sunday, October 23, 2016

Scientists: life on Titan should be radically different from earth

A group of researchers from Cornell University concluded that on Titan, a moon of Saturn, may be a life, however different from the earth she must differ, fundamentally. The role of water in organisms of the inhabitants of the satellite could play a special organic molecules — polyamine.

photo: ru.wikipedia.org

Titan is quite similar to Earth cosmic body from the point of view of natural processes, it is observed. It rains, rivers flow and the seasons are changing and there are some other processes, in addition to Titanium observed only on Earth. However, due to the fact that Titan is located much further from the Sun than our planet, it is much colder, and therefore, the water on Titan could be contained only in solid form, and its role in the above processes performed by some organic molecules, primarily methane. This means that life similar to earth, it can not arise. However, on Saturn’s moon could appear her very exotic, from the point of view of earthlings, forms, according to the scientists.

In the study of distant galaxies, scientists almost do not consider the likelihood that life can emerge on planets where water cannot be in liquid form. In astrophysics there is a term “zone of habitability”, which implies the distance from the star, which can be liquid water, and thus potential life. Methane, largely performing the function of” water on Titan does not have the necessary properties that allowed him to replace it and the formation of living organisms.

However, analyzing the data collected by the spacecraft Cassini, experts discovered that another compound found on Titan, water can replace. This substance declared polyimide — contained at the bottom of the oceans of Titan structure from atoms of nitrogen, hydrogen and carbon. Besides the fact that this substance could contribute to accelerating the chemical reactions necessary for more complex molecules, it is able to form nearly endless chains that need for the formation of molecules, such as proteins, RNA or DNA.

On the obtained findings, the scientists reported in the pages of the scientific publication Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

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