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Are oceans mandatory for life to develop ?

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A new study has concluded that an exoplanet requires a liquid water ocean in order to sustain life.

While Earth's oceans have long been recognized as a vital ingredient in the development of life on our own planet, scientists have long pondered over whether or not a liquid ocean is a necessity in order to sustain life elsewhere in the universe.

Read More: http://www.unexplain...life-to-develop

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Probably not :-*

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The geobacter research (see science forum) seems to negate that.

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So no stable atmosphere equals no life? This is the gist I'm getting from the article.

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So no stable atmosphere equals no life? This is the gist I'm getting from the article.

Just wait a while and they will find that this assumption is also false. But yes, that is the current assumption.

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A new study has concluded that an exoplanet requires a liquid water ocean in order to sustain life.

.

of course it does.

how else would you be able to make enough Guinness to keep all the (ever-present!) oirish bars open!!

.

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Not mandatory, it helps the microbial organisms locomotion and access to more food sources.

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Just wait a while and they will find that this assumption is also false. But yes, that is the current assumption.

I would hope it to be false. Life is creative and can defy rules (didn't they just find some that live entirely on electricity after all)...

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I would hope it to be false. Life is creative and can defy rules (didn't they just find some that live entirely on electricity after all)...

Life needs one primordial thing: A possibility to generate energy. With an atmosphere that is easier (using gases for a exoenergetic reaction) and much easier with the combination of liquids and gases for this reaction. At the same time there must be a organism that transfers the byproducts of that reaction back to their original state (i.e. animals and plants or bacteria and algae or a mix of those) so the organism does not poison itself on its "excrement".

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there must be a organism that transfers the byproducts of that reaction back to their original state, so the organism does not poison itself on its "excrement".

.

mine must have the week off QM, if the ringsting after last night's chicken phaal is anything to go by!

.

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so a constant 100% humidity atmosphere is no good then?

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What I think is a bit off in all of these theories is the "Habital Zone" is based on Earth life necessities. We may find life somewhere that needs more heat or less depending on how it was spawned..

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What I think is a bit off in all of these theories is the "Habital Zone" is based on Earth life necessities. We may find life somewhere that needs more heat or less depending on how it was spawned..

The habitable zone is not based on Earth life's necessities as such. It is based on the properties of water. It is where water can exist in liquid form. Since water has some rather unique properties and is an abundant molecule there is fair reason to speculate that most life will utilise it.

Given that you can only base a habitable zone on the properties of known life and not (for obvious reasons) on unknown it is the best we can do at the moment.

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so a constant 100% humidity atmosphere is no good then?

I wonder how an atmosphere ever would be constantly 100% humid, unless it always has also the same temperature... and that would make that planet a curiosity. Yes I can imagine a planet that rotates so fast that day and night have no influence on the temperature or a planet so far away from the its star that its atmospheric temperature comes mostly from geothermal activity... but the type of life that would be quite different from what we know. Still, it is possible.

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Posted (edited)

I wonder how an atmosphere ever would be constantly 100% humid, unless it always has also the same temperature... and that would make that planet a curiosity. Yes I can imagine a planet that rotates so fast that day and night have no influence on the temperature or a planet so far away from the its star that its atmospheric temperature comes mostly from geothermal activity... but the type of life that would be quite different from what we know. Still, it is possible.

Of course it's possible, all you need is a thick atmosphere, like that on Venus, and voila, constant temperatures sorted. A little thermal inertia here and a little transfer of heat by winds there, and you have constant temperatures served on a silver plate, plus you don't even need to be close to your parent star to feel warm and cozy, which is good news if you're worried about cosmic radiation, which, depending on the composition of the atmosphere, shouldn't be much of a problem anyway. Plus, as you mentioned, thermal energy is another viable alternative, which is also more or less evenly distributed, and evened out even further by winds. With that atmosphere, if it happens to maintain a 100% water humidity, I can't see why life shouldn't be able to strive on that. Indeed, no need for oceans. They only take up valuable land.

Edited by Rolci

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Of course it's possible, all you need is a thick atmosphere, like that on Venus, and voila, constant temperatures sorted. A little thermal inertia here and a little transfer of heat by winds there, and you have constant temperatures served on a silver plate, plus you don't even need to be close to your parent star to feel warm and cozy, which is good news if you're worried about cosmic radiation, which, depending on the composition of the atmosphere, shouldn't be much of a problem anyway. Plus, as you mentioned, thermal energy is another viable alternative, which is also more or less evenly distributed, and evened out even further by winds. With that atmosphere, if it happens to maintain a 100% water humidity, I can't see why life shouldn't be able to strive on that. Indeed, no need for oceans. They only take up valuable land.

A dense atmosphere is not necessarily a water saturated one, but to be constantly 100% water saturated you need a constant temperature. Besides that, Venus is too hot to have water. But if the Mid-Atlantic ridge smokers is anything to go by we cannot exclude life there either.

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A new study has concluded that an exoplanet requires a liquid water ocean in order to sustain life.

Read More: http://www.unexplain...life-to-develop

From the OP Link:

"We know that many planets are completely uninhabitable because they are either too close or too far from their sun," said David Stevens of the University of East Anglia.

What kind of scientist would make such a statement? Shouldn't he say, "We suspect..."

Smells like some egghead trying to make a name for himself and using definitive language that he has no business using.

In a new study published by the journal Astrobiology, University of East Anglia (UEA), UK, researchers have come to the conclusion that, to make a planet habitable, a large liquid ocean is needed to stabilize its atmosphere.

Here again they say "needed", a definitive word.

What about planets that have an ocean under a permanent ice layer? Atmosphere is not a factor then.....

I'd say an ocean would ADD a lot to the chances of life developing, but I'd hesitate to say "This Must be This Way!!", like seems to be coming across from the article.

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A dense atmosphere is not necessarily a water saturated one, but to be constantly 100% water saturated you need a constant temperature. Besides that, Venus is too hot to have water. But if the Mid-Atlantic ridge smokers is anything to go by we cannot exclude life there either.

So there you have it. A Venus (a planet with thick atmosphere) with a 100% water-saturated atmosphere, maybe a bit further away from the Sun than Mars. And the planet is ready to "get a life". Albeit a funny-looking one, compared to ours, life that is adapted to high atmospheric pressures. But who said it had to look like "our" life? Ours is funny enough, a 100 kpa inner pressure? So you pop in space like a balloon? Just watched Event Horizon yesterday, regretted it, kind of graphic, eyes popping out, blood vomited, and the rest, before the guy is pushed back into the airlock or whatever it's called in English. That's human biology. For all we know other life forms may be more resistant to close-to-zero pressures, maybe even lower temperatures. I remember this whale-like life-form from Star Trek Generations that lives in outer space. Maybe we'll meet a Space Willy one day.

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Posted (edited)

Space Willy !! Love it !

:clap:

Better yet >>>>> FREE SPACE WILLY !!! :w00t:

Edited by mfrmboy

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Posted (edited)

So there you have it. A Venus (a planet with thick atmosphere) with a 100% water-saturated atmosphere, maybe a bit further away from the Sun than Mars. And the planet is ready to "get a life". Albeit a funny-looking one, compared to ours, life that is adapted to high atmospheric pressures. But who said it had to look like "our" life? Ours is funny enough, a 100 kpa inner pressure? So you pop in space like a balloon? Just watched Event Horizon yesterday, regretted it, kind of graphic, eyes popping out, blood vomited, and the rest, before the guy is pushed back into the airlock or whatever it's called in English. That's human biology. For all we know other life forms may be more resistant to close-to-zero pressures, maybe even lower temperatures. I remember this whale-like life-form from Star Trek Generations that lives in outer space. Maybe we'll meet a Space Willy one day.

The point I am trying to get across is that life on earth most probably will be a very poor sample of life everywhere. It is not only water but also the type of possible metabolism. Even if we take the metabolic possibilities of this planet (i.e sulfur instead of carbon) we come to very different life than what we would expect.

And don't hold your breath to meet Space Willy... I doubt his primordial aim is to meet you.

Edited by questionmark

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Posted (edited)

And don't hold your breath to meet Space Willy... I doubt his primordial aim is to meet you.

For all I know, his primordial aim may as well be to seek out new life and to boldly go where man is killing his own. You know, the entertainment-seeking type. A species destroying its own members and its own environment must be a cosmic attraction, I'm sure we're aired live full time on millions of worlds, but what if Space Willy is of the kind that has to see it for himself to be sure this is not a comedy with actors playing out an obviously absurd play?

Edited by Rolci

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So no stable atmosphere equals no life? This is the gist I'm getting from the article.

Not exactly. It just radically decreases the opportunities for life. Adaptability and flexibility are two of the most powerful evolutionary traits that can develop, but there must be life there for those traits to develop in to begin with. Got to walk before you can run, and a stable atmosphere makes it easier to walk in.

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