Category Archives: Chemistry

Cassini Spacecraft Finds Ingredient of Household Plastic on Titan


NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has detected propylene, a chemical used to make food-storage containers, car bumpers and other consumer products, on Saturn’s moon Titan.

This is the first definitive detection of the plastic ingredient on any moon or planet, other than Cheap Jordans Sale Earth.

A small amount of propylene was identified in Titan’s lower atmosphere by Cassini’s composite infrared spectrometer (CIRS). This instrument measures the infrared light, or heat radiation, emitted from Saturn and its moons in much the same way our hands feel the warmth of a fire.

Propylene is the first molecule to be discovered on Titan using CIRS. By isolating the same signal at various altitudes within the Wholesale NFL Jerseys lower atmosphere, researchers identified the chemical with a high degree of confidence. ray ban outlet Details are presented in a paper in the Sept. 30 edition of the Astrophysical Journal cheap jerseys Letters.

“This chemical is all around us in everyday life, strung together in long chains to form a Perisi plastic called polypropylene,” said Conor Nixon, a planetary scientist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md., and lead author of the paper. “That plastic container at the grocery store with the recycling code 5 on the bottom — that’s polypropylene.”

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Life on Mars hopes fade after methane findings

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Hopes of ray ban outlet finding Cheap Ray Ban Sunglasses life on Mars suffered a setback after new findings from NASA’s Curiosity rover detected only trace amounts of methane gas in the Red Planet’s atmosphere, a study said Thursday.

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Marc Kaufman: First Contact

First ContactVia Authors@Google:

Marc Kaufman visits Google’s San Francisco office to present his book “First Contact: Scientific Breakthroughs in the Hunt for oakley sunglasses sale Life Beyond Earth“. This event took place on May 27, 2011, as cheap jerseys china part of the Authors@Google series.

In his riveting, game-changing book First Contact: Scientific Breakthroughs in the Hunt for Life Beyond Earth Marc Kaufman, The Washington Post science and space reporter, tells the incredible true story of science’s search wholesale nfl jersyes for the beginnings of life on Earth and the likelihood of it existing elsewhere in our universe. He has received amazing praise, a sampling is below, and the book is being embraced by the science community from NASA to the Smithsonian and the Natural History Museum.

For decades, researchers assumed that the genesis of life was too delicate a process to exist anywhere other than Earth. But recent discoveries from microbes living in unimaginably inhospitable environments to new extra-solar planets point towards a day when the existence of extraterrestrial life will be confirmed. Kaufman takes readers around the globe, into space, and miles below Earth’s surface to show how the search cheap fake oakleys for life on other planets is changing the way humans think about their own history, what it means to be human, and what, exactly, life is. It is a complicated quest made simple: First Contact is the first book to bring together cutting-edge developments across the many branches of science, from microbiology to geochemistry, physics, and astronomy, that are racing to verify what was once deemed impossible. Kaufman demystifies the rigorous science and advanced technology that is edging ever closer to the most important scientific discovery ray ban sunglasses sale of our time.

Also see a related SETI Talk and panel discussion which features Kaufman, as well as Jill Tarter, Seth Shostak and Frank Drake:

Finally, you can check out Kaufman’s website.

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