Carnival of Space 383

Carnival of Space 383 is up at Urban Astronomer

Universe Today – Meteorite May Contain Proof of Life on Mars, Researchers Say

According to a recent paper submitted by an international team of scientists, evidence of Mars life may have arrived on Earth three and a half years ago aboard a meteorite that fell in the Moroccan desert. Believed to have broken away from Mars 700,000 years ago, so-called Tissint meteorite has internal features that researchers say appear to be organic materials.

Research challenges work proposed in 2012 that asserted that the carbon traces originated through the high-temperature crystallization of magma. According to the new study, a more likely explanation is that liquids containing organic compounds of biological origin infiltrated Tissint’s “mother” rock at low temperatures, near the Martian surface

A piece of the Tissint meteorite that landed on Earth on July 18th, 2011. Credit: EPFL/Alain Herzog

Nextbigfuture – There has been ground based telescope detection of exoplanet superearths

Nextbigfuture – Jeff Bezos says his vision is he wants to see millions of people living and working in space. Bezos’ private spaceflight company Blue Origin is currently working with the United Launch Alliance (ULA) to build a new liquid rocket engine called the BE-4. They plan to have rockets flying payloads with the new engine in 2019.

The vehicle Bezos’ company is working on uses a modern booster engine, which is said to be more efficient than those made 20-30 years ago, reports The Washington Post. Bezos also said the vehicle is autonomous, so there’s no need to send test pilots when they’re running trials with it.

The BE4 will produce 550,000 pounds of thrust and is propelled by a mix of liquefied natural gas and oxygen. The fuels are pressurized by a single turbopump before being burned, which scientists say may make it more efficient than using a two-prop system.“