People are always eager to learn more about space. This astronomy student even photographed it, using only a telescope and Game Boy. While it’s impressive, NASA never fails to blow us out of the water. In its final voyage, satellite Cassini discovered a possibility of life on Saturn’s moon Titan.
Using data from Cassini, the first study… documents so-called carbon chain anions—negatively charged carbon molecules that are thought to serve as a step to the formation of more complex organic molecules that can develop life.
These molecules don’t normally appear in other space environments, meaning this is big news. Also found present on Titan was vinyl cyanide, a molecule that can build cell membranes.
This molecule, if it fell into the pools of liquid hydrocarbons on Titan’s surface, could theoretically serve a role similar to that of phospholipids on Earth, which comprise the soft, but durable membranes surrounding all of our cells and their precious genetic material.
The material is toxic on Earth but would develop perfectly on Titan — just differently. Actual life on Saturn has not yet seen the light of day, but this major discovery is crucial, nonetheless. (Or should I say out of this world?)