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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2002 > Nov > Nov 7

Details Of ET Microbes

From: Stig Agermose <stig.agermose.nul>
Date: Thu, 07 Nov 2002 07:50:33 +0100
Archived: Thu, 07 Nov 2002 12:51:02 -0400
Subject: Details Of ET Microbes

Source: The Times of India




Signs2: Move over M. Night Shyamalan


SUNDAY, OCTOBER 27, 2002 12:48:16 AM


PUNE: Is there life, other than us, out there in the vast
expanse of the cosmos? Celebrated Hollywood director M.
Shyamalan may have probed the question with his latest thriller

But if recent experiments conducted by Indian scientists are
anything to go by, then extraterrestrial life (ET) may very much
turn out to be a reality.

This was revealed on Friday by legendary Indian astrophysicist
Jayant Naralikar, who supervised the experiments last year. He
was delivering a lecture titled 'Searches for extra-terrestrial
life' before a packed auditorium at the Inter University Centre
for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA).

Naralikar said there was indeed circumstantial evidence to
support the idea of life beyond earth. Millimetre wave astronomy
had revealed the existence of both organic and in organic
molecules in space, he added.

Over the decades scientists weighed the options of sending
spaceships and unmanned probes to seek out ET life. "Sending
radio messages (with information about us) turned out to be the
most practical one, but it required immense patience," Naralikar

Fred Hoyle and Wickremasinghe propounded the theory that comets
could have been the carriers which delivered micro organisms in
frozen state on earth. "The Cryosampler Experiment conducted in
collaboration with ISRO last January was a fallout of the
theory", said Naralikar.

Elaborating on the experiment, the ace astrophysicist said a
balloon carrying a cryosampler with 16 sterilised probes was
sent to a height of 41 km into the atmosphere from the TIFR
Balloon facility in Hyderabad.

The probes sucked air at four different heights which were
filtered and later tested at laboratories.

"Some bacteria were found in the air samples. These were not
common contaminants. Nor had they been used in the laboratory
where the test was held.

Moreover, no such growth was found on control membranes that
were not exposed to the air samples," he underlined.

"If these micro organisms are not from earth, had we intercepted
extraterrestrial life?" Narlikar wondered aloud, adding that
further confirmatory work was in progress to help arrive at a
satisfactory answer.

Earlier, Arvind Paranjpye, science and technology officer of the
public outreach programme at IUCAA, welcomed the gathering.
Naralikar's lecture marked the beginning of a monthly series, he


Copyright 2002 Times Internet Limited. All rights reserved.

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