Science Update – Meteor-Preserved Life?

This might be approximately the coolest thing I’ve heard in a while…

First a little background. When a meteor strikes the Earth and actually reaches the surface, creating a crater, there is an immense amount of heat and pressure during the impact–so much, in fact, that clumps of glass can form. Scientists have recently dissected the remnants of the 800,000 year old Darwin Crater and discovered clumps of glass that contain completely preserved organic compounds. These compounds suggest that when the meteor came, it hit a swampy area and when that happened, glass was created and somehow captured tiny particles from that ancient swamp, preserving them indefinitely within the glass.

Trust me, this is cool. When a meteor impacts occurs, it blasts pieces of itself and pieces of Earth off into space. These pieces can then travel vast distances to the moon or even other planets… Yes. You heard that right. Meteor impacts on planets that have life could potentially transport organic compounds to other planets–essentially seeding planets with some of the components necessary for life! (This is referred to as panspermia by sciencey people). With that knowledge, it is reasonable to hypothesize that life on Earth may have originated in a similar fashion.

Okay, I’m going to stop before I hurt myself… Thinking about how life created itself from just a bunch of organic molecules and compounds messes with my brain.

Check it out here:  http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn24560-meteor-impact-trapped-ancient-swamp-plants-in-glass.html#.UoFoiPl4yuM

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