New research shows that meteorites grazing Earth’s atmosphere can collect bacteria in the process and send them to Venus.
The idea that scientists put forward in this study is panspermia, the hypothesis that life can be spread in space by floating bacteria.
In 2017, a 0.3m-wide meteorite flying through the Australian sky created a giant fireball. The peculiarity is that this asteroid does not dive to the ground, but passes beyond and out of the atmosphere.
Harvard scientists Amir Siraj and Avi Loeb believe that any rock in space could theoretically pick up bacteria in the atmosphere and transport them to another planet.
The duo calculated that the said meteorite, while passing through the Earth’s atmosphere, collected around 10,000 microorganisms and carried it into space.
Based on this hypothesis, they believe that the Earth may have provided the life of Venus because over the past 3.7 billion years, at least 600,000 meteors have passed Earth’s upper atmosphere.
In an earlier study, scientists discovered a gas called phosphine inside the clouds of Venus. They believe this is proof that microorganisms can exist on this planet, thus showing signs of life outside of Earth.
However, some scientists claim that the existence of phosphine is not necessarily a sign of life.
“Although the discovery team determined which phosphine Kim uses two different telescopes for, phosphine can be the result of a number of processes unrelated to life, such as lightning, meteorite effects. or even volcanic activity, ”said Paul Byrne, associate professor at the University of North Carolina.
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