Supernova Condensate is a blog about our place in the Universe. Of astronomy, chemistry and life in the big bad bubble of academia.
Invader Xan is a molecular astrophysicist and part-time alien invader, who spends life looking at very small things on very large scales, and trying to better understand the chemistry of interstellar space.
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Category Archives: astrobiology
It’s safe to say that we all know the phrase “primordial soup.” An idea originally put forward by J.B.S. Haldane in 1929, writers have been waxing lyrical about this proverbial soup from which life arose, for decades now. The phrase … Continue reading
Remember that puzzle about the martian methane? No? Well, if you’d like a refresher, you may be interested to take a glance at my latest article over on Australian Science. On methane, Mars, and more… Image: Arabia Terra, Mars – ESA/DLR/FU … Continue reading
Over a century ago, a gigantic fossil was discovered in Saudi Arabia. Gigantic and mysterious, because no one had any idea what exactly it had once been. With a thick trunk, it was similar to petrified trees, but this didn’t … Continue reading
This trope is used all the time. It’s incredibly rare for it not to be used, in fact. And I must say, it’s one thing which I frequently find disappointing about sci fi. I am, of course, talking about the … Continue reading
Because we’re all surrounded by plants, we tend to have the association between photosynthesis and green things. While this is certainly true for most phototrophic life on Earth, it isn’t always the case. Every now and again, you find something … Continue reading
As the old adage goes, when looking up at the stars – what if there’s someone else out there looking back at us. But what exactly would they be looking with? Eyes are probably one of evolution’s greatest inventions. And … Continue reading
Lots of people, scientists and writers of fiction, have hypothesised what life on another world may be like. Indeed, with the idea that a world like Europa may have a hidden ocean locked inside its icy shell, it’s all too … Continue reading
As an addendum to my previous post on prospective life on Titan, I should point out a couple of things from those papers I cited… Citing Tobie et al (2006), Mitri et al (2007) state that; “Since Cassini-Huygens indicates that … Continue reading
Our solar system is full of mysteries, and it seems the more we look, the more we find, and the less we can explain. Most recently, the puzzles of the martian methane and the beautifully lethal venusian clouds have been … Continue reading