The chemistry of fossilization on Earth and Mars

Fossils provide our most decisive evidence for testing hypotheses about the abundance, diversity, and evolution of life on Earth over the past three-and-a-half billion years. They are also our best hope for answering one of the most compelling questions in science: was there ever life on Mars? Continue reading The chemistry of fossilization on Earth and Mars


Lost in Space

“Though a planetary perspective is a magnificent and enriching thing, places, not planets, are the core of human experience. It is from places that we build our world.” —    Mapping Mars, Oliver Morton (2002) “He stood thereby, though ‘in the centre of Immensities, in the conflux of Eternities,’ yet manlike towards God and man; the vague shoreless … Continue reading Lost in Space

“As to what they may be”

Oh how grassy is this hopper, How this berry ripely rasps. I would never have conceived it If I weren’t conceived myself! —Wisława Szymborska (1923-2012) Astrobiology is sometimes and with some justice disparaged as a science with only one data point. This is not to deny the wealth of geological, astronomical and biological knowledge that … Continue reading “As to what they may be”