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Life on Venus?

marauder2048

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Arjen

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No funding - no results. First hits definitely not free. No funding for scientific missions - ignorance. Now, choose your area of ignorance. What are you going to miss out on?
 

marauder2048

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No funding - no results. First hits definitely not free. No funding for scientific missions - ignorance. Now, choose your area of ignorance. What are you going to miss out on?
Quick review of the facts:

The basis for the paper was analysis of data collected from existing earthbound observatories.
That's practically speaking, free.

The follow-on efforts will be staggeringly expensive in comparison unless there's already a Venusian probe
in the funded pipeline which can host a sensor suite. And that sensor suite would still be really costly.

25 years after the Alan Hills announcement, and numerous highly expensive, high-profile probes later there's still
no scholarly consensus on it.
 

Flyaway

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No funding - no results. First hits definitely not free. No funding for scientific missions - ignorance. Now, choose your area of ignorance. What are you going to miss out on?
Quick review of the facts:

The basis for the paper was analysis of data collected from existing earthbound observatories.
That's practically speaking, free.

The follow-on efforts will be staggeringly expensive in comparison unless there's already a Venusian probe
in the funded pipeline which can host a sensor suite. And that sensor suite would still be really costly.

25 years after the Alan Hills announcement, and numerous highly expensive, high-profile probes later there's still
no scholarly consensus on it.
See my post below your original one.
 

marauder2048

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No funding - no results. First hits definitely not free. No funding for scientific missions - ignorance. Now, choose your area of ignorance. What are you going to miss out on?
Quick review of the facts:

The basis for the paper was analysis of data collected from existing earthbound observatories.
That's practically speaking, free.

The follow-on efforts will be staggeringly expensive in comparison unless there's already a Venusian probe
in the funded pipeline which can host a sensor suite. And that sensor suite would still be really costly.

25 years after the Alan Hills announcement, and numerous highly expensive, high-profile probes later there's still
no scholarly consensus on it.
See my post below your original one.
Feel free to contradict the factual basis outlined above.
 

Flyaway

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View: https://twitter.com/brian73996459/status/1305568614947475458


@Peter_J_Beck I'd love to hear your take on this! When you send a Venutian probe, will it be looking life?
View: https://twitter.com/peter_j_beck/status/1305606071369621506


Yes, that’s the goal.
View: https://twitter.com/sixsilverstones/status/1305607103650897922


If you could attach heat-sheild enabled spacecraft to the Photon satellite, you could do atmospheric sample tests, send the data to Photon, and then Photon could send it back to mission control.
View: https://twitter.com/peter_j_beck/status/1305610387505647616


The plan is to seperate a probe off the main photon spacecraft and enter that in to the clouds to sample.
View: https://twitter.com/tgmetsfan98/status/1305610548206280706


Would Photon then stay in Venus’s orbit? Or just a flyby?

Atmospheric entry probe with a flyby from the main bus.
 

Flyaway

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No funding - no results. First hits definitely not free. No funding for scientific missions - ignorance. Now, choose your area of ignorance. What are you going to miss out on?
Quick review of the facts:

The basis for the paper was analysis of data collected from existing earthbound observatories.
That's practically speaking, free.

The follow-on efforts will be staggeringly expensive in comparison unless there's already a Venusian probe
in the funded pipeline which can host a sensor suite. And that sensor suite would still be really costly.

25 years after the Alan Hills announcement, and numerous highly expensive, high-profile probes later there's still
no scholarly consensus on it.
See my post below your original one.
Feel free to contradict the factual basis outlined above.
What so you think Rocket Lab’s mission is going to be expensive.
 

marauder2048

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No funding - no results. First hits definitely not free. No funding for scientific missions - ignorance. Now, choose your area of ignorance. What are you going to miss out on?
Quick review of the facts:

The basis for the paper was analysis of data collected from existing earthbound observatories.
That's practically speaking, free.

The follow-on efforts will be staggeringly expensive in comparison unless there's already a Venusian probe
in the funded pipeline which can host a sensor suite. And that sensor suite would still be really costly.

25 years after the Alan Hills announcement, and numerous highly expensive, high-profile probes later there's still
no scholarly consensus on it.
See my post below your original one.
Feel free to contradict the factual basis outlined above.
What so you think Rocket Lab’s mission is going to be expensive.
Is there a price tag for it? The only range I've seen suggests that what used to cost tens of millions of dollars
for inter-planetary probes will now only cost tens of millions of dollars.
 
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Arjen

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No funding - no results. First hits definitely not free. No funding for scientific missions - ignorance. Now, choose your area of ignorance. What are you going to miss out on?
Quick review of the facts:

The basis for the paper was analysis of data collected from existing earthbound observatories.
That's practically speaking, free.

The follow-on efforts will be staggeringly expensive in comparison unless there's already a Venusian probe
in the funded pipeline which can host a sensor suite. And that sensor suite would still be really costly.

25 years after the Alan Hills announcement, and numerous highly expensive, high-profile probes later there's still
no scholarly consensus on it.
Reality check.
Those earthbound observatories are not free.
 

Archibald

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Bouncing off this... one of the major critic against that study is ALMA and JCST (goddam acronyms, sorry if I got the second one wrong) were not optimal for the job. They are operating a bit on the edge of their usual area there. As such the team had to make some cleanup / extrapolaion of the data to eliminate parasitic stuff here and there.
In the long term that could bit them back, even if they were very honest and did a good job overall.

And so that's why we need balloons, balloons, and more balloons. Mind you, in France we had a very smart scientist specialized in that peculiar topic - Jacques Blamont.


Blamont, who unfortunately didn't lived to see yesterday stunning event (he died last April, damn it), made CNRS and CNES worlwide leaders in Venus balloons. This climaxed in 1985 when one of the Vega probes on its way to Halley dropped ballooons on Venus. He had even more ambitious plans, worked with both NASA and the Soviet Union (in pure De Gaulle fashion). Pioneer, Venera, Magellan , Vega, he didn't cared as long as its balloons made it to Venus.

He wrote a book over his experience, Vénus dévoilée (Venus unveiled).
 
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Archibald

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Considering the colossal number of probes the Soviets send to Venus, plus of course all the NASA ones, plus the other countries - I was wondering if old data from these probes could be reviewed in search of phosphine.

It is a heavy trend those days - even the oldest missions can bring interesting stuff if reviewed with present day tools. Most spectacular example was Lunar Orbiter pictures in the 2000's, reviewed again for VSE / Constellation.
 

RanulfC

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Does somebody have their hands out for funding for a Venusian probe?
Well I'd floated, (pun intended :) ) "Green Dragon" as the basis for a Venus Balloon probe on nasaspaceflight.com. (And there's a "Yellow Dragon" concept and website out there as well :) )

Because none of these reveals conclude with "and we require no funding for follow-on work."
In astrobiology, the first hit is free.
Because it might 'cost money' any new discovery's should be ignored and no new research undertaken... got it :)

Randy
 

FighterJock

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robunos

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Post by Derek Lowe over at 'In the Pipeline' Blog HERE
It's suggested that the possible Venusian microbes are the result of terrestrial contamination . . .

cheers,
Robin.
 

Flyaway

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Post by Derek Lowe over at 'In the Pipeline' Blog HERE
It's suggested that the possible Venusian microbes are the result of terrestrial contamination . . .

cheers,
Robin.
Unlikely I would think as Earth life would probably be destroyed by the conditions on Venus.
 

marauder2048

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No funding - no results. First hits definitely not free. No funding for scientific missions - ignorance. Now, choose your area of ignorance. What are you going to miss out on?
Quick review of the facts:

The basis for the paper was analysis of data collected from existing earthbound observatories.
That's practically speaking, free.

The follow-on efforts will be staggeringly expensive in comparison unless there's already a Venusian probe
in the funded pipeline which can host a sensor suite. And that sensor suite would still be really costly.

25 years after the Alan Hills announcement, and numerous highly expensive, high-profile probes later there's still
no scholarly consensus on it.
Reality check.
Those earthbound observatories are not free.
Naturally, you have figures for data collection/processing costs for Maxwell and ALMA...


Of course, the ALMA observatory had huge cost overruns and NSF + the other member states that
ponied up money have been under pressure to show that it's worth it.

But compared to building spacecraft + probe and sending it to another planet, the amortized cost
of the data collection for this paper was practically free especially since the initial discovery came from
data gathered from a 30 year observatory.
 

marauder2048

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Does somebody have their hands out for funding for a Venusian probe?
Well I'd floated, (pun intended :) ) "Green Dragon" as the basis for a Venus Balloon probe on nasaspaceflight.com. (And there's a "Yellow Dragon" concept and website out there as well :) )

Because none of these reveals conclude with "and we require no funding for follow-on work."
In astrobiology, the first hit is free.
Because it might 'cost money' any new discovery's should be ignored and no new research undertaken... got it :)

Randy
Because it *will* cost money; astrobiology generates claims that are *very* hard to corroborate
despite repeated, expensive interplanetary expeditions.

I gather that few posters on these forums have been involved with "big science" in a technical capacity.
This game gets played in a certain way.
 

Arjen

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Reviewing old data is traditional in scientific practice. A large chunk of scientists' time goes into it, effort that needs funding. The effort is not guaranteed to deliver results, at times it only delivers affirmation of present theory. Sometimes it refutes present theory. Sometimes it provides a breakthrough. Reviewing old data is at the core of scientific practice, all the little reviews add up to very much time and money spent on them because so much reviewing is going on. To single out one piece of that huge effort and state that the money spent on that particular review is a negligible amount, misses the point that it is part of the very much larger, very costly tradition of reviewing old data. Which grand tradition will sometimes lead to spectacular results, most times to humdrum ones. So - not free.

I have not been involved in 'big' science. I have been involved in science, which made me acutely aware of how much effort goes into reviewing old data.
 

TomcatViP

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Just to give some perspectives to everyone happy to send a probe there that if Martians had detected (intelligent?) life in Manchester stadium, that might not have been the most subtle things to do for them to blast it through with a Mach 24 rocket in an attempt to collect samples...
 
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Zootycoon

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Considering the colossal number of probes the Soviets send to Venus, plus of course all the NASA ones, plus the other countries - I was wondering if old data from these probes could be reviewed in search of phosphine.

It is a heavy trend those days - even the oldest missions can bring interesting stuff if reviewed with present day tools.
A version of that question was asked during the QA. The answer was “The archive data hasn’t been checked because accessing it, particularly the Russian stuff, has been difficult. Not because of any blocking or anyone being uncooperative, I’ll simply just locating the raw data from 40 years ago is challenging.
 
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Flyaway

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Who knew but apparently Venus is a Russian planet.

Russia has announced an intention to independently explore Venus a day after scientists said there was a gas that could be present in the planet's clouds due to single-cell microbes.

The head of Russia's space corporation Roscosmos, Dmitry Rogozin, told reporters that they would initiate a national project as "we believe that Venus is a Russian planet," according to the TASS news agency.

In a statement, Roscosmos noted that the first missions to explore Venus were carried out by the Soviet Union.

"The enormous gap between the Soviet Union and its competitors in the investigation of Venus contributed to the fact that the United States called Venus a Soviet planet," Roscosmos said.
 

galgot

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God… I have pity for these poor Venusians if they try having a courteous and balanced communication with us humans.
- Hi ! We are from Venus and come in peace.
- No you’re not ! Get the data, see I’m right !
 

Flyaway

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FighterJock

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BepiColombo will try and confirm the detection. There is a phosphine signature in MERTIS' wavelength range but they're unsure about detectability of the signal. Unlikely on the first flyby, but next year's flyby will be a better chance.

View: https://twitter.com/Astro_Jonny/status/1306244941333528582
I wonder if BepiColombo will find actual life forms in the atmosphere of Venus on its flyby, I doubt it, it will probably take another Venus mission to detect life forms.
 

Flyaway

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BepiColombo will try and confirm the detection. There is a phosphine signature in MERTIS' wavelength range but they're unsure about detectability of the signal. Unlikely on the first flyby, but next year's flyby will be a better chance.

View: https://twitter.com/Astro_Jonny/status/1306244941333528582
I wonder if BepiColombo will find actual life forms in the atmosphere of Venus on its flyby, I doubt it, it will probably take another Venus mission to detect life forms.
I doubt it has the instruments as it’s designed to study Mercury.
 

FighterJock

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BepiColombo will try and confirm the detection. There is a phosphine signature in MERTIS' wavelength range but they're unsure about detectability of the signal. Unlikely on the first flyby, but next year's flyby will be a better chance.

View: https://twitter.com/Astro_Jonny/status/1306244941333528582
I wonder if BepiColombo will find actual life forms in the atmosphere of Venus on its flyby, I doubt it, it will probably take another Venus mission to detect life forms.
I doubt it has the instruments as it’s designed to study Mercury.
What I would like to see in another Venus mission would be, is some form of plane or helicopter being dropped from an orbiter to fly in the atmosphere of Venus and look for potential signs of life forms.
 

Flyaway

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View: https://twitter.com/nickastronomer/status/1305988468942700544


A secondary mission almost in parallel with the first to Venus would be outstanding right now, and given the potential cost savings, one I suspect would get huge support in the science community
View: https://twitter.com/peter_j_beck/status/1306061308421271552


Agree. I think it’s important to think about a campaign rather than just one single mission. So much to learn.
 

Flyaway

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One of the more informative articles about Rocket Labs Venus mission. It really does look like RL will be in the vanguard of this with their rapid low cost mission in front of any proposed government agency mission to Venus.

 

RanulfC

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Reality check.
Those earthbound observatories are not free.
How much did Jane Greaves spend to build those observatories? Oh.
For those wondering:

The 'answer' is she did NOT spend anything to 'build' those observatories, she and her team spent grant money to 'rent' them to make the observations, (thereby paying BACK those that DID spend money to build them) paid for computer time, (yes you still have to do that and though they work 'cheap' there are costs to using under-grads-et-al) paid the team and doctor for the time they spent correlating and collating the data and comparing that data with their theories and suppositions. No, science it not 'free' and getting results that can stand up to peer review (and yes there are likely dozens of other teams now pouring over the data and observations to further confirm the findings and refine the available data) and open scrutiny is not likely to be either cheap or easy.

There are programs and efforts out there to make some of the more arduous efforts easier, (the various @home type programs that use 'spare' computing power of networked home computers for example) but the deep and focused work takes time, effort and money to accomplish and it's not like any of these people get more than a small portion of that money as it's mostly administered by professional and educational financial services.

Yes these folks are quite often chasing grants and hoping the next discovery will bring in more so the can continue their work. No, no one makes a lot of money from this in some nefarious way by finding 'cheap' methods to extend the work. That stretches the given money further but it's not like the head scientist gets to 'keep the change' he saves, he doesn't and it simply means he can probably afford another couple of days of telescope or computing time or maybe he can actually afford to keep the grad-students working a few more days.

Randy
 

overscan (PaulMM)

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Children, behave..... or you'll have to go sit on the naughty step. Moderators have had to intervene several times in this topic.
 

marauder2048

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The 'answer' is she did NOT spend anything to 'build' those observatories, she and her team spent grant money to 'rent' them to make the observations, (
Not true: the uber expensive ALMA observatory data was provided gratis. They won free time on it on the merits of their proposal.
You can go through the "Acknowledgments" section of the Nature paper and look at the foundation and governmental grant money.

It's very small and compared to the tens of millions required for a spacecraft, practically free.

No one is criticizing the paper in Nature. In fact, I'm praising it because of the economy of their effort, and the
innovative modeling and methodology which is every bit as important as their putative discovery.

I believe Nature Astronomy has an acceptance rate of ~ 10% which is highly selective. Per their metadata,
it was a 5 month review process which is typical for highly selective venues.

But I'd wager that 90% of the papers that didn't get in were also very high quality; acceptance is decidedly
non-deterministic, non-repeatable, your reviewers are your rivals and it's a horrible thing on which to base a career (end rant).

PI salaries are typically paid by the university. Undergrads are regarded as "free" by research programs since you aren't
charged dept. overheads for using them. Grad students are more expensive but still cheap and you have them captive since
you are the gatekeeper on them graduating and staying funded*/enrolled.

Post-docs are a different animal but they want to build their pubs and get their letters of recommendations/job talk
connections. And their productivity per $ spent is vastly better that undergrads or grad students 'cuz they 1337;
getting a post-doc at a top tier group is harder that getting in as a grad student.

* unless you win external fellowships which have like single digit acceptance rates for the nicer ones (e.g. NDSEG).
 
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Dilandu

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What I would like to see in another Venus mission would be, is some form of plane or helicopter being dropped from an orbiter to fly in the atmosphere of Venus and look for potential signs of life forms.
Airships are better suited for Venus conditions. Atmospheric baloons were already send on Venus onboard Soviet probes, and drifted for days in upper atmosphere (presumably longer, but their batteries have a limited resource). It is perfectly possible to send a solar-powered blimp - or even a semi-rigid airship with keel frame - on Venus, which would probably be able to operate here for years, drifting above the cloud tops and using electric engines to change course a bit.
 
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