How did life begin? Neil deGrasse Tyson gives his take about life on Earth and beyond. Tyson also explains Panspermia.
Earth is the only place we know of so far that’s inhabited by living things. It is the only world in our solar system with liquid water on the surface. Does this mean that our beloved planet is the only planet in the Universe that supports life? According to Neil deGrasse Tyson, to think that we are the only place where life found its way would be arrogant.
Some of today's most brilliant minds are actively considering whether life got to Earth from elsewhere in the Universe. The idea is that life would form in one place across space and then by some mechanism or another, transfer from that place where it formed to another place. This leads to the question whether living organisms have been transported between the planets of our solar system by the same mechanism.
Scientists are exploring several possible locations for the origin of life. One hypothesis is that life originated near a deep sea hydrothermal vent. The chemicals found in these vents and the energy they provide could have fueled many of the chemical reactions necessary for the evolution of life. Furthermore, using the DNA sequences of modern organisms, scientists have tentatively traced the most recent common ancestor of all life to an aquatic microorganism that lived in extremely high temperatures — a likely candidate for a hydrothermal vent inhabitant!
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"Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson Visits NASA Goddard" by NASA Goddard Photo and Video is licensed under CC BY 2.0.
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