Archive for the ‘exobiology’ Category

Planetfall, Enceladus, vents

Space.com – Enceladus vents water into space from its south polar region. The moon is lit by the Sun on the left, and backlit by the vast reflecting surface of its parent planet to the right. Icy crystals from these plumes are likely the source of Saturn’s nebulous E ring, within which Enceladus orbits. Mosaic composite photograph. Cassini, December 25, 2009.
CREDIT: NASA/JPL-Caltech/Michael Benson/Kinetikon Pictures. © All rights reserved.

From Saturn Moon Enceladus Eyed for Sample-Return Mission at Space.com:

SAN FRANCISCO — Scientists are developing a mission concept that would snag icy particles from Saturn’s moon Enceladus and return them to Earth, where they could be analyzed for signs of life.

The spacecraft would fly through the icy plume blasted into space by geysers near Enceladus’ south pole, then send the collected particles back to our planet in a return capsule. Enceladus may be capable of supporting life, and the flyby sample-return mission would bring pieces from its depths to Earth at a reasonable price, researchers said.

“This is really the low-hanging fruit” of sample-return missions, said study leader Peter Tsou of Sample Exploration Systems in La Canada, Calif., who presented the idea here Wednesday (Dec. 5) at the annual fall meeting of the American Geophysical Union. “It would be a shame not to pick it.”

[]

If the mission is approved, it could probably be ready to launch by 2020, Tsou added. Samples from Enceladus’ plume would make it to Earth about 14 years later.

Enceladus is a great candidate for sample-return, Tsou said. Its geyser-blasted particles are fresh, having come right out of the moon’s subsurface ocean. The mission can be done without landing on and re-launching from another world, two costly and complicating extra steps. And Enceladus seems to have all the ingredients necessary to support life.

“That doesn’t mean life is there,” Tsou said. “But we want to find out.”

Well, dang, doc, I want to find out, too!

I mean, just think… !

Enceladus is an awesome place. Seriously, I have always had a gut feeling that there are critters there.

Too bad it will be so far off, man, seven long years… but

It would be awesome if a base could be established, robotic, no doubt, that would bore through the ice to the ocean below… and have streaming video. Should be able to sort out the streaming part by then, eh?

There’s a strange old post here from October ‘09 called The Critters Of Enceladus,

Ha! That was a fun one.

Here’s a pic…

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

shocking

Yes, indeed, Enceladus is a fine place to get real and tangible material to study.

Peace.

P.S. This was a draft from way back in January… sigh.

 

Solar Dark Matter by SDO/GSFC/NASAWow, they never told me that in school! 

To be fair to my teachers, this was only discovered in 1995 and confirmed in 1997; and I learned of it only yesterday via my buddy Domenick DiMaggio, who was as surprised as I by this revelation. He called attention to the implications of this discovery. Those implications are, indeed, very deep, as I am sure you will understand.

As you may have heard, “Where there is water, there is life.” Not saying that there’s life on the Sun exactly, but it surely means that if water can exist on a star, then water is present pretty much everywhere and those  are the implications we are getting at.

It is the feeling and belief around these parts that we should just assume that there is life wherever we look. It’s that way here on Earth; and this evidence makes it all but a foregone conclusion for any location anywhere else, in my humble opinion at least. And yes, I mean not only planets and moons, but asteroids, comets, itty, bitty lumps of rock and ice and yes… quite possibly on the stars themselves.

Below are the abstract of the study and the press release… note that the study is from a biotechnology institution. Life, anyone?

This is exciting!

Here’s the abstract of the study results from the National Center for Biotechnology InformationU.S. National Library of Medicine:

Science. 1997 Jul 18;277(5324):346-8.

Water on the sun: line assignments based on variational calculations.

Polyansky OLZobov NFViti STennyson JBernath PFWallace L.

Source

Department of Physics and Astronomy, University College London, Gower Street, London WC1E 6BT, UK.

Abstract

The infrared spectrum of hot water observed in a sunspot has been assigned. The high temperature of the sunspot (3200 K) gave rise to a highly congested pure rotational spectrum in the 10-micrometer region that involved energy levels at least halfway to dissociation. Traditional spectroscopy, based on perturbation theory, is inadequate for this problem. Instead, accurate variational solutions of the vibration-rotation Schrödinger equation were used to make assignments, revealing unexpected features, including rotational difference bands and fewer degeneracies than anticipated. These results indicate that a shift away from perturbation theory to first principles calculations is necessary in order to assign spectra of hot polyatomic molecules such as water.

And here’s the press release from Stanford University:

Researchers Confirm that Water Exists On The Sun

Press Release no. 115 — July 17, 1997
University of Waterloo

WATERLOO, Ont. — An international team of scientists, including a University of Waterloo chemistry professor, has conclusively demonstrated that water (actually steam) does exist on the sun, confirming a breakthrough finding made two years ago.

The team used an innovative method to calculate the water spectrum at sunspot temperatures. The method will be useful in modelling systems with an abundance of extremely hot water molecules, such as forest fires.

The team was led by Oleg Polyansky, a theoretician from Russia’s Institute of Applied Physics; Nizhnii Novgorod, who works with co-researcher Jonathan Tennyson, a physicist at University College, London; and UW chemistry Prof. Peter Bernath, an expert in molecular astronomy. Other team members included Serena Viti, a physicist at University College, London; Nikolai Zobov, a physicist at University College, London; and Lloyd Wallace, an astronomer at Kitt Peak National Observatory, Tucson, Ariz.

In their 1995 study, the team recorded evidence of water — not in liquid form because the sun is too hot, but as vapor or steam — in dark sunspots. The scientists compared the laboratory infrared spectrum of hot water with that of a sunspot.

The water in the sunspots causes a sort of “stellar greenhouse effect” that affects the sunspot’s energy output. Hot water molecules are also the most important absorbers of infrared radiation in the atmospheres of cool stars, such as “variable red giants.”

In their follow-up study, to be published today in the journal Science, the scientists examined the spectrum of extremely hot water such as that found in sunspots and in the laboratory. Hot water has a complicated infrared spectrum characterized by a dense series of sharp absorption lines.

But the transitions that give rise to those lines were not known, until now. The research team carried out a simulation of the infrared spectrum based purely on theoretical calculations, allowing accurate assignments of the absorption lines.

“The detailed interpretation of the infrared spectrum of hot water is one of the important unsolved problems in molecular spectroscopy,” the researchers write in their Science  article.

The spectroscopic data will be useful in modelling other systems that contain extremely hot water molecules, such as forest fires and rocket plumes. Spectral analysis captures the characteristic spectra, or wavelength patterns, emitted or absorbed by molecules.

“Our research team solved the problem by doing something completely different,” Bernath said. “Starting with a mathematical model that is progressively improved through perturbation theory doesn’t work for hot water.”

Instead, the team went directly to theory and used the calculated interaction energies of the atoms of water. By using sophisticated variational calculations of energy levels, the researchers predicted the position of transitions that give rise to absorption lines.

“The calculations were so good that they were close enough to the observations for us to make sense of the spectrum,” said Bernath, who led the team that carried out the laboratory spectroscopy. Spectroscopy is the study of the interaction of light and matter.

Contact: John Morris, UW News Bureau, (519) 888-4567, ext. 6047 Prof. Peter Bernath, (519) 888-4567, ext. 4814

Wow!

And yowza, folks, as a bonus for reading this far it can be reported that a team using The National Science Foundation’s Very Large Array found in 1991, (and again in 1994), that Mercury has water, too! Whee!

Here is their summary of the study:

The Discovery of Water Ice on Mercury

 

Mercury as seen by the VLA

Mercury, the innermost planet of our Solar System, is less than half as distant from the Sun as the Earth. Because of this proximity, parts of Mercury’s surface are heated to temperatures nearing 425 degrees Celsius (800 degrees Farenheit). Thus, it was long considered one of the least likely places to find ice.

Though Mercury is one of Earth’s closest planetary neighbors, we know less about it than we do many of the more-distant planets. In 1974 and 1975, the Mariner 10 spacecraft made three passes by Mercury, sending back photos of 45 percent of the planet’s surface. The rest of Mercury is little known, however, so ground-based observers continue to study the planet.

In 1991, planetary scientists Duane Muhleman and Bryan Butler from Caltech and Martin Slade from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, studied Mercury using a radar system consisting of a 70-meter (230-foot) dish antenna at Goldstone, CA, equipped with a half-million-watt transmitter, and the VLA as the receiving system. The beam of 8.5-GHz microwaves sent from Goldstone bounced off Mercury and was collected at the VLA to produce a radar image of the planet. The researchers used the Goldstone-VLA radar system to look at the side of Mercury that was not photographed by Mariner 10.

The resulting radar image, shown here, contained a stunning surprise. In this image, red indicates strong reflection of the radar signal and yellow, green, and blue, progressively weaker reflection. The bright red dot at the top of the image indicates strong radar reflection at Mercury’s north pole. In fact, it resembles the strong radar echo seen from the ice-rich polar caps of Mars.

“Normal” ice, such as that found on Earth, absorbs radio waves, but ice at very low temperatures is a very effective reflector of radio waves. The strong reflection seen on Mercury is too large to be caused by a momentary “glint” off a crater wall, and when studied in more detail shares the characteristics of reflections from the water ice seen on Mars and the icy moons of Jupiter.

Scientists now believe that the ice resides on the floors of craters at Mercury’s north pole, where it can remain permanently shaded from the Sun and reach temperatures as low as 125 degrees Kelvin (-235 degrees Farenheit).

The VLA, with its great angular resolution, or ability to see fine detail, was crucial to this discovery. It was able to provide sufficient detail of small regions (down to 100 meters in this observation) to reveal the ice reflections. Other analytical capabilities of the VLA helped to further confirm the discovery. In 1994, the same observing team discovered a similar radar reflection from Mercury’s south pole. In sum, the VLA’s capabilities provided major new insight into the nature of this planet.

Good gracious.

Peace.

Okay, now… this caught my eye in a slightly off-topic post in an ATS thread on alleged Apollo photo manipulation started by the uploader of the first video in this thread. I won’t go into the details of that thread, I’ll just say I didn’t find it at all compelling… for a few reasons. I’d seen some of his threads before and, some are interesting, but information is usually withheld, so, caveat emptor, eh?

This video however is quite straightforward. I will freely admit to my romantic half’s desire to find “something” having an effect with it, but, still, it is quite intriguing in my view.

I have been getting more and more careful as I age. Eww, I said the a-word. Ha! I’ve been hoodwinked before and there are quite a few threads on my blogs I wish I’d been more careful with and never posted. There have been changes, let’s put it that way… and all for the better.

So, anyway… this vid is ‘on the edge,’ as it were. Its original source is good, obviously, but it’s in very low res, on the H.264 codec and being played by Flash, so like anything you see on YouTube it’s not, shall we say, ideal for research.

But it’s pretty darn cool… one does not expect to see little things seemingly flying around in the ISS.

To the guys credit he does put up (in the description) the possibility that they are just four bits of paper or something blowing around in the A/C, but, even at this res… I too am not so sure.

Especially of the other two… that appear to be… crawling.

Those two are mainly why this is here, despite the awful resolution.

Here you go…

Uploaded by  on Jun 11, 2011

Hi there!

Perhaps my eyes are playing tricks on me but I really thought to have seen spacecritters flying and crawling around INSIDE the ISS! Do we have alien lifeforms / critters visiting the ISS?

Why don’t you take a peek and convince yourselves. As soon as the astronaut has disappeared the show starts.

The first flying critter appears 45 seconds into the video (on top of the instrument panel), the second one shows up at 1.39 (center right), the third critter we see in the upper right corner at 3.50 and the fourth one at 4.00 in the lower right corner. You should also check for some slight movements on the instrumentpanel. This looks like a couple crawling critters. (Or is it a reflection of light?)

In order to exclude or eliminate NASA’s biological experiments aboard the ISS, I checked whether NASA (recently) had been performing any experiments involving butterflies or bugs. There have not been such experiments!

So what is it we see?

As some people claim: small pieces of paper flying around, lifted and transported through the air by the airflow coming from the ventilation system.

Really? These “things” come from several directions and they do not look like pieces of paper to me.

Looking at the way they move, you could compare it with how single cell organisms swim inside a fluid. Are we seeing something we were not supposed to?

Greetz,

Sander

This next vid was posted on YT as a response to the one above and focuses on the crawly fellas. It’s zoomed in a tad which is good for the purpose.

Uploaded by  on Jun 13, 2011

Your eyes are not playing tricks on you. Otherwise their playing tricks on me too.

Not just spacecritters flying around INSIDE the ISS, but also MORPHING shadows!

The show start before the astronaut disappear …

At least two morphing shadows, black critters and some unexplanable “metallic” reflexes… what do you think they are??

I’ve no idea… there is only speculation and conjecture. I would love to know. I can only enjoy the show and wonder if we will ever know. I wonder, too, if there is any other footage showing these anomalies. I bet there is. Can we, while I’m doing all this wondering, get the full res originals?

Peace.

Mars Critter Shirt modeled by Jamie.
Nice, huh?

I’d like to thank Jamie for enthusiastically modeling my Mars Critter shirt. She is of course wearing the 3/4 sleeve raglan version which you can change the colors on or if you like put my little buddy on another style shirt, I’ve got tons, 70, I think – regular tees, “green” tees, basic tees, polos, spaghetti strap style, hoodies – all kinds and in a ton of colors.

The official blurb about the shirt Jamie has on:

Ladies 3/4 Sleeve Raglan (Fitted)

Cute and comfortable, this classic baseball jersey has been cut just for women. Made from 100% super-soft ring-spun cotton by Bella. Includes side-seams and double-needle stitched sleeve and bottom hems for lasting quality. NOTE: Sizes run extremely small. Order 1 to 2 sizes larger than normal. Imported.

You can personalize it, too, if you want; add text or pics to it, on the front or back… you can do that to all the gear.

My little Martian buddy can also be had on a Speck brand iPad Case, a variety of caps and coffee mugs, a key chain, greeting cards, post cards, a mousepad and a really nice quality print. If you might want it on something I have yet to make, like the little speakers that just got added, just let me know, no worries.


It’s really a lot of fun making all these images in Photoshop and Fireworks and Apophysis and then arranging them as nicely as I can on the clothes and the gear… keeps me out of trouble and puts a smile on my face… and gives me an excuse to peruse NASA images looking for weird stuff… and to think that it’s all for sale, that I could make a couple of dollars if some like-minded wacko should actually buy something… what could be better than that?

Ha! If it actually happened, maybe! It does sometimes, but…

Don’t think I get rich off of this particular endeavor… it’s been 6 years now and I’ve yet to get to even half a K… in all that time. Any person buying anything is pretty much a hero in my eyes. I wonder sometimes, though, as a colleague of mine in Australia actually makes a living at this!  WAAAH!  So prolific she is… just amazing! And talented. I really wish I could emulate that. Maybe someday I will figure it out… wish me luck!

Anyway, enjoy. There’s some strange stuff in my store that might trigger something inside you.

Peace.

I’ve been meaning to post this for ages, but I am just well and truly shot, so, here it finally is. And I’ve got another one I’ve been meaning to post for ages, too. Sigh.

I used to spend many an hour totally absorbed in reading the discussions on and digesting the wonderful evidence contained within the fabulous forum on Charles Shults’ Xenotech Research website. That site went away during Shults’ time setting up his Spaceport America project.

Charles has told me that what once was will eventually again be, and indeed he has been posting his discoveries bit by bit onto his new site with linkage to the original science data. I sure hope that forum comes back.

Here’s a link to the original article that also has a very nice 7 minute video on it: Sir Charles ShultsCharles Shults presents his discoveries on WLTX-TV   April 29th, 2011

Winnsboro, SC (WLTX) — Charles Shults says there’s life on Mars, and he’s got the pictures he says proves it.

NASA announced the discovery of water on Mars in 2006, but Shults came to that conclusion in 2004.

“The date I was first certain was February 15, 2004,” Shults says.

Using the Freedom of information Act, Shults obtained more than 200,000 Mars images from NASA. After thousands of hours of reviewing the images, Shults came to a startling conclusion to some: not only is there water on Mars, but there are fossils too.

“Many of the things I’ve seen look clearly like the recent erosion, or presence of water on the surface, and many of the images show what appear to be fossil organisms, marine fossils,” Shults says. “Right now, the planet has extremely thin air, very tough living conditions, but it is wet on the surface in many areas, and it is covered with fossil remains from marine organisms.”

“Some of the fossils we found are seashells, and very clearly, they are identical to what we find on Earth,” he says. “There’s an absolute identical appearance to both of them.”

Shults’ research has the potential to change the way people think about the universe. He’s written numerous articles and books on the subject. The latest is A Fossil Hunter’s Guide to Mars.

Continue reading this article…

A broken helmet shell.

Don’t miss out on seeing some rather strange “rocks” on Mars, “rocks” bearing much, much more than a passing resemblance to Earthly marine fossils at Charles’ site: ShultsLaboratories.com

A sporty new video’s arrived from the boffins over at Lunar Explorer Italia − this one dealing with an interesting look at what is perhaps yet another fossil, a flat little round guy of a nice size this time, unfortunately broken. But, it’s “reconstructed” nicely… and shown to compare favorably with an Earthly organism called a Nummulite.

Nice little stream, too, or rather the remnant thereof… that looks, shall we say… recent!

Un flusso? Che cosa?

Sì, l’uomo!

Indeed, that got me going a bit more than the fossil did, as, well, there are tons of fossils. But rarely have I seen such close up, on the ground, positive indication of surface water. This is really great stuff.

Can’t you just see the water bubbling up from a spot under the Rover’s wheel… heading off down the slope… only to quickly get absorbed into the soil, all the while evaporating at the same time? Way cool, I say!

You know, having said that, the Rovers should really be giving us videos… maybe next time, as they’re so fond of saying. Yeah, right, that’ll happen.

Fantastico … godetevi lo spettacolo!

Following is the always interesting “description” that LEI attached to the video. Heady, these guys… :)

Channel Icon

What are we looking at? Will be the usual – wonderful! – Photomosaic in natural colors that shows us a piece of Mars?

No, this is more.

More.

Go and look at the EDM below …

We already know what they say and write in many :”… but what is it? E ‘a detail that you do not understand … is too small … … is undefined does not explain anything and does not prove anything. .. “.

Yes, certainly.
And you know why? Why the “people” (like the Anomaly Hunters Sunday …) wants to be surprised and, to believe, wants to see – or rather: MUST SEE! – Something big: a pyramid – or perhaps a group of Pyramids! -, An amphitheater, a Cosmodrome, a “face” that looks toward the sky or maybe a “parable” that points to nowhere …

Yes, it’s true: you try the “Big Test”, because it is “common thought” that only the “Big Test” AND ‘ “the smoking gun.”

It does not work that way.

Those seeking the “Cathedral” – and that we have already said and written until the nausea (more ours than your, believe it …) – in the end, does not want to see anything and even if he stumbles and falls on a simple but essential “Brick” … I do not see it!
Not consider.
I do not even understand.

LORD, that (in our humble but informed opinion) is the brick!

Look at him, Study him and if you’re really good, explain and spiegatecelo.

The Thing On The Moon by iggymak

Ah, yes, well, here we have the lovely Luz along with righteous dude Darren both modeling variations of my Thing On The Moon Tshirt, which celebrates what may just be the strangest thing that I have ever clapped eyes on — namely, well, the “thing” — discovered back in the day by none other than the notorious Mr. John Lear.

It’s on a photo taken on the exceptionally notorious far side of the Moon… by the intrepid crew of Apollo 8.

A high resolution version, that is; obtained by Lear from his buds a bit before they got real strict about taking stuff like that out of circulation. Score!

This design is my enhancement of a crop of this particular anomaly from that very high res version.

If you’re motivated, the official NASA image number is AS8-12-2209.

High Strangeness at it’s best, eh?!

I mean… seriously… people… wtf is that?!

Fog ThingA little while ago, there in my mailbox was the usual roundup of headlines at Phantoms and Monsters… this one though, had a flying creature report from the very gung ho guys at the Centre for Fortean Zoology!

I love flying Cryptids! One of my life goals, in fact, if you don’t know is to capture, (on film at least), both a Thunderbird and a Pterodactyl. [Please Note: The imagery in this post is suggestive or illustrative only as no images were captured during the reported sightings.] Checked it out… here’s what it said…

Flying Cryptid Reported in County Durham, UK

This was reported at CFZ:

We saw a Thing the other night. Not sure at all WHAT it was, but both myself and Gareth saw it. We were driving back from Darlington to home at about 10pm on Wednesday 7th October, and just west of Harperley roundabout on the A698 to Wolsingham, when “it” flew in front of the car.

Whatever it was, was not a bird, and was not a moth or bat. It was approx. 3 feet long, about 1ft wide at the head, tapering down to a short tail. It was white and almost see-through – like a cloud, perhaps – pear-drop shaped, and moved very fast.

It rose from a hedge (or from the ground close to the hedge), which borders the road. Then it sped across the road at about 30ft high. Not sure how fast it was going, but a few mins later we saw a tawny owl flying across the road, and the Thing was much faster than the owl.

Before anyone gets the wrong idea, I am not suggesting that the Thing and the owl were connected in any way. It was incidental and only serves as an indication of air-speed.

The site we saw it at was close to the POW camp, which has recently been put up for sale on ebay. There are no street lights nearby, and it is a remote area of the high north Pennines. Very few dwellings, not much human activity, other than the fairly quiet A689. There was very little wind, and it was quite dark as it was cloudy/overcast. No rain.

Ideas?

A critter?And in response to that post, a short while later a person sent this report in to Phantoms and Monsters

I read the article you had listed entitled “Flying Cryptid in County Durham UK”. I live in the USA, and saw something very similar to what was described in the article. My sighting occurred in a rural area of Henderson, West Virginia, approximately 20 years ago (1989). I had been visiting a friend with my daughter and was on my way home in the afternoon. The day was partly sunny with clouds in the sky, but not rainy or misty. We were traveling down an incline in the car and we saw something strange go across the road (from the left side to the right side of the road). I’m not good with distances but it was probably no more than fifty feet from us. The thing described in the article was much smaller than what my daughter and I saw. I watched it disappear and asked my daughter if she had seen anything, and she confirmed that she had seen it also.

What we observed was approximately horse or cow sized and it had a white, translucent appearance, without identifiable head, tail, or appendages. It was just a big oval shaped airy “blob” that you could see through! This thing was like watching a tiny cloud or a mass of fog move on its own. It was flying or gliding quickly across the road and just disappeared on the other side of the road. It moved straight and did not weave or bobble. We only saw it for maybe 5 seconds. I had never seen anything like it before and haven’t seen another one since. I never reported it but I always remembered my sighting and was immediately struck by the similarity of what was reported in the UK.

Thanks for your website…it is extremely interesting.

Pat Queen, Ohio

It’s exciting!

And the reason it is so, to me, is because, as a Fortean and big fan of both on and off-world cryptozoology, it is my humble opinion that these two sightings are appearances of a “new” form of life that I’ve recently rekindled my interest in and have become very hot on… the Critter, or, the Plasma Lifeform.

Trevor J Constable photo - "amoeba"Not really new, though,  to those immersed in such things – interest started a long time ago within the scientific community following renowned plasma physicist Dr. David Bohm’s discovery through repeated laboratory observations that plasmas, more often than not, act just like living things; and there’s always researcher Trevor James Constable’s infrared photography to peruse, wherein he managed to regularly capture these “critters” back in the late 50s, and coined the term we still use for them. But surely, this concept is not something the majority of people have ever thought about.

The idea is that there are perhaps as many species of plasma creatures as there are “regular” creatures, with the same diversity as all our known life… replete with the same diversity of intelligence endowment, too.

As Mr. Constable noted, due to their rather exotic makeup, most of the critters would normally be invisible to us; his photos, after all, were in the infrared spectrum. They’d possibly become visible during certain interactions with the environment… while passing through localized electrical fields in search of food, namely the electrons that gives plasma life, (Bohm’s original observation), maybe, or perhaps through other phenomena; perhaps light can catch some qualities of their amorphous bodies in certain situations.

NASA's famous tether incidentMany UFOs, perhaps up to 80% of good sightings, a great deal  of the things usually deemed to be “spirits,” aerial BVM apparitions, shadow people and indeed lots of other oddly intangible sightings may in fact be plasma critters… who are, for whatever reason, occasionally visible to us at certain places, at certain times.

Clearly the two featured sightings here were real enough, but also were clearly not animals in the sense of flesh and blood beings… nevertheless, I do feel that these two sightings represent living creatures, or rather, critters… and as living things, these fabulously different critters should not be cast by cryptozoologists into the abyss of the paranormal. What’s needed is a broadening of the playing field, to think in terms of all that’s out there; to include all living things, not just those that are like us.

That may be asking too much, I’m not sure. Critters not made of flesh and blood may be too radical a departure for biologists, who have enough on their plate already. Maybe a special branch is needed… not sure who they might be, though. I suggest a multi-disciplinary approach… after all, this is radically different from our norms. But it should be done… they are alive… they are all around us… even in space… we should know all there is to know about them.

Resident of Enceladus? image N00121336(crop) NASA/JPL

What the heck is that? I just knew you’d ask. This JPL image is a crop I chopped from the “full-res” image number N00121336 taken by the Cassini mission to Saturn, the top right catches a bit of the moon Enceladus. The thing at center left is, as you might imagine, unidentified.

Most of you have probably seen the spectacular ring photos that were recently released showing the varying mountains of material at the ring edges. Truly fascinating. I am impressed! Thoughts came flooding in via remembrance of Dr. Norman Bergrun’s work, published long ago in his book The Ringmakers of Saturn, wherein evocative and rather spooky evidence of massive objects of very likely artificial construction was presented.

Did my usual stop at Skipper’s Mars Anomaly Research site to see if there was a new post — and there was — a nice post on the Cassini investigations at the Saturnian moon Enceladus, featuring a whole bunch of high strangeness objects of which the object here in my post is but one. This one I picked for its visual brightness and cool shape, however the others are equally strange in their own right (one looks like a big lobster claw, another a giant resistor!).

Skipper thinks all these things including our guest here are life forms. It is, believe it or not, a distinct possibility. Just as up to 80% or so of our UFOs may be critters. Plasma critters.

This has been discussed in scientific circles for many, many decades… at least six of ’em… that plasma can and does behave much like a life form does… so much so there is very little doubt that plasma life forms not only exist but are as evolved and as diverse as our sort of life… as in microbes to people. Including intelligence. They are able to live in outer space.

By the way, the scientific discussions mentioned above — we’re talking David Bohm, Neils Bohr and Albert Einstein here… yes, it’s not the fringe, it’s the real deal.

Anyway, since I’ve no truck with any of those dudes, dudes who influenced my childhood, I have no problem in accepting and imagining the world of these creatures… and no problem with Skipper’s analysis… especially if you look at the sequences, the things do move and change shape, so hey… not much of a stretch. They sure are big, though! Jeez!

I am impressed. Very much so. There are tons of these guys around out there at Saturn… and different kinds, too! Very, very exciting. To me at least.

Now… I do have two problems with the Cassini mission, one pointed out by Skipper that I share, as will you, I bet.

Firstly, Cassini has several occasions flown way close to Enceladus, once in 2008 approaching within 16 miles of the surface! Sixteen miles! What could be wrong with that, you ask? Nothing!

The problem is that no photos have been publicly released that are any closer than 88,020 kilometers. Not one. And even those are only 512 pixels small. It twists my gut. In my opinion, that is simply criminal. In a literal sense. Our tax dollars paid for all this… and we want to see! Man, that ticks me off. Really, really, really so.

Secondly, I have a problem with the image below. Haven’t checked the others. This is the original “hi-res” (Ha!) shot with our selected guest critter in it, reduced from the 512 pixel width to the 497 that this blog theme displays.

My problem is the stars. Assuming of course that they are stars. Because if they are… then how in heck are they showing through the moon? Eh? I mean really, don’t you think that that is mighty odd? The moon seems to vanish into the ether just past halfway up; and below that doesn’t look too solid, either… I really want to know just what is up with that… that’s just weird. That’s just wrong.

I’m actually more concerned with this aspect than with the critters!

Even if these stars aren’t stars at all but are really just more critters, that’s cool, but what of the vanishing moon? This is driving me right up the wall! The cameras sure took some sporty pics of those rings, so, again… what is going on here?

Enceladus. Nearly full released resolution N00121336. NASA/JPL

And, now, something I just now stumbled across… here’s my resulting image just below.

I opened up the above shot from JPL/NASA and gave it 4 more f-stops of exposure (which is all I can give it in one shot)… and just lookee what we can see now!

A little bit more of Enceladus… which served as some small relief for the aforementioned mind-warping conundrum (is it really that dark out there? Wow!) but certainly not relief in full by any stretch of the imagination.

Lots more “stars” which I’m now thinking are just more critters… The “stars” all exhibit awful jpeg weirdies by the way which one can see just by enlarging the original, which causes our Skipper to go on about tampering and such in his report… anyway…

But look! There are at least four more of our lovely curved-V critters! Woot! They just aren’t up to glowing like our invited guest does. Wow!

Since they all have the same shape… are these camera artifacts? From the conditions out there? Reflections of the first one? Could be certainly, but it doesn’t seem likely… there are different families of critters in the day’s sequence… all the dudes in the Skipper’s report are from the same day… so… wow.

Finally, I would just like to note that it’s been more and more apparent to me over the years, more so lately simply due to more thought being devoted to it… that the farther out we go… the more the strangeness factor applies… and applies exponentially! Just weird!

Enceladus image N00121336 at plus 4 f-stops. image enhancement by Iggy Makarevich.

!!!

site_A86_pcam_90_cyl-A231R1 copywMarvin will be well pleased. He was so excited when he found out he was needed in Hollywood that he forgot his teapot, and it was lost all those years, until a cute little robot landed and started driving around, and just happened to do so right where he left it.

Seriously, now, the picture on the right is a Mars Pathfinder mission image by the JPL team. It’s a very tight crop within the full image, which is a composite of several individual pictures. Spotted long ago by Tim Beech, one of the original investigators of Martian photographic anomalies, it shows an object that resembles for all the world the classic spout of an English teapot, ready to pour a little cheer into our lives. This particular teapot spout, however… I am currently thinking… is another in a series of Martian critters, yes, I’m talking an animal, coming out of it’s lair to scope out the surrounding area for a bit of a snack. This view is primarily based on its shape, its relationship to the “rock” immediately to its left and on the marked dissimilarity to anything else in the entire image.

site_A86_pcam_90_cyl-A231R1 Image NASA/JPLThe larger version on the right is a levels enhancement by myself, to make the scene appear more natural, lighting-wise, not that it doesn’t pop right out at you in the image above. [Levels refer to the reaction of the imaging software in displaying the brightness level of any particular pixel, i.e. a certain value in the original data is output at the same, a brighter, or a darker level. Therefore the overall image ratios remain the same, as long as there is image data in a given pixel.] Clicking either image will take you to the original composite shot.

Do you think a rock could have eroded into that shape? I don’t. As always, your comments are most welcome. I am highly opinionated, it’s true, but I am also highly open-minded. 

As for the “rock” immediately to the left, it could be a rock that it’s using as a shelter, or it could be a shell. The smaller triangular-roofed “shell” that’s just a touch closer to us could be a fellow creature’s lair, as it has the same shape as the object our pal is peeking out from.

I don’t know, but that’s what I think of this bit of evidence… you must decide for yourself what you think it might be. We all want to see life running around in these images from space… I posit that that’s exactly what we’re looking at here.

This, evidence suggests, is an animal. Image based on NASA/JPL 2N289093752EFFB074P1985L0M1

I’m very excited! On my regular visit to Mr. Skipper’s site, I was enticed by the title of the latest post, MARS MOVING EVIDENCE, and I was certainly not disappointed! I’d like you to go over there and read it, because what I’ve done here with my own photo work is only a portion of a quarter of the evidence presented, even within this section of his posting. For besides the other inexplicables…

This “rock” is what caught my eye. As Skipper intimates with his writing; and after looking so closely and so extensively into the wee hours… I am of the opinion that this rock… ain’t no rock. No, I think we’ve got a live one here. I really  do! Damn!

This is a sequence, (not all of them here) of the Rover’s views over a period of many days, from Sol 1830 to 1843. That’s a day shy of two weeks. Be aware that the rover is moving slightly to the left in relation to these images as the days go on, so there are some camera angle changes, but not enough, surely, to account for what we’re seeing.

Check out the general shape. There’s a frill or ridge on the thing’s “head.” That’s cool, but I’m in particular looking at the progression of the tentacular-looking appendage that’s at the little dude’s front. Note how it becomes more vertical in attitude and therefore appearing thinner along it’s length as the days go on. It appears as if it’s an arm of sorts to perhaps scoop food into reach. I mean, come on, just look at that thing! It clearly is not in the same orientation in the different timeframes. It’s possible as well that the whole being has moved in angular relation to us as well, with the “head” more towards us later on. Maybe not, but it seems so.

Okay, guys, I am well aware of simulacra and pareidolia… however… this evidence is pushing those two very human phenomena of the mind just a bit, don’t you think? Perhaps that’s what this really is, nevertheless it looks pretty well real to me at this point and I’m willing to risk a foray onto the limb. Especially when considered in concert with the other activity in this scene as revealed at Skipper’s site. These images are a crop of much, much less than 10% of the full frame and perhaps a quarter of the area where the other stuff happens.

Although these are merely stills and not many of them over the 13 days, there’s an impression in my mind that life’s a bit slow-paced up there… ah, wouldn’t it be fabulous if they’d put a video camera on our explorers? For that matter… why haven’t they? Seems so very odd within our video and television enmeshed culture. Maybe it’s because we the people would learn way too much, or that NASA would have way too much editing to do. I believe they’d get all the funding and popular enthusiasm they could ever want if they did that. [UPDATE: 6/08/09. Re: this paragraph. They had. See why they stopped! Go here. Then go here.]

Anyhow, this is the coolest thing I’ve seen in a dog’s age. Be sure to read Skipper’s post, as I mentioned there’s more going on in this scene than just this guy, and there are three other incidents there as well.

On Sol 1833, Mars Exploration Rover Spirit took the above image… and on Sol 1836, it took the one below and the third on Sol 1843. Images by NASA/JPL with very  slight enhancement by myself.

Spirit, Navigation Camera, Sol 1836 - NASA/JPL 2N289363474EFFB0A1P1985R0M1

NASA/JPL 2N289976994EFFB0EOP0675L0M1 Sol 1843

Apollo 17 image AS17-137-20925HR; enhanced gamma, brightness and contrast.

This is a crop of the somewhat notorious Apollo 17 image AS17-137-20925HR. Why notorious? It’s that green thing. Some have been so bold as to suggest it’s some sort of lifeform. Since this is the moon, I’m not too sure about that conjecture… Although it has been shown that the moon has an atmosphere and water ice, there doesn’t appear to be a heck of a lot of water around this locale. Be that as it may… there this thing is. Note that it is not at all required to do any enhancing to the original photo in order to see our green friend. Nope, it stands right out… in a pretty deep shadow no less. As if it’s actually self-luminous. High strangeness, indeed.

An unknown form of living thing is a bit more likely than some sort of alien device doing who knows what…

For the image here, I started with a version with enhanced gamma, although I don’t remember where I got it. (I have such a backlog of these things to write about… sheesh.). I elevated the brightness and contrast by 30 each to get the lighting up to snuff and approach daylight a bit. [No pixels were harmed in the making of this picture.]

Nice purple mineral it’s sitting on, by the way. Food, maybe? Like the NY Lottery ads say, “Hey, you never know.” Life out there doesn’t necessarily have to follow our dogma. If you said 50 years ago that there were creatures on Earth that live 2 miles down and eat rocks, you know what would’ve happened, right? Right.

It would be so sad if the anomaly is a film defect, but of course it could be, can’t leave that out no matter how doubtful the scenario, the film being custom made expressly for the lunar program. Nothing remotely like it has appeared before or since.

So… being the romantic nut that I am, I vote for… High Strangeness.

Update 5/20/09: added image below. For this version, only brightness was applied to the original hi-res image as released to the public. This is to better show you the very interesting colors at the tip of this object and what may well be projections in the tip area.

AS17-137-20925HR with only brightness applied.

LOL: From the JPL/NASA site: Back by popular demand: THEMIS ART IMAGE #73 These north polar dunes look odd -- like a plant, or fossil, or some alien creature. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/ASU

One of my all-time favorite Martian anomaly images, Mars Odyssey catalog number PIA08557… I’m confident you can sort out why on your own. What do the once-great Jet Propulsion Lab and the master of obfuscation have to say about it? As well as the Arizona State University folks who built and run the THEMIS instrument that snapped it back in 2001?

Firstly, they present it as an “Art Image.”  No trouble there, it’s pretty sweet, after all. But… remember now… to everyone involved in the shenanigans at an official level… literally everything on Mars… no matter what… is a sand dune. No matter what.

This is the comment on the JPL/NASA site:
Back by popular demand: THEMIS ART IMAGE #73 These north polar dunes look odd — like a plant, or fossil, or some alien creature. VIS instrument. Latitude 82.4N, Longitude 314.5E. 40 meter/pixel resolution. Image Credit: NASA/JPL/ASU.

Sand dunes. What else could it be? There are only sand dunes on Mars, right? Yeah, and I’m the Queen of the Nile. Ha! I find it most interesting that the majority of traffic at Xenotech Research and no doubt Skipper’s site as well is from NASA and its related contractors. Interesting, indeed. And telling.

It’s surely not a creature… surely… it’s immense… it put the widest bit at about 3 3/4 miles across. However, it could very well be a colony of lifeforms of the type that J.P.  Skipper’s been looking into and theorizing about. That’s entirely plausible. I would certainly like a reasonable explanation for it. This would not include sand dunes. That’s absurd. I’ll be zoomin’ in on this one…

A fascinating image with probable fossils and a possible lifeform. NASA/JPL/Cornell

Negotiating a path through the pretty blue fossils and rocks in this photo taken by the Mars Exploration Rover Spirit’s PanCam on it’s 960th Martian day is a most unusual little critter. See it? Right between the “rock” that looks like a fish and the one that looks rather frog-like. What is that? A worm? A snake? What the…? Naturally the NASA dudes drove right on by, as is their custom… sigh.

Haven’t seen anything like that up there before! Haven’t seen many string-shaped rocks either… here or there. At first I thought the groove in the very lower right might be a track, but I now don’t think so, as there’s none right at the object’s location and it’s pretty deep. No way to know if it moved, there’s only a few shots, and only from this camera, so we’ll never know. Me? I’m rooting for lifeform while we wait until someone with a sense of inquiry goes up there and finds out…

The PanCam page for Sol 960 is where you’ll find all the pics from the day, and here’s the page for the original image, which is by NASA/JPL/Cornell. Clicking on the image will take you to the color version on the areo.info Rover page, which automatically creates, daily (when available), very close to true color images.

A Martian life form? image © Sir Charles W. Shults III, K.B.B.This image is the result of a photo test conducted at Xenotech Research. Without getting all geeky, it represents what changed between the two photos they were looking at.

The object of our affection here is the little blue segmented fellow near the Phoenix lander’s foot, cropped from the original.

True, it’s sort of worm-looking, you might say… but why did it catch the eye?

Well… 109 seconds after this shot was snapped, they took another… and… it was gone.

Yeah.

Seriously close examination revealed that it wasn’t really gone, but, just as intriguingly… it had changed color… and… it had moved. Moved. Think about it. We’re talking Mars here, lads ‘n lasses. That place that’s supposedly so very inhospitable.

Inhospitable… right. Bullshit.

That’s what I love about the dudes over at Xenotech… they do real science on the released data… they have the science chops to back it up… they don’t take any of the aforementioned bullshit… and they’re not afraid to tell NASA or whomever exactly what they think of them… much like me, (except for the chops bit)… so, hey! Check ’em out, man… fabulous forum goin’ on, too. They keep using Photobucket for forum pics, though, so old pics are gone pretty quick, but don’t let that stop ya!