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Billionaire Million Milner's pioneering project in collaboration with NASA to hunt for extraterrestrial life

Billionaire Million Milner's pioneering project in collaboration with NASA to hunt for extraterrestrial life

Russian-Israeli billionaire Yuri Milner plans the first private mission to deep space – and NASA helps him.

Milner hopes for life on Saturn's moon Enceladus, many experts believe this is the most likely place in the universe to contain extraterrestrial life.

According to New Scientist, agreements signed by NASA and Milner's non-profit Breakthrough Starshot Foundation in September show that the organizations are working on scientific, technical and financial plans for the ambitious mission. & # 39;

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The best hope of mankind for finding extraterrestrial life can be Saturnusmaan Enceladus (photo). Scientists say that the icy celestial body is the only world in the solar system other than the earth with all the ingredients needed for life. Now the Russian-Israeli billionaire Yuri Milner plans to find the first private mission to the deep space.

The best hope of mankind for finding extraterrestrial life can be Saturnusmaan Enceladus (photo). Scientists say that the icy celestial body is the only world in the solar system other than the earth with all the ingredients needed for life. Now the Russian-Israeli billionaire Yuri Milner plans to find the first private mission to the deep space.

WHAT WOULD LIKE KNOW ON ENCELADUS?

The species of life forms that could live on Enceladus would not be small green men – but would be similar to microbes that live on earth under extreme conditions – such as volcanic openings on the ocean floor.

The natural satellite is pumping organic molecules – a forerunner of microbial life – from its liquid underground ocean, revealing observations from a NASA probe earlier this year.

NASA has committed more than $ 70,000 to help create a draft study for a flyby mission and will use the money to make staff available.

Scientists say that the icy celestial body is the only world in the solar system other than the earth with all the ingredients needed for life.

The natural satellite is pumping organic molecules – a forerunner of microbial life – from its liquid underground ocean, revealing observations from a NASA probe earlier this year.

Researchers said they were being blown away & # 39; through the study, adding the results may lead future searches to extraterrestrial life.

The breakthrough represents another flying mission to sample the plumes of the moon, but now with equipment to detect extraterrestrial life.

The agreements make clear that Breakthrough would be leading and affordable for the mission and would only be competent to determine whether it would continue.

Both NASA and the European Space Agency are currently considering whether they want to finance their own missions to Enceladus.

The role of NASA in the Breakthrough Mission will be to provide scientific and technical advice, including expertise in the field of astrobiology, planetary, biological and earth sciences, as well as planetary protection. & # 39;

The natural satellite pumps organic molecules from the fluid under the ocean, measurements from a NASA probe show. The molecules are emitted through surface rays and hydrothermal vents (artist & # 39; s impression)

The natural satellite pumps organic molecules from the fluid under the ocean, measurements from a NASA probe show. The molecules are emitted through surface rays and hydrothermal vents (artist & # 39; s impression)

Researchers have previously speculated about a next generation mission to the moon.

"The findings are of great significance for the next generation of exploration", said study author Dr. ir. Christopher Glein, a researcher at the Southwest Research Institute in San Antonio, Texas.

A future spacecraft could fly through Enceladus' plume and analyze those complex organic molecules using a high-resolution mass spectrometer to help us determine how they were made.

WHO IS YURI MILNER?

In 2012 Milner founded The Breakthrough Prize - a series of international awards that recognize three areas: Fundamental Physics, Life Sciences and Mathematics

In 2012 Milner founded The Breakthrough Prize – a series of international awards that recognize three areas: Fundamental Physics, Life Sciences and Mathematics

A one-time physicist in Moscow who left to move to the US in 1990, Milner is one of a handful of technology magnates who spend time and money on space exploration.

Yuri Milner was born in a Jewish family on 11 November 1961 in Moscow and studied theoretical physics at Moscow State University, where he graduated in 1985.

He began his career as a salesman of illegal DOS computers in the Soviet Union.

When the national government collapsed, he enrolled at the Wharton School of Business to obtain an MBA.

His real success came when he founded investment firm & # 39; s Digital Sky Technologies (DST) – now called Mail.ru Group – and DST Global.

DST Global has invested in a number of large technology companies, including Facebook, Spotify, Twitter and Alibaba.

In 2012 Milner founded The Breakthrough Prize – a series of international awards that recognize three areas: Fundamental Physics, Life Sciences and Mathematics.

Laureates each receive $ 3 million in prize money, making the Breakthrough Prizes the largest scientific awards in the world.

Earlier this year, along with Stephen Hawking, he went looking for extraterrestrial life as part of the Breakthrough Initiatives. & # 39;

The $ 100 million mission will see telescopes rubbing a million of the closest stars to Earth for vague signals that are sent into space by intelligent living outside of our own world.

As part of his long-term vision, Milner believes that the internet will develop into a global brain & # 39; that will work as a kind of nervous system for the earth.

We have to be careful, but it is exciting to remember that this finding indicates that biological synthesis of organic molecules on Enceladus is possible. & # 39;

Enceladus – 628 million miles of earth – is extremely cold and has ice volcanoes over its cracked superficial crust.

Scientists have long suspected that the moon can host the lives of extraterrestrials since the discovery of the underground ocean by the Nasa Cassini probe in 2015.

The moon regularly throws plumes of water and ice particles from the global ocean through hydrothermal vents.

The research team studied the lectures of one of these plumes collected by Cassini.

Instruments on the probe made measurements within the plume and the E-ring of Saturn, which is formed by ice granules of plume that escape the gravity of Enceladus.

They discovered that complex, carbon-rich organic molecules are ejected from the cracks in the icy surface of Enceladus.

The molecules have masses of more than 200 atomic mass units – more than ten times heavier than methane.

WHAT IS ENCELADUS AND COULD IT GET THE ALIEN LIFE?

Enceladus (photo) is the sixth largest moon of Saturn, 313 miles wide (504 kilometers)

Enceladus (photo) is the sixth largest moon of Saturn, 313 miles wide (504 kilometers)

Enceladus is the sixth largest moon of Saturn, 313 miles wide (504 kilometers).

It is an icy satellite with hydrothermal activity – a rare combination – with openings that spew out water vapor and ice particles from an ocean buried under the frozen crust of the moon.

A handful of worlds are believed to have liquid water oceans below their frozen scale, but only Enceladus sprays its ocean into space, where a spacecraft can sample it.

According to Nasa observations, the plume includes organic compounds, volatile gases, carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, salts and silica.

Microbes on our planet produce these compounds or use them for growth, so that some speculate that small organisms live in the hidden ocean of Enceladus.

This means that while Enceladus might be & # 39; inhospitable & # 39; looks like the other moons of Saturn, it is an excellent candidate in our search for extraterrestrial life.

Scientists believe that chemical reactions between the rocky core of the moon and warm water from the ocean below are connected with these complex molecules.

"Complex organic molecules do not necessarily provide a viable environment, but on the other hand they are a necessary precursor for life", said Dr. Frank Postberg of the University of Heidelberg, who led the research, against The Independent .

& Previously, it was not known whether complex organic chemistry takes place on Enceladus – and now we know it. & # 39;

Liquid water, hydrogen gas and simple organic molecules – all important ingredients for life – were found on the moon earlier.

Scientists have long suspected that Enceladus could host the lives of extraterrestrials since the Nasa Cassini probe discovered the ice-cold body with an underground ocean in 2015. This artist's impression shows the probe passing through one of the hydrothermal plumes of Enceladus

Scientists have long suspected that Enceladus could host the lives of extraterrestrials since the Nasa Cassini probe discovered the ice-cold body with an underground ocean in 2015. This artist's impression shows the probe passing through one of the hydrothermal plumes of Enceladus

Researchers said that the results could send future searches to extraterrestrial life, because the organic molecules may be the precursors of extraterrestrial microbes. It suggests that the ocean of the moon (artist impression) underwater is an important target for future searches for extraterrestrial life

Researchers said that the results could send future searches to extraterrestrial life, because the organic molecules may be the precursors of extraterrestrial microbes. It suggests that the ocean of the moon (artist impression) underwater is an important target for future searches for extraterrestrial life

But the discovery of complex organic molecules, the forerunners of the evolution of simple microbes, means that the moon now has everything it takes to make life grow.

& # 39; We are, once again, blown away by Enceladus, & # 39; said Dr. Glein.

Earlier we had identified only the simplest organic molecules that contained some carbon atoms, but even that was very intriguing. & # 39;

With complex organic molecules coming out of the ocean with liquid water, this moon is the only body next to Earth that is known to simultaneously meet all the basic requirements for life as we know it. & # 39;

During Cassini's short trip from Enceladus in October 2015, the probe discovered molecular hydrogen when the spacecraft flew through the plume.

The moon regularly throws plumes of water and ice particles from the global ocean through hydrothermal vents. The research team studied the lectures of one of these plumes collected by Cassini (artist & # 39; s impression)

The moon regularly throws plumes of water and ice particles from the global ocean through hydrothermal vents. The research team studied the lectures of one of these plumes collected by Cassini (artist & # 39; s impression)

Earlier flybys provided evidence for a global underground ocean that lived above a rocky core.

It is thought that molecular hydrogen in the plume is formed by the geochemical interaction between water and rocks in hydrothermal environments.

Hydrogen provides a source of chemical energy that supports microbes that live in Earth's oceans near hydrothermal sources, said study author Dr. Hunter Waite.

& # 39; Once you have identified a potential food source for microbes, the next question to ask is & # 39; what is the nature of the complex organic substances in the ocean? & # 39;

& # 39; This article is the first step in that concept – complexity in organic chemistry that exceeds our expectations! & # 39;

The full findings of the study were published in the journal Nature.

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