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If it Happened | We Covered it

Russian Cosmonauts May Have Discovered Bacterial Life in Space

international space station
Russian cosmonauts may have discovered bacterial life in space. I'm not convinced that this is completely on the up and up, but incredible if it is.

alien

I read an article online yesterday and while it is certainly newsworthy, I had different reasons for wanting to share it.  My reason for wanting to share this is two-fold.  The first is because I’m extremely skeptical of this finding.  But my second reason is because I’m also really interested in what has been discovered.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s the fact that the Russians have claimed to have found some kind of extraterrestrial life.  More specifically, they have reportedly discovered tiny bacteria on a swab that was collected from outside the International Space Station.  They are saying that this bacteria didn’t originate on Earth.  So how did this happen?

Apparently, this bacteria has actually been around for “years”.  It was absent during the launch of the International Space Station module and eventually settled on the external surface.  While they don’t seem to be a danger, it’s awfully convenient that they’re being discovered now, don’t you think?  I’m not suggesting that there is anything nefarious going on, but I do find it odd that this bacteria was suddenly discovered years later.  Why haven’t other astronauts found this kind of bacteria?

international space station

The discovery itself hasn’t been confirmed so I might be getting ahead of myself.  I do think this kind of discovery is fascinating though.  Science fiction movies and novels have taught us that if we do find alien life, it will be in the form of a full-blown alien with laser guns and advanced intelligence.  But we have known all along that any kind of “alien” life found was actually going to be microscopic.

The swabs, which were collected years ago, were seemingly overlooked.  But they contained living bacteria that might have come from outer space.   My other question is how are they still living then?  Or are they?  Along with the alien bacteria, other bacteria thought to have originated on Earth was also found on the swabs.  Surviving in the vacuum of space is no easy feat, and intense temperature fluctuations failed to kill the bacteria over the course of three years, which is extremely impressive.  It’s unclear exactly how the researchers were able to differentiate between terrestrial bacteria and the alien bacteria that appeared within the same samples.

nasa

The bacteria was brought back to Earth on swabs and is now being studied.  The Russian space agency is saying that these swabs shouldn’t be considered dangerous.  Apparently, the group didn’t actually know the bacteria was present on the swab samples until it was returned to Earth for closer inspection.

The other reason I think this is kind of suspicious is because of Yuri Milner.  Milner is a Russian billionaire who threw down the gauntlet and announced that he wanted to be the first to find extraterrestrial life on another planet.  His sights are set on Saturn’s moon Enceladus, but all of this coming out right now seems extremely coincidental and maybe even convenient.  I am not necessarily suggesting that there is a correlation between the two stories, but there does seem to be a link between the two.  That said, if this is something extraterrestrial, it will be fascinating to see what it is, where it came from and if there is more of it out there in the universe.

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