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Response to Redfairen (Original post)

Thu Feb 28, 2013, 09:50 PM

6. Wow, talk about jumping to conclusions from minimal evidence.

These are both MUCH simpler molecules than any nucleic acid heterocycles, or all but the simplest amino acid (glycine). The first is just the dimer of hydrogen cyanide, found pretty much wherever HCN is found. This fad of reporting "MOLECULES OF LIFE FOUND IN SPACE!" has gotten really old. There is a very long and improbable path between such spaceborne molecules and all but the simplest amino acids or nuclear bases. In contrast, the formation of these molecules under planetary conditions is well documented. The main difference is simply concentration -- the probability of two molecules reacting with each other is proportional to the concentration of each of the molecules involved, which is much, much lower in instellar space than in planetary atmospheres/hydrospheres. I wish these scientists would try harder to formulate plausible hypotheses, rather than going for the most spectacular hypothesis in the hopes of greater fame -- which is evidently what is driving this fad.

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