HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
NASA develops a 'nugget' to search for life in space

Astrobiologists, who search for evidence of life on other planets, may find a proposed Neutron/Gamma ray Geologic Tomography (NUGGET) instrument to be one of the most useful tools in their toolbelt.

As conceived by scientists at the Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) in Greenbelt, Md., NUGGET would be able to generate three-dimensional images of fossils embedded in an outcrop of rock or beneath the soil of Mars or another planet. Tomography uses radiation or sound waves to look inside objects. NUGGET could help determine if primitive forms of life took root on Mars when the planet was awash in water eons ago.

Similar to seismic tomography used by the oil industry to locate oil reserves beneath Earth's surface, NUGGET would look instead for evidence of primitive algae and bacteria that fossilized along the edges of extinct rivers or oceans. As on Earth, these remains could lie just a few centimeters beneath the surface, compressed between layers of silt. If a mechanical rover that explores planet surfaces were equipped with an instrument like NUGGET -- capable of peering beneath the surface -- then it might be able to reveal evidence of life beyond Earth.

"This is a brand new idea," said Sam Floyd, the principal investigator on the project, funded this year by Goddard's Director's Discretionary Fund. If developed, NUGGET would be able to investigate important biological indicators of life, and quickly and precisely identify areas where scientists might want to take samples of soil or conduct more intensive studies. "It would allow us to do a much faster survey of an area," Floyd said.

The proposed instrument, which could be carried on a rover or a robot lander, is made up of three fundamentally distinct technologies -- a neutron generator, a neutron lens, and a gamma-ray detector.

At the heart of NUGGET is a three-dimensional scanning instrument that beams neutrons into a rock or other object under study. When the nucleus
'"/>

Contact: Rob Gutro
Robert.J.Gutro.1@gsfc.nasa.gov
301-286-4044
NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
27-Jul-2005


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. N.C. A&T food scientist develops process for allergen-free peanuts
2. MIT develops nanoparticles to battle cancer
3. UC develops new approach to Web-based drug withdrawal warnings
4. Engineer ramps up protein production, develops versatile viral spheres
5. Hopkins develops online tool to aid research on certain orphan diseases
6. U of I scientist develops enzyme inhibitor that may slow cancer growth
7. West develops taste for primates
8. OHSU researcher develops first animal model to treat devasting head and neck cancers
9. Novel stem cell technology develops a new cell for repairing spinal cord injuries
10. Interdisciplinary team develops guidelines for treating severely injured patients
11. Georgia Tech develops technology for more compact, inexpensive spectrometers

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: NASA develops nugget search for life space

(Date:10/15/2014)... 15, 2014 Sandata Technologies, LLC, an ... community-based care, today announced it released a case ... Electronic Visit Verification™ Solution (EVV™)  for Quality Care ... health company founded in 1996 and has five ... The study details the challenges facing ...
(Date:10/15/2014)... pneumonia in female mice to an enzyme activated by ... more resistant to respiratory infections than males. Now, an ... to bacterial pneumonia in female mice is linked to ... show that this enzyme is ultimately activated by the ... team, lead by Professor Lester Kobzik at the Harvard ...
(Date:10/14/2014)... A new study published in Cancer Research ... liver and colon cancers—can promote the development of skin ... proliferation and survival of sun-damaged skin cells. , Previously ... seven proteins called sirtuins that help regulate genomic stability ... aging. SIRT6 helps repair DNA damage, which can lead ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Sandata Announces Case Study with Quality Care Services, Inc. 2Two-faced gene: SIRT6 prevents some cancers but promotes sun-induced skin cancer 2
(Date:10/19/2014)... The Asian Automatic patient billing report defines and segments ... revenue. The Automatic patient billing market in Asia is ... at a developing CAGR of 7.2% from 2013 to ... Automatic patient billing market, to get an idea of ... of the segmentation of this market in the same ...
(Date:10/19/2014)... (PRWEB) October 19, 2014 The report ... Market Share, Trade, Prices, Geography Trend and Forecast (2011 ... sales category, and geography and studies the major market ... North America, Europe, and Asia. , The global chocolate ... 2010.to $98.3 billion in 2016 at an estimated CAGR ...
(Date:10/19/2014)... The report "Unmanned Ground Vehicle Market ... Payload, Type & by Geography - Forecasts & ... ground vehicle market into various sub segments with ... The report also identifies the factors driving this ... with the adoption trends. , The unmanned ground ...
(Date:10/18/2014)... The “Human Insulin Market- by Product Type, [Human ... Insulin (Rapid Acting, Long Acting, Premixed)], by Brand ... Forecast to 2018” provides a detailed overview of ... trends, and strategies impacting the global human insulin ... the revenue and share analysis. , The global ...
Breaking Biology Technology:The Asian Automatic patient billing market is estimated to grow to around $463.9 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 2The Asian Automatic patient billing market is estimated to grow to around $463.9 million by 2018 - New Report by MicroMarket Monitor 3Chocolate Market Projected To Reach $98.3 Billion by 2016 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 2Chocolate Market Projected To Reach $98.3 Billion by 2016 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 3Chocolate Market Projected To Reach $98.3 Billion by 2016 - New Report by MarketsandMarkets 4Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Market Estimated to Reach $8.26 Billion by 2020 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 2Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Market Estimated to Reach $8.26 Billion by 2020 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 3Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Market Estimated to Reach $8.26 Billion by 2020 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 4Unmanned Ground Vehicle (UGV) Market Estimated to Reach $8.26 Billion by 2020 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 5Medical Human Insulin Market Is Expected to Reach $42 billion by 2019 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 2Medical Human Insulin Market Is Expected to Reach $42 billion by 2019 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 3Medical Human Insulin Market Is Expected to Reach $42 billion by 2019 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 4Medical Human Insulin Market Is Expected to Reach $42 billion by 2019 - New Research Report by MarketsandMarkets 5
Cached News: