Sunday, May 17, 2009

next best thing after carbon.....

we all know how life and carbon have been loyal to each other since their marriage atleast 3.9 Billion years ago on earth.....but what if we have a planet,with a dearth of carbon.......will life just not exist?which element do you think could form basis for another life system without carbon?

how would silicon do?it is of the same group as carbon,it has 4 valencies,and plus,is a semiconductor....although it lacks by factors the activity and combinational variety of carbon,but then,life has the curiosity to finally overcome any problem it faces......would a Silicon based life exist?or for that matter any other metal based?.....

Carbon does show a better ability to form compounds than any element known.....but that shouldn't restrict our extraterrestrial life search to just carbon or water is a very complex mechanism....i recall a sci-fi novel wherein 'tachyons' do exist,and there exists a 'tachyon family of atoms' which forms a 'tachyon universe with tachyon life forms' here right along with our universe,only that none of us can sense each other in any possible way,and we never know that the other ever exists!in search of something so similar to our own existence,we mite skip living mechanisms on a broader,wider,weirder level....

i dont mean to say we go hunt tachyons,just dont get why we are looking for water as a 'primary source' of life.......are there no chances of us being wrong?life surviving on sulphur entirely,living off H2S instead of H2O?

Great topic.... But it makes one wonder : If it were possible for non-hydrocarbon life-forms to exist, then why did they not appear on earth?! Why have we not come across any silicon-based life-form on earth? Why do we see only hydrocarbon forms of life? 
I did a google search for any non-hydrocarbon/non-carbon life form that may've existed on earth, but all the results pointed to was theories and speculations on alien/ET life forms. However, I found this interesting:

only elements H and C are required ....this is a must because of the unique nature of the elements .....C has the highest no. of possible allotropes compared to all the other elements...H has a single electron and can form hydrogen bonds due to polar covalency
this helps in formation of DNA which helps to form cells

we might have a different type of genetic material ( for ex DNA is de oxy ribo nucleic acid )
we might have something like de sulpho ribo something the main requirement for life is not water but carbon nd hydrogen

carbon is present in adequate quantities in milky way nd nearby scientists search for water as a source of hydrogen nd as a source of a mixing medium where various elements can mix to form a single bacteria which can evolve to form complex life

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