Phosphine gas in the cloud decks of Venus

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This is enormous news, it’s a shame that we can’t really appreciate how huge this is when the world is so fucked up


In the press conference they said that the article would’ve been free to read, but it’s not?


I’ve been highly interested in this new discovery because of course why wouldn’t you be? But to me it’s amazing either way. If it’s a positive; i.e there is microorganisms on Venus, that’s huge news, because it can show life may be a lot more abundant than we thought it was, and life may not be as rare as we once thought. But on the flip side if it isn’t life, it will also just change our understanding of fundamental chemistry. So as a whole this is a massively groundbreaking discovery


Proud dad moment was me explaining this to my daughter. She then proceeded to march over to her first grade zoom class, and explain to her teacher that a “chemical” was discovered on Venus and aliens “might” be real, and that we’re going to have to send a robot and return a sample… I’m paraphrasing. She filibustered that zoom meeting for a full 5 minutes explaining that we don’t know if aliens are real but they might be and this chemical suggests they could be, and she went into her spacecraft design for sample return… it’s a bird with some sort of atmospheric scoop. This is a first grader. This is why space exploration needs to be fully funded. Now, I don’t think her teacher has seen the news this morning, so she pretty much just got a “uh yeah, ok” out of her, but I was beaming anyway.


My bet is on unknown chemistry processes and not life, but I would be positively surprised if its indeed life. Our knowledge of the Venus atmosphere is a bit lacking, so it might very well be something in the chemistry of the atmosphere that we currently do not know. There are some Venus missions planned in the next decade, so im sure we will get more data about this.