Life-Supporting Nitrogen detected on Mars by NASA

Life-Supporting Nitrogen detected on Mars by NASA.

Life-Supporting Nitrogen Detected on Mars by NASA



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Nitrogen, an element considered to be a crucial one to sustain life on Earth, now has been discovered on our neighbor Mars, as per the findings of the NASA space rover Curiosity. Scientists have always speculated about the existence of life on planet Mars much before it did on earth and this report might just prove them right.

While the general perception about Life and its beginning revolves around Carbon and its compounds, and of course Oxygen, Nitrogen acts as a secret ingredient in continuing the circle of Life. Our genetic code inscribed in the DNA consists of macromolecules essentially formed of Nitrogen emphasizes on the vitality of the element in continuation of life as we know it.

SAM (Sample Analysis on Mars), the instrument onboard Curiosity analyzed the atmosphere of Mars taking the samples at three different points, thereafter detecting the presence of essential Nitrogen. The samples have been collected at a place called Sheepbed Mudstone and one is a general Martian dust. The analysis has led to the discovery of fixed forms of Nitrogen on Martian surface.

Also See: NASA Discovers the Mystery Behind the ‘Man In The Moon’

Nitrogen in its fused gaseous form N2 is not usable for the purpose, but when it gets separated to form separate elemental Nitrogen N; it comes to use. This is known as fixed form of Nitrogen that the living organisms fundamentally utilize to harbor life.

Javier Martín-Torres co-author of the scientific manuscripts on the first detection of organics on Mars says:

It has been established that the nitrates, which is a form of nitrogen, comes from fixation of atmospheric diatomic nitrogen in the atmosphere during meteorite impacts, which is consistent with the data that we obtained through the SAM analyses, so this may be the main source of fixed nitrogen on Mars.

The findings come after the propositions of NASA that Mars could once had been covered in vast oceans. After Moon , Mars is the second celestial body that is most often fantasized to be inhabited or could be inhabited. Different space agencies like NASA and ISRO are now planning to send manned missions to Mars.

Could this finding provide backing for the supporters of colonization of MARS fanatics??
Stay tuned for latest science and tech news from fossBytes!


Tenth Wall Defense 4 Human Rights

Tenth Wall Defense 4 Human Rights.

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Tenth Wall Defense 4 Human Rights


Thank You – SumAll

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Iran deal would be worst U.S. betrayal of Israel yet – Opinion

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Mark G Kirshner @MarkGKirshner Human Rights Advocate and electronic Journalist:focus of issues of Women s Rights, Human Rights in Iran, Founder: Tenth Wall Defense of Baha’i s in Iran … See More s

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Iran Backs Away From Key Detail in Nuclear Deal

Iran Backs Away From Key Detail in Nuclear Deal.

Six world powers on last round of talks with Iran

Six world powers on last round of talks with Iran

LAUSANNE, Switzerland – NYT – MARCH 29, 2015 – With a negotiating deadline just around the corner, Iranian officials on Sunday backed away from a critical element of a proposed nuclear agreement, saying they are no longer willing to ship their atomic fuel out of the country.
For months, Iran tentatively agreed that it would send a large portion of its stockpile of uranium to Russia, where it would not be accessible for use in any future weapons program. But on Sunday Iran’s deputy foreign minister made a surprise comment to Iranian reporters, ruling out an agreement that involved giving up a stockpile that Iran has spent years and billions of dollars to amass.
“The export of stocks of enriched uranium is not in our program, and we do not intend sending them abroad,” the official, Abbas Araqchi, told the Iranian media, according to Agence France-Presse. “There is no question of sending the stocks abroad.”
Western officials confirmed that Iran was balking at shipping the fuel out, but insisted that there were other ways of dealing with the material. Chief among those options, they said, was blending it into a more diluted form.
Depending on the technical details, that could make the process of enriching it for military use far more lengthy, or perhaps nearly impossible.
Nonetheless, the revelation that Iran is now insisting on retaining the fuel could raise a potential obstacle at a critical time in the talks.
And for critics of the emerging deal in Congress, in Israel and in Sunni Arab nations like Saudi Arabia, the prospect of leaving large amounts of nuclear fuel in Iran, in any form, is bound to intensify their already substantial political opposition.
If an accord allowing Iran to retain the fuel is reached, the Obama administration is expected to argue that it would not constitute a serious risk, particularly if it is regularly inspected. So far under an interim agreement negotiated in 2013, Iran has complied fully with a rigorous inspection process for the stockpiles of its fuel, the International Atomic Energy Agency has said.
But the development could give opponents another reason to object, adding it to a list of what they call concessions made by an administration in search of an agreement.
If Iran ever bars the inspectors from the country, as North Korea did a dozen years ago, the international community would have no assurance about the fate of the fuel. Nor has Iran answered longstanding questions about its suspected nuclear design and testing of components that could be used to detonate a warhead.
On the assumption that Iran’s uranium stockpile would be small, the United States and its negotiating partners had been moving toward an agreement that would allow Iran to retain roughly 6,000 centrifuges in operation. It is not clear how much that might change if the fuel, even in diluted form, remains in the country.
If the fuel had been shipped to Russia, the plan called for Moscow to convert it into specialized fuel rods for the Bushehr nuclear power plant, Iran’s only commercial reactor. Once it was converted into fuel rods, it would have been extremely difficult for Iran to use the material to make a nuclear weapon.
It is not clear what form the fuel would take if it remains on Iranian territory.
The disclosure also adds a new element to the growing debate over whether the proposed agreement would meet President Obama’s oft-stated assurance that the world would have at least a year’s warning if Iran raced for a bomb — what experts call “breakout time.”
The argument over warning time, which was accelerated by a skeptical paper published over the weekend by the former chief inspector of the International Atomic Energy Agency, offered a taste of the kind of arguments already taking shape in Congress.
On Sunday, Republican leaders made it clear they would press for more sanctions against Iran if no agreement is reached here by Tuesday. In an interview with CNN, Speaker John A. Boehner expressed doubts about a potential agreement on Iran’s nuclear program.

 “We have got a regime that’s never quite kept their word about anything,” he said. “I just don’t understand why we would sign an agreement with a group of people who, in my opinion, have no intention of keeping their word.”
With pressure mounting to settle on the main parameters of an accord, negotiators were still divided on how fast United Nations ’ and others’ sanctions on Iran might be lifted. Important differences remained on what kind of research and development Iran could carry out on new types of centrifuges during the last five years of what is intended to be a 15-year agreement.
There was a clear sense that the talks were approaching a pivotal moment as the foreign ministers from other world powers joined Secretary of State John Kerry in an effort to reach the outlines of a deal by a midnight Tuesday deadline.
“We are not there yet,” said one Western official who, like others in this article, declined to be identified because he was discussing diplomatic deliberations. “There are lots of pieces floating around.”
That calculation over “breakout time” is so complex that experts from Britain, France, Germany and Israel all have somewhat slightly different calculations than those of experts from the United States.
The debate over breakout time intensified when Olli Heinonen, who ran inspections for the I.A.E.A. before moving to Harvard several years ago, published a paper on Saturday concluding that, based on leaked estimates that Iran would operate roughly 6,500 centrifuges, “a breakout time of between seven and eight months would still be possible.”
But the emergence of competing estimates could pose a political problem for President Obama, who has made breakout time the paramount measure for a potential agreement.
Parts of the agreement have begun to leak out, and reflect the balancing act underway: An effort by the United States and the other five powers here to cripple Iran’s ability to produce enough nuclear material for a weapon for at least 10 years, while letting the Iranians preserve a narrative that they are not dismantling major facilities, or giving in to American pressure.
For example, a deep underground facility at Fordow — exposed in 2009 — would likely be converted to make medical isotopes. That means it would not be used for enriching uranium.
But several hundred centrifuges might still be spinning there — the facility now has about 3,000 — and that fact alone, American officials acknowledge, could provide fodder to opponents of the deal.
Article contributed by DAVID E. SANGER and MICHAEL R. GORDON.

Sweden’s feminist foreign minister has dared to tell the truth about Saudi Arabia. What happens now concerns us all » The Spectator

Sweden’s feminist foreign minister has dared to tell the truth about Saudi Arabia. What happens now concerns us all » The Spectator.

Special Representative of the Secretary-

If the cries of ‘Je suis Charlie’ were sincere, the western world would be convulsed with worry and anger about the Wallström affair. It has all the ingredients for a clash-of-civilisations confrontation.

A few weeks ago Margot Wallström, the Swedish foreign minister, denounced the subjugation of women in Saudi Arabia. As the theocratic kingdom prevents women from travelling, conducting official business or marrying without the permission of male guardians, and as girls can be forced into child marriages where they are effectively raped by old men, she was telling no more than the truth. Wallström went on to condemn the Saudi courts for ordering that Raif Badawi receive ten years in prison and 1,000 lashes for setting up a website that championed secularism and free speech. These were ‘mediaeval methods’, she said, and a ‘cruel attempt to silence modern forms of expression’. And once again, who can argue with that?

The backlash followed the pattern set by Rushdie, the Danish cartoons andHebdo. Saudi Arabia withdrew its ambassador and stopped issuing visas to Swedish businessmen. The United Arab Emirates joined it. The Organisation of Islamic Co-operation, which represents 56 Muslim-majority states, accused Sweden of failing to respect the world’s ‘rich and varied ethical standards’ — standards so rich and varied, apparently, they include the flogging of bloggers and encouragement of paedophiles. Meanwhile, the Gulf Co-operation Council condemned her ‘unaccept-able interference in the internal affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’, and I wouldn’t bet against anti-Swedish riots following soon.

Yet there is no ‘Wallström affair’. Outside Sweden, the western media has barely covered the story, and Sweden’s EU allies have shown no inclination whatsoever to support her. A small Scandinavian nation faces sanctions, accusations of Islamophobia and maybe worse to come, and everyone stays silent. As so often, the scandal is that there isn’t a scandal.

Escaping ISIS in Libya | A Sense of Belonging

Escaping ISIS in Libya | A Sense of Belonging.

Escaping ISIS in Libya

From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Consider the horrible ordeal of Coptic Christians in Libya, as the Islamic State stormed their compound. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review tells how one escaped, helped by his Muslim friend:

Hani Mahrouf awakened at 2:30 in the morning when fists pounded on the door of his housing compound in Sirte, Libya.

It was Islamic State gunmen, searching for Egyptian Christians.

“They had a lot of weapons,” said Mahrouf, 33, a Muslim construction worker. “They asked if we were Muslim or Christian.

“We told them we were Muslim. Then they asked for the rooms of the Christians.

“They threatened us with their guns.”

The article describes how fighters scaled the compound walls, but the story centers on one who got away:

Osama Mansour, a Christian, was sleeping in a room of the first compound when ISIS burst in. Warned of what was happening, he slipped outside and “jumped from fence to fence just ahead of the gunmen,” he said.

He escaped but was left on his own in the dangerous city, separated from his friends.

“I stayed (in Sirte) for 30 days, but I didn’t stay in the same room” from night to night, said the 26-year-old tile worker.

A man he called “Sheikh Ali,” a Muslim from his home province of Assuit, helped Mansour hide and constantly change locations. Eventually, he grew a beard in order to leave Sirte.

“ISIS had two checkpoints that they would move around. I heard they were checking for tattoos” — he pointed to the bluish-black cross that he and many Coptic Christians ink on the insides of their wrists — “and we put a plaster cast on my hand and wrist. Sheikh Ali gave me a Quran and a prayer rug for the trip.

“I had to do this — I can’t have my mother wearing black” for mourning, Mansour said.

The article says most of his companions also eventually returned home, but it does not specify Sheikh Ali. Maybe he is still in Libya, able to work. If so, Osama may be using a pseudonym to protect his friend’s identity there.

One would hope it is not to protect his identity in Egypt. Recent news has some in the village protesting the church President Sisi promised to build in the name of the martyrs.

But in Libya, in this instance, the bonds of relationship and homeland proved stronger than the militant call of extremist religion. Amid constant news of chaos and atrocity, stories like this are precious reminders of humanity.

Unfortunately, guns and ideology can change the equation.

Escaping ISIS in Libya

A Sense of Belonging

From the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review Osama Mansour (L), from the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Consider the horrible ordeal of Coptic Christians in Libya, as the Islamic State stormed their compound. The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review tells how one escaped, helped by his Muslim friend:

Hani Mahrouf awakened at 2:30 in the morning when fists pounded on the door of his housing compound in Sirte, Libya.

It was Islamic State gunmen, searching for Egyptian Christians.

“They had a lot of weapons,” said Mahrouf, 33, a Muslim construction worker. “They asked if we were Muslim or Christian.

“We told them we were Muslim. Then they asked for the rooms of the Christians.

“They threatened us with their guns.”

The article describes how fighters scaled the compound walls, but the story centers on one who got away:

Osama Mansour, a Christian, was sleeping in a room of the first compound when ISIS burst in. Warned of what was happening, he slipped outside…

View original post 280 more words

Cabo Pulmo Image, Mexico — National Geographic Photo of the Day

Cabo Pulmo Image, Mexico — National Geographic Photo of the Day.


MARCH 29, 2015

All the Fish in the Sea

Photograph by Jeff Hester, National Geographic Your Shot

Your Shot member Jeff Hester was drawn to make this image because, he says, “I believe this is what our oceans should look like.” But Cabo Pulmo, a marine park off Mexico’s Baja California peninsula, hasn’t always been this way. “In 1995, [the] park was established by local citizens to counteract depleted reef fishes and marine life due to overfishing,” he says. “Today, the biomass is booming, and the ecosystem is returning to a healthy state. For this particular image, I wanted to show some scale … so I had my wife, seen in the foreground, swim ahead of me.”

This photo was submitted to Your Shot, our storytelling community where members can take part in photo assignments, get expert feedback, be published, and more. Join now >>

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