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Thread: Newish theory life started in hot springs, but on land, not deep under sea...

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    Newish theory life started in hot springs, but on land, not deep under sea...

    Did life on Earth start from a warm little pond on the surface (as Darwin thought), or from hot springs deep under the ocean? A couple of recent papers argue that the most likely scenario is a sort of mixture of these two — life began in hot springs, but the hot springs were on land, not deep under the sea.

    Some of the reasons why this may be the most likely origin of life:

    * Chemical reactions would be driven by UV light from the sun,
    * And also from interaction of hydrogen-rich subsurface material and more oxidised material from the atmosphere
    * Cycles of wetting and drying could make polymerisation more likely
    * An environment containing geysers/springs and pools could enable compounds to interact in a diversity of ways
    * Compared to other suggested sites, the chemical composition of environments like this seems better match for composition of living cells today

    Origin of Life’s Building Blocks in Carbon- and Nitrogen-Rich Surface Hydrothermal Vents

    TERRESTRIAL HOT SPRINGS AND THE ORIGIN OF LIFE: IMPLICATIONS FOR THE SEARCH
    FOR LIFE BEYOND EARTH.


    A Terrestrial Hot Spring Setting for the Origin of Life? Darwin’s Warm Little Pond revisited

    The word "terrestrial" in these titles means "terrestrial" as contrasted to "marine", not "terrestrial" as contrasted to "extra-terrestrial".

    I used the word "newish" in the thread title because I think there have been suggestions like this before. What's new is the level of detail researchers have been going into, to see how viable or not a scenario like this may be...
    Last edited by Colin Robinson; 2019-Sep-08 at 10:53 AM.

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