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Earth as a Tool for Astrobiology - A European Perspective

Martins, Z. and Cottin, H. and Kotler, J.M. and Carrasco, N. and Cockell, C. and de la Torre Noetzel, R. and Demets, R. and de Vera, Jean Pierre Paul and d'Hendecourt, L. and Ehrenfreund, P. and Elsaesser, A. and Foing, B. and Onofri, S. and Quinn, R. and Rabbow, E. and Rettberg, P. and Ricco, A.J. and Slenzka, Klaus and Stalport, F. and ten Kate, I.L. and van Loon, Jack and Westall, F. (2017) Earth as a Tool for Astrobiology - A European Perspective. Space Science Reviews, 209, pp. 43-81. Springer. doi: 10.1007/s11214-017-0369-1. ISSN 0038-6308.

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Official URL: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs11214-017-0369-1


Scientists use the Earth as a tool for astrobiology by analyzing planetary field analogues (i.e. terrestrial samples and field sites that resemble planetary bodies in our Solar System). In addition, they expose the selected planetary field analogues in simulation Chambers to conditions that mimic the ones of planets, moons and Low Earth Orbit (LEO) space conditions, as well as the chemistry occurring in interstellar and cometary ices. This paper reviews the ways the Earth is used by astrobiologists: (i) by conducting planetary field analogue studies to investigate extant life from extreme environments, its metabolisms, adaptation strategies and modern biosignatures; (ii) by conducting planetary field analogue studies to investigate extinct life from the oldest rocks on our planet and its biosignatures; (iii) by exposing terrestrial samples to simulated space or planetary environments and producing a sample analogue to investigate changes in minerals, biosignatures and microorganisms. The European Space Agency (ESA) created a topical team in 2011 to investigate recent activities using the Earth as a tool for astrobiology and to formulate recommendations and scientific needs to improve ground-based astrobiological research. Space is an important tool for astrobiology (see Horneck et al. in Astrobiology, 16:201-243, 2016; Cottin et al., 2017), but access to space is limited. Complementing research on Earth provides fast access, more replications and higher sample throughput. The major conclusions of the topical team and suggestions for the future include more scientifically qualified calls for field campaigns with planetary analogy, and a centralized point of contact at ESA or the EU for the organization of a survey of such expeditions. An improvement of the coordinated logistics, infrastructures and funding system supporting the combination of field work with planetary simulation investigations, as well as an optimization of the scientific return and data processing, data storage and data distribution is also needed. Finally, a coordinated EU or ESA education and outreach program would improve the participation of the public in the astrobiological activities.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/112941/
Document Type:Article
Title:Earth as a Tool for Astrobiology - A European Perspective
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iDORCID Put Code
Martins, Z.imperial college, london, ukUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Cottin, H.laboratoire interuniversitaire des systèmes atmosphériques (lisa), umr cnrs 7583, université paris est créteil et université paris diderot, institut pierre simon laplace, franceUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Kotler, J.M.leiden institute of chemistry, p.o. box 9502, 2300 leiden, the netherlands and faculty of applied sciences, city of oxford college, oxpens road, oxford, ox1 1sa, ukUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Carrasco, N.univ paris 06, univ versailles st quentin, cnrs, latmos, f-78280 guyancourt, franceUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Cockell, C.university of edinburgh, ukUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
de la Torre Noetzel, R.department of earth observation, area of atmospheric research and instrumentation, inta, 28850 torrejón de ardoz, madrid, spainUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Demets, R.esa (european space agency),estec, noordwijk, the netherlandsUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
d'Hendecourt, L.Institut d’Astrophysique Spatiale, UMR 8617 CNRS, Univ. Paris-Sud, Université Paris-Saclay,Campus d’Orsay, Bat 121n, 91400 Orsay, FranceUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Ehrenfreund, P.universiteit leiden, netherland and george washington university, usa.UNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Elsaesser, A.Experimental Molecular Biophysics, Free University of Berlin, Arnimallee 14, 14195 Berlin, GermanyUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Foing, B.european space agency, estec, research and scientific support department, noordwijk, the netherlandsUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Onofri, S.decos, università degli studi della tuscia, largo dell’università, viterbo, italy;UNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Quinn, R.NASA Ames Research Center MS 239-4, Moffett Field, CA 94035, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Rabbow, E.UNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-9301-2021UNSPECIFIED
Rettberg, P.UNSPECIFIEDhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-4439-2395UNSPECIFIED
Ricco, A.J.NASA Ames Research Center, Mountain View, CA, USAUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Slenzka, KlausOHB SYSTEM AG, Universitätsallee 27-29, 28359 Bremen, GermanyUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Stalport, F.Laboratoire Interuniversitaire des Systèmes Atmosphériques (LISA), UMR CNRS 7583, Université Paris Est Créteil et Université Paris Diderot, Institut Pierre Simon Laplace, 61 avenue du Général de Gaulle, 94010 Créteil Cedex, FranceUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
ten Kate, I.L.Department of Earth Sciences, Universiteit Utrecht, P.O. Box 8002, 3508 TA Utrecht,The NetherlandsUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
van Loon, Jackdepartment of oral cell biology, desc, acta-free university, amsterdam, the netherlandsUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Westall, F.CBM, UPR 4301, CNRS, rue Charles Sadron, 45071 Orléans, FranceUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Date:13 April 2017
Journal or Publication Title:Space Science Reviews
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Page Range:pp. 43-81
Keywords:Astrobiology, Exobiology, Astrochemistry, Planetary field analogues, Laboratory analogues, Field test campaigns
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Exploration
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EW - Space Exploration
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Vorhaben Planetary Evolution and Life (old)
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Leitungsbereich PF
Institute of Aerospace Medicine > Radiation Biology
Deposited By: de Vera, Dr. Jean Pierre Paul
Deposited On:16 Aug 2017 14:06
Last Modified:27 Jun 2023 08:30

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