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Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Would moving microbes on Mars make sounds?

A Rotifer    (Image by Bob Blaylock) 
Let's face it:  Detecting the presence of microbes on Mars might not be as easy as spotting the movements of little green men.

Nevertheless, scientists are well on their way to figuring out how to hear those microbes wiggle.  Leonard David of reports on “a new microphone technology called the remote acoustic sensor (RAS).” 

The RAS is allegedly capable of “capturing sounds within extreme and often inaccessible aerospace environments.”  Its detector is “sensitive to small audio-frequency variations in electromagnetic energy.”

Yes, but how small?  According to RAS Lead Technologist Dan Slater, this device has already recorded the “acoustic activity produced by a 75-micron (0.003 inches) rotifer, a type of protozoan, of the genus Cothurnia.”  


Copyright October 7, 2015 by Linda Van Slyke   All Rights Reserved

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