Why Life Is Beginning to Seem Very Special Indeed
"Life should not exist. This much we know from chemistry. In contrast to the ubiquity of life on Earth, the lifelessness of other planets makes far better chemical sense."
So writes Professor James Tour, one of the world's foremost synthetic organic chemists, based at Rice University in Texas. Intimately acquainted with the latest research in prebiotic chemistry, Tour has expressed severe skepticism that a plausible naturalistic mechanism for the origin of life will be found any time soon. But he goes even further:
We synthetic chemists should state the obvious. The appearance of life on Earth is a mystery. We are nowhere near solving this problem. The...
is the author of seven books in amateur and professional astronomy. His historical work, Chronicling the Golden Age of Astronomy, celebrates four centuries of telescopic astronomy and the characters who shaped the science.This article originally appeared in Salvo, Issue #50, Fall 2019 Copyright © 2022 Salvo | www.salvomag.com https://salvomag.com/article/salvo50/origin-stories