NASA Statement regarding “Alien” Fossils
“NASA is a scientific and technical agency committed to a culture of openness with the media and public. While we value the free exchange of ideas, data, and information as part of scientific and technical inquiry, NASA cannot stand behind or support a scientific claim unless it has been peer-reviewed or thoroughly examined by other qualified experts. This paper was submitted in 2007 to the International Journal of Astrobiology. However, the peer review process was not completed for that submission. NASA also was unaware of the recent submission of the paper to the Journal of Cosmology or of the paper’s subsequent publication. Additional questions should be directed to the author of the paper.” – Dr. Paul Hertz, chief scientist of NASA’s Science Mission Directorate in Washington
The paper has received a fair amount of attention the past few days, and rightly so. As Marcello Truzzi and Carl Sagan have said: “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof”. Hoover may be correct in his theories about what has been found in the meteorites he has analyzed, but as true scientists and skeptics, we must insist that Hoover’s claims be reviewed by others in the scientific community. There are also some questions as to whether or not Hoover actually has a Ph.D.
Many Astrobiologists have since spoken out regarding Hoover’s announcement and given the methodology used, and the choice of journal to publish to (Journal of Cosmology) has had its integrity questions on occasion. Given the controversy and scientific backlash against NASA surrounding the last “Alien” life announcement , it is understandable that NASA has been quick to make a statement regarding this latest announcement.
The paper submitted can be read at: http://journalofcosmology.com/Life100.html – however, I’ll warn that it is by no means a “light” read.