Wednesday, 7 August 2019


Counted in the manifest in what aimed to be the first private space probe to land on the Moon among other cargo including a veritable Noah’s Ark the sum of human knowledge on a medium to last a billion year, Super Punch informs, the Beresheet mission was also carrying a sizable compliment of hardy tardigrade passengers.
When the craft crashed upon landing, it spilled out the water bears famously resilient for being able to withstand extreme and punishing environments, including the vacuum of space. While we cannot say whether this accident has transferred life to the Earth’s satellite, we learn that according to NASA’s Office of Planetary Protection this act of panspermia is not in violation of the agency’s directive meant to protect planetary environments like Mars, Europa or Ganymede that are understood to be more fecund and whose ecology might be threatened by contamination—as considered that humans have already quite befouled the lunar surface some fifty years ago.