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RE: starship-design: Infrastructure in space [was: FTL travel...]
L. Parker writes:
> > Is not oil made by compression of large amounts of
> > organic matter?
> Well, scientists used to believe so, but recently it has been discovered
> through spectroscopic analysis that chemical compounds remarkably similar to
> good old crude abound in space. While it may still be true that oil on Earth
> originated by compressing organic matter, there is now some speculation that
> perhaps some of it was simply trapped here during planetary formation or
> I should think it would be relatively easy to prove through carbon dating,
> but I haven't seen anything on it recently.
I doubt carbon dating could prove that since it isn't effective past
something like a few tens of thousands of years, so it couldn't
distinguish oil formed from organic matter deposited a few hundred
million years ago from oil baked out of the Earth's core from stuff
deposited a few billion years ago.