A few conference-related bits and pieces to report.
First of all, student travel grants of €200–300 are now available for the European Astrobiology Network Association (EANA) ’14 meeting in Edinburgh in September. The registration deadline for the conference and to apply for travel support is the 15th of August.
Secondly, the 2nd NoR HGT & LUCA conference has been announced for the 28th and 29th of October 2014. More information at the conference website.
Finally, a session potentially of interest to astrobiolgy researchers has been selected for AGU this December. The session, entitled Persistence of Earth Habitability, is described by the organisers as follows:
The continuous presence of life (requiring liquid water) on Earth for about 3 billion years is made more surprising by: (1) the 25% increase in incoming radiation over that time (‘Faint Young Sun’), (2) the potential volatility of atmospheric CO2 (residence time <0.001 billion years), and (3) the example from Mars that climate can be initially conducive to liquid water without needing to remain so. We invite data, models, and arguments which shed light on this question of why Earth remained continuously habitable, without interruption, over such an immensity of geological time. Contributions are welcome on mechanistic explanations (thermostats) suggesting that Earth was destined from the outset to remain habitable. Alternatively, contributions are also welcome that feature chance and observer selection effects, perhaps building on the emerging exoplanets information from Kepler. Other relevant perspectives include long-term climate data, and information on the ease or difficulty of eradicating all life.
Note that the deadline for AGU abstracts is August 6th. You can submit yours here.
Photo credit (CC BY 2.0) Marianne Weiss