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Ron Patton | September 14, 2023

On September 24, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission will bring a sample containing material from the asteroid, Bennu to Earth. A previous mission almost 20 years ago, ended in disaster. In 2004, The Project Genesis capsule returned from space with particle samples from a comet. Unfortunately, the parachutes did not open and the capsule crashed 40 miles SW of Salt Lake City. Scientists were concerned about contamination and that possible extraterrestrial microbes would spread out and appear as some unknown disease. Shortly after the incident, “Morgellon’s” arrived and many people called it the “alien disease” because nothing else like it manifested in humans. Shouldn’t we be concerned about the potential of astrobiological microorganisms infecting life on Earth?  Tonight on Ground Zero, Clyde Lewis talks with Dr. Sky about BENNU – EARTH GERMS ARE EASY.





I want to know when NASA or whoever changed the narrative again about UFOs. They were being called UAP or unidentified aerial phenomena — but now they are calling it unidentified anomalous phenomena.

So silly me — I have been wrong the whole time.

Save me the embarrassment of not knowing my terminology — I figured this out when I heard that NASA was holding another UAP meeting.

The meeting discussed the findings from an unidentified anomalous phenomena independent study team it commissioned in 2022.

It aims to inform NASA on what possible data could be collected in the future to shed light on the nature and origin of UAP. The report is not a review or assessment of previous unidentifiable observations.

I really had no interest in watching it or trying to find it because last time the meeting seemed like a bunch of nerds got together to basically talk about their lack of knowledge about UAP and how cool it would be to find out more.

They were as giddy as a nerd standing next to William Shatner at the urinal in the men’s restroom.

But no new revelations were announced — even though independent researchers that distance themselves from the UFO monopoly are providing evidence for future study.

David Grusch’s testimony was not discussed either – I mean wouldn’t the words of a whistle-blower saying that the U.S. government is in possession of crashed aircraft and non-human bodies be a topic?

The Mexican congress just convenied to discuss the unearthing of mummified alien remains in Peru.  Was that brought up?


When Avi Loeb appeared at the webinar last Saturday, he lamented the fact that when you present absolute proof of extraterrestrial artifacts or even interstellar rocks there are many fellow scientists that reject it even though they claim they want to see the evidence.

I brought up the Gilbert Levin case where NASA rejected his findings of possible life on Mars during the Viking mission.  His discovery of what appeared to be microbial life was at first reported as proof that life existed on Mars.  It was such an important discovery that President Bill Clinton made a statement to the American people about the discovery.

NASA denies that the Viking missions proved that life existed on Mars.

Gilbert Levin, the principal investigator for the labeled-release experiment, is convinced to this day that Vikings 1 and 2 found evidence of life on Mars. NASA’s Phoenix spacecraft, which landed near the planet’s north pole in 2008, re-started the argument when it confirmed that the chemistry of the Martian soil may, in fact, destroy organic material—which could explain at least some of the Viking findings.

NASA says that the Viking data has been lost or incomplete or some other story.

But now we are learning that NASA may have unknowingly found and killed microbial alien life from the Viking Missions.

One researcher hypothesizes that experiments carried out by NASA’s Viking landers in 1976 could have inadvertently killed microbes living in Martian rocks. Other experts are skeptical of course.

After landing on Mars in 1976, NASA’s Viking landers may have sampled tiny, dry-resistant life forms hiding inside Martian rocks.

Dirk Schulze-Makuch, an astrobiologist at Technical University Berlin, suggested in a June 27 article for Big Think.

He stated: If these extreme life forms did and continue to exist, the experiments carried out by the landers may have killed them before they were identified because the tests would have “overwhelmed these potential microbes.”

Each of the Viking landers — Viking 1 and Viking 2 — carried out four experiments on Mars: the gas chromatograph mass spectrometer (GCMS) experiment, which looked for organic, or carbon-containing, compounds in Martian soil; the labeled release experiment, which tested for metabolism by adding radioactively traced nutrients to the soil; the pyrolytic release experiment, which tested for carbon fixation by potential photosynthetic organisms; and the gas exchange experiment, which tested for metabolism by monitoring how gases that are known to be key to life (such as oxygen, carbon dioxide and nitrogen) changed surrounding isolated soil samples.

The results of the Viking experiments were confusing, and have continued to perplex some scientists ever since. The labeled release and pyrolytic release experiments produced some results that supported the idea of life on Mars: In both experiments, small changes in the concentrations of some gases hinted that some sort of metabolism was taking place.

It indicated that microbial life could live in harsh conditions — and that there were also fossilized life forms embedded in Mars Rocky soil.

The GCMS also found some traces of chlorinated organic compounds, but at the time, mission scientists believed the compounds were contamination from cleaning products used on Earth. (Subsequent landers and rovers have since proved that these organic compounds occur naturally on Mars.)

However, the gas exchange experiment, which was deemed the most important of the four, produced a negative result, leading most scientists to eventually conclude that the Viking experiments did not detect Martian life.

In 2007, NASA’s Phoenix lander, the successor to the Viking landers, found traces of perchlorate — a chemical that’s used in fireworks, road flares and explosives, and naturally occurs inside some rocks — on Mars.

Scientists later also reported traces of methane in the Martian atmosphere that would indicate that something on the planet may be decaying,

Perhaps life forms.

There has also been a conspiracy theory that the reason these life forms were rejected — or perhaps destroyed because they were not just microbes but a dangerous space clade that contained contaminated and perhaps viral components.

Something like a virus from space.

Every scoop of extraterrestrial soil our rovers dig up, and every sample that is returned from space brings some fears.

The scoop could contain alien bacteria that might thrive here on Earth in ways that are unexpected, unknown and possibly very deadly.

We could potentially have no immunity to extraterrestrial microbes. They could quickly wipe out large chunks of the human population, like a modern-day Black Plague. And that’s not the only threat. Such bacteria could go after animals, plants and earthly microbes. Our food sources could be gone before we do.

The encounter between us and aliens or alien bacteria could be similar to what happened to Native Americans when Europeans arrived in the 15th century. Over 95% of possibly 54 million people were killed due to a lack of immunity to such illnesses as smallpox and flu.

The possibility of plague and biological threats to the planet need to be considered as we are experiencing the effects of active solar activity and the upcoming eclipse.

Extremophiles have been known to hitch a ride on asteroids, and space ships — These microbes can withstand harsh conditions.

The idea of diseases from space and comets has always been discussed but never really proven.

But the astronauts in the 1960s and 1970s were always forced into isolation in case they brought with them interstellar bugs from space. The space age is 40 years old it has literally been closed down and yet there has always been an interest in harnessing the building blocks of life from comets and asteroids and with many failed experiments from NASA, we may not ever know if some of these space diseases have arrived.

When Apollo 12 retrieved parts of the Surveyor 3, which landed on the moon in April of 1967, bacteria was found in the probe. It had survived the launch and managed to stay alive on the airless surface of the moon. The bacteria were Streptococcus mitis. It is a bacterium that is normally found in the nose and throat.

Apparently, one of the astronauts or a NASA employee had it and spread it to the surveyor.

An important concept in space microbiology or astrobiology is ‘habitability’, which is essentially an assessment of whether an environment can support the activity of a given organism.

This is why recent studies in Micrometeorology and microorganisms in the stratosphere put more fuel on the fire for the confirmation of alien life in space.

But this type of alien life could contaminate the earth because of planned sample returns from planets, comets and asteroids.

On September 24, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission will bring to Earth a sample containing material from the asteroid Bennu collected in 2020.

A capsule containing the sample will be released from the probe

It will land at the Dugway Proving ground — in the west desert of Utah.

On board the capsule there are approximately 250 grams of rock material collected from the surface of Bennu in 2020. This is the first asteroid sample collected by NASA, and the largest ever collected in space, not including samples collected from the lunar surface.

During its approach to Earth, the OSIRIS-REx probe will not slow down as it drops the capsule.

About 20 minutes before the capsule lands, when it is still high above the veil of Earth’s atmosphere, the recovery team will board four helicopters and head out into the desert.

The capsule’s signature infrared glow will be tracked by thermal instruments until it is visible to optical instruments, giving the recovery team a way to trace the capsule’s path to Earth.

But while NASA is hoping everything will go as planned — they hope that we forget what happened the last time they attempted a retrieval mission.

It was a disaster, and quite possibly contaminated the western desert of Utah with extraterrestrial microbes.

On September 8th, 2004, Project Genesis NASA’s solar–wind sample capsule, returned from space. Project Genesis was the first U.S. sample return mission since the 1972 Apollo mission. This was the retrieval mission that would set the course for other such missions already scheduled for years to come. The Genesis probe was set to make history as it was to take a scoop of the particles of a comet and bring them successfully back to Earth.

A fireball sighting was reported near Bend, Oregon. It was a dot of light far brighter than Venus, moving across the morning sky. Oregon was having a rare clear day and observers were getting an eyeful. Moving at 25,000 mph, it got brighter as it moved across eastern Oregon into Southwestern Idaho. People in Elko, Nevada, were able to see it as it roared across the sky to its destination in Western Utah.

It was at that point that a set of parachutes was to open, slowing its descent, and helicopter pilots were to snag the capsule in midair in the same way that Corona capsules were retrieved decades earlier.

Unfortunately, it did not happen the way it was planned. The capsule’s parachutes did not open. The $250 million dollar project and its precious cargo whizzed past the helicopter pilots at about 150 miles per hour.

The capsule’s wobbling arc ended in a crash into the soft salt flats 40 miles west of Salt Lake City. The Salt Flats were probably not soft enough for the 55 hexagonal fragile wafers that were used to gather up particles from the sun. Scientists had been worried that if the capsule crashed, the samples would be contaminated.

However, there were others who worried that the crash contaminated the area of the western desert in Utah and those possible extraterrestrial microbes would spread out and appear as some unknown disease.

The precautions were already made – the probe crashed near a bio-weapons facility.

We suppose that if anything was released it was contained.

However, years after the probe crashed there were reports of a strange disease that was plaguing people — and some were calling it an extraterrestrial like plague.

It was reported in the media that  a few cases of a disease that when contracted would produce a filamentous microorganism usually, via oblong black filaments embedded in the skin that patients of the disorder claimed would crawl through the body.

Morgellon’s disease had arrived and many people called it the alien disease because nothing else like it manifested in humans.

It has been called a fibrous form of scabies, or leprosy – it was even diagnosed as a psychological disorder. The idea of the disease being an extraterrestrial plague has been downplayed so that modern medicine would take it seriously.

Further inquiry results revealed that most of the Morgellons afflicted had also bacterial co-infections, acquired probably by a fungus vector, which may transmit also bacterial or viral pathogens.

Could it have been the result of an astrobilogical contamination?

So far it is simply a case of Post hoc ergo propter hoc– or “Since event Y followed event X, event Y must have been caused by event X.

But we absolutely do not know what the sample return from Bennu will bring back to earth.

That is if it is successful.

Scientists are claiming that the regolith from the Rock would open secrets to the creation of our solar system.

If scientists have already identified a virus in space on a space rock like Bennu, perhaps very few people would claim the discovery was not evidence of life in space.

The truth is that when one considers the whole virus replication cycle, it comes close to NASA’s working definition of life: ‘a self-sustaining chemical system capable of Darwinian evolution or invading the planet.

The film, “The Andromeda Strain” offers a warning about planet-to-planet contamination and that perhaps a true alien invasion would not be conducted by little green or gray men, but by a virus that attacks humans in such a way that no doctor or epidemiologist can find a cure and thus creates a cosmic nail in your coffin.

The story provided by Michael Crichton spins a scenario where a sample retrieval satellite is sent into space to collect microorganisms for study. A malfunction occurs and the retrieval capsule crash lands in a desolate area of Arizona. The alien virus contaminates the area.

Just like what happened in Utah — or what could happen with the BENNU retrieval.

For those who are skeptical about microbial contaminations from sample returns — consider the fact that in 1956 NASA established the Planetary Quarantine Advisory Panel. It was established in order to avoid interplanetary cross-contamination with living organisms.

It’s mission was to ensure that no earth organization would interfere with another planet’s natural development. And not to endanger us or Earth’s Biosphere with alien pathogens.

In 1958, the International Committee on Space Research called for the sterilization of any spacecraft destined for Mars. NASA accommodated this request by subjecting its two Viking spacecraft to chemical and thermal treatments to reduce the probability of either spacecraft carrying a viable microorganism to Earth.

We are not as thorough in scouring shuttles and space vehicles when they return. It seems that sample return missions like Genesis and BENNU are crapshoots as well.

Over the years since Viking, the Space Studies Board of the National Academy of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine has produced reports on planetary protection. NASA requested the SSB to review the development of the evolving policy. This effort culminated in a report (NASA Planetary Protection Independent Review Board, NASA, 2019.

NASA also requested the SSB review that report and an earlier one on planetary protection for consistency, resulting in its current policy.

However, NASA’s actions have so far completely ignored its deeply expressed concerns of back contamination.

Now that they are preparing for another trip to the moon, and possibly to Mars, they may have to consider that there is indeed microbial life there– perhaps pathogens that could be deadly for the astronauts.

Somehow, it seems more alarming to hazard infection than to risk physical harm. Perhaps, this is because infection can be spread to Earth upon the return of someone from Mars.

The public would not want the pilgrims to Mars to be regarded as expendable. As always, proving a negative, that there are no pathogens on the planet, is impossible, and, especially, if it is acknowledged that microorganisms do exist there.

All we do now is watch and wait.



Steve Kates / Dr. Sky is a science journalist with expertise in the realms of Astronomy, Space, Aviation and Weather. A true New Yorker, he got his start in broadcasting and television as a child actor in many commercials and print media.
During college, his mentor was Dr. Clyde Tombaugh, the discoverer of the then-planet Pluto. Continuing with his own broadcast shows, the Dr.Sky Show is heard on local Arizona radio and television and stations around the nation!
He continues as the “Astronomy/ Space” correspondent for the popular NYC radio station…Talk Radio 77 WABC, with his commentary and podcast…The Dr.Sky Experience. His email is

Written by Ron Patton


This post currently has 9 comments.

  1. Walter

    September 14, 2023 at 3:56 pm

    Fuck! Not enough bullshit to be concerned about? Bring that shit on, Im ready to check out of this popstand. I do love Dr. Sky.

  2. John Weiner

    September 14, 2023 at 7:23 pm

    According to Mark Levin, in his book ,” AMERICAN MARXISM,” Marxist philosophy states ,” s(he) who controls the language, controls the culture, ie, the narrative.”

  3. Jimbo

    September 14, 2023 at 9:16 pm

    It is far more likely that any life discovered exo-earth came initially from earth and blown into space by low angle meteor/asteroid impact: for example, microbial Martian life. A thesis that humanity is a macro-evolution product incepted panspermia through an andromeda strain coming to earth, takes far more faith to believe than for Divine creation. Also, it’s still a logical (infinite regress) fallacy, because it does not explain where and how it came to be. Only pushes it back to some earlier version of itself. At some point the “first inception” needs to occur (life from Non-life) which is best and really can only be-explained by a pre-causal agent, ie: God.

  4. John Weiner

    September 14, 2023 at 9:55 pm

    I think I saw that comet early Tuesday morning, September 12, 2023, 4:00 o’ clock from the crescent moon. It was a rather bright, prominent, yet pale green.

  5. Pat

    September 18, 2023 at 4:29 pm

    Contamination from space? The Day of the Triffids………. Take care enjoy your life. It’s way too short……

Comments are closed.

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