|MadSci Network: Earth Sciences|
Well, I cannot be sure, this is a little out of my field of expertise, though an area of great fascination. If you are looking for exact details on abiogenesis and potential biogeochemical interactions I would contact the researchers that are doing the primary investigations. These can be found by a literature search on a university database, or often via the web. From what I have picked up on the newer evidences: The first formation of the organic molecules may have been around deep-sea vents. This region is A) often a very anoxic environ, and B) is where we find the most "primitive" or least derived form of archaebacteria today. Stanley Miller: "We really don't know what the Earth was like three or four billion years ago. So there are all sorts of theories and speculations. The major uncertainty concerns what the atmosphere was like. This is major area of dispute." We may not know if the atmosphere was reducing, but based on the other planets in the solar system, it is presumed to have been reducing, at least during pre-biotic earth. I believe that is one other reason that some researchers favor a deep-sea vent hypothesis for abiogenesis. It helps remove the atmosphere out of the equation momentarily. The thing about looking back in time that far, it becomes more and more difficult to test, hence the strong debate amongst researchers. Ahhh...the beauty of science! Here are two great links that can lend much more insight than I ever could! http://www.accessexcellence.org/WN/NM/miller.html http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-abiogenesis.html Hope this helps. Admin note: Since the argument that life evolved from a reducing atmosphere, which must have existed for life to evolve from is a bit circular, many scientists have turned to the geological data to determine, independently, the state of the probiotic atmosphere, and have come to the same conclusions: http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/288/5466/658 http://link.springer-ny.com/link/service/journals/00239/bibs/47n2p127.html http://georef.cos.com/cgi-bin/getRec?un=1993-025370
Try the links in the MadSci Library for more information on Earth Sciences.