Researchers hope detection of such minerals on exoplanets can narrow the search for life:
Of known minerals, 296 known are thought to pre-date Earth’s formation. Of these, 97 are known only from meteorites, the oldest of which are 7 billion years old — much older than our solar system at about 4.2 billion years old. Human activities have created more than 600 minerals; over 500 derive from mining — including 234 which were formed by coal mine fires.
So how will this help us with exoplanets?: Just for example, 77 biominerals originate in the processes of life forms. The detection of such minerals’ chemical signatures on an exoplanet or exomoon would be a biosignature — evidence of life forms, past or present…News, “Exoplanets: Life forms made one third of Earth’s minerals” at Mind Matters News (July 30, 2022)
Takehome: If life is “a cosmic imperative that emerges on any mineral- and water-rich world,” say the researchers, then life emerged early on Earth along with minerals.
“Cosmic imperative” is interesting language for introducing journal papers. The authors’ observations about minerals and life are fascinating and instructive.
You may also wish to read: You may also wish to read: Earth’s weirdest life forms show that ET life is possible. Whether it’s living in boiling water, breathing sulfur, or eating radium, we’ve found life forms that do just that right here on Earth. Many life forms eat and breathe things we used to think were lethal. Life seems to want to come into existence any way it can.