NANOBES: About Philippa Uwins and the Discovery Team 

Philippa seems to have lived a life of discovery and unusual encounters since she was born in a military hospital in the Yemen - the daughter of a captain in the British Army. When her family moved to Jersey, her interest about rocks developed at an early age and set the starting point for a career as a Geologist. Her recent discovery may well rekindle controversy between biologists and geologists regarding nanofossils and whether or not these structures are chemical processes or organic ones, but it will not be the first time she has encountered 'opposing' forces. In 1971, on an 11 month  journey of a lifetime with her father  across land to Australia, she was met with hostility from Turkish villagers and was caught up in a war between India and Pakistan. 

The journey became an ideal opportunity for her to collect rocks she was so passionate about and by the journey's end, the motor caravan was literally brimming over with her 'collection'.  

Philippa went on to study Geology in Edinburgh and Aberdeen (Scotland) where she met her husband, and fellow German Geologist, Jochen Kassan. The pair later moved to Australia where they now continue to share not only a marriage but a common interest too. 

ABOUT Tony Taylor

Tony was born in Rockhampton, Queensland in 1965. He was reared on a small farm that also operated as a native fauna orphanage. Having a pet koala, kangaroo, possums, sugarglider, dingo and snakes, he became interested in biology at a very early stage. Later he developed interests in aeronautics and geology. Aeronautical engineering was not available at the undergraduate degree level in Australia when he reached university, so he enrolled in a B. Sc. majoring in microbiology. 

On completion of the degree Tony pursued a career in art. 
He invented a new painting technique (medium) termed morphous entropy. This invention was an application of chaos theory and enabled realistic and surrealistic images to be portrayed. At a distance the image appears to be realistic. However, on close inspection the images are composed of a mass of swirling colours that blend to form the image at a distance. Along with his wife, he purchased an art gallery and to pay the repayments - took up a part-time position as a lecturer in microbiology at Griffith University.

With time the lecturing took his interest, and so life for Tony had come full circle. To remain a lecturer he enrolled in a Ph.D. at the University of Queensland. Since then his studies focused on magnetotactic bacteria and the biominerals that they produce.

In 1996 NASA announced the discovery of evidence of past-life on Mars. Among the biomarkers found in the Martian meteorite ALH84001 were magnetite and possibly greigite crystals resembling magnetofossils produced by magnetotactic bacteria. The next year Philippa approached Tony to identify peculiar structures that she had discovered. The peculiar structures were nanobes. Currently he is finishing his thesis and analysing the sample of ALH84001. 

ADVENTURES: Tony's whole life has been and still is one big adventure. 
MARITAL STATUS: married with a kelpie as a surrogate child. 
HOBBIES: golf, surfing, diving, art and music. 
FAVOURITE AREA OF RESEARCH: high resolution transmission electron microscopy, meteoritics and virtually anything that comes along. Tony loves diverse challenges. 
BEST BOOK EVER READ: The Dispossessed by U. K. Le Guine, because the protagonist's experiences are similar to Tony's.
FAVOURITE PLACE: Point Lookout, North Stradbroke Island, in particular Tony loves surfing on Deadman's beach beach with the sharks. 

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