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Extraterrestrial life

Analysis and Comment (10)

The same question again and again. The same question again and again. howardignatius

We could find alien life, but politicians don’t have the will

While alien life can be seen nightly on television and in the movies, it has never been seen in space. Not so much as a microbe, dead or alive, let alone a wrinkle-faced Klingon. Despite this lack of protoplasmic…
Let’s hope it’s barren. Let’s hope it’s barren. NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-CalTech

Habitable exoplanets are bad news for humanity

Last week, scientists announced the discovery of Kepler-186f, a planet 492 light years away in the Cygnus constellation. Kepler-186f is special because it marks the first planet almost exactly the same…
Rocky, water-rich asteroids and similar objects likely delivered the bulk of water on Earth. Now they’re being found well outside our Solar system. Rocky, water-rich asteroids and similar objects likely delivered the bulk of water on Earth. Now they’re being found well outside our Solar system. Mark A. Garlick, space-art.co.uk, University of Warwick and University of Cambridge

Watery asteroid gobbled up by a white dwarf: implications for life

How will future alien scientists know whether life existed in our solar system? One method may be to sift through the planetary debris left when our sun becomes a white dwarf. Astronomers are doing just…
The “Rocknest” site has been Curiosity’s laboratory for the past few months. The “Rocknest” site has been Curiosity’s laboratory for the past few months. NASA/JPL-Caltech/Malin Space Science Systems

NASA’s Curiosity shows there’s more to life than life

The Curiosity rover has landed on Mars, driven around, started its scientific mission and, as of 4am today (AEDT), started reporting integrated science results. In a news conference at the American Geophysical…
Meteorites from Mars may have seeded life on Earth – or not. Meteorites from Mars may have seeded life on Earth – or not. NASA

Just out of Curiosity, did life on Earth come from Mars?

In an announcement today, NASA poured cold water on rumours that its Curiosity rover had found life on Mars. Curiosity found evidence that it had landed on an ancient riverbed, and it identified some interesting…
We can learn a lot about the conditions life can endure by looking under the ice of Antarctica. We can learn a lot about the conditions life can endure by looking under the ice of Antarctica. Eugene Kaspersky

A life less ordinary: looking under the surface of Lake Vida

The search for life in extreme environments is an exploration not only of the robustness of earthly life, but also of our origins. And perhaps the biggest question here is whether the earth is a unique…
We’re a long way off finding little green men, but we might find evidence of life on Mars within a year. We’re a long way off finding little green men, but we might find evidence of life on Mars within a year.

Life on Mars: just add carbon and stir

The building blocks of life have been discovered on Mars … in Martian meteorites that fell to Earth. Let me rephrase that: according to a paper by published in Science Express on Friday, meteorites from…
Drilling could provide insights on Jupiter’s moon, Europa. Drilling could provide insights on Jupiter’s moon, Europa. Shandchem

Life in Lake Vostok? The link between Antarctica and extra-terrestrials

Late last week the Russian Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI) announced they had successfully drilled into the elusive sub-glacial Lake Vostok, a body of water lying under nearly 4km of Antarctic…
Are we getting closer to solving one of life’s greatest mysteries? Are we getting closer to solving one of life’s greatest mysteries? jcoterhals

Where is everybody? Doing the maths on extraterrestrial life

During a lunch in the summer of 1950, physicists Enrico Fermi, Edward Teller and Herbert York were chatting about a recent New Yorker cartoon depicting aliens abducting trash cans in flying saucers. Suddenly…

Research and News (1)

Research Briefs (2)

Super Earths could not sustain life

Rocky planets larger than Earth could not sustain life because their thick, crushing hydrogen atmospheres would be deadly…