Did Life On Earth As We Know It Come From ‘Geological Life’?

When it comes to life on Earth, we're not sure if it came from the outside (transported by comets) or on the inside. A new theory focuses on the "interior " theory, saying that microbes could have evolved from non-living matter such as chemical compounds in minerals and gases. » 3/13/14 9:40am 3/13/14 9:40am

New Technique Could Help Scientists Detect Alien Life... in Four Years

A team of astrobiologists has described a new method of detecting not just water, but life, on distant worlds. There's just one problem – the telescope we need to do it won't be on line until 2018. » 3/09/14 3:30pm 3/09/14 3:30pm

This image is why everyone's so excited about a NASA mission to Europa

NASA wants to visit Jupiter's moon Europa. Why's that exciting? In a word: Water. As this visualization shows, the icy moon may look tiny next to our own planet, but it's got 2- to 3-times as much H2O as we have here on Earth. That "little" moon is packing quite the store of water — and with it, scientists think, a… » 3/08/14 8:15am 3/08/14 8:15am

A New Scientific Model that Defines Alien Intelligence

Should we ever detect an extraterrestrial civilization, or any kind of alien life for that matter, it's a safe bet they'll look very different from us. They'll also probably think in a way that's completely foreign to what we're used to. Here's how experts believe we might be able to predict what the minds of aliens… » 1/28/14 11:14am 1/28/14 11:14am

Some of the Most Plausible Scenarios for Alien Civilizations

We have yet to make contact with an extraterrestrial intelligence, making it exceedingly difficult for us to imagine what an alien civilization might be like. But that doesn’t mean we can’t make some educated guesses. Here’s what we know — and don’t know — about aliens. » 11/04/13 11:00am 11/04/13 11:00am

Chemists show life on Earth was not a fluke

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How life came about from inanimate sets of chemicals is still a mystery. While we may never be certain which chemicals existed on prebiotic Earth, we can study the biomolecules we have today to give us clues about what happened three billion years ago. Now scientists have used a set of these biomolecules to show one… » 10/24/13 8:40am 10/24/13 8:40am

Searching for life in our galaxy may have just gotten a little harder

Let's say you're a planetary scientist searching for signs of life on other worlds, and you happen upon an exoplanet whose atmosphere contains a large proportion of oxygen. Jackpot, right? Not exactly. New research shows planets orbiting red dwarf stars may harbor signatures of life (like oxygen) that are actually… » 10/11/13 4:40pm 10/11/13 4:40pm

Astronomers Find Water on the Remnants of a Destroyed Planet

For the first time ever, scientists have found actual chemical evidence of water on a rocky object outside of our solar system. The water wasn’t found on a planet, but rather the remains of one shredded to bits by its dying parent star. » 10/11/13 8:00am 10/11/13 8:00am

NASA is getting ready to search for signs of life on Mars

The goal of NASA's Curiosity rover is to determine if Mars was ever capable of supporting life. But the Agency's next rover, set to launch in 2020, could take things one giant step further. Given recent findings, says Jack Mustard, chairman of the Agency's Science Definition Team, "past Martian life seems possible, and… » 7/10/13 12:17pm 7/10/13 12:17pm

A New Equation Reveals Our Exact Odds of Finding Alien Life

It’s been over half a century since Frank Drake developed an equation to estimate the probability of finding intelligent life in our galaxy. We’ve learned a lot since then, prompting an astrophysicist from MIT to come up with her own take on the equation. Here’s how the new formula works — and how it could help in the… » 6/21/13 11:00am 6/21/13 11:00am

James Cameron has donated his record-breaking submarine to science

Last year, James Cameron became the third person in history to venture to the deepest point on Earth, the Mariana Trench's Challenger Deep. He was also the first person to ever make the trip alone – a trip he made in a badass submersible, fittingly named the DEEPSEA CHALLENGER. Now, one year after his historic dive, » 3/26/13 11:30am 3/26/13 11:30am

Curiosity Confirms That Mars Was Once Capable of Harboring Life

The Curiosity Rover has just accomplished exactly what it was set out to do. According to NASA scientists, the probe's latest analysis of a Martian rock sample shows that ancient Mars was once capable of supporting living microbes. It’s not confirmation of life; rather, it's evidence for the Red Planet's historical » 3/12/13 1:27pm 3/12/13 1:27pm

One of the best places to search for alien life is the last that you'd…

In death, it has been said, there is often life. And while it may sound counterintuitive, this old saw may hold especially true in the search for life of the extraterrestrial variety. NASA's Kepler mission may be just years away from discovering Earth 2.0, but the first signs of life probably won't come from planets… » 3/01/13 11:00am 3/01/13 11:00am

Life has been discovered beneath the Antarctic ice

There is life in Lake Whillans. For millions of years, this small body of liquid water has lurked hundreds of meters below Antarctica's Ross Ice Shelf, sealed off from the outside world and the scientists who would explore its subglacial depths. Now, in a monumental first, a team of researchers led by Montana State… » 2/12/13 2:00pm 2/12/13 2:00pm

Three Life-On-Mars scenarios, as described by NASA Curiosity Scientist …

Is there (or was there ever) life on Mars? In this great little video — produced by the folks over at thinkrtv — Dr. Ashwin Vasvada, NASA's Deputy Project Scientist for the Mars Curiosity mission, presents three theories surrounding life on the Red Planet, and describes how rovers like Curiosity are helping us paint… » 10/09/12 10:40am 10/09/12 10:40am

There's more water on Jupiter's moon Europa than there is on Earth

Remember that image from a few weeks back that showed Earth with all its water gathered up in a sphere beside it? Well here's that image again, only this time, it also features Jupiter's moon Europa, along with all of its water. Notice anything interesting? » 5/24/12 1:30pm 5/24/12 1:30pm