question has interested people for millennia. Now though,
while we cannot confirm the presence of life on other planets
in the Solar System, we do have a good idea of which places in
the Solar System could support life and what that life may be
like if it is there. Another question you
may be asking is why are some places potential habitats for life
while others are not? Let us take a journey through the
Solar System and try and answer those questions by looking at
all the major planets and moons.
thing is certain no advanced life or intelligent life, such as
ourselves, exists off Earth in the Solar System. Current
knowledge suggests that extraterrestrial Solar System life
would most likely be microbial and single-celled in nature - similar
to bacteria, nano-bacteria
They will almost certainly be some sort of extremophile.
all the places in the Solar System that may support life, Mars
and Jupiter's moon Europa
may eventually confirm without doubt, that life exists or used
to exist elsewhere than planet Earth. While Mars may reveal
the expected microbes, Europa holds the exciting possibility that
more developed life forms may exist there...
these two bodies are not the only targets we should be looking
for life in the Solar System. Other places, such as Saturn's
moon Titan, may
be able to tell us about the chemistry of life, even if living
organisms do not exist there. Callisto,
another of Jupiter's moons, has recently been surveyed by the
It too may hide secrets that life scientists will be interested
to investigate further.
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up First Contact
- Design a spacecraft for a life detection mission