Results tagged “astrobiology”

Researchers at the University of Tokyo have for the first time been able to create an RNA molecule that replicates, diversifies and develops complexity, following Darwinian evolution. This has provided the first empirical evidence that simple biological molecules can lead to the emergence of complex lifelike systems.

The Astrobiology Graduate Conference (AbGradCon) is an annual conference both organized for and by early career researchers, postdoctoral fellows, and students as a way to train the next generation of astrobiologists and develop a robust network of cohorts moving forward.

Can A Planet Have A Mind Of Its Own?

The collective activity of life--all of the microbes, plants, and animals--have changed planet Earth.

There is overwhelming geological evidence from 60Fe and 244Pu isotopes that Earth was in direct contact with the interstellar medium (ISM) 2-3 Myr ago.

Now that we know that Earth-like planets are ubiquitous in the universe, as well as that most of them are much older than the Earth, it is justified to ask to what extent evolutionary outcomes on other such planets are similar, or indeed commensurable, to the outcomes we perceive around us.

C-complex asteroids, rich in carbonaceous materials, are potential sources of Earth's volatile inventories.

A NASA sounding rocket will observe a nearby star to learn how starlight affects the atmospheres of exoplanets - key information in the hunt for life outside our solar system.

How do we understand the significance of new scientific results related to the search for life? When would we be able to say, "yes, extraterrestrial life has been found?"

The Fine-Tuning of the Universe for Life

When a physicist says that a theory is fine-tuned, they mean that it must make a suspiciously precise assumption in order to explain a certain observation.

Dear Astrobiology Community: We at NASA Astrobiology are continuing to prioritize thoughts and efforts in justice, equity, and belonging. We are seeking your inputs at this time on several fronts toward building momentum for growth, change, and action... for ourselves and our beloved community.

Researchers supported in part by the NASA Astrobiology Program have experimentally tested a method that could aid in the search for life... including life as we don't know it.

Ours could realistically be the generation to discover evidence of life beyond Earth. With this privileged potential comes responsibility. The magnitude of the question, "are we alone?", and the public interest therein, opens the possibility that results may be taken to imply more than the observations support, or than the observers intend.

Dear Astrobiologists, NASA has released a Request for Information (RFI) related to the newly announced "Mission Equity," soliciting input from the public on topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion

Are we alone in the universe? So far, the only life we know of is right here on Earth. But here at NASA, we're looking.   

The Astrobiology Science Conference (AbSciCon) is a community-organized conference that provides a forum for reporting on new discoveries, sharing data and insights, advancing collaborative efforts and initiating new ones, planning new projects, and educating the next generation of astrobiologists.

Research shows that a new telescope could detect a potential signature of life on other planets in as little as 60 hours.

In Kevin Hand's "Alien Oceans: The Search For Life In The Depths Of Space" we learn that Earth is just one example of a myriad ways that a world can have an ocean. And searching for life on other ocean worlds requires a combination of old tools and new approaches to using those tools.

We live on an ocean world with 71% its surface covered by a water. For all of history humans had an intrinsic bias that all inhabited worlds would have large oceans - since we do. Indeed, the large flat plains of our Moon still bear names of imaginary seas based on that bias and early telescopes. That said we held to the notion that life would arise on a world if only it had Earth's basic characteristics - one of which was large bodies of water. Well, we now know that there is more than one way to have a planet with lots of liquid water.

If we find life on the Red Planet, we'll have astrobiologists like Dr. Kennda Lynch to thank.

The huge forces generated by the Z machine at Sandia National Laboratories are being used to replicate the gravitational pressures on so-called "super-Earths" to determine which might maintain atmospheres that could support life.

The capacity to sense gradients efficiently and acquire information about the ambient environment confers many advantages like facilitating movement toward nutrient sources or away from toxic chemicals.

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