Can we find life on other planets? How and where to look? Here is NASA's answer
Article by: Andacs Robert Eugen, on 13 March 2022, at 04:00 am Los Angeles time
Is it life on other planets? Are we alone or are there other lives in our universe?
These are the great questions of mankind. We, humans, are the only beings who live, think, etc. or are there others? Of course, the signs of life do not only mean aliens, but also signs of the existence of water, bacteria, etc.
Well, we have not yet discovered any concrete signs of life, but we are on the right way and a new discovery of life on other planets can occur at any time.
After the launch of the largest and most powerful telescope, James Webb, we can expect discoveries almost monthly or even weekly. James Webb will be the first to see the gas mixture in the atmospheres of exoplanets the size of Earth, according to NASA.
Webb may also (it is not yet clear) detect other oxygen on the planets, carbon dioxide, methane, or atmospheres similar to ours. Most likely Webb and the next high-performance telescopes will do so, probably closer to other worlds.
According to NASA plans, the next telescopes that will be even more powerful than Webb will be able to detect photosynthesis on other planets (the transformation of light into chemical energy by plants) if it exists. If they detect it, that planet will have to be studied very well, because it is probably a new world that we did not know about until then.
NASA's space agency plans to build telescopes to detect even gases or molecules that suggest the animal's presence there.
How will we find life on other planets?
This is a question that many of you have probably asked yourself.
Well, life can occur anywhere, probably even near the closest planets to us (eg Mars) or the moon (eg Europe). "Life may be in our neighborhood: maybe below the Martian surface or in the dark subterranean oceans of Jupiter's moon, Europe." says NASA.
Maybe with the technologies of the future we will be able to listen to extraterrestrial conversations, if they exist or maybe even capture the traces of new extraterrestrial technologies. A dream can come true anytime!
Well, all of the above will only happen by chance, and if we are not lucky, things will get very complicated.
If we are forced to discover other civilizations, then the main key will be light, light from other atmospheres of exoplanets, which divided into a rainbow spectrum, can be read in some way as a bar code. That is, it will provide a kind of list of gases and chemicals in the skies of these worlds, including those related to life, according to NASA. This method is called spectroscopy.
Where should we look?
Good question. We have no way of discovering other worlds if we do not know where to look. So far, NASA has confirmed 4,940 exoplanets and 8,709 are under analysis.
And these are from our galaxy, in any case, NASA claims that they can trillions of exoplanets, so in short, we have discovered very few.
And if we keep up with this trend, we will probably never get past 100,000 discovered exoplanets. That is, less chance of discovering other lives. So we have to work hard and develop as many technologies and telescopes as possible to discover exoplanets every day and even every hour.
It is difficult to study nearly 5,000 exoplanets, so scientists are reduce them to a smaller number, which have "habitable zones" where life could exist.
This means that the planet is at a distance from the star that it orbits in such a way that it is neither too hot nor too cold and water can form.
Besides, of course, the planet should be adequate, and the star it orbits should not be in the process of erupting.
So the bottom line is that if we are to find other worlds, it will be extremely difficult and if we are not lucky or develop new technologies, our chances of discovering other life forms will approach zero.