Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Habitable planets around red dwarfs, data from Titan and space tourism

Welcome! “Alien Life” tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. You may notice that this and future entries are shorter than usual; Career, family and book deal commitments have forced me to cut back some of my projects. Now, here’s today’s news:
g Stars - Only recently has the idea of habitable planets around red dwarf stars taken hold. But it’s a fascinating one, especially if you take a look at the potential window for life to develop on such worlds. M-class red dwarfs live anywhere from 50 billion up to several trillion years, a vast stretch compared with our own Sun’s projected ten billion years. And with 75 percent of main sequence stars thought to be red dwarfs, the hunt for life can be expanded enormously if we add red dwarfs to the mix. See
g Abodes - The Huygens probe landed on Titan two and a half years ago, but the data it collected is still yielding new scientific insights about Saturn's largest moon. See
g Life - Quote of the Day: "There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved." - Charles Darwin
g Cosmicus -Until space tourism becomes a substantial business space activities, including particularly all crewed space activities, will remain a burden on taxpayers. But some argue that no activity other than tourism offers similar promise of turning space activities into profitable commercial activities in the foreseeable future. See