Thursday, June 12, 2008

First mouthful of Martian soil and clues left by extinct alien races

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 - What is the habitable zone for the nearby star Ross 128?
g Abodes - After vibrating the screen that covers the TEGA instrument, the Phoenix Lander now has its first mouthful of Martian soil. See article.
g Message - The first 42 radio dishes of the Allen Telescope Array are activated and collecting scientific data from the far reaches of the universe. See article.
g Cosmicus - A Pentagon office is taking advantage of the collaborative nature of the Internet as it studies potential applications for space-based solar power, according to one of the officials leading the effort. See article.
g Aftermath - How might explorers determine what happened to an extinct alien race based on the clues they left behind on their home planet? See article.