Thursday, November 13, 2008

First images of an extrasolar star system and plants on exoworlds

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 -Scientists of Canada’s National Research Council succeeded in taking images of an extrasolar star system or at least parts of it. It is the first time we can see three planets circling a star other than the sun. The star, called HR 8799, is approximately 762.5 trillion miles away from the Earth. See article.
g Abodes - At two distinct points in history, increases in oxygen and oxidation of deep oceans may have impacted the spread of complex organisms. The two events - occurring 635 and 551 million years ago - highlight the connection between the environment of Earth and the evolution of life. See article.
g Life -The greenery on other planets may not be green. Astrobiologists say plants on Earth-sized planets orbiting stars somewhat brighter than the Sun may look yellow or orange, while those on planets orbiting stars much fainter than the Sun might look black. See article. Note: This article is from 2007.
g Message -Recent advances in wireless computing technology could improve deep-space missions like asteroid research and remote spacecraft operations by changing the way signals are sent from Earth. A new method designed to effectively deliver commands and instructions using hundreds of millions of tiny transmitters linked together could also free the giant satellite dishes currently used to send and receive the long-range information for other applications. See article. Note: This article is from 2005.

Honoring the Past, Inspiring the Future

No comments: