Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Possible target stars for Project Icarus and more evidence for flowing water on Mars

Welcome! "Alien Life" tracks the latest discoveries and thoughts in the various elements of the famous Drake Equation. Here's today's news:
g Stars - In the first of a series of 20 articles detailing different aspects of the Project Icarus interstellar spacecraft, Ian Crawford, Reader in Planetary Science and Astrobiology at Birkbeck College, University of London, and Lead Designer for the Icarus "Astronomical Target" module, will detail possible nearby star systems the hundred year mission could target. See article.
g Abodes - Scientists have discovered new evidence that water once flowed near the surface of Mars by examining rare Martian meteorites. The information could help astrobiologists understand whether or not Mars was once habitable for life as we know it. See article.
g Life - New research provides the first detailed genetic picture of an evolutionary war between Streptococcus pneumoniae bacteria and the vaccines and antibiotics used against it over recent decades. Large-scale genome sequencing reveals patterns of adaptation and the spread of a drug-resistant lineage of the S. pneumoniae bacteria. See article.
g Message - If we are not alone in the universe, why have we never picked up signals from an extraterrestrial civilization? Known as the Fermi paradox after physicist Enrico Fermi, who first posed the question, this long-standing puzzle remains one of the strongest arguments against the existence of intelligent aliens. But two physicists say they have come up with a solution. They suggest a way in which aliens could send messages to each other across space that not only disguises their locations but also makes it impossible for a casual observer to even distinguish the messages from background noise. See article. This article is from 2003.
g Cosmicus - NASA's focus on the value of innovative commercial space firms took center stage in back-to-back meetings with a private space station module builder and a company developing a new space plane to fly passengers to and from Earth orbit. See article.

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