Evidence for Life Beyond Earth?

Question:  Hi! My name is Natasha and I live in New Jersey and am 17 years old. I am currently a Senior in high school and I’m planning on pursuing Astronomy and Physics in my future. Currently, I am in a Journalism class and I am writing a feature article on the existence of extraterrestrial life. I 100% believe in life other than ours, but I need an expert’s support in my stance. What blatant proof is there that life other than ours exists and any statistics of any kind are appreciated as well!  Thank you so much for your time!  — Natasha

Answer:  Well, the fact is that there is no evidence for the existence of living organisms such as those we find here on Earth on any other planet.  As you probably know, there have been many attempts to detect the signatures of life beyond Earth, all of which have resulted in what we call a “non-detection”.  These searches continue, though, through such measurements as studies of the properties of extrasolar planet, or “exoplanet”, atmospheres.  These exoplanetary atmosphere studies are attempting to detect the signatures of life, otherwise known as “biosignatures”.

Jeff Mangum

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