From Habitability To Life On Mars

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From Habitability to Life on Mars

From Habitability to Life on Mars
  • Author : Nathalie A. Cabrol,Edmond A. Grin
  • Publisher : Elsevier
  • Release Date : 2018-07-10
  • Total pages : 390
  • ISBN : 9780128099360
  • File Size : 35,5 Mb
  • Total Download : 297
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From Habitability to Life on Mars explores the current state of knowledge and questions on the past habitability of Mars and the role that rapid environmental changes may have played in the ability of prebiotic chemistry to transition to life. It investigates the role that such changes may have played in the preservation of biosignatures in the geological record and what this means for exploration strategies. Throughout the book, the authors show how the investigation of terrestrial analogs to early Martian habitats under various climates and environmental extremes provide critical clues to understand where, what and how to search for biosignatures on Mars. The authors present an introduction to the newest developments and state-of-the-art remote and in situ detection strategies and technologies that are being currently developed to support the upcoming ExoMars and Mars 2020 missions. They show how the current orbital and ground exploration is guiding the selection for future landing sites. Finally, the book concludes by discussing the critical question of the implications and ethics of finding life on Mars. Edited by the lead on a NASA project that searches for habitability and life on Mars leading to the Mars 2020 mission Presents the evidence, questions and answers we have today (including a summary of the current state of knowledge in advance of the ESA ExoMars and NASA Mars 2020 missions) Includes contributions from authors directly involved in past, current and upcoming Mars missions Provides key information as to how Mars rovers, such as ExoMars and Mars 2020, will address the search for life on Mars with their instrumentation

Solar System Update

Solar System Update
  • Author : Philippe Blondel,John Mason
  • Publisher : Springer Science & Business Media
  • Release Date : 2006-08-23
  • Total pages : 332
  • ISBN : 9783540376835
  • File Size : 13,9 Mb
  • Total Download : 925
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This book, the first in a series of forthcoming volumes, consists of topical and timely reviews of a number of carefully selected topics in solar systemn science. Contributions, in form of up-to-date reviews, are mainly aimed at professional astronomers and planetary scientists wishing to inform themselves about progress in fields closely related to their own field of expertise.

Lakes on Mars

Lakes on Mars
  • Author : Nathalie A. Cabrol,Edmond A. Grin
  • Publisher : Elsevier
  • Release Date : 2010-09-15
  • Total pages : 410
  • ISBN : 0080931626
  • File Size : 34,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 265
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On Earth, lakes provide favorable environments for the development of life and its preservation as fossils. They are extremely sensitive to climate fluctuations and to conditions within their watersheds. As such, lakes are unique markers of the impact of environmental changes. Past and current missions have now demonstrated that water once flowed at the surface of Mars early in its history. Evidence of ancient ponding has been uncovered at scales ranging from a few kilometers to possibly that of the Arctic ocean. Whether life existed on Mars is still unknown; upcoming missions may find critical evidence to address this question in ancient lakebeds as clues about Mars’ climate evolution and its habitability potential are still preserved in their sedimentary record. Lakes on Mars is the first review on this subject. It is written by leading planetary scientists who have dedicated their careers to searching and exploring the questions of water, lakes, and oceans on Mars through their involvement in planetary exploration, and the analysis of orbital and ground data beginning with Viking up to the most recent missions. In thirteen chapters, Lakes on Mars critically discusses new data and explores the role that water played in the evolution of the surface of Mars, the past hydrological provinces of the planet, the possibility of heated lake habitats through enhanced geothermal flux associated with volcanic activity and impact cratering. The book also explores alternate hypotheses to explain the geological record. Topographic, morphologic, stratigraphic, and mineralogic evidence are presented that suggest successions of ancient lake environments in Valles Marineris and Hellas. The existence of large lakes and/or small oceans in Elysium and the Northern Plains is supported both by the global distribution of deltaic deposits and by equipotential surfaces that may reflect their past margins. Whether those environments were conducive to life has yet to be demonstrated but from comparison with our planet, their sedimentary deposits may provide the best opportunity to find its record, if any. The final chapters explore the impact of climate variability on declining lake habitats in one of the closest terrestrial analogs to Mars at the Noachian/Hesperian transition, identify the geologic, morphologic and mineralogic signatures of ancient lakes to be searched for on Mars, and present the case for landing the Mars Science Laboratory mission in such an environment. First review on the subject by worldwide leading authorities in the field New studies with most recent data, new images, figures, and maps Most recent results from research in terrestrial analogs

Life on Mars

Life on Mars
  • Author : David A. Weintraub
  • Publisher : Princeton University Press
  • Release Date : 2020-11-03
  • Total pages : 326
  • ISBN : 9780691209258
  • File Size : 40,9 Mb
  • Total Download : 681
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"Does life exist on Mars? The question has captivated humans for centuries, but today it has taken on new urgency. NASA plans to send astronauts to Mars orbit by the 2030s. SpaceX wants to go by 2024, while Mars One wants to land a permanent settlement there in 2032. As we gear up for missions like these, we have a responsibility to think deeply about what kinds of life may already inhabit the planet -- and whether we have the right to invite ourselves in. This book tells the complete story of the quest to answer one of the most tantalizing questions in astronomy. But it is more than a history. Life on Mars explains what we need to know before we go."--From Amazon.com.

An Astrobiology Strategy for the Search for Life in the Universe

An Astrobiology Strategy for the Search for Life in the Universe
  • Author : National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine,Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences,Space Studies Board,Committee on Astrobiology Science Strategy for the Search for Life in the Universe
  • Publisher : National Academies Press
  • Release Date : 2019-04-20
  • Total pages : 189
  • ISBN : 9780309484169
  • File Size : 13,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 759
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Astrobiology is the study of the origin, evolution, distribution, and future of life in the universe. It is an inherently interdisciplinary field that encompasses astronomy, biology, geology, heliophysics, and planetary science, including complementary laboratory activities and field studies conducted in a wide range of terrestrial environments. Combining inherent scientific interest and public appeal, the search for life in the solar system and beyond provides a scientific rationale for many current and future activities carried out by the National Aeronautics and Science Administration (NASA) and other national and international agencies and organizations. Requested by NASA, this study offers a science strategy for astrobiology that outlines key scientific questions, identifies the most promising research in the field, and indicates the extent to which the mission priorities in existing decadal surveys address the search for life's origin, evolution, distribution, and future in the universe. This report makes recommendations for advancing the research, obtaining the measurements, and realizing NASA's goal to search for signs of life in the universe.

Habitability of Other Planets and Satellites

Habitability of Other Planets and Satellites
  • Author : Jean-Pierre de Vera,Joseph Seckbach
  • Publisher : Springer Science & Business Media
  • Release Date : 2013-07-30
  • Total pages : 419
  • ISBN : 9789400765467
  • File Size : 51,7 Mb
  • Total Download : 858
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Is the Earth the right model and the only universal key to understand habitability, the origin and maintenance of life? Are we able to detect life elsewhere in the universe by the existing techniques and by the upcoming space missions? This book tries to give answers by focusing on environmental properties, which are playing a major role in influencing planetary surfaces or the interior of planets and satellites. The book gives insights into the nature of planets or satellites and their potential to harbor life. Different scientific disciplines are searching for the clues to classify planetary bodies as a habitable object and what kind of instruments and what kind of space exploration missions are necessary to detect life. Results from model calculations, field studies and from laboratory studies in planetary simulation facilities will help to elucidate if some of the planets and satellites in our solar system as well as in extra-solar systems are potentially habitable for life.

Preventing the Forward Contamination of Mars

Preventing the Forward Contamination of Mars
  • Author : National Research Council,Division on Engineering and Physical Sciences,Space Studies Board,Committee on Preventing the Forward Contamination of Mars
  • Publisher : National Academies Press
  • Release Date : 2006-04-22
  • Total pages : 166
  • ISBN : 9780309097246
  • File Size : 54,5 Mb
  • Total Download : 398
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Recent spacecraft and robotic probes to Mars have yielded data that are changing our understanding significantly about the possibility of existing or past life on that planet. Coupled with advances in biology and life-detection techniques, these developments place increasing importance on the need to protect Mars from contamination by Earth-borne organisms. To help with this effort, NASA requested that the NRC examine existing planetary protection measures for Mars and recommend changes and further research to improve such measures. This report discusses policies, requirements, and techniques to protect Mars from organisms originating on Earth that could interfere with scientific investigations. It provides recommendations on cleanliness and biological burden levels of Mars-bound spacecraft, methods to reach those levels, and research to reduce uncertainties in preventing forward contamination of Mars.

Volatiles in the Martian Crust

Volatiles in the Martian Crust
  • Author : Justin Filiberto,Susanne P. Schwenzer
  • Publisher : Elsevier
  • Release Date : 2018-08-30
  • Total pages : 426
  • ISBN : 9780128042014
  • File Size : 43,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 168
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Volatiles in the Martian Crust is a vital reference for future missions - including ESA’s EXO Mars and NASA’s Mars2020 rover - looking for evidence of life on Mars and the potential for habitability and human exploration of the Martian crust. Mars science is a rapidly evolving topic with new data returned from the planet on a daily basis. The book presents chapters written by well-established experts who currently focus on the topic, providing the reader with a fresh, up-to-date and accurate view. Organized into two main sections, the first half of the book focuses on the Martian meteorites and specific volatile elements. The second half of the book explores processes and locations on the crust, including what we have learned about volatile mobility in the Martian crust. Coverage includes data from orbiter and in situ rovers and landers, geochemical and geophysical modeling, and combined data from the SNC meteorites. Presents information about the nature, relationship, and reactivity of chemical elements and compounds on Mars Explores the potential habitability of Mars Provides a comprehensive view of volatiles in the Martian crust from studies of actual samples as well as from the variety of landed missions, including the MER and Curiosity rovers Delivers a vital reference for ongoing and future missions to Mars while synthesizing large data sets and research on volatiles in the Martian atmosphere Concludes with an informative summary chapter that looks to future Mars missions and what might be learned

Is Mars Habitable?

Is Mars Habitable?
  • Author : Alfred Russel Wallace
  • Publisher : BoD – Books on Demand
  • Release Date : 2018-04-05
  • Total pages : 62
  • ISBN : 9783732639830
  • File Size : 13,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 429
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Reproduction of the original: Is Mars Habitable? by Alfred Russel Wallace

Geology and Habitability of Terrestrial Planets

Geology and Habitability of Terrestrial Planets
  • Author : Kathryn E. Fishbaugh,Phillipe Lognonné,François Raulin,David J. Des Marais,Oleg Korablev
  • Publisher : Springer Science & Business Media
  • Release Date : 2007-09-07
  • Total pages : 306
  • ISBN : 9780387742885
  • File Size : 15,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 888
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Given the universal interest in whether extraterrestrial life has developed or could eventually develop, it is vital that an examination of planetary habitability go beyond simple assumptions. This book has resulted from a workshop at the International Space Science Institute (ISSI) which brought together experts to discuss the multi-faceted problem of how the habitability of a planet co-evolves with the geology of the surface and interior, the atmosphere, and the magnetosphere.

How We'll Live on Mars

How We'll Live on Mars
  • Author : Stephen Petranek
  • Publisher : Simon and Schuster
  • Release Date : 2015-07-07
  • Total pages : 96
  • ISBN : 9781476784779
  • File Size : 40,9 Mb
  • Total Download : 717
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Award-winning journalist Stephen Petranek says humans will live on Mars by 2027. Now he makes the case that living on Mars is not just plausible, but inevitable. It sounds like science fiction, but Stephen Petranek considers it fact: Within twenty years, humans will live on Mars. We’ll need to. In this sweeping, provocative book that mixes business, science, and human reporting, Petranek makes the case that living on Mars is an essential back-up plan for humanity and explains in fascinating detail just how it will happen. The race is on. Private companies, driven by iconoclastic entrepreneurs, such as Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Paul Allen, and Sir Richard Branson; Dutch reality show and space mission Mars One; NASA; and the Chinese government are among the many groups competing to plant the first stake on Mars and open the door for human habitation. Why go to Mars? Life on Mars has potential life-saving possibilities for everyone on earth. Depleting water supplies, overwhelming climate change, and a host of other disasters—from terrorist attacks to meteor strikes—all loom large. We must become a space-faring species to survive. We have the technology not only to get humans to Mars, but to convert Mars into another habitable planet. It will likely take 300 years to “terraform” Mars, as the jargon goes, but we can turn it into a veritable second Garden of Eden. And we can live there, in specially designed habitations, within the next twenty years. In this exciting chronicle, Petranek introduces the circus of lively characters all engaged in a dramatic effort to be the first to settle the Red Planet. How We’ll Live on Mars brings firsthand reporting, interviews with key participants, and extensive research to bear on the question of how we can expect to see life on Mars within the next twenty years.

Buddhist Ecological Protection of Space

Buddhist Ecological Protection of Space
  • Author : Daniel Capper
  • Publisher : Rowman & Littlefield
  • Release Date : 2022-11
  • Total pages : 167
  • ISBN : 9781666922417
  • File Size : 55,5 Mb
  • Total Download : 245
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"This book provides essential guidance that we need to act as responsible ecological citizens while we expand our reach beyond Earth. The author not only examines the science and morals behind ecological pitfall scenarios, but he also provides groundbreaking policy responses founded upon ethics from Buddhists and American ethnographers alike"--

Habitability Beyond Earth

Habitability Beyond Earth
  • Author : Karen Olsson-Francis,Daniela Billi,Andreas Teske,Jean-Pierre Paul de Vera
  • Publisher : Frontiers Media SA
  • Release Date : 2019-07-25
  • Total pages : 213
  • ISBN : 9782889457656
  • File Size : 17,9 Mb
  • Total Download : 643
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This eBook is a collection of articles from a Frontiers Research Topic. Frontiers Research Topics are very popular trademarks of the Frontiers Journals Series: they are collections of at least ten articles, all centered on a particular subject. With their unique mix of varied contributions from Original Research to Review Articles, Frontiers Research Topics unify the most influential researchers, the latest key findings and historical advances in a hot research area! Find out more on how to host your own Frontiers Research Topic or contribute to one as an author by contacting the Frontiers Editorial Office: frontiersin.org/about/contact.

Planetary Astrobiology

Planetary Astrobiology
  • Author : Victoria Meadows,Giada Arney,Britney Schmidt,David J. Des Marais
  • Publisher : University of Arizona Press
  • Release Date : 2020-07-07
  • Total pages : 593
  • ISBN : 9780816540068
  • File Size : 28,8 Mb
  • Total Download : 634
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Are we alone in the universe? How did life arise on our planet? How do we search for life beyond Earth? These profound questions excite and intrigue broad cross sections of science and society. Answering these questions is the province of the emerging, strongly interdisciplinary field of astrobiology. Life is inextricably tied to the formation, chemistry, and evolution of its host world, and multidisciplinary studies of solar system worlds can provide key insights into processes that govern planetary habitability, informing the search for life in our solar system and beyond. Planetary Astrobiology brings together current knowledge across astronomy, biology, geology, physics, chemistry, and related fields, and considers the synergies between studies of solar systems and exoplanets to identify the path needed to advance the exploration of these profound questions. Planetary Astrobiology represents the combined efforts of more than seventy-five international experts consolidated into twenty chapters and provides an accessible, interdisciplinary gateway for new students and seasoned researchers who wish to learn more about this expanding field. Readers are brought to the frontiers of knowledge in astrobiology via results from the exploration of our own solar system and exoplanetary systems. The overarching goal of Planetary Astrobiology is to enhance and broaden the development of an interdisciplinary approach across the astrobiology, planetary science, and exoplanet communities, enabling a new era of comparative planetology that encompasses conditions and processes for the emergence, evolution, and detection of life.

Astrobiology on the International Space Station

Astrobiology on the International Space Station
  • Author : Jean-Pierre de Vera
  • Publisher : Springer Nature
  • Release Date : 2020-11-16
  • Total pages : 61
  • ISBN : 9783030616915
  • File Size : 27,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 426
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This volume on astrobiology of the Springer Briefs in Life Sciences book series addresses the three fundamental questions on origin, evolution, distribution and future of life in the universe: how does life begin and evolve? Is there life beyond Earth and, if so, how can we detect it? What is the future of life on Earth and in the universe? The book provides insights into astrobiological experiments that are being performed on the International Space Station, ISS, and discusses their findings. This extremely exciting volume on astrobiology is intended for scientists of various research fields and for laypersons interested in space research and in the fundamental issues of the universe and life.

Geoforming Mars

Geoforming Mars
  • Author : Robert Malcuit
  • Publisher : Springer Nature
  • Release Date : 2020-11-25
  • Total pages : 420
  • ISBN : 9783030588762
  • File Size : 19,8 Mb
  • Total Download : 550
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This book offers an exercise in theoretical planetology, presenting five different scenarios to assess the evolution of habitable conditions on Mars to assess planetary terraforming potential and to give insight into the ongoing search for habitable exoplanets. Four of the scenarios involve Martian satellite capture models, in which gravitational capture via tidal deformation and energy dissipation processes are measured to predict a pathway of biological evolution, while the fifth scenario analyzes the possible model that led to the Mars that we have today (i.e. with no life forms). In ten chapters, readers will learn how a Mars-like terrestrial planet can be transformed into a habitable planet, and what conditions must be assessed when searching for exoplanets in a star-centered orbit to support life. The book is intended for planetologists, and general enthusiasts of planetary evolution and our solar system.

How to Find a Habitable Planet

How to Find a Habitable Planet
  • Author : James F. Kasting
  • Publisher : Princeton University Press
  • Release Date : 2012-08-26
  • Total pages : 346
  • ISBN : 9780691156279
  • File Size : 42,8 Mb
  • Total Download : 892
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The amazing science behind the search for Earth-like planets Ever since Carl Sagan first predicted that extraterrestrial civilizations must number in the millions, the search for life on other planets has gripped our imagination. Is Earth so rare that advanced life forms like us—or even the simplest biological organisms—are unique to the universe? How to Find a Habitable Planet describes how scientists are testing Sagan's prediction, and demonstrates why Earth may not be so rare after all. James Kasting has worked closely with NASA in its mission to detect habitable worlds outside our solar system, and in this book he introduces readers to the advanced methodologies being used in this extraordinary quest. He addresses the compelling questions that planetary scientists grapple with today: What exactly makes a planet habitable? What are the signatures of life astronomers should look for when they scan the heavens for habitable worlds? In providing answers, Kasting explains why Earth has remained habitable despite a substantial rise in solar luminosity over time, and why our neighbors, Venus and Mars, haven't. If other Earth-sized planets endowed with enough water and carbon are out there, he argues, chances are good that some of those planets sustain life. Kasting describes the efforts under way to find them, and predicts that future discoveries will profoundly alter our view of the universe and our place in it. This book is a must-read for anyone who has ever dreamed of finding other planets like ours—and perhaps even life like ours—in the cosmos. In a new afterword, Kasting presents some recent breakthroughs in the search for exoplanets and discusses the challenges facing space programs in the near future.

Astrobiology

Astrobiology
  • Author : Charles S. Cockell
  • Publisher : John Wiley & Sons
  • Release Date : 2020-04-01
  • Total pages : 632
  • ISBN : 9781119550396
  • File Size : 47,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 550
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A guide to understanding the formation of life in the Universe The revised and updated second edition of Astrobiology offers an introductory text that explores the structure of living things, the formation of the elements required for life in the Universe, the biological and geological history of the Earth, and the habitability of other planets. Written by a noted expert on the topic, the book examines many of the major conceptual foundations in astrobiology, which cover a diversity of traditional fields including chemistry, biology, geosciences, physics, and astronomy. The book explores many profound questions such as: How did life originate on Earth? How has life persisted on Earth for over three billion years? Is there life elsewhere in the Universe? What is the future of life on Earth? Astrobiology is centered on investigating the past and future of life on Earth by looking beyond Earth to get the answers. Astrobiology links the diverse scientific fields needed to understand life on our own planet and, potentially, life beyond. This new second edition: Expands on information about the nature of astrobiology and why it is useful Contains a new chapter “What is Life?” that explores the history of attempts to understand life Contains 20% more material on the astrobiology of Mars, icy moons, the structure of life, and the habitability of planets New ‘Discussion Boxes’ to stimulate debate and thought about key questions in astrobiology New review and reflection questions for each chapter to aid learning New boxes describing the careers of astrobiologists and how they got into the subject Offers revised and updated information throughout to reflect the latest advances in the field Written for students of life sciences, physics, astronomy and related disciplines, the updated edition of Astrobiology is an essential introductory text that includes recent advances to this dynamic field.

Extraterrestrial Life

Extraterrestrial Life
  • Author : NASA Scientific and Technical Information Facility
  • Publisher : Unknown
  • Release Date : 1965
  • Total pages : 356
  • ISBN : STANFORD:36105024714656
  • File Size : 22,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 596
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PDF book entitled Extraterrestrial Life written by NASA Scientific and Technical Information Facility and published by Unknown which was released on 1965 with total hardcover pages 356, the book become popular and critical acclaim.

The Sirens of Mars

The Sirens of Mars
  • Author : Sarah Stewart Johnson
  • Publisher : Crown
  • Release Date : 2020-07-07
  • Total pages : 304
  • ISBN : 9781101904824
  • File Size : 23,9 Mb
  • Total Download : 983
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“Sarah Stewart Johnson interweaves her own coming-of-age story as a planetary scientist with a vivid history of the exploration of Mars in this celebration of human curiosity, passion, and perseverance.”—Alan Lightman, author of Einstein’s Dreams WINNER OF THE PHI BETA KAPPA AWARD FOR SCIENCE • NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The New York Times Book Review • Times (UK) • Library Journal “Lovely . . . Johnson’s prose swirls with lyrical wonder, as varied and multihued as the apricot deserts, butterscotch skies and blue sunsets of Mars.”—Anthony Doerr, The New York Times Book Review Mars was once similar to Earth, but today there are no rivers, no lakes, no oceans. Coated in red dust, the terrain is bewilderingly empty. And yet multiple spacecraft are circling Mars, sweeping over Terra Sabaea, Syrtis Major, the dunes of Elysium, and Mare Sirenum—on the brink, perhaps, of a staggering find, one that would inspire humankind as much as any discovery in the history of modern science. In this beautifully observed, deeply personal book, Georgetown scientist Sarah Stewart Johnson tells the story of how she and other researchers have scoured Mars for signs of life, transforming the planet from a distant point of light into a world of its own. Johnson’s fascination with Mars began as a child in Kentucky, turning over rocks with her father and looking at planets in the night sky. She now conducts fieldwork in some of Earth’s most hostile environments, such as the Dry Valleys of Antarctica and the salt flats of Western Australia, developing methods for detecting life on other worlds. Here, with poetic precision, she interlaces her own personal journey—as a female scientist and a mother—with tales of other seekers, from Percival Lowell, who was convinced that a utopian society existed on Mars, to Audouin Dollfus, who tried to carry out astronomical observations from a stratospheric balloon. In the process, she shows how the story of Mars is also a story about Earth: This other world has been our mirror, our foil, a telltale reflection of our own anxieties and yearnings. Empathetic and evocative, The Sirens of Mars offers an unlikely natural history of a place where no human has ever set foot, while providing a vivid portrait of our quest to defy our isolation in the cosmos.

The Cosmic Zoo

The Cosmic Zoo
  • Author : Dirk Schulze-Makuch,William Bains
  • Publisher : Springer
  • Release Date : 2017-11-18
  • Total pages : 232
  • ISBN : 9783319620459
  • File Size : 21,6 Mb
  • Total Download : 845
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Are humans a galactic oddity, or will complex life with human abilities develop on planets with environments that remain habitable for long enough? In a clear, jargon-free style, two leading researchers in the burgeoning field of astrobiology critically examine the major evolutionary steps that led us from the distant origins of life to the technologically advanced species we are today. Are the key events that took life from simple cells to astronauts unique occurrences that would be unlikely to occur on other planets? By focusing on what life does - it's functional abilities - rather than specific biochemistry or anatomy, the authors provide plausible answers to this question. Systematically exploring the various pathways that led to the complex biosphere we experience on planet Earth, they show that most of the steps along that path are likely to occur on any world hosting life, with only two exceptions: One is the origin of life itself – if this is a highly improbable event, then we live in a rather “empty universe”. However, if this isn’t the case, we inevitably live in a universe containing a myriad of planets hosting complex as well as microbial life - a “cosmic zoo”. The other unknown is the rise of technologically advanced beings, as exemplified on Earth by humans. Only one technological species has emerged in the roughly 4 billion years life has existed on Earth, and we don’t know of any other technological species elsewhere. If technological intelligence is a rare, almost unique feature of Earth's history, then there can be no visitors to the cosmic zoo other than ourselves. Schulze-Makuch and Bains take the reader through the history of life on Earth, laying out a consistent and straightforward framework for understanding why we should think that advanced, complex life exists on planets other than Earth. They provide a unique perspective on the question that puzzled the human species for centuries: are we alone?