Life in the universe: the search for extraterrestrial life.
- PubMed: 17759311
The study of stellar, planetary and galactic evolution leads to the conclusion that the phenomenon of life must be coursing through the universe. It is estimated, by means of telescopic sampling, that there are billions of stars capable of having those photochemical reactions necessary for the origin of life. One approach in the search for other life would be to deploy men and instruments in spacecraft. Radio contact with other civilizations is another approach. Finally, the question might be approached by considering life as an inevitable consequence of the evolution of matter. A survey of Martian characteristics shows the possibility of life there to be dubious. The possibility of life in other parts of the galaxy is supported by a fundamental conclusion of living matter that all organisms have a common chemical ancestry. The experiment of Urey and Miller, wherein four amino acids were obtained by subjecting a mixture of methane, ammonia, and water to an electric arc, is believed to duplicate the initial organic syntheses which led to the emergence of life on earth.