If you’re hoping humans will discover other living beings in the universe during your lifetime, you might be in luck. Speaking yesterday at a panel in DC, NASA researchers touched on the topic of alien life and finding evidence of such, and what they had to say was largely inspiring: it’ll eventually happen, and the first stages of that likely within the span of the next 20 years. The prospect is exciting, not the least of which is due to the leaps in space travel humans are likely to make in that same time span.
That’s not to say we’ll definitely be finding anything, and certainly not likely we’ll discover other intelligent beings inhabiting a planet like our own any time soon, but some kind of evidence of alien life surfacing in the next two decades is definitely possible, at least according to NASA researchers.
They point toward the number of oceans to be found in the universe as one indication. The evidence first discovered will most likely come in the form of microbes, and that reality has become more apparent as increasing discoveries of water bodies on planets are made. Europa, a moon of Jupiter, is one example, with researchers believing it holds a large ocean below its icy shell.
Said NASA Chief Scientist Ellen Stofan, “I believe we are going to have strong indications of life beyond Earth in the next decade and definitive evidence in the next 10 to 20 years.” Be sure to check out our NASA tag portal, as well as the timeline below, for more recently news from the space agency!