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Thursday, July 18, 2024

Geology and the search for extraterrestrial intelligence

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Are we alone in this universe, or intelligent beings like us do exist somewhere out there? Are there more advanced civilizations than ours, and have they developed a network of linked societies throughout our galaxy? These are a few questions that blow the mind of every curious individual among us.

Several theories have been presented about the origin of life on Earth. Many of them support the idea that it is possible to have many Earth-like planets or exoplanets beyond our solar system. These planets could have similar evolution processes that we witness on Earth. Scientists argue that such processes could be fairly common in the universe, and intelligent beings like us must exist on these planets.

Our evidence of the origin of life on Earth comes from the geological record of the planet. The record that geologists have gathered so far is collected from thin rocks nearly 2.7 to 3.5 billion years old. It confirms the presence of small inclusions, a 100th of a millimetre in diameter.

These evolved organisms, like bacteria and blue-green algae, must be the beneficiaries of a pro-long evolutionary process. Geologists didn’t find a rock on Earth that is more than 4 billion years old. Scientists believe that before this time, the planet’s surface had melted in the final stage of its creation.

Since life originated on Earth seems to be short than its present age, there is additional evidence that life may evolve on other planets in our solar system or beyond it, at least on the planets having an abundance of hydrogen-rich gases, liquid water, and a constant source of energy from their host star.


James Webb Space Telescope released its first image in July 2022, and the world is overwhelmed by break-taking deep space images revealed later. Since then, several significant questions have been around in space communities about the existence of life on exoplanets beyond our solar system. Digging deep into these most concerned questions of all time, Scientia Pakistan brings its exclusive edition on “Extraterrestrial life”.

We have got exciting stories on Sentient in the cosmos, microbial life, Fermi Paradox, NASA’s program on UFOs, use of modern technologies for the search for ET life, and much more. We exclusively interviewed Dr Munazza K Alam for this edition. Have an excellent read!

Also, read: Probing into the Atmospheres of Exoplanets with Dr. Munnaza K. Alam

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