space
Here’s Where the ExoMars 2020 Mission Will Likely Land, and Why

When it comes to landing a robot on another planet, perhaps the most important question is where to put the dang thing. The researchers behind the upcoming ExoMars mission, consisting of a rover and lander, have now announced their preferred location on the Red Planet. Read More >>

space
Report: NASA and Yuri Milner Working Together on Life-Hunting Mission to Enceladus

It looks like NASA will offer billionaire entrepreneur and physicist Yuri Milner help on the first private deep-space mission: a journey designed to detect life, if it exists, on Saturn’s moon Enceladus, according to documents acquired by New Scientist. Read More >>

space
No, ‘Oumuamua Is Probably Not an Alien Spaceship

On 19 October 2017, a strange object from outside the Solar System whizzed by the Earth, exciting scientists and non-scientists alike. Immediately, some people speculated that this interstellar visitor could be an alien spacecraft. But we’re here to report that, despite a recent paper, there’s no reason to think ‘Oumuamua is an alien ship. Read More >>

aliens
‘Telescope Did Not See Aliens,’ Director of Mysteriously Shut Down Observatory Claims

It has been a week since the National Solar Observatory in Sunspot in the US state of New Mexico was shut down, evacuated, and visited by FBI agents—and the undisclosed “security issue” behind all this activity remains a mystery to the public. Read More >>

space
Top Scientists Explain to US Senators Why We Must Look for Aliens

The US Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation is holding a series of hearings leading up to another NASA authorisation bill, which helps set goals and authorises funding for the agency (2017-2018's bill is here). On Wednesday, scientists from U.S. universities, the Smithsonian Institution, and NASA answered senators’ questions about why Congress should fund the hunt for extraterrestrial life. Read More >>

exoplanets
This Solar System Catalogue Could Be Key to Finding an Earth-Like Exoplanet

By searching for the telltale, periodic dimming of light from distant stars, astronomers can spot orbiting exoplanets tens to hundreds of light-years away. But how do they know what these bodies look like? Perhaps they first try to imagine how the planets in our own Solar System might appear to a faraway alien world. Read More >>

space
Moon Could Have Been Habitable Once, Scientists Speculate

The Moon today is not habitable. It’s covered in potentially killer dust and seemingly dry as a bone. But though it seems wild to think, a new perspective wonders: What if the Moon used to be friendly to life? Read More >>

space
A New NASA-Led Project Means the Search for Aliens Is Heating Up

To date, scientists have catalogued more than 3,500 exoplanets, some of which may even be capable of fostering life. But we simply don’t know. The ability to detect life on distant worlds still eludes us, but a new project coordinated by NASA now takes us a significant step closer to achieving that goal. Read More >>

space
Gorgeous Photo of Martian Landscape Is Just the Beginning for ExoMars Mission

The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter has released the first images from its new orbit, taken on April 15 from 400 kilometres above the Martian surface. Here’s the uncropped composite image: Read More >>

giz asks
If You Find Aliens, Who Do You Call?

Let’s say your house is on fire, or overrun by a gang of psychotic raccoons. You don’t hesitate—you take out your phone, and you call the fire department, or animal control, and then firemen/raccoon-wranglers are promptly dispatched to your home. These are well-established protocols, essential to the maintenance of a mostly not-on-fire, feral-animal-free society. Read More >>

space
New Scale Pinpoints Most Life-Friendly Alien Planets 

Researchers at the University of Washington’s Virtual Planetary Laboratory have devised a new habitability index for judging how suitable alien planets might be for life. The point of the exercise is to help scientists prioritise future targets for close-ups from NASA’s yet-to-be-launched James Webb Space Telescope and other instruments. Read More >>

space
NASA Finds Water Ocean Inside Saturn Moon

NASA has found a subterranean ocean in Enceladus, "a large underground ocean of liquid water." According to the space agency, this may be a potential home to extraterrestrial life. Enceladus was out of the list of potential life harbours in the solar system until now, the other major candidates being Titan and Europa. Read More >>