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Ingredients for Life on Gliese 581g?

1 Oct 2010, 03:00 UTC
Ingredients for Life on Gliese 581g?
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Just in case you haven’t heard, astronomers have released news about an “Earth-like” exoplanet orbiting within the “Goldilocks zone” of a star some 20 light-years away. This is awesome, but does it mean Gliese 581g is habitable? Does it mean life is already slithering across its surface? Judging by an exuberant claim by Steven Vogt, [...]

Credit: Lynette Cook
Just in case you haven’t heard, astronomers have released news about an “Earth-like” exoplanet orbiting within the “Goldilocks zone” of a star some 20 light-years away. This is awesome, but does it mean Gliese 581g is habitable? Does it mean life is already slithering across its surface?
Judging by an exuberant claim by Steven Vogt, professor of astronomy and astrophysics at University of California Santa Cruz, one would think we now know there’s life on this strangely familiar world.
“Personally, given the ubiquity and propensity of life to flourish wherever it can, I would say that the chances for life on this planet are 100 percent. I have almost no doubt about it,” Vogt told Discovery News when the announcement broke on Wednesday.
100%?
Why did he say that his personal view was that the chances for life on Gliese 581g ...

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