While some in the scientific community believe that finding extraterrestrial life "is likely to take a long time", others believe that foreigners may be more common than previously thought.
A new study suggests that intelligent life is likely to inhabit a star system drastically different from ours. The researchers modeled a theoretical earth in binary star systems – those with two stars – and found that 87 percent of these "exo-Earths" should have the slope axis similar to Earth, an important ingredient for intelligent life.
Multi-star systems are common and about 50 [percent] of stars have binary companions. So this study can be applied to a large number of solar systems, "said the study's co-author, Gongjie Li, in a statement.
These types of discoveries have been made before, including most recently the LTT 1
A light-year measures distance in space and equals 6 trillion miles
The researchers compared the Earth's slope to the Mars slope, noting the extreme variations between the two planets, and then looked at what the Earth might look like if it were in the Alpha Centauri AB system, 4.4 light years from Earth
"Using numerical modeling in α Centauri AB, we show the following: there is a sharp contrast between the planetary distortion variations depending on the host star, planetary neighbors limit the possible spinning modes for jor Such oblique stability and the presence of a moon can destabilize oblique, defying our terrestrial expectations, "the researchers added in the study.
"We simulated what it would be like for other binaries with multiple variations in the masses of stars, orbits, and so on," Billy Quarles, the study's lead investigator, said in the statement. "The overall message was positive but not for our closest neighbor."
As you went further into deep space, the results became more promising, which led the researchers to believe it was a possibility.
"Generally, the difference between stars is greater in binary systems and then the other star has less effect on Earth," Li added. “The planet's own movement dynamics dominate other influences and obliquity usually has a minor variation. So this is pretty optimistic. "
The study was published in the scientific journal Astrophysical Journal and was funded by NASA's Exobiology Program.
A comprehensive study published in June found no evidence of extraterrestrial life among more than 1,300 stars near Earth, a hunt that spanned more than three years.
A separate study published that month drastically reduced the number of planets that could potentially host intelligent life, noting that the definition of "habitable zone" – the distance between a planet and a star – "is likely limited to that of microbial life. "
In October, a former NASA scientist published a fantastic op-ed stating that he is convinced that the space agency "found evidence of life" on Mars in the 1970s. NASA has firmly denied this claim.