View Full Version : Could We Detect Plants on other Planets?

2007-Dec-05, 09:40 PM
We've already found over 250 extrasolar planets, and more are continuing to be discovered fairly often. With all of these new planets popping up, the obvious question must be asked: how do we go about detecting whether or not they contain life? Though we can't yet see features on the surface with even the most [...]

More... (http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/universetoday/pYdq/~3/195692529/)

2008-Jan-04, 05:54 PM
I was checking out this article just now, and it addressed some very serious concerns in the search of ET life. We're sitting here on our pebble staring at other pebbles in the sky to see if they contain life, but there is the very strong chance that what we define as life is completely out of the ordinary for the rest of the universe. Of course, scanning the light reflection from is definitely a good start, but I wonder if there is the possibility that somewhere plants might be using ultra-violet light for photosynthesis or even more extreme cases of life forms feeding on soft x-rays. I'm sure these ideas are completely bonkers, but OTOH life itself seems to be completely bonkers when we're looking at the grand scheme of things.

Also, a more difficult task might be the possibility of finding life on planets in the vicinity of neutron stars that develop food using energy in the radio spectrum. I've read a few stories about space dust organizing itself into simple structures, so I'm thinking it might be possible that even a space dwelling organism might be possible in older regions of space where the organization of space dust and a high amount of any kind of radiation could lead to the creation of some other kind of life.

I dunno if this really counts as a 'comment' but these are some ideas that this article got me started on. If I'm completely off-base, please correct me!