Aliens: Extraterrestrial Life

Topics: Extraterrestrial life, SETI, Extrasolar planet Pages: 6 (2387 words) Published: March 5, 2014
Simon Sheets
Mrs. Owen
English III-H
28 February 2013
When Aliens Attack
No one would believe that in the early years of the 21st century that earth was being watched by intelligence greater than his or her own. That while people busied themselves on their various concerns, they were being observed and studied. As if a scientist was looking through a microscope to study creatures not seen by the human eye. Slowly, the outsiders grow envy, watching as the humans waste away this wonderful planet like a McDonald’s Big Mac in a science experiment. Across the gulf of space, could unsympathetic intellects be slowly drawing their plans against the human race? Well that’s just a bunch of bull-shenanigans, but when one really thinks about it, is it really? The solar system contains over 100 billion galaxies, so it’s very plausible that one of them may contain a star, like the sun, that is able to support life to its planets. Astronomers discovered the first exoplanet orbiting a sun-like star in 1995, and since then, they've spotted more than 800 worlds beyond the solar system (Space Mike Wall). If they have discovered so many planets with the small portion of space they can actually access with today’s technology, then the thought of no other life in the universe existing would be almost hogwash! In fact, famous astrophysicist and science communicator Neil Degrasse Tyson stated in a recent interview with Richard Dawkins “To say that life doesn’t exist anywhere besides earth, would be like filling a cup full of ocean water and stating there wasn’t such thing as whales, you’re going to need a bigger portion!” Okay, all right, most by now probably get it, there’s a really, really big chance that earth isn’t the only planet that can support life, but if that’s the case, then where are they? Somewhere out there in this vast universe, there must certainly be other planets teeming with life, but why don’t astronomers see any evidence of it? This is a famous question asked by Enrico Fermi in 1950: Conspiracy theorists claim that U.F.O’s (Unidentified Flying Objects) are visiting all the time and the reports are just being covered up, but honestly they aren’t very convincing. But that leaves a real riddle. In the past year, the Kepler space observatory has found hundreds of planets just around nearby stars, and when they look at that data, it’s as if there could be half a trillion planets just in this very own galaxy (CNN Adamu). If only one in ten thousand had conditions that might support a form of life, that’s still fifty million possibly earth-like planets right here in the Milky Way. The earth didn’t form until nine billion years after the big bang. Countless other planets in the galaxy should have formed earlier, and given life a million, or maybe billion-year head start for life to underway. If just a few of them possessed earth-like conditions and spawned intelligent life that started creating technology, those technologies would have had billions or millions of years to grow in complexity and power. On earth, people have seen how dramatically technology can advance in just one hundred years. In millions of years, an intelligent alien civilization could have easily spread out across the galaxy. After all this time, wouldn’t it make sense for them to deliver their presence deliberately or otherwise through electromagnetic signals? Yet to this day, astronomers don’t see any convincing evidence of any of it. Why is that, this is the question that astronomers and Cosmologists have been asking over 50 years. So let’s say that for some whatever reason, the first person to make contact with life outside of earth is tomorrow. Yes, very unlikely, probably isn’t going to happen, but it would be a good idea to think about it, what if it was really that close? Well for one: Most Historians and scientists today agree that this would be the most important moment in all of human history, and probably for the aliens themselves. In fact,...

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