Mankind may be able to discover alien life within the next 10 to 15 years. An expert reportedly believes that the search for extraterrestrial life may soon bring results.
According to The Indian Express, researchers will be able to take the help of the James Webb Space Telescope and other detection equipment in the next few years to hunt for biomarkers such as methane and oxygen in the atmosphere of Earth-like planets.
“This biomarker experiment could find evidence of microbial life indirectly,” expert Chris Impey said in an interview with Futurism. “The research should help us pinpoint the planets that are the closest to Earth as possible, not in distance, but in character.”
Impey, who is a researcher from the University of Arizona in the U.S., believes that since Earth is the only place where life is known to exist, therefore, searching for the most Earth-like planets is mankind’s best option to find alien life. Incidentally, Impey’s research has been supported by the American space agency, NASA. The expert believes humans are less than two decades away from finding aliens and extraterrestrial life -- albeit in microbial form, rather than intelligent life.
Interestingly, Impey has not ruled out the probability that life exists on Mars; however, the present Martian forms of life possibly exist below the surface and consequently are harder to discover. The researcher also believes there is a better chance at finding proof of life that once existed on the Red Planet by examining its rock samples. Impey suggests that if humans could get Martian rocks from areas that might have been habitable in the past, then they could find evidence of prior life.
Other celestial bodies in the solar system that could potentially support life includes Europa, the watery moon of Jupiter. Future missions to Europa could help in gathering information on the matter.