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Life In Space Went Extinct, Habitable Planets Froze Or Became Hot

First Posted: Jan 21, 2016 02:17 PM EST

If life existed on other planets, it would not last long. It would be short and eventually become extinct soon after its origin, according to astrobiologists at the Australian National University (ANU). In this new study, the researchers focused on understanding how life may have developed on planets that were potentially habitable. They found that extreme heating or cooling may have had a role in diminishing any existence of life.

"The universe is probably filled with habitable planets, so many scientists think it should be teeming with aliens. Early life is fragile, so we believe it rarely evolves quickly enough to survive," Dr. Aditya Chopra, lead author of the study, said in a news release. "Most early planetary environments are unstable. To produce a habitable planet, life forms need to regulate greenhouse gases such as water and carbon dioxide to keep surface temperatures stable."

The researchers believe that Earth, Venus and Mars were habitable planets four billion years ago. After these planets were formed, Venus became a fireball and Mars turned into an icebox. The researchers claimed that early microbial life on Venus and Mars failed to stabilize rapid environmental changes.

"Life on Earth probably played a leading role in stabilizing the planet's climate," Chopra said. "The mystery of why we haven't yet found signs of aliens may have less to do with the likelihood of the origin of life or intelligence and have more to do with the rarity of the rapid emergence of biological regulation of feedback cycles on planetary surfaces."

Some planets have wet, rocky surfaces with features that are necessary for life, however no signs of surviving extraterrestrial life have been found, according to the researchers.

The findings of this study were published in Astrobiology.

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