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Home News These are the 3 most likely scenarios for our first alien encounter

These are the 3 most likely scenarios for our first alien encounter

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How we will find extraterrestrial life is just as important of a question as to when we will find the first alien life.

We already know of more than 4,000 planets orbiting other stars, and that number will greatly increase in the coming years and decades as revolutionary instruments set their sights on alien worlds.

Image credit: LionFive/Pixabay A new study suggests that up to one-quarter of all exoplanets slightly larger than Earth could house liquid water on their surface.

There are three likely possibilities for the first contact to be established and each scenario comes with its own opportunities and pitfalls.

They sound friendly!” Flying saucers landing on Earth would certainly be a good sign of life on other worlds.

Still, it’s the least likely of all first contact scenarios.

Image credit: Ella 87/Pixabay Most visions of first contact, from Cold War-era science fiction to Star Trek pictures aliens (usually onboard flying saucers), landing on Earth.

It’s like interstellar zoom The very large Array of radio telescopes in New Mexico was the location where signals from aliens were first detected in Carl Sagan’s novel, Contact.

While some of these may be intentionally sent to attract other civilizations (as seen in Contact), there also exists the possibility that extraterrestrial radio or television (or, perhaps, video meetings) are leaking to space, waiting to be picked up by detectors here on Earth.

By studying the atmospheres of distant worlds, we may be able to find life long before they develop intelligence.

Image credit: The Cosmic Companion/Created in Universe Sandbox The most likely scenario for humans to find life elsewhere in the Universe to find telltale signs of life in the atmospheres of worlds orbiting distant stars.

Life existed for hundreds of millions of years on Earth before humans evolved and started building radio telescopes.

If astronomers are able to show the chemical makeup of a planetary atmosphere is unlikely from simple chemical reactions, then life may be found on that world.

In the video above, you can look at how the James Webb Space Telescope will explore atmospheres of distant planets.

A new generation of telescopes, including the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), will begin operations in the next few years, examining these distant worlds.

But, given the fragile nature of genetic code on Earth and the harsh conditions of space, any such fragments of alien genetic code is likely to be highly inconclusive.

The most likely way we will find life — by studying the atmospheres of distant worlds — is also the least conclusive.

The most certain way to know we have of knowing aliens are out there is to watch them land in front of a crowd, but that’s the least likely scenario for first contact.