Is there life out there? Our experts can provide some insight

Feb 23, 2017

1 min

According to a study published Wednesday in Nature, and announced at a NASA news conference in Washington – a mere 40 light years away, astronomers have discovered seven planets similar in size and shape as Earth. As well, scientists believe these planets are made of rock and not gas – meaning if the conditions were right, they could support life.

This is an amazing discovery and a great step for science but what does this mean? What’s next? And how will we ever find out if there’s life out there? How far away is 40 light years and how long would it take to make contact or for a satellite to get there?

There are a lot of questions. And astronomy and physics are not simple fields to understand nor comprehend. That’s where Missouri State University can help.

Dr. Peter Plavchan is an assistant professor of physics, astronomy and materials science at Missouri State. He researches the formation and frequency of exoplanets around solar-type and low-mass stars, and is an expert in astronomy and astrophysics.

Dr. Michael Reed is a professor of physics, astronomy and materials science at Missouri State who specializes in asteroseismology, binary stars and extrasolar planets.

Both experts are well-spoken, available to speak and can explain to the media what this all means for science, the study of space and if there might actually be life out there. Click on either of their icons to arrange an interview.


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