Lord Martin Rees, president of the Royal Society of London, believes advances in astronomy will allow astrophysicists to “view images of distant planets outside of our solar system as soon as 2025,” revealing the potential existence of alien life.
Lord Rees made the comments at a debate, held in advance of Stephen Hawking’s latest television program Grand Design on the Discovery Channel, which will take a look at a variety of cosmic questions, as well as the meaning of life.
However, our search for extraterrestrials isn’t quite as easy as pointing a camera at an Earth-like planet and hitting the zoom button. While Kepler hunts for Earth-like planets in the “goldilocks” zone, and SETI analyzes space noise in search for alien signals, we also face the possibility that aliens may exist in a form we simply wouldn’t recognize.
There’s also the reality that we’re separated from alien life not only by space, but by time.
Of course, some would claim that alien life is already here, but that’s an entirely different story…