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Jan 03, 2017 06:06 AM EST

2017 Big Science Breakthrough May Be The Discovery Of Extraterrestrial Life

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One of the most exciting fields of science is looking for another habitable planet and, along with that, the quest for extraterrestrial life. Experts believe that 2017 could be the year that we confirm that we are not alone in the universe.

Express reported that experts are hopeful for the new year as it could bring the discovery of life on other planets. Last year, scientists got excited when they were able to detect signals from deep space.

Doctor Simon Foster, a physicist from Imperial College London, told the publication that a breakthrough could be just around the corner. There have been probes sent to orbit Jupiter and Saturn collecting valuable data about the possibility of extraterrestrial life.

Dr. Foster added that Cassini, the probe sent to study Saturn and its moons, may be able to get great results. It was previously reported that the Cassini-Huygens mission will begin its "Grand Finale" in April. It will make a series of close passes between Saturn and its rings. It is scheduled to make a kamikaze dive on Sep. 15, 2017.

Meanwhile, Juno, NASA's spacecraft, is also expected to bring in more news and images from Jupiter. In February, the ESA will launch the CHEOPS, which has been tasked to look for exoplanets around bright stars. It was noted that Enceladus, one of Saturn's moons, is icy. This makes it possible to have been able to sustain life.

Dr. Foster did admit, though, that it could be microbial life that may be discovered in the coming months. Nonetheless, it is an exciting prospect since it will definitely change the way we see the universe.

Signs of extraterrestrial life will also pave the way for in-depth studies especially since several space companies have expressed their interest to have humans colonize another habitable planet. SpaceX, Boeing and now China are developing their own strategies for the race to Mars.

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