Where Are The COOL Aliens? Antarctica May Hold Clues
Antartica is believed to house alien Life, but we’re not so sure... yet
Roswell. Little green men. The “Greys”. Reptilians. The “Tall Whites”. Martians. ET. Xenomorphs. Predators. Alf. These are all iconic aliens created in fiction or witnessed in close encounters with the most untrustworthy middle-class sources in rural America. And scientists are out there in the Antarctic trying to convince people the dead dirt they dug up is its own evidence of possible alien life. By proving a negative. That’s so… science.
The search for alien life is a search for hints. As far as we know, (which, to be fair, is generally only as far as our own solar system), there is no intelligent life attempting to contact us or roaming around the surface of a nearby celestial body. Any tech landed on Mars or the moon or sent to be knocked around the magnetic fields of other planets is searching for fossils or ancient microbial life. This is a strong modality. Living microbes have been found every where they wouldn’t be expected to chilling in boiling-hot seafloor hydrothermal vents to clinging to the sides of the ISS out in space. In SPACE.
So when microbial ecologist Noah Fierer and his colleagues reported in June’s Journal of Geophysical Research: Biogeosciences that some of their driest and coldest soil samples from Antarctica’s Shackleton Glacier didn’t seem to support any microbial life, that raised some questions. Particularly in the search for life on other planets. Meaning that if Earth, which is rumored to just be teeming with intelligent life, can produce soil samples devoid of living microbes, then maybe signs of alien life have been overlooked. Maybe, the signs of alien life exist by there being nothing at all.
No. No. No. This is not what anyone thinking “I want to believe” needs to hear. That proving a negative has now entered the chat on the search for alien life. Proving a negative is incredibly difficult in general and ridiculously challenging in science. Already there’s variables surrounding just the Antarctic microbes alone despite the team doing their due diligence in checking their work in their findings. Maybe the soil is naturally sterile. Maybe it’s just the arid nature combined with the cold. Maybe current technology just isn’t sensitive enough to detect low levels of life, a false-negative.
What it all means is that humanity now has a whole new angle to consider in the search for life off-planet. That it was there and undetectable or was in an environment that became so inhospitable, nothing was left.
The truth is out there. Or maybe it’s not. And that’s so annoying. Oh… science. Will you ever learn?