Earth scientists get extraterrestrial today
By Kelsey Dayton, Jackson Hole, Wyoming
August 20, 2012
They are the unanswered questions that have stirred debate both humorous and serious: Are we humans alone in the universe? Is there life on other planets? Do aliens exist?
John Hebberger Jr. will tackle the question about who, if anyone or anything, we share the universe with today at a talk by the Geologists of Jackson Hole.
“Is Extraterrestrial Life Likely — or Not?” begins at 6 p.m. in the Teton County Commissioners’ Chambers. Admission is free.
It’s an exciting time for science and exploration of the universe beyond Earth, Hebberger said. In the past 20 years, there have been leaps in what is known about the Earth’s history, and planets have been discovered orbiting stars light years away. With each new discovery comes the possibility of learning if life exists elsewhere, he said.
Hebberger’s talk will explore what science knows, what is being studied and how they affect the assessment about whether life exists on other planets.
“I just think it’s a compelling question to ask,” Hebberger said. “Are we unique? Are there other civilizations out there? Are we it?”
The discussion is part of the Geologists of Jackson Hole’s regular speaker series, which tackles a variety of topics related to earth science. This month’s talk is being held on a Monday instead of its normal day due to a scheduling conflict, Hebberger said.