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We’ll find signs of alien life within a decade, says NASA chief scientist

“I think we’re going to have strong indications of life beyond Earth within a decade, and I think we’re going to have definitive evidence within 20 to 30 years,” NASA chief scientist Ellen Stofan has told a panel discussion into the agency’s search for life beyond Earth.

“We know where to look. We know how to look,” Stofan said. “In most cases we have the technology, and we’re on a path to implementing it. And so I think we’re definitely on the road.”

Former astronaut John Grunsfeld, associate administrator for NASA’s Science Mission Directorate, agreed.

“I think we’re one generation away in our solar system, whether it’s on an icy moon or on Mars, and one generation [away] on a planet around a nearby star,” Grunsfeld said.

Bill Condie

Bill Condie

Bill Condie is a science journalist based in Adelaide, Australia.

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