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Frontiers of Astrobiology

Frontiers of Astrobiology

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Cambridge University Press, 11/15/2012
EAN 9781107006416, ISBN10: 1107006414

Hardcover, 331 pages, 25.1 x 18 x 2 cm
Language: English

Astrobiology is an exciting interdisciplinary field that seeks to answer one of the most important and profound questions: are we alone? In this volume, leading international experts explore the frontiers of astrobiology, investigating the latest research questions that will fascinate a wide interdisciplinary audience at all levels. What is the earliest evidence for life on Earth? Where are the most likely sites for life in the Solar System? Could life have evolved elsewhere in the Galaxy? What are the best strategies for detecting intelligent extraterrestrial life? How many habitable or Earth-like exoplanets are there? Progress in astrobiology over the past decade has been rapid and, with evidence accumulating that Mars once hosted standing bodies of liquid water, the discovery of over 500 exoplanets and new insights into how life began on Earth, the scientific search for our origins and place in the cosmos continues.

Part I. Introduction
Introduction and welcome Cardinal Ljolo
1. Astrobiology – a new synthesis J. Baross and C. Impey
Part II. Origins of Planets and Life
2. Towards a theory of life S. Benner and P. Davies
3. Terran metabolism
the first billion years S. Copley and R. Summons
4. Planet formation S. Raymond and W. Benz
Part III. History of Life on Earth
5. The early Earth F. Westall and F. Selsis
6. Evolution of a habitable planet J. Kasting and J. Kirschvink
7. Our evolving planet
from dark ages to evolutionary renaissance A. Knoll and E. Gaidos
Part IV. Habitability of the Solar System
8. Early Mars – cradle or cauldron? A. Azua-Bustos, R. Pierrehumbert and R. Vicuña
9. Large habitable moons
Titan and Europa A. Coustenis and M. Blanc
10. Small habitable worlds J. Castillo-Rogez and J. Lunine
Part V. Exoplanets and Life in the Galaxy
11. Searches for habitable exoplanets S. Seager
12. Review of known exoplanets C. Lovis and D. Minniti
13. Characterizing exoplanet atmospheres G. Tinetti
14. If you want to talk to ET, you must first find ET J. Tarter and C. Impey
Index.

'The breadth of topics is likely the book's most distinctive feature, so it does give readers a good overview of the field … Recommended.' C. Palma, Choice