I never doubted that we’d find other planets with physical characteristics somewhat close to our own.

Gliese 581 d (named after Wilhelm Gliese) is only 20 light-years away from us and has liquid water, so I’m psyched about the next step: finding out whether or not there’s life there. But what kind of life might it be?

For you detail-oriented folks, here’s the preprint from arXiv. But for those of you who would like an introduction to astrobiology first, here are some good sources of background info:

By the  way, if this topic interests you, JHU’s Astrobiology Club would love to hear from you.

(Apologies to Constantine Cavafy for the title of this post.)

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