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How Habitable Is Mars? A New View of the Viking Experiments
Topic: Mars
A NASA-Ames led study sought to define the environment that the Viking landers sampled on Mars. Their results are showing a different picture of habitability than previously believed.

The Overprotection of Mars?
Topic: Mars
A recent paper argues that planetary protection policies guarding spacecraft from bio-contamination need to be re-evaluated because they inhibit a more ambitious agenda to search for life on Mars.

Dining on Methane in the Cold, Dark Sea
Topic: Extreme Life
Scientists have performed a detailed analysis of the biochemistry that allows microbes to survive in extreme cold on the ocean floor around methane seeps.

MAVEN Set to Launch November 18
Topic: Mars
MAVEN stands for “Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution”, and the mission will examine the upper portion of Mars’ thin, mostly carbon dioxide atmosphere in order to determine how the climate of the Red Planet has changed over time.

The Oldest Signs of Life on Earth
Topic: Origin & Evolution of Life
Scientists have found signs of microbial life in rocks 3.48 billion years old--possibly the oldest signs of life on Earth. These sedimentary structures may guide our search for life on Mars.

Glassy Coating Keeps Viruses Happy In Harsh Environments
Topic: Extreme Life
Viruses can coat themselves in silica glass to protect themselves, like donning a suit of armor. This finding has implications for the search for life on other planets such as Mars.

A New Microbe Living in Spacecraft Clean Rooms
Topic: Extreme Life
Scientists have discovered a new, previously unidentified microbe living in spacecraft assembly clean rooms in Florida and South America.

Cosmic Rays Zap a Planet's Chances for Life
Topic: Spaceship Earth
Mysterious cosmic rays constantly bombard Earth from outer space. Now scientists find these energetic particles could limit where life as we know it might exist on alien planets.

Moonlight and Mortality
Topic: Moon to Mars
A new study explores effects of moonlight on nocturnal mammals, and the results could change the way scientsts think about moonlight and predation.

What Astrobiology Teaches Us About Living Well on Earth
Topic: Earth
Astrobiology's study of life in the universe has much to say about how humans can live sustainably on Earth.
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