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「地球外生命体の痕跡を10年以内に発見できる」NASAのチーフサイエンティストが断言

2015年04月09日 22時08分 JST | 更新 2015年04月09日 23時04分 JST
NASA

エレン・ストファン氏

アメリカ航空宇宙局 (NASA) のチーフサイエンティストが、2025年までに地球外生命体の痕跡を見つけ、その後20~30年以内に有力な証拠が手に入るだろうと予測している。

NASAのチーフサイエンティスト、エレン・ストファン氏は4月7日、「地球外生命体の存在を示す有力な兆候を10年以内に手にすることができるでしょう。20~30年以内に、確実な証拠をつかむことができるのではと思います」と、宇宙にある水をテーマにしたパネルディスカッションで述べた

ストファン氏は、「どこを探せばいいか、またどのように探せばいいかもわかっています。私たちには技術があり、その技術を実行に移しつつあります。ですから、確実に私たちはその途上にあると言えるでしょう」と、述べた。

同じパネルディスカッションに登壇していた他の参加者も同意した。

太陽系物理学部門のジェフリー・ニューマーク暫定事務局長も「間違いなく、『もしかしたら…』という仮定という問題ではなくなりました。これは『いつ』という時期の問題なのです」と述べた。

しかし、生命が存在する証拠を見つけると言っても、地球外生命体の文明ではなく、ずっとずっと小規模なものである。

「背の低い宇宙人の話をしているのではなく、小さな微生物の話をしているのです」と、ストファン氏は述べた。

この発言は、2014年にNASAの宇宙飛行士ケヴィン・ハンド氏が、同様のイベントで大きな発見を予言したことに同意したものだ。

ハンド氏は、「これから20年の間に、私たちは宇宙の中で孤独ではないのだとわかることになると思います」と述べていた

ディスカッションの全編は下の動画で閲覧できる。

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