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Welcome to the companion web site for "The Living Cosmos," a popular book about astrobiology, written by Professor Chris Impey and published by Cambridge University Press.

The Living Cosmos

UPDATE: Click here to read the preface which outlines some new book updates.

The Living Cosmos draws readers into the scientific search for life in the universe. After centuries of speculation, we are on the verge of learning if biology is unique to the Earth. The Living Cosmos is a snapshot of the interdisciplinary field called astrobiology, weaving in stories of discovery by leading researchers. Life on Earth is amazingly robust and diverse, with implications for the range of sites where life may be found. In our solar system, Mars is joined by Titan, Europa, and several other moons as places that might host microbes. With over 200 extra-solar planets now known, there may be 100 million habitable places in the Milky Way alone. Some astronomers are approaching the goal of finding clones of the Earth. Others are vaulting over uncertainties in how often microbial life advances to become intelligent; they’re looking and listening for signals from remote civilizations. The Living Cosmos presents recent information on the origin and evolution of life on Earth. The vastness of space and the eons since the big bang present a great potential for biology both familiar and unfamiliar. The discoveries of astrobiology may soon redefine our place in the universe.

© 2011 Chris D. Impey