Earth is a remarkable planet.
Its atmosphere, its oceans–the diversity of life. And scientists believe it all started with a big bang. Even though our world is so rich and complicated, it might surprise you to learn most astronomers don’t even believe it’s unique. Not even by a long shot.
A new study published Tuesday in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society found that although star formation has slowed down here in the Milky Way, most galaxies still continue to create solar systems and will do so for a long time to come.
Based on those findings, researchers calculated that of all the Earth-like planets that will be created, only 8 per cent of them came before Earth. Which means 92 per cent haven’t even formed yet.
“Assuming that gas cooling and star formation continues, the Earth formed before 92 per cent of similar planets that the Universe will form. This implies a [less than] 8 per cent chance that we are the only civilization the Universe will ever have.”
This mean there’s not only a huge chance of other similar civilizations existing somewhere out in space, it also means we’re probably the most advanced. So when you think of all those alien movies where some futuristic spaceship comes to our planet–that’ll be humans. We will likely be the advanced alien race of future space invaders.
Here’s the kicker though, another new study found that life here on Earth likely existed 300 million years earlier than previously thought. That suggests we could be seeing organisms forming on these newer planets pretty early.
In light of these findings, researchers at UCLA concluded that life is likely more resilient than expected, and capable of surviving in environments once deemed unlivable. Heck, if it can apparently form on a lava-filled Earth with almost no water, just imagine where else life could thrive.
Who knows, maybe that super advanced alien civilization won’t come from a planet like ours at all.