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IPFS News Link • Biology, Botany and Zoology

Philae comet could be home to alien life, say scientists

•, Rebecca Ratcliffe

The comet landed on by the spacecraft Philae could well be home to an abundance of alien microbial life, according to leading astronomers.

Features of the comet, named 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, such as its organic-rich black crust, are most likely explained by the presence of living organisms beneath an icy surface, the scientists have said. 

Rosetta, the European spacecraft orbiting the comet, is also said to have picked up strange clusters of organic material that resemble viral particles.

The European Space Agency pulled off a sensational feat of engineering and captured the imagination of space-travel enthusiasts across the world when Philae landed on the comet in November. Since then, the lander has undergone a period of hibernation from which it awoke in June, having recharged its solar panels.