Dr. Dirk Schulze-Makuch received his Ph.D. in geosciences at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Afterwards he took up a fellowship at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, worked as Assistant Professor at the University of Texas at El Paso, and later as Associate and Full Professor at Washington State University. In 2010 he received the Friedrich-Wilhelm Bessel Award from the Humboldt Foundation for extraordinary achievements in theoretical biology. Since 2013 he is a faculty member at the Technical University Berlin in Germany and holds a professorship for planetary habitability and astrobiology, leading the Astrobiology Research Group. He still is Adjunct Professor at Washington State University and also an Associate Member of SETI. Dirk published more than 200 papers and eight books in the field of planetary habitability and astrobiology, including the 3rd edition of Life in the Universe: Expectations and Constraints and The Cosmic Zoo: Complex Life on Many Worlds, first published in 2017. Since 2016, Dirk is President of the German Astrobiological Society and Council Member of the European Astrobiology Network. He gave interviews in scientific television documentaries such as National Geographic and Discovery Channel (USA), NHK-TV (Japan), ARD and RTL (Germany), and reports about his research appeared in media and news outlets such as Science, Popular Science, Discovery Magazine, New Scientist, World Science, Natural History Magazine, BBC, CNN, MSNBC, etc. More information can be found on his website.
Every astrobiologist wants to find an alien. But the public should be skeptical when the "aliens" look like tiny humans.
In one experiment, the Viking landers added water to Martian soil samples. That might have been a very bad idea.
Exoplanet LP 791-18d is likely to have an atmosphere and liquid water.
"Superhabitable" planets might be real, but Earth is probably as good as it gets.
Does humanity have a moral imperative to seed life on lifeless worlds? And should we avoid colonizing a planet if life already exists there?
At least one of Earth's creatures is able to survive the vacuum of space.
The nature of civilizational threats has changed in a mere decade.
We may have discovered alien life already but rejected the evidence too quickly because it seemed false at first glance.
Some microbes can withstand Earth's most inhospitable corners, hinting that life may be able to survive similarly extreme conditions on other worlds.
If life is common in the Universe, then where is everybody? Known as the Fermi Paradox, a new project may help solve the riddle.
On Earth, microbial growth is common in lava tubes no matter the location and climate, whether it’s ice-volcano interactions in Iceland or hot, sand-floored lava tubes in Saudi Arabia.
Dead whales inspire a way to find extraterrestrial life on Mars.
From astrobiology to geology, a Moon base could serve as a laboratory unlike anything on Earth.
Scorpions would probably survive.
Organic molecules can be produced by living or non-living systems. But the recent findings are very intriguing.
Cooperation was the first technology.
UAP are no laughing matter anymore.
Venus Life Finder could launch as early as 2023.
Should we be searching for life on other planets, or technology?
"You develop an instant global consciousness, a people orientation, an intense dissatisfaction with the state of the world, and a compulsion to do something about it."
The psychology of alien contact largely revolves around the concept of "otherness." We need to learn to be comfortable around strange things.
On Earth, carbon can form millions of compounds, while silicon is largely stuck inside rocks. But elsewhere, silicon could form the basis of life.
The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) will study many dangerous cosmic phenomena, knowledge of which may help save humanity.
Researchers have discovered 830-million-year-old microbes living inside a salt rock on Earth. Could the same occur on Mars?
Some astrobiologists believe life is rare, while others believe it is common in the Universe. How can we find out which view is correct?
Was there an intelligent, technologically advanced species long before humans existed? Could there have been a dinosaur civilization?