Date of this version

Fall 2017

Document Type



astrobiology, chemical definition of life, definition of life, extraterrestrial life


What is life? While a simple question, the answer is incredibly complex. Historical views on life and modern popular understanding heavily influence our definition of life, but as extraterrestrial exploration expands our knowledge, it is clear that a new view on life is needed. To effectively define life, it is necessary to examine the nature of life on the chemical level, and to look to research to guide our search for life in extraterrestrial environments. This work examines the historical views of life, the modern chemical elements of life, the research that investigates life in the extraterrestrial setting, and some locations where extraterrestrial life might be found.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 License.

Included in

Biology Commons