Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin has passed lie detector tests “proving” his claim that he saw aliens while in space. This lie detector supposedly used the latest and greatest technology and analyzed voice recording of Edgar Mitchell and Gordon Cooper (who have both died) and tested Mr. Aldrin and Al Worden.
While analyzing voices are an actual thing with scientific backing, claiming to prove the existence of aliens by listening to recordings is ridiculous. This test does NOT prove anything about aliens and whether or not the Apollo 11 astronauts saw them. Regardless of whether or not this test is sham, this does raise an important question: could aliens exist?
“There may be aliens in our Milky Way galaxy, and there are billions of other galaxies. The probability is almost certain that there is life somewhere in space.” — Buzz Aldrin
To provide some background to this wildly ridiculous claim, the astronauts who “participated” in this lie detector test were all a part of the Apollo 11 mission. During the mission, the astronauts saw an “unidentified flying object” (or UFO), which they believed was either part of the rocket used to take them to the moon or was a panel of their rocket that came off when the lander detached to land on the moon.
Aldrin has repeatedly denied the idea that this piece they saw was actually an alien spacecraft saying that he believed the object was from their rocket, but conspiracy theorists have still latched onto the idea that it was aliens. During an interview, Aldrin made the comment that they saw a UFO, but has since explained himself that he did not mean UFO as in little green men from Mars.
While this lie detector test is not believable in the slightest, there has always been a question as to whether or not aliens could exist. While we have no proof of life outside of Earth (yet), there are some interesting ideas scientists and researchers have.
Can Aliens Exist?
As of right now, we have absolutely no proof for the existence of alien life in the universe, but that does not mean we aren’t actively looking for it.
Currently, there is a NASA telescope in space called Kepler. Now, Kepler’s job is to search the universe for other Earth-like planets and see which of those planets could potentially be habitable. These planets are ones that orbit a large star (called exoplanets) and are in a location in their orbit that is neither too hot nor too cold and are roughly the same size as Earth. So far, Kepler has found 2,300 exoplanets that could be habitable for life. Now these planets can be millions of lightyears away, and they do not necessarily have life on them, but they could harbor life (as far as what we know what life is in the universe). Once we find those planets that are similar to our Earth, then we could make an educated guess that those may very well hold life on them.
“If we find lots of planets like ours…we’ll know it’s likely that we aren’t alone, and that someday we might be able to join other intelligent life in the universe.” — William Borucki (chief investigator for Kepler mission)
We do know water exists in other places, including our very own solar system. One of Jupiter’s moons, Europa, is covered in ice with liquid water underneath it. It has also been found that Mars once had water on it judging by mineral records and the existence of Martian ice on its poles. With our understanding of life, organisms need water to survive. So, when we find planets or even moons with ice on them then we can at least know that life could exist on it.
One of the biggest things in our search for alien life outside of Earth is the sheer amount of stars in the universe. There are millions of galaxies that each holds millions (if not trillions) of stars each. The idea that humans are the only lifeforms to ever exist in the universe is a stretch, and statistically speaking with the sheer amount of stars in the galaxy the idea that we are the only life is very low.
Not only do we look for life in exoplanets with Kepler, but we also use radio waves to search for life. All around the world there are stations set up that can monitor radio frequencies given by far-off planets. In fact, there is a study called “Breakthrough Listen” that scientists have begun that listens to radio frequencies to detect radio bursts. Earlier this year Breakthrough listen received specific bursts of radio frequencies coming from a very distant galaxy which got alien addicts very curious. Were the bursts aliens trying to contact other life? Possibly, although scientists believe it could be something else, we might never actually know the true cause of these bursts.
So the question remains; could aliens exist? In short, yes, they could very well exist and they may very well be sentient life with intelligence that humans have. Just because we don’t have rock-solid proof yet does not mean that there aren’t lifeforms in the entire expanse of the universe. Some NASA scientists believe that with our technology we could find proof of alien life as early as 2030, but they also say that it would actually require quite a bit of luck. With all the stars out there we would have to come across the right one that has life on it.
“I believe alien life is quite common in the universe, although intelligent life is less so. Some say it has yet to appear on planet Earth.” — Stephen Hawking
With all the technological advances that humans have made in the past 50 years, and the active search scientists are conducting, we have an incredible chance of finding life out there so we can answer the question if we are alone or not. A “lie detector” test done by analyzing the voices of dead astronauts does not prove the existence of alien life of any sort. What will prove alien life is the hard work that scientists put in every day to try to answer the burning question that humans have had since the dawn of man; are we alone in the universe?
Life exists on Earth because it is not only the right distance from the sun, has an atmosphere not stripped away by the solar wind due to magnetic poles, has been free from most major asteroid collisions due to the large planets like Jupiter and Saturn acting as deflectors, and because it has a large moon of just the right dimensions and distance away to produce a stable rotation like a counter weight, without which life would be alternately fried and frozen.
To find exactly all of these conditions in another planetary system is possible, but probably vanishingly small. To have stable conditions long enough for higher life forms to develop and evolve, without wrecking their planet or destroying themselves, is probably even rarer.