With NASA’s $2.5 billion unmanned mission to Mars slated to launch on November 25, and the recent discovery of a potentially habitable planet a mere 35 light years from Earth (203 trillion miles) in the constellation of Vela, scientists may be closer to discovering alien life than ever before.
However, as Seth Shostak, senior astronomer at the SETI (Search For Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute says, the first life forms we're likely to encounter won't be little green men, but nearly invisible microbes.
Shostak says even microscopic life from alien worlds are important discoveries, and he believes that intelligent life will also be found eventually.
- Dr. Seth Shostak, senior astronomer at SETI Institute
This segment aired on November 8, 2011.