Life On Titan May Signal Early Life In The Universe

By Keith Cowing
Press Release
December 4, 2022
Filed under , , , ,
Life On Titan May Signal Early Life In The Universe
These are images of Saturn’s moon Titan, captured by the NASA/ESA/CSA James Webb Space Telescope’s NIRCam instrument on 4 November 2022.

The temperature of the cosmic microwave background (CMB) was equal to the surface temperature of Saturn’s moon Titan, 94K, at a redshift z=33.5, after the first galaxies formed.

Titan-like objects would have maintained this surface temperature for tens of Myr irrespective of their distance from a star.

Titan has the potential for the chemistry of familiar life in its subsurface water ocean, as well new forms of life in the rivers, lakes and seas of liquid methane and ethane on its surface. The potential future discovery of life on Titan would open the possibility that the earliest lifeforms emerged in metal-rich environments of the earliest galaxies in the universe, merely 100 Myr after the Big Bang.

Abraham Loeb (Harvard)

Comments: 4 pages, Submitted for publication in an AAS Journal
Subjects: Cosmology and Nongalactic Astrophysics (astro-ph.CO)
Cite as: arXiv:2212.00473 [astro-ph.CO] (or arXiv:2212.00473v1 [astro-ph.CO] for this version)
Submission history
From: Avi Loeb
[v1] Thu, 1 Dec 2022 12:57:16 UTC (6 KB)

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