Habitability of Other Planets and Satellites

  • Jean-Pierre de Vera
  • Joseph Seckbach

Part of the Cellular Origin, Life in Extreme Habitats and Astrobiology book series (COLE, volume 28)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxix
  2. Parameters for Habitability, Habitable Zones and Life: Energy, Liquid Solvent, Information

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Stephen R. Kane
      Pages 3-12
    3. John Lee Grenfell, Heike Rauer, Philip von Paris
      Pages 13-29
    4. Giora Shaviv, Smadar Bressler, Nir J. Shaviv
      Pages 31-46
    5. Orion Talmi, Giora Shaviv
      Pages 47-68
    6. Rob Hengeveld
      Pages 69-88
  3. Impact Craters and the Evolution of Life

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 113-113
  4. Field Studies in Planetary Analogs, Simulations and Space Experiments with Relevance to Habitability

  5. Search for Habitable Worlds in the Solar System and Beyond

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 181-181
    2. Frances Westall
      Pages 183-202
    3. Stephen R. Kane
      Pages 235-249
  6. Alternatives to Earth-Like Life

  7. Application of Existing Technologies for the Detection of Habitable Planets and the Search for Life

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 285-285
    2. Heike Rauer, Juan Cabrera, Stefanie Gebauer, John Lee Grenfell
      Pages 287-310
    3. Howell G. M. Edwards, Ian B. Hutchinson, Richard Ingley
      Pages 311-330
    4. Ute Böttger, Jean-Pierre De Vera, Antje Hermelink, Jörg Fritz, Iris Weber, Dirk Schulze-Makuch et al.
      Pages 331-345
  8. Future Space Missions for Life Detection

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 347-347
    2. Julian Chela-Flores
      Pages 349-366
    3. Bernd Dachwald, Stephan Ulamec, Jens Biele
      Pages 367-397
  9. Summary and Conclusions

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 399-399
  10. Back Matter
    Pages 413-419

About this book


Is Earth the right model and therefore our Earth-centric view the only universal key to understand habitability, the origin and maintenance of life? This book tries to give answers on this question. It gives insights into the nature of planets and their potential to harbor life as well as the role of life itself as an engine to increase the habitability of planets and satellites. Knowledge of different disciplines in Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Geology, Planetology and Physics are the driving force for the discussion what might be the clues to classify a planetary body as a habitable object. The role of the atmosphere, solar radiation, magnetism, tectonics, mineral composition, liquid water availability and the interactions with life are in the focus of the general discussion. Earth serves as the reference system to get an approximation of the factors which might be important for classification of a celestial body as a habitable object. Results from field studies and those obtained from laboratory studies in planetary simulation facilities will help to elucidate if some of the planets and satellites in our solar system are potentially habitable for terrestrial life forms. The discussion is also enlarged in particular to exo-planets and their potential to be habitable. Further, recent technologies are presented in this book which might be suitable for remote or in situ identification of habitable environments and life as we know it. Instrumentation, detection devices, space projects and space mission designs to search for habitable niches and life is part of this work and gives insights into the challenges we might confront if we pursue the main task to detect life. The initial step of these exploration endeavors might be to discover first habitable environments and then to look after life forms with life detecting instrumentation in the discovered habitable niches.


Astrobiology Biosignatures Exo-planets Habitability Solar System

Editors and affiliations

  • Jean-Pierre de Vera
    • 1
  • Joseph Seckbach
    • 2
  1. 1.Experimental Planetary PhysicsInstitute of Planetary ResearchBerlinGermany
  2. 2.The Hebrew Univ. of JerusalemJerusalemIsrael

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2013
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Biomedical and Life Sciences
  • Print ISBN 978-94-007-6545-0
  • Online ISBN 978-94-007-6546-7
  • Series Print ISSN 1566-0400
  • Buy this book on publisher's site