Are we alone? Fifty-five years ago, astronomer Frank Drake came up with an equation that weighed the odds for aliens, and now two astronomers have tweaked the formula to come up with a slightly different spin.
Their bottom line? There’s an astronomically high chance that other civilizations have arisen elsewhere in the universe at some point in its 13.8 billion-year history.
The University of Washington’s Woody Sullivan and the University of Rochester’s Adam Frank published their assessment in the May issue of Astrobiology, and Frank is following up with an op-ed in Sunday’s New York Times.
“While we do not know if any advanced extraterrestrial civilizations currently exist in our galaxy, we now have enough information that they almost certainly existed at some point in cosmic history,” Frank writes.