Humans have still not heard from extraterrestrials because they probably live in underwater civilizations on ocean worlds covered in ice. The theory has been suggested by Alan Stern who is a planetary scientist at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado.
Could Icy Ocean Worlds Be Home To Alien Life Forms
Oceans are a common occurrence in the Solar System and they can be seen on various moons of Jupiter, Saturn, Neptune and even Pluto. In fact, water ice is a major component of these satellites’ crusts and form cracked canyons and towering mountains on their surfaces but at lower depths, the ice melts into liquid water.
Researchers have suggested that hydrothermal vents on the ocean beds of icy water worlds might generate nutrients into their surroundings — in a manner akin to ecosystems at the deep ends of Earth’s oceans. In fact, the habitats on these moons might be even more productive than those found in similar depths in Earth because a thick ice shell shields the former from an overexposed environment.
Furthermore, scientists linked to the Cassini mission have suggested that a type of chemical energy that life can feed on appears to prevail on Enceladus — Saturn’s moon.
"Confirmation that the chemical energy for life exists within the ocean of a small moon of Saturn is an important milestone in our search for habitable worlds beyond Earth," Cassini project scientist Linda Spilker had said earlier this year. Researchers have also observed plumes erupting from Europa, which is Jupiter’s moon.
Stern has added that intelligent alien life flourishing in such ecosystems would have a different perspective of space in comparison to what humans think. Extraterrestrials that live in the depths of water under an icy layer might treat the ice cap as the frontier that separates them from the rest of their satellite world.
Stern’s Theory New Solution To The Fermi Paradox?
The new theory could be the solution to the “Fermi Paradox,” according to a report. Named after Enrico Fermi, the anomaly questions why humans have not made any contact with extraterrestrials yet in spite of there being evidence that there are stars that can host intelligent life.
However, Stern’s colleagues are not in agreement with his theory that the presence of aliens in the depths of icy water worlds, and their contentment in doing so, have prevented them from contacting humans and that this effectively addresses the Fermi Paradox.