Astrobiology @ NASA
Astrobiology @ NASA
NASA supports research that leads to a better understanding of how life emerged and evolved on Earth, what conditions make any environment in our universe capable of supporting life, and what is the potential distribution of habitable worlds and life itself beyond Earth. Within the NASA Science Mission Directorate there are many Research and Analysis programs that solicit proposals from the research community that include astrobiology research. Results from these programs guide our strategy, inform our missions, and continue the quest to answer these fundamental questions: How does life begin and evolve? Is there life elsewhere in the Universe? What is the future of life on Earth and beyond?
Supports research into the origin and early evolution of life, the potential of life to adapt to different environments, and the implications for life elsewhere.
Carries out research using knowledge of the history of the Earth and the life upon it to determine the processes which create and maintain habitable environments, search for ancient and contemporary habitable environments, and explore the possibility of extant life beyond the Earth.
Conducts research centered on understanding the formation and early evolution of the Solar System (the Sun’s family of planets, satellites, small bodies and rings), as well as planetary systems in general.
These programs are structured to ease the full development and maturation of instrument technologies. PICASSO will support instruments Technical Readiness Levels (TRLs) 1 through 3, and MatISSE will support instruments TRLs 4 through 6.
Researches the determination of compositions, dynamics, energetics and chemical behaviors of extrasolar planets, and the detection and characterization of other planetary systems. (shared with the Astrophysics Division)
A virtual institute dedicated to collaborative interdisciplinary research across a geographically dispersed community, addressing all aspects of astrobiology in concert with the national and international science communities.
Promotes the responsible exploration of the solar system by implementing and developing efforts that protect the science, explored environments, and Earth.
Conducts integrated interdisciplinary field experiments on Earth in order to develop a sound technical and scientific basis to conduct planetary research on other solar system bodies.
Maximizes the scientific return from samples provided by missions through development of laboratory instrumentation and advanced analytical techniques required for the complete analyses of the samples.
Increases the amount and quality of digital information and data products available for planetary science research and exploration, and to produce tools that would enable or enhance future scientific investigations.
The NASA Astrobiology Strategy
The 2015 Astrobiology Strategy identifies questions to guide and inspire astrobiology research.