Dimitar Sasselov, Harvard University
The lecture will discuss the new field of scientific research on the emerging frontier where astronomy meets biochemistry. In the past year astronomers have discovered planets that resemble Earth around nearby stars and now prepare to explore them with a new generation of telescopes. In the meantime, chemists and biologists have narrowed down the environments necessary for early forms of Earth life and are helping the astronomers in defining their targets. The search is on!