Telescope to seek alien life

Today's pupils have a good chance of being the scientists who discover alien life beyond our solar system, according to a leading astronomer. The launch of the European Space Agency's Darwin telescope in about 15 years'

time, will for the first time give humans a realistic chance of finding other planets capable of supporting life, according to Barrie Jones of the Open university's centre for earth, planetary, space and astronomical research. So far about 160 planets have been discovered outside our solar system, but they all are gas giants similar to Jupiter, easier to spot but inhospitable to living things.

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