Chapter 9. Life in Planetary Systems

  1. Stephen Eales

Published Online: 23 APR 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9780470721780.ch9

Planets and Planetary Systems

Planets and Planetary Systems

How to Cite

Eales, S. (2009) Life in Planetary Systems, in Planets and Planetary Systems, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9780470721780.ch9

Author Information

  1. School of Physics and Astronomy, Cardiff University, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 23 APR 2009
  2. Published Print: 27 MAR 2009

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9780470016923

Online ISBN: 9780470721780



  • life in planetary systems;
  • short history of life on Earth;
  • evolution of Solar System as a habitat;
  • Earth's orbit affected by gravitational fields;
  • possibility of life elsewhere;
  • Enrico Fermi and existence of extraterrestrial life;
  • objections to Fermi's paradox;
  • Allen Telescope Array - first telescope for radio signal detection from extraterrestrial life;
  • radio SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) programmes


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • A short history of life on Earth

  • The evolution of the Solar System as a habitat

  • The possibility of life elsewhere

  • Exercises

  • Further Reading and Web Sites