In the March 4 SN: Search for sustainable catalysts, deflating cancer’s defenses, species miscounts, frog spit secrets, an acrobatic bat robot, coconut-cracking crabs, baffling X-ray bump, neutron’s elusive lifetime, Zika’s baby photo and more.
PLANETARY LINEUP Seven Earth-sized planets orbit the star TRAPPIST-1 with short periods, from 1.5 to 20 Earth days. This artist’s illustration shows potential differences in the planets’ surfaces and sizes.
IN DEEP Samples from fluid pockets in crystals inside Mexico's Naica mine in Chihuahua revealed life-forms that may have been trapped in the minerals for up to 50,000 years.
Alexander Van Driessche/wikimedia commons (CC BY 3.0)
ONTO THE ICE This image from the Galileo spacecraft shows the icy surface of Europa. The Jovian moon is a target for a potential lander mission that will look for signs of life there.
New telescopes and spacecraft will soon help researchers scour our galaxy for signs of extraterrestrial life. But what might aliens look like? And if they do exist, why haven’t they returned our calls? These are just some of the questions addressed in the Science News special report “In Search of Aliens” (SN: 4/30/16, p. 24).