Life on the edge
They also are looking into the red edge effect. Seen at 700 nanometers out, where normal human vision quits working, this reflectance spectrum is a signature of the fact that there is very intense chlorophyll absorption going on.
A third way yet to find extrasolar planets is to look for wobbly stars because as the planet especially a massive planet goes around the star it causes the star to wobble a bit. The Hubble Space Telescope has found wobbly stars.
NASA has two missions in the works designed to find possible evidence for life on extrasolar planets. One features a space-based instrument that will make measurements in the near infrared region; the other gives longer wavelength to get good biosignatures for things like methane and oxygen.
Blankenship said that speculation about the natural world of extrasolar planets is at this point speculative, but that it is important to get a handle on what the possibilities are, how things might look, what measurements to make and what experiments to do to conclude whether there is life on another world.
I think that everyone thinks that there are Earth-like ones out there, but very few have been detected so far , he said. One of the things that Ive learned is that you have to free your mind from the constraints of thinking that life elsewhere has to be lik
Washington University in St. Louis