CPS Events Publications

APEX this week: The Cosmic Zoo

Start: Mar 15, 2018 01:00 PM
End: Mar 15, 2018 02:00 PM

Location: Garwood Lecture Theatre, first floor of the UCL South Wing

APEX Meeting logo

This week's Astrobiology and Planetary Exploration (APEX) seminar features a talk by:

Dr William Bains (Cambridge):  The Cosmic Zoo - Complex life on many worlds


Are humans a galactic oddity, or will complex life with human abilities develop on planets with environments that remain habitable for long enough? Are the key events that took life from simple cells to astronauts unique occurrences that would be unlikely to occur on other planets? William Bains will describe why he thinks that complex life may be abundant in the galaxy, and that we live in a Cosmic Zoo. He focuses on what life does - it's functional abilities - rather than specific biochemistry or anatomy. Systematically exploring the various pathways that led to the complex biosphere we experience on planet Earth, he shows that most of the steps along that path are likely to occur on any world hosting life. He ends with two questions. Does complex life mean intelligent life? If technological intelligence is a rare, almost unique feature of Earth's history, then there can be no visitors to the cosmic zoo other than ourselves. And how do you prove it? 

The full APEX programme for this term is now available at:


As usual, everyone interested in these topics is welcome to attend.

Page last modified on 30 oct 17 10:52 by Joanna Fabbri