Science & Tech

Dinosaurs still exist on other planets, say scientists

Dinosaurs still exist on other planets, say scientists
New Theory About Asteroid That Killed Dinosaurs
Cheddar / VideoElephant

The dinosaurs may have been extinct for more than 65 million years but scientists have suggested that they could still exist as aliens on other planets.

Researched published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society suggests that dinosaurs might not only be on other planets but that we could also find them.

The study suggests that if scientists researched compounds that are not currently on Earth but ones that were around during the age of the dinosaurs then it may yield some results.

One key element that scientists believe could unlock what would be a groundbreaking discovery is oxygen. The levels of oxygen on Earth at the moment are around 21 per cent but during the time of dinosaurs it was higher at 30 per cent. This, in theory, allowed the dinosaurs to flourish and rule the planet for millions of years.

The study suggests that if similar levels of oxygen can be discovered on faraway planets then the conditions could be right for alien like dinosaurs to exist.

The study's co-author Lisa Kaltenegger said in a statement: "Modern Earth's light fingerprint has been our template for identifying potentially habitable planets, but there was a time when this fingerprint was even more pronounced — better at showing signs of life."

She adds: "This gives us hope that it might be just a little bit easier to find signs of life — even large, complex life — elsewhere in the cosmos."

One clue that could unlock this discovery which scientists are looking for are signs of a Phanerozoic stage on a planet which would allow creatures like dinosaurs to evolve.

The study's lead author, Rebecca Payne of Cornell University, said: "The Phanerozoic is just the most recent 12 per cent or so of Earth's history, but it encompasses nearly all of the time in which life was more complex than microbes and sponges. These light fingerprints are what you'd search for elsewhere if you were looking for something more advanced than a single-celled organism."

If they are successful in finding these conditions on other planets then Kaltenegger believes it could lead to the discovery of dinosaurs that have never been found on Earth.

"Hopefully we'll find some planets that happen to have more oxygen than Earth right now because that will make the search for life just a little bit easier," she said. "And, who knows, maybe there are other dinosaurs waiting to be found."

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