The Requirements For Complex Life

You are alive right now, but the question is how

vector DNA color by gemmerich is marked with CC BY-SA 2.0.

“vector DNA color” by gemmerich is marked with CC BY-SA 2.0.

By: Thomas J Ahern, Journalist

For complex life, there are a lot of requirements. The basics we would need for life is an energy source, so that life can have energy, complex chemistry, so that it is a material heavier than hydrogen and helium, a gentle environment, so that if life were to come into existence, it wouldn’t immediately die, and on an obvious note, the planet has to be rocky and not a gas giant. It also has to be a perfect distance away from the star. If it is too far, it will end up leaving the star. If it is too close, it will go into the star. If we are the perfect distance away so that neither of the previous 2 happen, we would also have to be within a location that it is not too cold or too hot. It also needs be warm enough to have liquid water. The planet has to be a good size as well, because that can change the temperature a lot.

Life would require protection from Ultraviolet radiation, as UV rays could damage molecules and cause mutations. There are locations in the solar system that meet some of the requirements, so let’s talk about that. One of Jupiter’s moons, Europa is icy, however, water might be unfrozen underneath by tides. The icy outer part of the planet protects it from UV rays. It is possible that there is life there. But overall, a ton has to go right for complex life. We are very lucky to have our planet.