Researching the origins of life

Two leading Swiss astronomers are collaborating on the setting up of a new centre in Zurich that will  examine fundamental questions of life.

This content was published on October 15, 2021 - 09:00

Didier Queloz was jointly awarded the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics for his work in furthering our understanding of the universe. Queloz and his doctoral advisor, Michel Mayor, discovered an exoplanet orbiting a sun-like star. Queloz has been bombarded with questions about life in the universe ever since.

He soon realised that these questions can't be answered by astronomy alone. So he got earth scientists, biologists, chemists and physicists on board to establish the new 'Center for the Origin and Prevalence of Life' at the federal technology institute ETH Zurich. Astrophysicist Sascha Quanz, a professor at the ETH, is also on board.

In this video, Queloz and Quanz explain why the time is right to bring different fields of science together and to find answers to the big questions concerning the origins of life.

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