Based on our knowledge of
extremophilic life on Earth, we can only imagine how diverse life could
be elsewhere - possibly using hydrocarbons as a universal solvent rather
than water, and utilizing different energy sources and building blocks.
Finally, he will discuss the possibility of life on exoplanets and the
implications of the Fermi Paradox on the existence of complex life
beyond our Solar System.
research interests focus on the interaction of microbes with their
natural geological environment in an aqueous medium. In particular, he
is interested in the presence of liquid-rich environments on other
planets and moons inside and outside of our Solar System and how these
environments can serve as a potential habitat for microbial life.
investigations of the habitability of the near-surface environment of
Mars, the Martian subsurface, the Gliese 581 system, water-rich clouds
on Venus, and ammonia-water puddles and hydrocarbon lakes on the surface
of Saturnís moon Titan.
Dr. Schulze-Makuch received
his Ph.D. in geosciences from the University of Wisconsin Milwaukee in
1996 and worked for the following two years as Senior Project
Hydrologist at Envirogen, Inc., an environmental research and consulting
firm, before he joined the faculty at the University of Texas at El Paso
in 1998. During the following year he was also a NASA Faculty Fellow at
the Goddard Space Flight Center. In 2004 he joined the faculty at
Washington State University and was promoted to full professor in 2010.
The same year he received the Friedrich-Wilhelm Bessel Price from the
Humboldt Foundation for extraordinary achievements in the field of
theoretical biology. Dr. Schulze-Makuch wrote four books in the fields
of astrobiology, one science fiction novel, and published more than 100
papers in academic journals.
research interests focus on the presence of liquid-rich environments on
other planets and moons inside and outside of our Solar System and how
these environments can serve as a potential habitat for life.