Science Questions

Could Neptune hold life?

Tue, 25th Jun 2013

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Anthony Knaup asked:



I'm Anthony Knaup I'm 12 years old and I would like to know if Neptune could hold life.



potosi mo, usa






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Life as we are familiar with it on Earth requires liquid water at between about -10C and 120C which is not likely to be found on Neptune which is much colder at least on its very ill defined surface syhprum, Tue, 9th Apr 2013

Neptune likely has oceans containing liquid water below a dense atmosphere, with temperatures ranging from  −218C (55K) in the clouds, to 5400K in the core. 

The oceans would likely get very little solar energy, but perhaps there would be some kind of geothermal energy sources capable of supporting life. 

With the variety of life on Earth, it is possible that some terrestrial extremophiles would be able to survive on Neptune, but whether the environment would have supported abiogenesis would be another question that would be difficult to answer without creating machinery capable of exploring the depths of the planet. CliffordK, Tue, 9th Apr 2013

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