Whether they are sweet, peaceful sky travellers or menacing, flesh-devouring invaders; the idea of encountering alien species is endlessly fascinating.
Unfortunately, most of us don’t have our own spaceship to zip around the universe in; scouring dusty planets for tentacles and glowing, pulsating eggs.
One day perhaps this sort of trip will be your average weekend away. But until then, we must rely on the brilliance of astronauts; with their out-of-this-world brains and bravery.
A brand new documentary is about to land on earth which explores the beauty and mysteries of space through the eyes of experienced astronauts.
Narrated by Will Smith, he of alien punching fame, One Strange Rock is hosted by a different astronaut each episode; each with their own unique perspective and expertise.
These magnificently shot episodes, produced by surreal filmmaker Darren Aronofsky, will each explore a different fascinating topic exploring planets and life.
These topics will include cosmic violence, survival versus destruction, oxygen and, of course, alien life; blending deeply personal storytelling techniques with mesmerising footage.
You can watch the trailer for One Strange Rock yourself below:
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It is hoped this beautiful series will instil a profound love within viewers for our own planet and the incredible way it has been shaped by the wonders of the universe.
Astronaut co-host Nicole Stott told CNET:
I hope that people feel like they’ve been reintroduced to the planet,
We go through our daily lives … without really even thinking about the fact that we’re on a planet.
— Mike Massimino (@Astro_Mike) March 23, 2018
At an event promoting One Strange Rock, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield advised Mashable about the true enormity of the universe; full of possibilities:
We’ve basically proven that every star has planets, Then you start doing the math.
The math isn’t easy. How many stars are in the universe? Well, that depends on the size of the universe.
We’re able to observe the cosmic microwave background (CMB), radiation formed around 400,000 years after the Big Bang.
It tells us the observable universe goes back around 14 billion years. But there could be something beyond the CMB, or even other universes contained in a massive ‘multiverse.’
In terms of potential alien life, Hadfield explained how ‘life is relatively common’ but ‘complex, intelligent life is rare:’
If we can find one fossil on Mars, or one little tube worm deep under the oceans of Europa or Enceladus, then the universe is full of life.
So although we may not be looking at an intelligent, technologically advanced species such as our own, it is important to remember life can be defined in a number of ways.
Stopped by @COSI to check out the #OneStrangeRock exhibit. So cool seeing Earth through the eyes of astronauts. @OneStrangeRock premieres March 26 at 10pm on @NatGeoChannel! pic.twitter.com/DUQSqyZMQY
— Alissa (Uh-LEASE-Ah) (@AlissaHenryTV) March 21, 2018
Jeff Hoffman, an astronaut who has clocked up an astronomical 1,211 hours up in space, told Mashable:
I believe there is life elsewhere in the universe.
But as a scientist, I look for evidence.
And as yet, we have no evidence. So I have nothing to support my belief. But I still believe it.
One Strange Rock will premiere March 26 on the National Geographic Channel.
This is absolute must see for anyone who is aching with curiosity about what else – or who else – is out there; living, loving and dying among the stars…
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Jules studied English Literature with Creative Writing at Lancaster University before earning her masters in International Relations at Leiden University in The Netherlands (Hoi!). She then trained as a journalist through News Associates in Manchester. Jules has previously worked as a mental health blogger, copywriter and freelancer for various publications.