Our unique approach to the scientific aspects of astrobiology research combines fieldwork, laboratory simulations, thermochemical modelling and in situ observations. Our primary objectives are:
To address these objectives, we draw on knowledge and techniques from a range of science disciplines, such as microbiology, organic geochemistry, minerology, planetary science and instrument development. We have world class planetary simulation facilities, which are part of Europlanet – a European Infrastructure project.
We study the feasibility of habitable environments existing elsewhere in the Solar System and how life could exist in such environments. We use this information to identify bio-signatures that could be used as evidence of life. Our work is fundamental for understanding the conditions in other planetary environments, which can inform future life detection missions, and is crucial for understanding the data (or samples) returned by such missions.