Oak Ridge National Laboratory


News Release

Media Contact: Fred Strohl (strohlhf@ornl.gov)
Communications and External Relations


Extraterrestrial life topic of July 14 reading at Borders

OAK RIDGE, Tenn., June 25, 1998 — Are we alone in the universe?

It is a question many ponder with regard to whether or not life exists beyond Earth.

Author Michael Lemonick, associate editor of Time magazine, explores the question in his book Other Worlds: The Search for Life In the Universe, which he will discuss at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 14 during the Books & Beakers series at Borders Books and Music, 202 Morrell Road, Knoxville, across from West Town Mall.

Lemonick surveys scientists and the science involved in the study of the possibility of life elsewhere in the universe. The topic is more interesting than ever because of the solid facts about planets orbiting nearby stars and the frenzy about life on Mars or the Jovian moon Europa.

The author summarizes current scientific evidence for the presence of life beyond Earth. He portrays three scientists whose work relates to the search for life in the universe, while looking back at some studies undertaken centuries ago to try and answer the question of whether life exists in the universe beyond Earth. Lemonick notes such early scholars sometimes lost their lives because of the "heretical" views they espoused about extraterrestrial life during their time.

In addition to his appearance at Borders, Lemonick also will speak in Weinberg Auditorium of the Department of Energy's (DOE) Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) at 2 p.m. Wednesday, July 15. Members of the public may attend that lecture by calling ORNL's Communications and Public Affairs at 865-574-4165. More information about the program also is available by calling that number.

Lemonick's appearance is the second in the Books & Beakers series, cosponsored by Lockheed Martin and Borders. The series is supported through Lockheed Martin Energy Research Corporation.

ORNL, one of DOE's multiprogram national research and development facilities, is managed by Lockheed Martin Energy Research Corporation.