Is there a methane habitable zone?

A sunlight glint off a methane lake near Titan’s north pole (infrared image). Credit: NASA/JPL/University of Arizona/DLR

For a long time now, we have heard the mantra “follow the water” when it comes to searching for life elsewhere. Life as we know it here on Earth requires liquid water, whether it is tiny microbes or elephants. It has thus been assumed that carbon-based life somewhere else that is basically similar to ours in its chemical makeup (another assumption) would also require water for its survival and growth. But is that necessarily true? In recent years, more consideration has been given to the possibility that life could develop in other mediums as well, besides water. A liquid is still ideal, for allowing the necessary molecules to bond together. So what are the alternatives? Well, one of the most interesting possibilities is something we have already seen now elsewhere in our solar system – liquid methane…

See Universe Today for the full article.