Encyclopedia of Astrobiology

2015 Edition
| Editors: Muriel Gargaud, William M. Irvine, Ricardo Amils, Henderson James (Jim) CleavesII, Daniele L. Pinti, José Cernicharo Quintanilla, Daniel Rouan, Tilman Spohn, Stéphane Tirard, Michel Viso

Sagan Carl

  • Florence Raulin-CerceauEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-662-44185-5_1399


Carl Edward Sagan (November 9, 1934 – December 20, 1996) pioneered Exobiology since the beginning of planetary exploration and played a leading role in the preparation of experiments intended to detect signs of life on other planets. He was associated with the American space program since its beginning in the 1950s and contributed to the Mariner, Viking, Voyager, and Galileo missions.

His background in astronomy and astrophysics (University of Chicago) and his strong interest in the origin of life on Earth and elsewhere in the universe led him to combine scientific fields such as biology, chemistry, and astrophysics. He popularized Exobiology with talent and wrote many popular science bestsellers. Above all, he was very famous for cowriting and presenting in the 1980s the TV series Cosmos: A Personal Voyage, which was broadcasted all over the world.

Sagan promoted  SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) thanks to his fine talent as writer (Cosmic Connection: An...

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Maître de ConférencesCentre Alexandre Koyré (UMR 8560-CNRS/EHESS/MNHN/CSI) Muséum National d’Histoire NaturelleBrunoyFrance