Nobel Prize winner Didier Queloz 'convinced' alien life will be found

Photo Taken In Sintra, Portugal
Photo credit: Getty

A Nobel Prize-winning scientist says he believes we could detect alien life within the next 30 years.

Didier Queloz was on Tuesday (local time) awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics "for the discovery of an exoplanet orbiting a solar-type star".

The Swiss astronomer was one of three scientists to be honoured "for contributions to our understanding of the evolution of the universe and Earth's place in the cosmos".

Speaking in London, he said he was "convinced" that extraterrestrial life exists, reports the Telegraph.

"I can’t believe we are the only living entity in the universe," he said.

"There are just way too many planets, way too many stars, and the chemistry is universal.

"The chemistry that led to life has to happen elsewhere."

Queloz, along with Michel Mayor, was awarded one half of the coveted prize between them, with the other half going to James Peebles. 

Queloz said he "blacked out" for two minutes after finding out he won the prize. 

He discovered the exoplanet - a planet outside our solar system - when he was still a PhD student. 

His supervisor at the time was fellow recipient Mayor.

As well as the prestige of winning the award, Queloz and Mayor will share half of the £740,000 (NZ$1.4 million) prize money, while Peebles will bank the other half.

Queloz is currently a professor at the University of Geneva and the University of Cambridge.

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