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Astrobiology is a discipline that is best enjoyed in the field. What follows is a series of short descriptions by University of Washington students and faculty of selected astrobiological destinations that our planet offers. We cannot hope to provide a comprehensive list – with more space and time we might have included the Burgess shale of Canada; the Atacama desert of Chile; the Cretacious/Tertiary boundary at Gubbio, Italy; Louis Pasteur's home and lab in Paris; Witwatersrand mine in South Africa; the channelled scabland of eastern Washington state, to name but a few. Nevertheless, the ten selected locales have played primary roles in determining how we have come to view the phenomenon of life, and how we have placed constraints on its potential occurrence both on our own planet and elsewhere.
From boiling microbial ponds in Yellowstone to frozen wastes of Greenland harboring Earth's oldest sedimentary rocks, a lifetime of exploration awaits you.
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