Graduate students and faculty at the autumn 2018 Astrobiology Field Trip to Death Valley, CA
Sunset over Death Valley, CA
Students and faculty at the NASA Jet Propulsion Lab on the Spring 2018 UWAB workshop.
Students and faculty at Yellowstone National Park on the Fall 2015 UWAB workshop.

Welcome to Astrobiology at the University of Washington

UWAB Headlines


UWAB Admissions Application Deadline Extended

Due to the recent crash of our department website we have decided to extend our admissions application deadline to January 31st, 2019!  When you are ready to submit your application, please email a 2 page statement of interest along with your application packet to your home department to  You can find all of the details about the application process and the prompt for the statement of interest on our Admissions Page.


Searching for Life in the Great Beyond

The College of Arts & Sciences at the University of Washington covered a story on Searching for Life in the Great Beyond . In the interview, Professor Victoria Meadows highlights how team members are working towards answering the question of: Are We Alone? "At VPL we use simulators with different capabilities to figure out what instrument would work best to make the sort of observations we want to make. We share this information with NASA, because NASA wants to know how it can use its assets to best search for life in the Universe.” The Virtual Planetary Laboratory is so instrumental in identifying the needs of future space technology that NASA recently awarded it a grant totaling $11 million over the next five years. MORE>


UWAB faculty are accepting new students this year

For prospective graduate students considering applying to UW: the Astrobiology program is accepting applicants for the Dual-Title Ph.D. program! The deadline is January 15, 2019. See the Admissions page for faculty accepting new students. MORE>


Modeled Climates and Spectra for Possible Evolved Climates for the Seven-Planet TRAPPIST-1 System

The TRAPPIST-1 system hosts seven terrestrial-sized planets, in and around the habitable zone of their small M dwarf host star. Since M dwarf stars exhibit a long superluminous pre-main-sequence phase during which its planets likely experience extreme volatile loss, the TRAPPIST-1 planets may have highly evolved, possibly uninhabitable atmospheres. Resultant possible atmospheres may be post runaway atmospheres like Venus, dominated by CO2, or be dominated by O2 as a result of severe water loss. These atmospheres exhibit spectroscopic signals in transit that may be observable by the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope. For more, read this new paper led by Andrew Lincowski, Ph.D. Candidate in Astronomy and Astrobiology. MORE>


NASA Astronaut Dr. Kate Rubins visits the Genome Sciences Department

Graduate students and postdocs from the Astrobiology Program and Genome Sciences Department met with NASA astronaut Dr. Kate Rubins to discuss how scientific experiments are performed aboard the ISS. A summary of Dr. Rubins's visit was published by the UW student newspaper, The Daily. MORE>