THIS astonishing image is the long-awaited proof that alien life DOES exist, scientists have sensationally claimed
It was discovered in dust and particulate matter gathered deep in the Earth’s stratosphere.
Its finders say it is a “biological entity” made of carbon and oxygen - the building blocks of life.
And the scientists who made the incredible find insist there is no way it could have blown up into space from our planet - and so must have originated elsewhere in the universe.
It was discovered by Professor Milton Wainwright and his team from the University of Sheffield and the University of Buckingham Centre for Astrobiology.
Professor Wainwright sent balloons into the stratosphere 27 km above the Earth’s atmosphere to collect particles from space.
He claimed what they have discovered is not only proof that life exists in outer space, but that extraterrestrial organisms are continually raining down on earth.
He said: "The photo shows a structure colloquially called ‘the dragon particle’ which scientific analysis shows is made of carbon and oxygen and is therefore not a piece of cosmic or volcanic dust.
“This is clearly a biology entity (about 10micron in size), although it is unclear whether it is part of a single organism or is made up of smaller, individual microbes.
“It is certainly unusual and seems to be like nothing found on Earth.
“What is amazing is that these organisms appear on the sampling stubs in an absolutely pristine condition.
“There is no pollen, grass or pollution particles found with them, or for that matter soil or volcanic dust.
“Unless a means of lifting them from Earth exists which selectively sieves them out from other Earth-derived debris then they must be incoming from space.
“This, plus the fact that some of the biological material samples by the team produce impact craters when they hit the sampler, confirms their space origin.”
It comes just weeks after astronauts said they found traces of life on the surface of the International Space Station (ISS) which orbits Earth.