Exoplanet habitability is traditionally assessed by comparing a planet's semi-major axis to the location of its host star's "habitable zone," the shell around a star for which Earth-like planets can possess liquid surface water.
The internal thermal and magnetic evolution of rocky exoplanets is critical to their habitability. We focus on the thermal-orbital evolution of Earth-mass planets around low mass M stars whose radiative habitable zone overlaps with the "tidal zone".
Recent discoveries of circumbinary planets by Kepler mission provide motivation for understanding their birthplaces - protoplanetary disks around stellar binaries with separations <1 AU.
Earth-like planets orbiting close to small stars probably have magnetic fields that protect them from stellar radiation and help maintain surface conditions that could be conducive to life.
In two recently published articles researchers from Instituto de Astrofsica e Cincias do Espao (IA3) show that the ratio of some heavy elements in a star, like Magnesium (Mg), Silicon (Si) and Iron (Fe), have a crucial influence in the composition of rocky exoplanets.
The Earth's atmosphere contains oxygen because plants continuously produce it through photosynthesis. This abundant supply of oxygen allows life forms like animals to flourish.
We used a sample of super-Earth-like planets detected by the Doppler spectroscopy and transit techniques to explore the dependence of orbital parameters of the planets on the metallicity of their host stars.
Characterizing the bulk atmosphere of a terrestrial planet is important for determining surface pressure and potential habitability.
It is well known that newly formed planetary systems undergo processes of orbital reconfiguration and planetary migration.
The detectability of planetesimal impacts on imaged exoplanets can be measured using Jupiter during the 1994 comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 events as a proxy.
The long-term carbon cycle is vital for maintaining liquid water oceans on rocky planets due to the negative climate feedbacks involved in silicate weathering.
We report a detection of water vapor in the protoplanetary disk around DoAr 44 with the Texas Echelon Cross Echelle Spectrograph - a visitor instrument on the Gemini north telescope.
The ExTrA facility, located at La Silla observatory, will consist of a near-infrared multi-object spectrograph fed by three 60-cm telescopes.
We report on the discovery and validation of Kepler-452b, a transiting planet identified by a search through the 4 years of data collected by NASA's Kepler Mission.
The discovery of a super-Earth-sized planet orbiting a sun-like star brings us closer than ever to finding a twin of our own watery world.
NASA's Kepler mission has confirmed the first near-Earth-size planet in the "habitable zone" around a sun-like star.
A fundamental astrobiological question is whether life arose spontaneously on earth or was transported here from an extrasolar system.
Detailed characterization of an extrasolar planet's atmosphere provides the best hope for distinguishing the makeup of its outer layers, and the only hope for understanding the interplay between initial composition, chemistry, dynamics & circulation, and disequilibrium processes.
We present a comprehensive study of the abundance of carbon dioxide in exoplanetary atmospheres.
The UV environment of a host star affects the photochemistry in the atmosphere, and ultimately the surface UV environment for terrestrial planets and therefore the conditions for the origin and evolution of life.