Archives

Extrasolar Planets: April 2014


The detection of strong thermochemical disequilibrium in the atmosphere of an extrasolar planet is thought to be a potential biosignature.

The goal of finding and characterizing nearby Earth-like planets is driving many NASA high-contrast flagship mission concepts, the latest of which is known as the Advanced Technology Large-Aperture Space Telescope (ATLAST).

Planetary rotation rate is a key parameter in determining atmospheric circulation and hence the spatial pattern of clouds. Since clouds can exert a dominant control on planetary radiation balance, rotation rate could be critical for determining mean planetary climate.

The ongoing discoveries of extrasolar planets are unveiling a wide range of terrestrial mass (size) planets around their host stars.

We investigate the formation of multiple-planet systems in the presence of a hot Jupiter using extended N-body simulations that are performed simultaneously with semi-analytic calculations.

Understanding the concept of habitability is related to an evolutionary knowledge of the particular planet-in-question. Additional indications so-called "systemic aspects" of the planetary system as a whole governs a particular planet's claim on habitability.

The Kepler-186 system consists of five planets orbiting an early-M dwarf. The planets have physical radii of 1.0-1.50 R⊕ and orbital periods of 4 to 130 days.

San Francisco State University astronomer Stephen Kane and an international team of researchers have announced the discovery of a new rocky planet that could potentially have liquid water on its surface.

From analytical studies of tidal heating, eclipses and planetary illumination, it is clear that the exomoon habitable zone (EHZ) - the set of moon and host planet orbits that permit liquid water on an Earthlike moon's surface - is a manifold of higher dimension than the planetary HZ.

A fluctuating tilt in a planet's orbit does not preclude the possibility of life, according to new research by astronomers at the University of Washington, Utah's Weber State University and NASA. In fact, sometimes it helps.

The discovery and characterization of exoplanets is one of the most exciting and fast-changing areas in modern astronomical research.

NAI-funded astrobiologists at the University of Washington have developed a new method of gauging the atmospheric pressure of exoplanets, or worlds beyond the solar system, by looking for a certain type of molecule.

It is well-known that stars with giant planets are on average more metal-rich than stars without giant planets, whereas stars with detected low-mass planets do not need to be metal-rich.

We present new astrometry for the young (12-21 Myr) exoplanet beta Pictoris b taken with the Gemini/NICI, Magellan/MagAO+Clio2, and Magellan/MagAO+VisAO instruments between 2009 and 2012.

Scientists recently discovered the source of naturally occurring aerosol particles in Earth's atmosphere that play an important role in cloud formation.

The habitable zone (HZ) is defined as the region around a star where a planet can support liquid water on its surface, which, together with an oxygen atmosphere, is presumed to be necessary (and sufficient) to develop and sustain life on the planet.

The formation of clouds affects brown dwarf and planetary atmospheres of nearly all effective temperatures.