Habitable Zones & Global Climate: July 2006

Researchers from NAI's University of Rhode Island Team and their colleagues have studied the use of phosphorus vs. sulfur in the membrane lipid sythesis pathways of organisms resident in the ocean's subtropical gyres.

NAI's Virtual Planetary Laboratory Team have explored the possibility of detecting exovegetation on terrestrial planets orbiting M stars. They estimated the red-shift of this surface feature using leaf optical property spectra with a three photon photosynthetic scheme. The authors have produced a model wherein a pigment-derived surface signature such as exovegetation could be detected, but would be dependent upon the extent of the vegetation on the surface, cloud cover, and viewing angle.