Searching For Jupiter And Saturn Analog Planets With Potential Icy Exomoons — A Panspermia Perspective

By Keith Cowing
Status Report
June 17, 2024
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Searching For Jupiter And Saturn Analog Planets With Potential Icy Exomoons — A Panspermia Perspective
The age and configuration of the known planets in putative, icy exomoon-bearing Jupiter-like gas giant consisting of candidate exosystems. The size of the bubbles indicates the mass of the planets in MJup. The dotted, dashed, and solid black curves in the upper right corner of the plot show the estimated impact ratio in the case of Late Heavy Bombardment and are used as an indicator of higher probability bioaerosol ejection in space 28 (steady decrease impact flux: dotted and dashed lines, and single cataclysm – sensu stricto Late Heavy Bombardment: solid line scenarios) [51]. I.e. the curves may show the changing tendency in the probability of bioaerosol ejection and transportation in the case of various exosystems in the period marked by the transparent grey horizontal regions. — astro-ph.EP

Considering the possibility of complex organic molecules and microbial life appearing under the ice shell of those satellites in the Solar system, this study investigates the possible analog sources (targeting the potential ice satellite hosting, Jupiter and Saturn-like planets in exoplanet databases) and the transport of such bioaerosols in an attempt to support or contradict Panspermia, a fringe theory about the fertilization of Earth.

Along many general parameters of the candidate planets, the host star, and the star system, additional factors thought to be related to Panspermia were also considered (e.g., the evolution of icy satellites, the frequency of impact related ejection, the traveling time from a source, and so on), revealing the following results.

Eleven exosystems, with candidate gas giants hosting icy satellites, were found in a database listing more than 5000 exoplanets. The exomoons of the oldest systems (c.a. > 8 Ga; HD 191939, HD 4203, and HD 34445) could have developed rapidly considering the short formation time (~100 Myrs), which may result in the overlap of the putative early biological evolution and asteroid bombardment phase, providing a higher chance to bioaerosol ejection to space due to frequent collisions. However, the direct transfer might have occurred too early, even before our Solar system was formed, which prevented the fertilization of the latter.

A longer formation of the exomoons (~3 Gyrs) significantly reduces the chance of ejection into space by asteroid impacts, which become less frequent over time, but increased the chance of arrival in time to the Solar system. Younger systems, such as HD 217107, HD 219828, HD 140901, and HD 156279 (c.a. 4 to 6 Ga), are better candidates of putative microbe source if the short icy satellite formation, along the higher impact and ejection frequency are expected considering direct transport from those systems.

Balazs Bradak

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP)
Cite as: arXiv:2406.09957 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2406.09957v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Balazs Bradak
[v1] Fri, 14 Jun 2024 12:04:26 UTC (1,228 KB)


Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA Space Station Payload manager/space biologist, Away Teams, Journalist, Lapsed climber, Synaesthete, Na’Vi-Jedi-Freman-Buddhist-mix, ASL, Devon Island and Everest Base Camp veteran, (he/him) πŸ––πŸ»