First distant planet with water vapor in atmosphere detected

13 Septembre, 2019, 22:51 | Auteur: Therese Cote
  • This artist’s rendering shows Exoplanet K2-18b foreground its host star and an accompanying planet in this system. On Wednesday scientists announced they have discovered water on the planet outside our solar system that has temperatures suitable for

In a tantalizing first, scientists have discovered water at a planet outside our solar system that has temperatures suitable for life.

Although a lot of scientists and astronomers are excited, some of them are still dubious and doubtful, The findings may help in speculation but there is nothing definitive though at the moment.

"Given it's so far away we don't really have any other choice but stay on our own Earth, so it's important to make Earth great again rather than looking for an alternative to go to", Tsiaras said.

Dr Angelos Tsiaras at UCL Centre for Space Exochemistry Data, said: "Finding water in a potentially habitable world other than Earth is incredibly exciting".

When K2-18b was discovered in 2015, Tsiaras and his colleagues thought it would be a good candidate for a form of analysis called transit spectroscopy, which involves studying the changes in a star's light as a planet "transits", or passes in front of it.

"Life as we all know relies on water", explained Tinetti. Its star, a red dwarf, is considerably smaller and cooler than our sun, a yellow dwarf, and its atmosphere is also different than ours.

Inside 10 years, new space telescopes may most likely decide if K2-18b's environment contains gases that could be produced by living creatures.

Astronomers have detected water vapour in the atmosphere of another planet in a habitable zone for the first time.

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The team used archive data from 2016 and 2017 captured by Hubble and developed open-source algorithms to analyze the host star's light filtered through K2-18b's atmosphere.

Many exoplanets with atmospheres are giant balls of gas, along with the handful of rugged planets for which information is available appear to have no air in any way.

A NASA tally now lists more than 4,000 confirmed exoplanets and another 4,000 potential candidates.

Unless we don't have these big telescopes we can not say much. The exoplanet completes one orbit around its sun every 33 days.

The star, glowing red in the day sky, is believed to bombard the planet with radiation harsh enough to quickly inflict any human visitors with cancer, although "life there may have evolved differently" in order to survive, noted the London team's Ingo Waldmann. More important: It sits in its star's "habitable zone", where it is bathed in the right amount of warmth to allow for liquid water on its surface.

The results revealed the molecular signature of water vapour, also indicating the presence of hydrogen and helium in the planet's atmosphere, researchers said.

The surface, meanwhile, could be wet or dry.

They discovered that the unmistakable touch of water vapor. That means the surface gravity on this planet would be significantly higher than on our planet.

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