Scientists to discover life on exoplanets


On: Jan 2020

A group of scientists from the United States of America implemented a newer method to discover oxygen in exoplanet atmospheres, which may speed up the search for life. The research issued in the journal Nature Astronomy introduced the technique for detecting a powerful signal that oxygen substance generates when they collide. This indication could help researchers difference between living and non-living planets.

Oxygen is utilized as a signal of life as it produced by life on Earth when organisms like plants and algae alert sunlight into chemical energy. Researchers from University of California, Riverside suggested a way of capturing high-level concentrations of oxygen from non-living methods, through NASA’s scientist James Webb Space Telescope to be implemented in 2021.

When molecules of oxygen collide with each other, they obstruct parts of the cardinal light spectrum from being observed by a telescope. And hence, by investigating patterns in that light researchers can consider the merging of the whole atmosphere of planet. If an exoplanet is extremely close to its host start or gathers too much star light, the environment becomes immensely warm and dripping with water vapour from dehydrating oceans.

 This water could then be divided by powerful radiograph into atomic hydrogen as well as oxygen. The light hydrogen moves to space very easily, heading the oxygen behind. Over the time, this technique may cause the overall oceans to be eliminate while generating a thick oxygen atmosphere. That’s why, lavish oxygen in the atmosphere of exoplanet may not significantly mean rich life but may rather than represent a history of water loss, as per the study.

It is a significant to know whether and how much dead planets produce atmospheric oxygen, so that we can better identify when a planet is alive or not, said by scientist from the University of California.