Tuesday, August 11, 2020
Contact us    |    Advertise    |   Help    |   Cookie Policy    |   Privacy Policy    RSS icon Twitter icon Facebook icon
    Home  ·  News  ·  Forum  ·  Stories  ·  Image Gallery  ·  Columns  ·  Encyclopedia  ·  Videos
Find: in
This news story is archived which means that, while it is still available to view, the information contained within may be outdated and the original source site/link may no longer be viewable.

For the most recent stories, please visit either the site's home page or main news section.

Can astronomers detect exoplanet oceans ?

Posted on Wednesday, 18 July, 2012 | Comment icon 8 comments | News tip by: Waspie_Dwarf


Image credit: NASA

 
As the hunt for habitable planets intensifies astronomers are turning their attention to alien oceans.

With a surface ocean being such a strong indicator of a habitable planet, a method with which to detect such an ocean on a planet orbiting another star would seem to be vital in determining if it might be a suitable place to find life. One method might be to look for specular reflection, the 'glint' on the water like we see on Earth when the Sun reflects off of the surface. The planet's reflectivity ( or 'albedo' ) could then be measured to determine if a liquid ocean is likely to be present there.

"Astronomers are keen to figure out how to detect oceans on exoplanets, because biologists assure us that liquid water is necessary for life as we know it," said team leader Nicolas Cowan. "The challenge is that exoplanets are very far away, so at best they appear as Carl Sagan's proverbial ‘pale blue dot’."

"Detecting water on the surface of exoplanets is becoming a high priority for researchers, as surface water is considered a requirement for habitability."

  View: Full article

 Source: Phys.org


  Discuss: View comments (8)

   


 
Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Super-Fly on 15 July, 2012, 23:22
Interesting, didnt they trial somesort of thing like this with the transit of venus, or am i completely wrong? Nice post OP!
Comment icon #2 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 15 July, 2012, 23:42
Interesting, didnt they trial somesort of thing like this with the transit of venus, or am i completely wrong Venus is just about the last planet you would use to help in the search for oceans. With a surface temperature of 480oC, there's not a lot of liquid water there. What astronomers were interested in with the transit of Venus was the planet's atmosphere. The hope is that the observations made will be able to help detect atmospheres on exoplanets when they transit their star.
Comment icon #3 Posted by Super-Fly on 15 July, 2012, 23:44
Venus is just about the last planet you would use to help in the search for oceans. With a surface temperature of 480oC, there's not a lot of liquid water there. What astronomers were interested in with the transit of Venus was the planet's atmosphere. The hope is that the observations made will be able to help detect atmospheres on exoplanets when they transit their star. Ah right, my mistake, i knew they were interested in for looking for something, atmosphere. Thanks for replying!
Comment icon #4 Posted by marcos anthony toledo on 18 July, 2012, 11:42
I would wait for a orbital observatory in deep space to search for oceans on exoplanets patance will win out in the end.
Comment icon #5 Posted by Sundew on 18 July, 2012, 17:00
While it would be scientifically interesting to find water or even oceans on other worlds, it is all rather academic to exploration/colonization. If a space vehicle cannot breach the speed of light barrier (and all thoughts are to how to do that are presently theoretical, certainly not practical) then these "water worlds" will always be tantalizingly out of reach. We are talking dozens or hundreds of light years distance, that is, if you COULD make a ship able to reach the speed of light, it would STILL take one or multiple generations of astronauts to reach these worlds. The effects of space ... [More]
Comment icon #6 Posted by Rhino666 on 18 July, 2012, 18:48
Why does it matter. We're not going there, it's too far.
Comment icon #7 Posted by csspwns on 19 July, 2012, 1:08
yea we should focus on mars a bit more its closer and there is a big chance of water there
Comment icon #8 Posted by St. Jimmy on 19 July, 2012, 20:08
yea we should focus on mars a bit more its closer and there is a big chance of water there This is interesting. A picture of Mars how it may have looked a billion years ago. http://xtremecoders.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/Mars-Water.jpg By the way, the chance of finding a liquid form of water isn't that big because of current conditions on the planet surface. But in the atmosphere is still small amount of water vapor.


Please Login or Register to post a comment.


  On the forums
Forum posts:
Forum topics:
Members:

6752319
281174
185648

 
John Cleese on the possibility of life after death
8-10-2020
The 80-year-old comedy veteran is a keen proponent of the idea that existence does not simply end when we die.
Should lithium be added to our drinking water ?
8-10-2020
A new study suggests that adding the psychoactive chemical to water supplies could reduce suicide rates.
Reptile had a neck 3 times the length of its body
8-9-2020
Scientists have been studying how a prehistoric creature named Tanystropheus supported its insanely long neck.
Are we living in a giant deflated croissant ?
8-9-2020
Scientists have determined the most likely shape of the heliosphere which surrounds the solar system.
Other news in this category
Are we living in a giant deflated croissant ?
Posted 8-9-2020 | 7 comments
Scientists have determined the most likely shape of the heliosphere which surrounds the solar system....
 
What will happen at the end of the universe ?
Posted 8-7-2020 | 39 comments
The Big Bang may have brought the universe into existence, but will a similar event bring about its demise?...
 
Crew Dragon successfully returns to Earth
Posted 8-3-2020 | 25 comments
NASA astronauts Robert Behnken and Douglas Hurley have safely returned home after two months in space....
 
Some stars could host seven habitable planets
Posted 8-2-2020 | 5 comments
Other stars may be able to host more than our own solar system's solitary habitable world, a new study suggests....
 
NASA's new Mars rover successfully launches
Posted 7-30-2020 | 2 comments
The ambitious new rover, which will look for signs of life on Mars, is now on its way to the Red Planet....
 
Russia conducts anti-satellite weapons test
Posted 7-24-2020 | 7 comments
Both the US and UK have expressed concern about an apparent test launch of a Russian space-based weapon....
 
Evidence of active volcanism found on Venus
Posted 7-21-2020 | 1 comment
Far from being a dormant world, the surface of Venus seems to show evidence of recent volcanic activity....
 
Pentagon to build first military space station ?
Posted 7-19-2020 | 19 comments
The US Space Force is reportedly working on plans for an experimental outpost in orbit around the Earth....
 
Four mystery objects spotted far out in space
Posted 7-13-2020 | 15 comments
Astronomers have discovered a number of peculiar ring-shaped 'islands' unlike anything ever seen before....
 

 View: More news in this category
 
Top   |  Home   |   Forum   |   News   |   Image Gallery   |  Columns   |   Encyclopedia   |   Videos   |   Polls
UM-X 10.712 Unexplained-Mysteries.com (c) 2001-2020
Terms   |   Privacy Policy   |   Cookies   |   Advertise   |   Contact   |   Help/FAQ