Tuesday, October 16, 2018
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news story is archived which means that, while it is still available to view, the information contained within may be outdated and the original source site/link may no longer be viewable.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:

6302542
266988
177498

 
Future of 1,000mph supersonic car in doubt
10-15-2018
An attempt to build the first car capable of exceeding 1,000mph has hit a major financial roadblock.
Robot gets field-tested at construction sites
10-15-2018
A recently released video shows Boston Dynamics' Spot robot climbing stairs and walking over platforms.
U-boat wreck is dubbed 'underwater Chernobyl'
10-15-2018
With its 60-ton cargo of mercury, the wreckage of U-864 is an environmental disaster waiting to happen.
Hawking feared rise of enhanced 'superhumans'
10-14-2018
The late physicist predicted that genetic engineering will ultimately render half of the world's population obsolete.
Other news in this category
Are there moonmoons orbiting other moons ?
Posted 10-14-2018 | 7 comments
A new study has looked in to the possibility that some large moons may actually have their own 'submoons'....
 
Astronomers detect 19 more fast radio bursts
Posted 10-13-2018 | 2 comments
The previously undiscovered deep space flashes could help scientists solve this ongoing astronomical enigma....
 
Astronauts will fly again after Soyuz failure
Posted 10-12-2018 | 52 comments
NASA has stated that it is still committed to using Russian Soyuz rockets to launch astronauts to the ISS....
 
Soyuz astronauts make emergency landing
Posted 10-11-2018 | 52 comments
Two astronauts narrowly escaped disaster today when their Soyuz rocket developed a problem with its booster....
 
Virgin Galactic to fly to space 'within weeks'
Posted 10-9-2018 | 7 comments
Richard Branson's fledgling space tourism firm could be heading in to space for the first time very soon....
 
Hubble in trouble as another gyroscope fails
Posted 10-8-2018 | 7 comments
The iconic space telescope has now lost so many of its gyroscopes that it may never fully recover....
 
Voyager 2 is nearing the edge of the solar system
Posted 10-8-2018 | 5 comments
The long-lived interplanetary spacecraft is set to become the second probe ever to reach interstellar space....
 
Europe's MASCOT rover dies after just one day
Posted 10-7-2018 | 9 comments
The latest robotic lander to touch down on the asteroid Ryugu had only enough power to last around 17 hours....
 
Curiosity rover switches to backup 'brain'
Posted 10-5-2018 | 4 comments
NASA engineers have switched over to the rover's secondary computer to help resolve a technical fault....
 

 View: More news in this category
 
Top   |  Home   |   Forum   |   News   |   Image Gallery   |  Columns   |   Encyclopedia   |   Videos   |   Polls
UM-X 10.712 Unexplained-Mysteries.com © 2001-2018
Terms   |   Privacy Policy   |   Cookies   |   Advertise   |   Contact   |   Help/FAQ