Midnight In The Desert — atmosphere

This Alien Planet Might Have an Atmosphere Like Earth’s

Posted by K R on

This Alien Planet Might Have an Atmosphere Like Earth’s

Have we finally found where the aliens live? Scientists have recently confirmed the chemical makeup of the atmosphere for GJ 1132 b, a nearby exoplanet 39 light-years away. The stunning results significantly bolster hopes the planet possesses both water and methane in its thick outer layer — which raises the possibility the planet is habitable to alien lifeforms. The paper, still up for review, in The Astrophysical Journal says the exoplanet — a large planet (roughly the size of Jupiter) that orbits a star — could have a steamy, water-rich surface and a rocky core. The team was able to...

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'Alien' Life Could Exist High in Earth's Atmosphere

Posted by K R on

'Alien' Life Could Exist High in Earth's Atmosphere

Life on Earth shows up in surprising places. It's been found in high-temperature vents deep undersea and high in the air. But we're still trying to learn more about these so-called "extremophiles." Researchers are now pondering how well can life reproduce in these environments. Also, could microbes of this type be found on other worlds? In March, a group of University of Houston students — piggybacking on a payload with a prime mission to scope out auroras — will fly a high-altitude experiment from Alaska to see what microbes are in the high atmosphere, between 18 km and 50 km...

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Carbon dioxide levels in atmosphere forecast to shatter milestone

Posted by K R on

Carbon dioxide levels in atmosphere forecast to shatter milestone

Atmospheric concentrations of CO2 will shatter the symbolic barrier of 400 parts per million (ppm) this year and will not fall below it our in our lifetimes, according to a new Met Office study. Carbon dioxide measurements at the Mauna Loa observatory in Hawaii are forecast to soar by a record 3.1ppm this year – up from an annual average of 2.1ppm – due in large part to the cyclical El Niño weather event in the Pacific, the paper says. The surge in CO2 levels will be larger than during the last big El Niño in 1997/98, because manmade emissions...

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