Hints of water found on TRAPPIST-1 exoplanets

ESO
TRAPPIST-1 System

Astronomer Vincent Bourrier of the Observatoire de l'Université de Genève led an global team that included scientists from NASA and MIT to attempt to determine if there's water 40 light-years away on the seven Earth-sized planets orbiting TRAPPIST-1, a system which claims the biggest number of Earth-sized planets we've found to date. "Naturally, this also depends on the age of the system", the team of astronomers explain in their report, and how much water the planets originally formed with.

Following up on the discovery, Dr. Vincent Bourrier of the Geneva Observatory and colleagues used Hubble's Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph to study the amount of UV radiation received by TRAPPIST-1 planets. The outer bodies, which includes the three planets located in the star's habitable "goldilocks zone", are now thought to have held onto much of their life-sustaining water.

Using the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) aboard Hubble, an worldwide team of astronomers studied the amount of ultraviolet radiation being received by each of the seven TRAPPIST-1 planets, and ran calculations to determine how this radiation might be influencing the amount of water on each.

Le'Veon Bell fulfills promise by reporting to Steelers on September 1
Under the terms of the NFL's franchise tag structure, Bell will be paid $12.120 million for the 2017 season. Today, general manager Kevin Colbert agreed to a deal that will keep him with the team through 2020.

However, a definitive answer on the TRAPPIST-1 water question will await the arrival of better telescopes.

The TRAPPIST-1 system - named after the TRAnsiting Planets and PlanetesImals Small Telescope in Chile - was discovered a year ago. At the same time, measurements of the amount of ultraviolet light hitting these planets allow scientists to estimate the rate at which their atmospheres are bleeding into space. It is orbited by seven Earth-size planets, according to the Hubble Space Telescope. The more potent UV rays, like XUV radiation and X-rays, heat the upper atmosphere of a planet causing hydrogen and oxygen to escape.

"As it is very light, hydrogen gas can escape the exoplanets' atmospheres and be detected around the exoplanets with Hubble, acting as a possible indicator of atmospheric water vapor".

US Open 2017: Sharapova Defeats Timea Babos To Reach Third Round
If she can beat Ashleigh Barty next, Stephens would get to the fourth round at a major for the first time in almost 2½ years. The public here are well aware that Sharapova has spent most of her life in the United States.

While the inner planets may have lost more than 20 Earth-oceans-worth of water over their 8-billion-year life cycles, it seems the outer planets e, f and g - which lie in the habitable zone - may have lost much less, and, therefore, could still have some on their surfaces. This makes them much easier to observe.

It shows that "atmospheric escape may play an important role in the evolution of these planets", said Julien de Wit, co-author of the study and a researcher from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

"UV radiation is an important factor in the atmospheric evolution of planets".

Red Cross Workers to Deploy for Hurricane Harvey Relief in Houston
They're going to load up between 4 to 6 trailers full of supplies, including water, snacks, first aid supplies and other basics.

"Our results suggest that the outer planets are the best candidates to search for water with the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope", says Bourrier.

Share

Related News

  • US Approves First Gene Therapy for Young Leukemia Patients

    US Approves First Gene Therapy for Young Leukemia Patients

    Each dose of Kymriah contains a patient's own immune cells, which are sent to a lab to be genetically modified using a virus. The treatment was originally developed by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and licensed to Novartis .
    How to help: Austin shelters expecting influx of animals after Hurricane Harvey

    How to help: Austin shelters expecting influx of animals after Hurricane Harvey

    The Atlanta shelter is anticipating more animal shipments from areas near Houston and along the coast in the coming weeks. The shelter will provide people with all the supplies needed to care for the dogs.
    Running Community Mourns US, Peru Middle-Distance Runner David Torrence

    Running Community Mourns US, Peru Middle-Distance Runner David Torrence

    He made the 1500-meter final at the 2016 Olympics and recently set Peruvian national records in the 1500 and mile. He left the training camp of controversial coach Jama Aden when they offered him vitamin injections.
  • Trump pushes Congress for tax reform

    This would suggest that Trump's plan is more likely to bolster stock prices and CEO pay than trickle down to workers' salaries. He told the audience that the countries that have low business tax rates have an advantage over the United States.
    Alexa and Cortana lend their voices to a mighty new AI chorus

    Alexa and Cortana lend their voices to a mighty new AI chorus

    When this partnership goes live, Alexa-powered devices will be able to connect to Cortana by saying, " Alexa , open Cortana ". The two companies say the move is recognition that people will use more than one digital assistant.
    IL  governor vetoes bill to raise minimum wage to $15 per hour

    IL governor vetoes bill to raise minimum wage to $15 per hour

    Rauner said he had used his amendatory veto powers to rewrite the measure previous year to address those concerns. Religious leaders, including Cardinal Blase Cupich of the Archdiocese of Chicago, have lobbied for the credit.
  • On the Occasion of Eid al-Adha

    On the Occasion of Eid al-Adha

    The animal that's sacrificed differs from country to country and in India, it is goats that are sacrificed. By Eid , every pilgrim is obliged to perform taqsir or halq , which means cutting or shaving their hair.
    Harvey price gouging offenders will pay, Texas AG Paxton says

    Harvey price gouging offenders will pay, Texas AG Paxton says

    Now, a Houston convenience store has began charging $20 a gallon for gas, according to the Texas Attorney General's office. The Department investigates any time there is evidence that state law has been violated for gouging or price fixing.
    ASUS details Windows Mixed Reality Headset

    ASUS details Windows Mixed Reality Headset

    But while recent quarterly reports show continued gains in its Azure cloud business, PC sales remain a consistent drag on profits. In addition, Microsoft revealed that 343 Industries will create the new title in Halo universe for the mixed reality devices.
  • Labor Day Weekend Weather

    Labor Day Weekend Weather

    The unofficial last weekend of summer is getting off to a cool, fall-like start, but the weather will improve for Labor Day . There's only a few chances for showers depending on location through the three-day weekend and we will break it down below.
    Spinner Steve O'Keefe recalled to Australian cricket team for Bangladesh tour

    Spinner Steve O'Keefe recalled to Australian cricket team for Bangladesh tour

    Shakib returned figures of 5-68 to help his side dismiss Australia for 217 after which Bangladesh ended the second day on 45-1. Australia spinner Steve O'Keefe has been handed a recall to the Test squad following an injury to paceman Josh Hazlewood .
    Osaka warns she's just getting started after beating Kerber

    Osaka warns she's just getting started after beating Kerber

    After Rafael Nadal's win on Ashe earlier in the day, he complained about how noisy it is with the roof closed. Open champion and recent world No. 1. "But for me it was for sure not the best day and not the best match".