Content Marked with: Astrobiology

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Broccoli gas: a better way to find life in space

"Broccoli, along with other plants and microorganisms, emit gases to help them expel toxins. Scientists believe these gases could provide compelling evidence of life on other planets. These types of gases are made when organisms add a carbon and three hydrogen atoms to an undesirable chemical element. This process, called methylation, can turn potential toxins...
By Jules Bernstein | | Astrobiology
Solar System and planets

Laughing gas in space could mean life

"Scientists at UC Riverside are suggesting something is missing from the typical roster of chemicals that astrobiologists use to search for life on planets around other stars — laughing gas. Chemical compounds in a planet’s atmosphere that could indicate life, called biosignatures, typically include gases found in abundance in Earth’s atmosphere today." Read more.
By Jules Bernstein | | Astrobiology
AU Microscopii

Newly discovered planet zips around baby star in a week

Understanding how planets form is one of the main challenges scientists face when placing our own and other planetary systems in context. Planets are thought to form from the disk-shaped clouds of gas and dust that surround newborn stars, but this process has never been observed. Astronomers normally only observe planets after they have already...
By Holly Ober | UCR News | | Exoplanets and Planetary Science
Trappist-1 planetary system (c) NASA / JPL / Caltech

Surprising number of exoplanets could host life

Our solar system has one habitable planet — Earth. A new study shows other stars could have as many as seven Earth-like planets in the absence of a gas giant like Jupiter. This is the conclusion of a study led by UC Riverside astrobiologist Stephen Kane published this week in the Astronomical Journal. The search...
By Jules Bernstein | UCR News | | Exoplanets and Planetary Science
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