NASA Team Looks to Ancient Earth First to Study Hazy Exoplanets



Washington, DC, United States

“We like to say that Archean Earth is the most alien planet we have geochemical data for,”

For astronomers trying to understand which distant planets might have habitable conditions, the role of atmospheric haze has been hazy. To help sort it out, a team of researchers has been looking to Earth – specifically Earth during the Archean era, an epic 1-1/2-billion-year period early in our planet’s history. Read more: go.nasa.gov/2kTBhPU

Caption: When haze built up in the atmosphere of Archean Earth, the young planet might have looked like this artist's interpretation - a pale orange dot. A team led by Goddard scientists thinks the haze was self-limiting, cooling the surface by about 36 degrees Fahrenheit (20 Kelvins) – not enough to cause runaway glaciation. The team’s modeling suggests that atmospheric haze might be helpful for identifying earthlike exoplanets that could be habitable. Credits: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/Francis Reddy


  • Title: NASA Team Looks to Ancient Earth First to Study Hazy Exoplanets
  • Date Created: 2017-12-08
  • Location: Greenbelt, MD
  • Rights: GSFC
  • Album: ayoung

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