Astron. J., 155, 195-195 (2018/May-0)
Redox evolution via gravitational differentiation on low-mass planet's: implications for abiotic oxygen, water loss, and habitability.
WORDSWORTH R.D., SCHAEFER L.K. and FISCHER R.A.
Abstract (from CDS):
The oxidation of rocky planet surfaces and atmospheres, which arises from the twin forces of stellar nucleosynthesis and gravitational differentiation, is a universal process of key importance to habitability and exoplanet biosignature detection. Here we take a generalized approach to this phenomenon. Using a single parameter to describe the redox state, we model the evolution of terrestrial planets around nearby M stars and the Sun. Our model includes atmospheric photochemistry, diffusion and escape, line-by-line climate calculations, and interior thermodynamics and chemistry. In most cases, we find abiotic atmospheric O2 buildup around M stars during the pre-main-sequence phase to be much less than calculated previously, because the planet's magma ocean absorbs most oxygen liberated from H2O photolysis. However, loss of noncondensing atmospheric gases after the mantle solidifies remains a significant potential route to abiotic atmospheric O2 subsequently. In all cases, we predict that exoplanets that receive lower stellar fluxes, such as LHS1140b and TRAPPIST-1f and g, have the lowest probability of abiotic O2 buildup and hence may be the most interesting targets for future searches for biogenic O2. Key remaining uncertainties can be minimized in future by comparing our predictions for the atmospheres of hot, sterile exoplanets such as GJ1132b and TRAPPIST-1b and c with observations.
© 2018. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
astrobiology - planet-star interactions - planets and satellites: atmospheres - planets and satellites: terrestrial planets - ultraviolet: planetary systems
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