Venus

No Phosphine In The Atmosphere Of Venus

No Phosphine In The Atmosphere Of Venus

The detection of phosphine (PH3) has been recently reported in the atmosphere of Venus employing mm-wave radio observations (Greaves et at. 2020). We here demonstrate that the observed PH3 feature with JCMT can be fully explained employing plausible mesospheric SO2 abundances (~100 ppbv as per the SO2 profile given in their figure 9), while the identification of PH3 in the ALMA data should be considered invalid due to severe baseline calibration issues.

Titan

Surface Energy Of The Titan Aerosol Analog

Surface Energy Of The Titan Aerosol Analog "Tholin"

The photochemical haze produced in the upper atmosphere of Titan plays a key role in various atmospheric and surface processes on Titan.

Mars

Geologists Simulate Soil Conditions To Help Grow Plants On Mars

Geologists Simulate Soil Conditions To Help Grow Plants On Mars

Humankind's next giant step may be onto Mars. But before those missions can begin, scientists need to make scores of breakthrough advances, including learning how to grow crops on the red planet.

Meteorites, Asteroids, & Comets

The Hamburg Meteorite Contains Pristine Extraterrestrial Organic Compounds

The Hamburg Meteorite Contains Pristine Extraterrestrial Organic Compounds

In the night of January 16, 2018, a fireball meteor streaked across the sky over the Midwest and Ontario before landing on a frozen lake in Michigan.

Titan

NASA Scientists Discover 'Weird' Molecule in Titan's Atmosphere

NASA Scientists Discover 'Weird' Molecule in Titan's Atmosphere

NASA scientists identified a molecule in Titan's atmosphere that has never been detected in any other atmosphere. In fact, many chemists have probably barely heard of it or know how to pronounce it: cyclopropenylidene, or C3H2.

Habitable Zones & Global Climate

The First Habitable-Zone, Earth-sized Planet Discovered with TESS

The First Habitable-Zone, Earth-sized Planet Discovered with TESS

TESS, the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, was launched in 2018 with the goal of discovering small planets around the Sun's nearest neighbors, stars bright enough to allow for follow-up characterizations of their planets' masses and atmospheres.

Titan

Detection Of Cyclopropenylidene On Titan With ALMA

Detection Of Cyclopropenylidene On Titan With ALMA

We report the first detection on Titan of the small cyclic molecule cyclopropenylidene (c-C3H2) from high sensitivity spectroscopic observations made with the Atacama Large Millimeter/sub-millimeter Array (ALMA).

Astrochemistry

Coexistence Of CH4, CO2 And H2O In Exoplanet Atmospheres

Coexistence Of CH4, CO2 And H2O In Exoplanet Atmospheres

We propose a classification of exoplanet atmospheres based on their H, C, O, N element abundances below about 600 K. Chemical equilibrium models were run for all combinations of H, C, N, O abundances, and three types of solutions were found, which are robust against variations of temperature, pressure and nitrogen abundance.

Extrasolar Planets

AI And Photonics Join Forces To Make It Easier To Find New Earths

AI And Photonics Join Forces To Make It Easier To Find New Earths

Australian scientists have developed a new type of sensor to measure and correct the distortion of starlight caused by viewing through the Earth's atmosphere, which should make it easier to study the possibility of life on distant planets.

Astrochemistry

Methanimine As A key Precursor Of Aimines In The Interstellar Medium: The Case Of Propargylimine

Methanimine As A key Precursor Of Aimines In The Interstellar Medium: The Case Of Propargylimine

A gas-phase formation route is proposed for the recently detected propargylimine molecule. In analogy to other imines, such as cyanomethanimine, the addition of a reactive radical (C2H in the present case) to methanimine (CH2NH}) leads to reaction channels open also in the harsh conditions of the interstellar medium.

Extrasolar Planets

Which Stars Can See Earth As A Transiting Exoplanet?

Which Stars Can See Earth As A Transiting Exoplanet?

Transit observations have found the majority of exoplanets to date. Spectroscopic observations of transits and eclipses are the most commonly used tool to characterize exoplanet atmospheres and will be used in the search for life.

More top stories from October.