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Why did NASA create a fresh oven atmosphere in the lab?



Great Exoplanet Bake-Off: Why did NASA create a fresh oven atmosphere in the lab?

Hot Jupiters are gas giants that orbit very closely to the host sun. Scientists have discovered dozens of planets in the distant solar system. The NASA team now uses a very hot oven to reproduce the hot Jupiter atmosphere on the planet.

Credits: NASA / JPL-Caltech

Scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California have developed a simple new method for baking fresh alien atmosphere from the oven and can follow home at home thanks to a simple study published on January 29th in The Astrophysical Journal.

What is needed is a beaker of hydrogen gas, a pinch of carbon monoxide and an oven set at 200 degrees Celsius (1200 degrees Fahrenheit). The mixture is fully coated with ultraviolet light and baked for 200 hours. viola! You are now ready to analyze your alien planetary atmosphere. (Do not eat the outside atmosphere.)

Why did NASA go to space with Betty Crocker? The agency tried to solve the mystery of the explanets known as hot Jupiters. They sit too close to the earth's sun and orbit in perfect orbits in less than 10 days on Earth. [9 Scientific Excuses for Why Humans Haven’t Found Aliens Yet]

As you can probably guess from the name, hot Jupiter is soaring. The JPL team said in a statement that it often reaches temperatures from about 1,000 to 5,000 F (530 to 2800 C). They are also bombarded by ultraviolet (UV) rays from the nearest sun.

This extreme array of life makes hot alien planets brighter than many alien planets and facilitates in-depth study. A few of the thousands of known extraterrestrial planets fall into this category, and unlike most planets beyond our solar system, astronomers can visualize the atmosphere with varying wavelengths of light to recognize hot Jupiter. These atmospheres tend to be very cloudy in areas of low altitude where high altitude or clouds are difficult to form.

The NASA JPL team wanted to know why. So they used a very strong oven to create a hot Jupiter atmosphere in the lab.

Previous research, such as the 2016 study in the Space Science Reviews Journal, suggested that hot Jupiter atmosphere contains hydrogen gas (the most abundant molecule in space) and some carbon monoxide (CO). So the team made a mixture of hydrogen with a pinch of 0.3% CO and heated it to various temperatures to reach a peak at 2,240F (1,230C).

Simply heating this wandering atmosphere did not produce the desired haze. However, the mixture was bathed in ultraviolet radiation. After exposure to radiation for more than a week in the oven, the ersatz atmosphere eventually developed a shroud of aerosols, a solid particle suspended in gas, like a fog hanging on a city skyline. And it created the fog they were looking for.

"These results change the way we interpret the hazy hot Jupiter atmosphere," researcher Benjamin Fleury, a JPL researcher, said in a statement. "In the future we want to study the nature of aerosols, how they form, how they absorb light, and how they respond to environmental changes."

This study provides the first evidence that radiation plays a key role in creating an aerosol shell around hot Jupiters. The radioactive fuel reactions that take place in JPL's oven provide some clues to generate astonishing amounts of water and carbon dioxide and give astronomers a clue when looking into the universe for this giant alien planet.

Originally posted Live science.


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