Scientists Miscalculate What Exoplanets Might House Alien Life

After some time spent on the subject, it was concluded that exoplanets thought to be safe for alien life to exist are, in fact, filled with toxic gases. A troubling fact due to the system that we currently have that monitors the so-called “safe zones” in a solar system where conditions for life are optimal.

This usually is in regards to temperature and water but researchers from the University of California, Riverside smash that thinking. They mark the fact that more than 50 percent of the previously accepted planets are not suitable due to very high levels of carbon monoxide and dioxide, that will not allow for complex life.

The lead scientist on the matter, professor Timothy Lyons had this to say: “Imagine a ‘habitable zone for complex life’ defined as a safe zone where it would be plausible to support rich ecosystems as we find on Earth today. Our results indicate that complex ecosystems like ours cannot exist in most regions of the habitable zone as traditionally defined.”

Scientists Miscalculate What Exoplanets Might House Alien Life

Many types of exoplanets have been observed by means of computer models and it has been noted that stars that are distant from their star require greenhouse gas to help maintain stable temperatures. Planets that are riding the edge of the safe zone may be highly toxic due to a substantial amount of carbon dioxide needed to sustain the needed ecosystem.

NASA scientist Dr. Edwards Schwieterman adds: “To sustain liquid water at the outer edge of the conventional habitable zone, a planet would need tens of thousands of times more carbon dioxide than Earth has today. That’s far beyond the levels known to be toxic to human and animal life on Earth.”

Carbon dioxide and other harmful gases may truly hinder the development of more sensitive alien life forms similar to us on these exoplanets. If our species and others with similar builds and sensibilities are to safely migrate into space, the habitable zone within solar system would have to get smaller thus reducing the possibilities to 30 percent of the previously accepted norm. The Astrophysical Journal hosts this study.

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Emmy Skylar

About the Author: Emmy Skylar

Emmy Skylar started working for Debate Report in 2017. Emmy grew up in a small town in northern Manitoba. But moved to Ontario for university. Before joining Debate Report, Emmy briefly worked as a freelance journalist for CBC News.  She covers politics and the economy.

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