Simulations indicate Life is possible on Proxima b:

Discussion in 'Astronomy, Exobiology, & Cosmology' started by paddoboy, Dec 13, 2016.

  1. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

    Simulations suggest life on planet Proxima b might be possible if it has a thick atmosphere or strong magnetic field
    December 13, 2016 by Bob Yirka report

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    Artist’s impression of the planet orbiting the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri. Credit: ESO
    (—Dimitra Atri, an astrobiologist with the Blue Marble Institute of Space Science, has published a paper in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Societyoutlining his work running simulations of planet Proxima b, an exoplanet circling the star Proxima Centauri, which could possibly support life.

    Last August, a team of scientists identified a planet circling Proxima Centauri—at 4.2 light-years away, the red dwarf is the closet star to our own sun and the discovery of a planet in its Goldilocks zone excited the astronomy community because it represented the possibility extraterrestrial life. Since that time, Atri reports, he has created and run simulations meant to measure the impact of stellar flares on the planet and whether they might be enough to prevent or allow life to exist on the planet.

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  3. paddoboy Valued Senior Member


    Modelling stellar proton event-induced particle radiation dose on close-in exoplanets:

    • Accepted 2016 September 28.
    • Received 2016 September 19.
    • In original form 2016 June 23.
    • First published online September 30, 2016.
    Kepler observations have uncovered the existence of a large number of close-in exoplanets and serendipitously of stellar superflares with emissions several orders of magnitude higher than those observed on the Sun. The interaction between the two and their implications on planetary habitability are of great interest to the community. Stellar proton events (SPEs) interact with planetary atmospheres, generate secondary particles and increase the radiation dose on the surface. This effect is amplified for close-in exoplanets and can be a serious threat to potential planetary life. Monte Carlo simulations are used to model the SPE-induced particle radiation dose on the surface of such exoplanets. The results show a wide range of surface radiation doses on planets in close-in configurations with varying atmospheric column depths, magnetic moments and orbital radii. It can be concluded that for close-in exoplanets with sizable atmospheres and magnetospheres, the radiation dose contributed by stellar superflares may not be high enough to sterilize a planet (for life as we know it) but can result in frequent extinction level events. In light of recent reports, the interaction of hard-spectrum SPEs with the atmosphere of Proxima Centauri b is modelled and their implications on its habitability are discussed.
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