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Stellar Energetic Particle-driven Production of Biologically Relevant Molecules in Atmospheres of Young Earth-like Exoplanets Around Active G-K Stars

Presentation #1105 in the session “Open Engagement Session B”.

Published onMar 17, 2021
Stellar Energetic Particle-driven Production of Biologically Relevant Molecules in Atmospheres of Young Earth-like Exoplanets Around Active G-K Stars

The chemistry of N2, CO2, CH4-rich atmospheres of terrestrial-type exoplanets around active G-K stars is a complex problem: the star’s ionizing radiation in the form of X-ray and Extreme UV radiation and the precipitating energetic particles accelerated in coronal mass ejection driven shocks can drive complex chemistry in the exoplanetary atmosphere, and ignite the production of complex molecules (Airapetian et al., 2016). We developed a set of atmospheric models to simulate the formation of organic molecules that can be considered as atmospheric pre-biosignatures from exoplanets around active stars. The model has recently been extended to account for the production of ions, their role in the enhanced chemistry in the lower atmosphere, as well as the interaction of these ions with the aerosols. We applied the photochemical-collisional model to simulate the chemistry of a young terrestrial-type exoplanets resembling the Hadean Earth to highlight the creation of atmospheric pre-biosignatures, relevant greenhouse gases, and the presence of aerosols driven by stellar activity sources. We also discuss the impact of that modified atmospheric chemistry on the exoplanetary climate.


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