A stunning new study which reports that it is likely that water is ‘common’ on many planets may indicate that alien life could be far more likely than many thought.
As Fox News reports:
A shocking new study says that water is “common” on exoplanets, potentially changing how we look at planet formation and upending the search for extraterrestrial life.
Researchers from the University of Cambridge looked at data of 19 exoplanets and found water vapor on 14 of them. However, “the amounts were surprisingly lower than expected,” according to a release from the university. There was an abundance of potassium and sodium found on six other exoplanets, though amounts of other chemicals discovered were in line with expectations.
“We are seeing the first signs of chemical patterns in extra-terrestrial worlds, and we’re seeing just how diverse they can be in terms of their chemical compositions,” said project leader Nikku Madhusudhan in a statement. Madhusudhan first measured the low water vapor amount in giant exoplanets in 2014.
he researchers looked at exoplanets of all different sizes, including “mini-Neptunes” with masses 10 times that of Earth to “super-Jupiters” with masses 600 times that of Earth. The temperature of the planets was also considered, with temperatures ranging from 20 degrees Celsius to more than 2,000 degrees Celsius.
In 2018 ‘a stable body of liquid water’ was discovered on Mars, raising the possibly that life could have at one time existed on the Red planet.
Or perhaps it even still does.