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Influence of Biomass Emissions on Habitability, Biosignatures, and Detectability in Earth-like Atmospheres

Gebauer, Stefanie and Vilovic, Iva and Grenfell, John Lee and Wunderlich, Fabian and Schreier, Franz and Rauer, Heike (2021) Influence of Biomass Emissions on Habitability, Biosignatures, and Detectability in Earth-like Atmospheres. Astrophysical Journal, 909 (2), pp. 1-19. Institute of Physics (IOP) Publishing. doi: 10.3847/1538-4357/abd9cc. ISSN 0004-637X.

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Abstract

We investigate the atmospheric responses of modeled hypothetical Earth like planets in the habitable zone of the M dwarf AD Leonis to reduced oxygen (O2), removed biomass (dead Earth), and varying carbon dioxide (CO2) and surface relative humidity (sRH). Results suggest large O2 differences between the reduced-O2 and dead scenarios in the lower but not the upper atmosphere layers. Ozone (O3) and nitrous oxide (N2O) also show this behavior. Methane depends on hydroxyl (OH), its main sink. Abiotic production of N2O occurs in the upper layers. Chloromethane (CH3Cl) decreases everywhere on decreasing biomass. Changing CO2 (from ×1 to ×100 present atmospheric levels (PALs)) and sRH (from 0.1 to 100 per cent) does not influence CH3Cl as much as lowering biomass. Therefore, CH3Cl can be considered a good biosignature. Changing sRH and CO2 has a greater influence on temperature than changing O2 or biomass alone. Changing the biomass produces a change of about six km effective height in transmission compared with changing CO2 and sRH ( about 25 km). In transmission O2 is discernible at 0.76 micron for more than 0.1 PAL. The O3 9.6 micron band is weak for the low O2 runs and difficult to discern from dead Earth; however O3 at 0.3 micron could serve as an indicator to distinguish between reduced O2 and dead Earth. The spectral features of N2O and CH3Cl correspond to effective heights of a few kilometers. CH4 could be detectable tens of parsecs away with the Extremely Large Telescope except for the 10-4 and 10-6 PAL O2 scenarios. O2 is barely detectable for the 1 PAL O2 case and unfeasible at lower abundances.

Item URL in elib:https://elib.dlr.de/141528/
Document Type:Article
Title:Influence of Biomass Emissions on Habitability, Biosignatures, and Detectability in Earth-like Atmospheres
Authors:
AuthorsInstitution or Email of AuthorsAuthor's ORCID iD
Gebauer, StefanieStefanie.Gebauer (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-7450-3207
Vilovic, Ivaiva.vilovic (at) yahoo.comhttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-0586-9373
Grenfell, John LeeLee.Grenfell (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0003-3646-5339
Wunderlich, Fabianfabian.wunderlich (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-2238-5269
Schreier, FranzFranz.Schreier (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0001-7196-6599
Rauer, Heikeheike.rauer (at) dlr.dehttps://orcid.org/0000-0002-6510-1828
Date:11 March 2021
Journal or Publication Title:Astrophysical Journal
Refereed publication:Yes
Open Access:Yes
Gold Open Access:No
In SCOPUS:Yes
In ISI Web of Science:Yes
Volume:909
DOI :10.3847/1538-4357/abd9cc
Page Range:pp. 1-19
Publisher:Institute of Physics (IOP) Publishing
ISSN:0004-637X
Status:Published
Keywords:exoplanet, atmospheres
HGF - Research field:Aeronautics, Space and Transport
HGF - Program:Space
HGF - Program Themes:Space Exploration
DLR - Research area:Raumfahrt
DLR - Program:R EW - Space Exploration
DLR - Research theme (Project):R - Planetary Evolution and Life
Location: Berlin-Adlershof
Institutes and Institutions:Institute of Planetary Research > Extrasolar Planets and Atmospheres
Institute of Planetary Research > Leitungsbereich PF
Deposited By: Grenfell, John Lee
Deposited On:21 Apr 2021 10:02
Last Modified:21 Apr 2021 10:02

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