JHU Performs First Lab Simulation of Exoplanet Atmospheric Chemistry

Lead author Sarah Hörst, right, and assistant research scientist Chao He examine samples of simulated atmospheres in a dry nitrogen glove box, where they are stored to avoid contamination from Earth’s atmosphere. (Credit: Will Kirk/JHU) Scientists have conducted the first lab experiments on haze formation in simulated exoplanet atmospheres, an important step for understanding upcoming observations of planets outside the solar system with the James Webb Space Telescope. The simulations are necessary to establish models of the atmospheres of far-distant worlds, models that can be used to look for signs…

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