Planets that exist outside Earth’s solar system documentary - the quest for alien planets

McGill Physics student Evelyn Macdonald and her supervisor Prof. Nicolas Cowan used over a decade of observations of Earth's atmosphere taken by the SCISAT satellite to construct a transit spectrum of Earth, a sort of fingerprint for Earth's atmosphere in infrared light, which shows the presence of key molecules in the search for habitable worlds. This includes the simultaneous presence of ozone and methane, which scientists expect to see only when there is an organic source of these compounds on the planet. Such a detection is called a "biosignature."

"A handful of researchers have tried to simulate Earth's transit spectrum, but this is the first empirical infrared transit spectrum of Earth," says Prof. Cowan. "This is what alien astronomers would see if they observed a transit of Earth."


By Space & The Universe HD

Universe documentary - series that features computer-generated imagery and computer graphics of astronomical objects in the universe plus interviews with experts who study in the fields of cosmology, astronomy, and astrophysics.

Subscribe my channel for more videos. Thank you.

(Source:; December 14, 2019;
Back to INF

Loading please wait...