Earth molecule discovered in exoplanet atmosphere for the first time

(ORDO NEWS) — OH is a hydroxyl radical that has never been found in the atmospheres of other planets before. It is formed by ionizing radiation. Dublin astronomers at Queens University in Belfast have made a sensational discovery. When studying exoplanet WASP-33, an OH molecule was discovered. The peculiarity of this chemical compound is that it is formed by the destruction of water vapor. This indicates that there is water on the WASP-33.

This is reported by Universe Today.

The exoplanet WASP-33 orbits the star HD 15082 (constellation Andromeda). It is located 378 light years from the Sun. The study was carried out using a Subaru heavy-duty telescope.

This planet is unsuitable for life, because it is heated to a temperature of 3.2 thousand degrees Celsius. The presence of OH molecules in its atmosphere can be considered a turning point in the study of celestial bodies. This discovery is unique because it is the first discovery of hydroxide radicals outside the solar system.

Extrasolar planets began to be studied relatively recently. And such a discovery will help to better understand the biochemistry of exoplanets that revolve around other stars. It can also help find Earth-like planets. Perhaps they will be suitable for human life in the future.

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