Subsurface Exolife

We study the prospects for life on planets with subsurface oceans, and find that a wide range of planets can exist in diverse habitats with relatively thin ice envelopes

We quantify the energy sources available to these worlds, the rate of production of prebiotic compounds, and assess their potential for hosting biospheres.

Life on these planets is likely to face challenges, which could be overcome through a combination of different mechanisms. We quantify the number of such worlds, and find that they may outnumber rocky planets in the habitable zone of stars by a few orders of magnitude.

Manasvi Lingam, Abraham Loeb
(Submitted on 27 Nov 2017)

Comments: 48 pages; 2 figures
Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Solar and Stellar Astrophysics (astro-ph.SR)
Cite as: arXiv:1711.09908 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:1711.09908v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)
Submission history
From: Manasvi Lingam [view email]
[v1] Mon, 27 Nov 2017 19:00:02 GMT (360kb)
https://arxiv.org/abs/1711.09908
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