Astronomers at Queen's University in Belfast discovered a terrestrial molecule for the first time in the atmosphere of a planet outside the solar system, it is a hydroxyl radical (OH), according to Universe Today, and this molecule is considered to be present on Earth, but scientists do not know yet How far it is on other planets, new research has shown that the molecule is present in hot Jupiter's atmosphere WASP-33b.
The planet is located 400 light-years from the sun, and it is a gas giant closer to its star than Mercury to the sun, as it is heated to extreme temperatures: more than 2500 degrees Celsius and this heating are able to meet most of the known minerals, but it also made the planet suitable for study.
The atmosphere of a distant planet
Scientists said that the chemicals in the atmosphere emit distinctive radiation in the temperature that can be easily recognized, they examined the planet with the Subaru telescope, and studies showed that the hydroxyl radicals are present in the planet's atmosphere, a molecule of one oxygen atom and one hydrogen atom (the abbreviation of OH), It reacts with water vapor and carbon monoxide.
The authors of the scientific work noted that "this is the first direct evidence of OH in the atmosphere of exoplanet water.
The scientists said, each discovery in this area improves our understanding of the outer planets and the methods needed to study their atmospheres.