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dc.contributor.authorZahnle, Kevin J.
dc.contributor.authorCatling, David C.
dc.contributor.authorClaire, Mark W.
dc.identifier.citationZahnle , K J , Catling , D C & Claire , M W 2013 , ' The rise of oxygen and the hydrogen hourglass ' , Chemical Geology , no. 0 , pp. 26-34 .
dc.identifier.otherPURE: 66186008
dc.identifier.otherPURE UUID: f2e5f5d3-18ab-4c93-95f1-b7b1720d3bb0
dc.identifier.otherRIS: urn:C4181840937F1E869D7ED53615A8FCAA
dc.identifier.otherScopus: 84889604042
dc.identifier.otherORCID: /0000-0001-9518-089X/work/34103250
dc.descriptionFunding: the NASA Exobiology Program and the NASA National Astrobiology Institute. DCC acknowledges support from NASA Exobiology grant number NNX10AQ90G.en
dc.description.abstractOxygenic photosynthesis appears to be necessary for an oxygen-rich atmosphere like Earth’s. But available geological and geochemical evidence suggest that at least 200 Myr, and possibly more than 700 Myr, elapsed between the advent of oxygenic photosynthesis and the establishment of an oxygen atmosphere. The interregnum implies that at least one other necessary condition for O2 needed to be met. Here we argue that the second condition was the oxidation of the surface and crust to the point where O2 became more stable than competing reduced gases such as CH4. The cause of Earth’s surface oxidation would be the same cause as it is for other planets with oxidized surfaces: hydrogen escape to space. The duration of the interregnum would have been determined by the rate of hydrogen escape and by the size of the reduced reservoir that needed to be oxidized before O2 became favored. We suggest that continental growth has been influenced by hydrogen escape, and we speculate that, if there must be an external bias to biological evolution, hydrogen escape can be that bias.
dc.relation.ispartofChemical Geologyen
dc.rights© The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.en
dc.subjectHydrogen escapeen
dc.subjectAtmospheric evolutionen
dc.subjectQE Geologyen
dc.titleThe rise of oxygen and the hydrogen hourglassen
dc.typeJournal articleen
dc.description.versionPublisher PDFen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. Earth and Environmental Sciencesen
dc.contributor.institutionUniversity of St Andrews. St Andrews Isotope Geochemistryen
dc.description.statusPeer revieweden

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