Atmospheric electrification in dusty, reactive gases in the solar system and beyond
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Detailed observations of the solar system planets reveal a wide variety of local atmospheric conditions. Astronomical observations have revealed a variety of extrasolar planets none of which resembles any of the solar system planets in full. Instead, the most massive amongst the extrasolar planets, the gas giants, appear very similar to the class of (young) brown dwarfs which are amongst the oldest objects in the universe. Despite this diversity, solar system planets, extrasolar planets and brown dwarfs have broadly similar global temperatures between 300 and 2500 K. In consequence, clouds of different chemical species form in their atmospheres. While the details of these clouds differ, the fundamental physical processes are the same. Further to this, all these objects were observed to produce radio and X-ray emission. While both kinds of radiation are well studied on Earth and to a lesser extent on the solar system planets, the occurrence of emission that potentially originates from accelerated electrons on brown dwarfs, extrasolar planets and protoplanetary disks is not well understood yet. This paper offers an inter-disciplinary view on electrification processes and their feedback on their hosting environment in meteorology, volcanology, planetology and research on extrasolar planets and planet formation.
Helling , C , Harrison , R G , Honary , F , Diver , D A , Aplin , K , Dobbs-Dixon , I , Ebert , U , Inutsuka , S , Gordillo-Vazquez , F J & Littlefair , S 2016 , ' Atmospheric electrification in dusty, reactive gases in the solar system and beyond ' Surveys in Geophysics , vol 37 , no. 4 , pp. 705-756 . DOI: 10.1007/s10712-016-9361-7
Surveys in Geophysics
© The Author(s) 2016 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.
ChH highlight financial support of the European Community under the FP7 by an ERC starting Grant 25743. DAD gratefully acknowledges support from EPSRC via Grant Numbers EP/K006142/1 and EP/K006088/1. FJGV thanks the Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (MINECO) under projects FIS2014-61774-EXP and ESP2013-48032-C5-5-R and the EU through the FEDER programme.
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