Chemical Coagulants In Pluto's Atmosphere Could Be Conducive For Astrobiological Life
By, Francis Benot'i Ph.D. and Ronald Stewart Th.D;Ph.D.
JUNE 30TH, 2010 - There are a number of interplanetary bodies within our solar system that astrobiologists are in hopes that as long as there are the correct atmospheric chemical constituents that the chemical induced atmospheric conditions for life in our solar system besides our own planet is a good distinct plausbility. Several prior celestial bodies within the confines of our own solar system are distinct in composition to where water vapor has been detected from previous space missions such as Europa and Titan. However, when it comes to bodies at the very edge of our solar system in the minds of some astrobiologists it is questionable if life could exist in such frigid and cold places. However, we are reminded that life in these places that have hostile extremely cold or exceedingly hot environments may not be life as we completely envision it. We know that in recent years that life has been found in frigid weather conditions like Anartica where temperatures sometimes drop as much as 100 degrees F below zero. Or other types of extremophile life has also been found in subquaceous volcanic vents on the oceans floor, where temperatures sometimes exceed 800 degrees (F). This article also reviews current understandings of these atmospheres on the basis of abundances of key molecular species. The systematic enrichment of methane and deuterated species from Jupiter to Neptune is consistent with formation models in which significant infall of icy and rocky planetesimals accompanies the formation of giant planets. In like manner we also know that the atmospheric conditions of the Saturnian satellite Titan has been strongly modified by photochemistry and interaction with the surface over 4.5 billion years; the combined knowledge of this moon's bulk density and estimates of the composition of the surface and atmosphere provide some constraints on this body's formation. Neptune's satellite Triton is a poorly known object for which it is hoped that some water may have been there as was shown by Voyager 2 in 1989.
(Brown Michael E. and Calvin Wendy C.(2000). Evidence For Crystalline Water and Ammonia Ices On Pluto's Satellite Charon brings to the reader's attention that Observations have resolved the satellite Charon from its parent planet Pluto, giving separate spectra of the two objects from 1.0 to 2.5 micrometers. The spectrum of Charon is found to be different from that of Pluto, with
water ice in crystalline form covering most of the surface of the satellite.They also bring out in their paper that Charon has an absorption feature in it's atmospheric spectrum which gives strong suggestive evidence of the presence of ammonia ices However, not just an ammonia based ice crystalline.
But, rather Ammonia ice–water mixtures have been proposed as the cause of flowlike features observed on the surfaces of many icy satellites. The existence of such ices on Charon may indicate geological activity in the satellite's past. There are some similar atmospheric coagulants and the spectrometry in past missions suggest that Pluto's craters have formulation of more water ice than ammonia based ice. This could suggest enough water for life.
The mean density of the Pluto-Charon system is well known and suggests an origin in the rather water-poor solar nebula. The recent occultation of a star by Pluto provides evidence that carbon monoxide, in addition to methane, may be present in its atmosphere.
Expanding the Habitable Zone
(Gretchen Vogel. (1999). Expanding The Habitable Zone in their technical paper suggests that our solar systems habitable zone for the potential expectation of astrobiological life should be extended out to as far as Pluto and it's largest moon named Charon. Dr. Vogel's colleagues suggest that Pluto's moon Charon may be hot enough to have liquid water. The belief is that Charon aside from the Pluto's other moons such as Nix that because Charon is so close to the gravitational and magnetic field forces of Pluto ( now classified as a minor planet), that the theromodynamic geological heat generated because of these conditions would allow Charon to extend enough warmth to have liquid water.
Where there is the availability to have liquid water there would also be the conditions for possible life at the rim of our solar system. Although it may be more plausible to expect astrobiological extremophile life forms to have a greater chance of existing more on some of the inner celestial bodies like Europa and Titan. However, where there could be a suffcient amount of water on Charon we cannot rule out the potential for some possible life to potentially exist in some remote section of Pluto more conducive to the chance of having some sort of extremophile to hyper-extremophile life forms.