Webb finds no atmosphere in potentially habitable TRAPPIST-1

James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) has provided fresh insights into the star system located just at the distance of 40 light-years away from Earth. 

TRAPPIST-1 is a unique solar system featuring seven Earth-sized planets orbiting a cold, red-dwarf star.

Interestingly, at least three planets in this system lie within the habitable zone, making them enticing targets in the hunt for atmosphere-supporting worlds beyond Earth.

Webb mainly targeted TRAPPIST-1 b, one of the planets in this system situated close to its host star. 

The space observatory’s spectrum data revealed that this planet supports no atmosphere than expected.

“Our observations did not see signs of an atmosphere around TRAPPIST-1 b. This tells us the planet could be bare rock, have clouds high in the atmosphere, or have a very heavy molecule like carbon dioxide that makes the atmosphere too small to detect,” said Ryan MacDonald, one of the authors of this new study, in an official release

Source link