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A test for the detection of vegetation on extrasolar planets: detection of vegetation in Earthshine spectrum and its diurnal variation

  • Danielle Briot (a1), Karim Agabi (a2), Eric Aristidi (a2), Luc Arnold (a3), Patrick François (a1) (a4), Pierre Riaud (a5), Patrick Rocher (a1) and Jean Schneider (a5)...

Abstract

The search for life in extraterrestrial planets is to be tested first with the only planet known to shelter life. If the planet Earth is used as an example to search for a signature of life, the vegetation is one of its possible detectable signature, using the Vegetation Red Edge due to chlorophyll in the near infrared (0.725 μm). We focus on the test of the detectability of vegetation in the spectrum of Earth seen as a simple dot, using the reflection of the global Earth on the lunar surface, i.e., Earthshine. On the Antartic, the Earthshine can be seen during several hours in a day (not possible at our latitudes) and so variations due to different parts of Earth, that is to say oceans and continents facing the Moon could be detected.

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References

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