1932

Abstract

It has been known for decades that atmospheric escape is important for the evolution of terrestrial planets in the Solar System, although exactly how atmospheric escape changes the atmospheres of these bodies is still hotly debated. Rapidly increasing numbers of exoplanet observations provide new targets against which atmospheric escape models are tested. In this review we summarize recent studies related to atmospheric escape from exoplanets. The most important conclusions are that () escape can significantly influence the volatile contents of low-mass exoplanets (with mass lower than those of Uranus and Neptune) and the atmosphere and climate evolution histories of Solar System terrestrial planets; () models including detailed physics and chemistry in planetary upper atmospheres will be important for the interpretation of existing and future observations of exoplanets; and () fluid models considering 2D or 3D planetary upper atmospheres and particle models for planetary exospheres will be important not only for comparisons with observations but also for order of magnitude estimates of atmospheric escape rates. Our understanding of how escape shapes planetary atmospheres and influences the climate of low-mass planets can be expected to advance substantially in the coming decade.

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2015-05-30
2024-06-14
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