Life and light: Exotic photosynthesis in binary and multiple-star systems

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Journal Article
Astrobiology, 2012, 12 (2), pp. 115 - 124
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The potential for Earth-like planets within binary/multiple-star systems to host photosynthetic life was evaluated by modeling the levels of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) such planets receive. Combinations of M and G stars in (i) close-binary systems; (ii) wide-binary systems, and (iii) three-star systems were investigated, and a range of stable radiation environments were found to be possible. These environmental conditions allow for the possibility of familiar, but also more exotic, forms of photosynthetic life, such as IR photosynthesizers and organisms that are specialized for specific spectral niches. © 2012, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.
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