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Characterization of Exoplanet Atmospheres: Spectral Retrieval and Chemistry


Line, Michael Robert (2013) Characterization of Exoplanet Atmospheres: Spectral Retrieval and Chemistry. Dissertation (Ph.D.), California Institute of Technology. doi:10.7907/9VHA-2N67.


The study of exoplanets is rapidly evolving into an important and exciting field of its own. My investigations over the past half-decade have focused on understanding just a small sliver of what they are trying to tell us. That small sliver is their atmospheres. Atmospheres are the buffer between the bulk planet and the vacuum of space. The atmosphere is an important component of a planet as it is the most readily observable and contains the most information about the physical processes that can occur in a planet. I have focused on two aspects of exoplanetary atmospheres. First, I aimed to understand the chemical mechanisms that control the atmospheric abundances. Second, I focused on interpreting exoplanet atmospheric spectra and what they tell us about the temperatures and compositions through inverse modeling. Finally, I interpreted the retrieved temperature and abundances from inverse modeling in the context of chemical disequilibrium in the planetary atmospheres.

Item Type:Thesis (Dissertation (Ph.D.))
Subject Keywords:Planetary Science, Exoplanets, Atmospheres, Radiative Transfer, Inverse Modeling, Chemical Kinetics, Photochemistry, Statistical Techniques
Degree Grantor:California Institute of Technology
Division:Geological and Planetary Sciences
Major Option:Planetary Sciences
Thesis Availability:Public (worldwide access)
Research Advisor(s):
  • Yung, Yuk L.
Thesis Committee:
  • Stevenson, David John (chair)
  • Knutson, Heather A.
  • Ingersoll, Andrew P.
  • Blake, Geoffrey A.
  • Yung, Yuk L.
Defense Date:17 May 2013
Non-Caltech Author Email:mrline69 (AT)
Funding AgencyGrant Number
JPL Graduate Fellowship vial the JPL Research and Technology Development ProgramUNSPECIFIED
NAI Virtual Planetary LaboratoryUNSPECIFIED
Record Number:CaltechTHESIS:05212013-091653227
Persistent URL:
Related URLs:
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Default Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:7729
Deposited By: Michael Line
Deposited On:22 May 2013 22:25
Last Modified:08 Nov 2023 00:36

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