The Atmospheres of Extrasolar Planets

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Marley, Mark S.
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Abstract
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The characteristics of irradiated solar system planetary atmospheres have been studied for decades, consequently modern planetary science benefits from an exhaustive body of ground- and space-based data. The study of extrasolar planetary atmospheres, by contrast, is still in its infancy and currently rests on a few score of datapoints, mostly of the transiting planets. This short survey aims not to review this dynamic field but rather stresses the importance of a few theoretical concepts and processes for our understanding of exoplanet atmospheres. Topics covered include atmospheric structure and dynamics, cloud processes and photochemistry of planetary atmospheres. Influences on the albedos, spectra, and colors of extrasolar planets are reviewed and caution is urged in the interpretation of exoplanet colors.
Comment: 19 pages, 8 figures; to appear in the proceedings of the Les Houches Winter School "Physics and Astrophysics of Planetary Systems", (EDP Sciences: EAS Publications Series)
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Astrophysics
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