Towards astrobiological experimental approaches to study planetary UV surface environments

Ximena C. Abrevaya, Martin Leitzinger, Oscar J. Oppezzo, Petra Odert, G. Juan M. Luna, Manish Patel, Ana F. Forte-Giacobone, Arnold Hanslmeier, Bruce G. Elmegreen, L. Viktor Tóth, Manuel Güdel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The stellar ultraviolet radiation (UVR) has been studied in the last decade and has been found to be an important factor to determine the habitability of planetary surfaces. It is known that UVR can be a constraint for life. However, most of the studies of UVR and habitability have missed some fundamental aspects: I) Accurate estimation of the planetary atmospheric attenuation, ii) The biological inferences used to represent the impact of the stellar UVR on life are theoretical and based on the action spectrum (for DNA or microorganisms) or considering parameters as the "lethal dose" obtained from non-astrobiological experiments. Therefore, the conclusions reached by previous studies about the UVR habitability of planetary bodies may be inaccurate. In this work, we propose how to address these studies in a more accurate way through an interdisciplinary approach that combines astrophysics, microbiology, and photobiology and by the use of specially designed laboratory experiments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)222-226
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the International Astronomical Union
Publication statusAccepted/In press - Jan 1 2020



  • astrobiology
  • methods: Laboratory
  • stars: Activity
  • ultraviolet: Stars

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Abrevaya, X. C., Leitzinger, M., Oppezzo, O. J., Odert, P., Luna, G. J. M., Patel, M., Forte-Giacobone, A. F., Hanslmeier, A., Elmegreen, B. G., Tóth, L. V., & Güdel, M. (Accepted/In press). Towards astrobiological experimental approaches to study planetary UV surface environments. Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union, 222-226.