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Thread: Clouds containing water(vapor,ice,liquid) in outer space.

  1. #1 Clouds containing water(vapor,ice,liquid) in outer space. 
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    Hi.

    I recently found that there is evidence that water exists in space.
    From articles I've read , there are also "clouds" in space that carry large volumes of water in various states(vapor,ice etc.).
    Now I don't know if those "clouds" would carry dust also , but if these clouds exist and they travel , what would their effect be on planets in our solar system if the clouds pass through our solar system.

    I'm trying to find out about this (here is one article I'm reading http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/ju.../pia01639.html for example)
    but if you know any evidence or if you can point me to articles I'll appreciate it really.

    I ask this because I want to find out whether water clouds could've affected planets in our solar system.

    -Thanks


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  3. #2  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    The solar system has passed through such clouds (GMCs - Giant Molecular Clouds) on several, even many occasions. Indeed the sun and the rest of the solar system were formed from the collapse of such a cloud.
    Passage through such a cloud would tend to clear the solar system of dust. (See Infrared Kuiper Belt Constraints.)
    It would also likely increase the influx of comets from the Oort Cloud, with a consequent increase in terrestrial impacts, some of which would intitiate local or global extinction events. (See this abstract, for example.)


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  4. #3  
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    Thanks for reply and I think the topic of space clouds is still being researched for me to ask such a question.
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  5. #4  
    Geo
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    Water exists only with their friend, the "nursery" of the GMC. I was formed here, I live here... until I encounter a Gravitational perturbation, Then what do I want to do next?

    Water molecules get busted by the solar wind. Those dust particles are the nursery that protects water and the 22 amino acids, along with that little bit of Fe/Ni/Co, which we need to protect our water haven. 8)
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  6. #5  
    Moderator Moderator Dishmaster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pierreSimons
    Thanks for reply and I think the topic of space clouds is still being researched for me to ask such a question.
    Indeed it is. Water is also very difficult to investigate, because the earth atmosphere is full of it, hence interfering with the much fainter signals from space. Therefore, any astronomical observation done from ground is doomed to fail - at least it is very difficult. That's why it is done from space with specially designed telescopes like e.g. the currently flying Herschel Space Telescope. You can have a look at some presentations dedicated to water research at the following link:
    http://herschel.esac.esa.int/SDP_IR_wkshop.shtml
    Especially look for Session 3.
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  7. #6  
    Forum Cosmic Wizard icewendigo's Avatar
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    Water is a simple molecule formed with the most abundant atom(H) and a relativeley common atom(O).

    I would not be surprised if it exited in massive quantities in space and on various planets and jovian moons etc

    There are even seas Hydrocarbons on jovian moons, thats a bit more complex but also all from relatively common elements, and I have to say it casts doubts as to the "fossil" component of fossil fuels (or that even if fossils played a role here, doesnt mean natural gas, methane and hydrocarbons cant result from processes that exclude fossils)
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