What does CHZ mean in Astronomy?

This page is about the meanings of the acronym/abbreviation/shorthand CHZ in the Academic & Science field in general and in the Astronomy terminology in particular.

Circumstellar Habitable Zone

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Definition

What does CHZ mean?

Circumstellar habitable zone
In astronomy and astrobiology, the circumstellar habitable zone is the region around stars within which planetary-mass objects with commensurate atmospheric pressure could support liquid water at the surface. The CHZ is inferred from known requirements of Earth's biosphere, the Earth's position in the Solar System and the amount of radiant energy it receives from the Sun. To many, studying such objects in the CHZ appears to be the best way to estimate the scope of life in the universe and locate extraterrestrial life. Since the concept of the CHZ was first presented in 1953, numerous planets have now been discovered in the CHZ. Most are more massive than the Earth since such planets are easier to detect. The number of planets with Earth-like composition orbiting within circumstellar habitable zones has been estimated to be anywhere from 500 million to over 150 billion. The CHZ is also of particular interest to the emerging field of natural satellite habitability, since moons are believed to greatly outnumber planets. In recent decades, the CHZ concept has been broadly challenged as a primary criterion for life. Since the discovery of evidence for extraterrestrial liquid water, substantial quantities of it are now believed to occur outside of the circumstellar habitable zone. Sustained by other energy sources, such as tidal heating or radioactive decay or pressurized by other non-atmospheric means, the basic conditions for water-dependent life may be found even in interstellar space. In addition, other circumstellar zones, where non-water solvents favorable to hypothetical life based on alternative biochemistries could exist in liquid form at the surface, have been proposed. Nevertheless, the CHZ remains important in the search for extraterrestrial intelligence.

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"CHZ." Abbreviations.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2020. Web. 16 Feb. 2020. <https://www.abbreviations.com/term/1612096>.

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