I saw this on Reddit, but I think it might be interesting to post here as well. :)
Open Access paper: http://www.nature.com/articles/srep18347
Using mathematical models, scientists have 'looked' into the interior of super-Earths and discovered that they may contain compounds that are forbidden by the classical rules of chemistry -- these substances may increase the heat transfer rate and strengthen the magnetic field on these planets. The findings have been presented in a paper published in the journal Scientific Reports.
The authors of the paper are a group of researchers from MIPT led by Artem Oganov, a professor of the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology and the head of the MIPT Laboratory of Computer Design. In a previous study, Oganov and his colleagues used an algorithm created by Oganov called USPEX to identify new compounds of sodium and chlorine, as well as other exotic substances.
In their latest paper, the researchers attempted to find out which compounds may be formed by silicon, oxygen, and magnesium at high pressures. These particular elements were not chosen by chance.
"Earth-like planets consist of a thin silicate crust, a silicate-oxide mantle -- which makes up approximately 7/8 of the Earth's volume and consists more than 90% of silicates and magnesium oxide -- and an iron core. We can say that magnesium, oxygen, and silicon form the basis of chemistry on Earth and on Earth-like planets," says Oganov.
Might this contribute any ideas for the distribution of life-terra's in future versions of SE?