Astronomers spot a trio of Earth-sized planets orbiting a distant star

12 June, 2018, 03:01 | Author: Dwayne Harmon
  • Scientists Discover New Planet'EPIC 211945201 600 Light Years Away at Mount Abu Observatory

Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) has announced this discovery on Friday and has also given insight into this important discovery.

The new exoplanet presents a mass 27 times bigger than the Earth's and was found orbiting a star similar to our Sun, located at 600 million light-years far from us.

Being that close, you might think that the planets would be unbearably hot but the scientists say that might not be the case. Speaking to TOI from Ahmedabad, Chakraborty said the new planet, which is 600 light years away from Earth, was between the size of Saturn and Neptune.

The gravitational pull caused by a planet on its host star makes it wobble around their common center of mass, which can be measured using high resolution spectrographs such as the PARAS.

Scientists have claimed that the discovery will help in the understanding of the formation mechanism of super-Neptune or sub-Saturn kind of planets that are too close to the host star.

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In the journey for finding more Earth-like planets, scientists from the "Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias" (IAC) and the University of Oviedo in Spain have gathered data collected by the Kepler telescope on a red dwarf star, dubbed as K2-239.

The team named the new planet as EPIC 211945201b or K2-236b after its host star.

The surface temperature of the planet is around 600C as it is very close to the host star (7 times nearer than Earth-Sun distance).

ISRO website states that the 1.2 m InfraRed Telescope at Mount Abu is the first major facility in India that is specifically designed for ground-based infrared observations of celestial objects. Although the atmospheric temperature of red dwarf stars, around which these planets revolve, is 3,450 and 3,800 K respectively, nearly half the temperature of our Sun. It can measure the mass of a planet revolving around its star. These type of spectrographs exist mostly in the U.S. and in the Europe that can do such precise measurements. Now, a trio of new rocky worlds has been discovered orbiting a distant star, and while they're a lot like Earth in terms of size, they're a bit steamier.

The other system has two much larger planets.

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