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NASA Telescopes Find Clear Skies And Water Vapor On

NASA Telescopes Find Clear Skies And Water Vapor On Exoplanet

NASA Astronomers using data from three of NASA's space telescopes -- Hubble, Spitzer and Kepler -- have discovered clear skies and steamy water vapor on a gaseous planet outside our solar system. The planet is about the size of Neptune, making...

Latest Exoplanetology Stories

2014-09-24 23:01:54

In a feat of long-distance detection, astronomers led by experts at the University of Maryland have found water vapor in the atmosphere of a Neptune-sized planet nearly 729 trillion miles from Earth. This is the smallest planet for which scientists have been able to identify chemical components of its atmosphere. (PRWEB) September 24, 2014 Astronomers have found water vapor in the atmosphere of a planet about four times bigger than Earth, in the constellation Cygnus about 124 light years...

exoplanet sun wobble
2014-09-16 04:19:22

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online It would seem like a star couldn't be affected by anything less than another star, but new evidence from Cornell University reveals that "hot Jupiters," or large gaseous exoplanets, can cause their host stars to wobble as the planets wind their way through their own solar systems to snuggle up against their suns. "Although the planet's mass is only one-thousandth of the mass of the sun, the stars in these other solar systems are...

coldest known brown dwarf
2014-09-11 03:00:56

Jacqueline Faherty, Carnegie Institution A team of scientists led by Carnegie's Jacqueline Faherty has discovered the first evidence of water ice clouds on an object outside of our own Solar System. Water ice clouds exist on our own gas giant planets--Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune--but have not been seen outside of the planets orbiting our Sun until now. Their findings are published Tuesday, Sept. 9 by The Astrophysical Journal Letters and are available here. At the Las Campanas...

hunting for exomoons
2014-08-12 08:51:02

University of Texas at Arlington Scientists hunting for life beyond Earth have discovered more than 1,800 planets outside our solar system, or exoplanets, in recent years, but so far, no one has been able to confirm an exomoon. Now, physicists from The University of Texas at Arlington believe following a trail of radio wave emissions may lead them to that discovery. Their recent findings, published in the Aug. 10 issue of The Astrophysical Journal, describe radio wave emissions that...

Spitzer Space Telescope
2014-08-10 02:00:38

Whitney Clavin, Jet Propulsion Laboratory NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has received the 2014 AIAA Space Science Award for its ongoing infrared studies of the hidden cosmos. The American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, or AIAA, a society for the field of aerospace engineering, established the award in 1961 for "individuals demonstrating leadership of innovative scientific investigation associated with space science missions." Michael Werner, the project scientist for Spitzer...

Companion planets
2014-08-02 04:44:52

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online For humans, having a companion in our later years can help increase our lifespan. A new study led by the University of Washington shows that having a companion might also extend the life of some Earth-sized planets. As a planet ages, it cools and the molten core solidifies. This leads to a dwindling of the inner heat-generating activity that keeps the planet habitable by regulating carbon dioxide to prevent runaway heating and...

gas giant planet HD 209458b
2014-07-24 07:35:40

J.D. Harrington, NASA Headquarters, Washington Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have gone looking for water vapor in the atmospheres of three planets orbiting stars similar to the sun -- and have come up nearly dry. The three planets, known as HD 189733b, HD 209458b, and WASP-12b, are between 60 and 900 light-years away from Earth and were thought to be ideal candidates for detecting water vapor in their atmospheres because of their high temperatures where water turns...

super earth Kepler-93b
2014-07-24 03:00:38

Whitney Clavin, Jet Propulsion Laboratory Thanks to NASA's Kepler and Spitzer Space Telescopes, scientists have made the most precise measurement ever of the radius of a planet outside our solar system. The size of the exoplanet, dubbed Kepler-93b, is now known to an uncertainty of just 74 miles (119 kilometers) on either side of the planetary body. [ Watch: ScienceCasts: Sizing Up An Exoplanet ] The findings confirm Kepler-93b as a "super-Earth" that is about one-and-a-half times...

polluted exoplanet
2014-07-24 04:09:47

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Industrial pollution could help in the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI), claim Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) researchers who have started looking for signs of pollutions on other worlds. According to the study authors, by studying exoplanet atmospheres, scientists can look for gases such as oxygen and methane that only exist together if they are replenished by microbial life. In addition, they...

Kepler-421b
2014-07-22 05:09:31

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The time that it takes for a planet, or planetary satellite, to orbit its star is considered the planet's year. For example, Earth's year is approximately 365 days, while Mercury's is 88 days and Mar's year is 687 days long. A group of astronomers working at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) has discovered a transiting exoplanet, named Kepler 421b, with the longest known year of any of the 1,800 exoplanets...


Latest Exoplanetology Reference Libraries

Planetary Astronomy
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Image Caption: Artistic concept of a planetary system. Credit: Wikipedia/NASA/JPL-Caltech The term Astronomy encompasses a broad range of topics, including the study of stars, galaxies, and planets. In order to focus on the different areas of study, many subfields of astronomy emerge. One such area is the study of planets known, appropriately, as Planetary Astronomy. Observational Planetary Astronomy Even within the field of Planetary Astronomy, there are several divisions to...

7_a23a0395183f2368aec4b62e1b9470672
2004-10-19 04:45:43

Terrestrial Planet Finder -- The Terrestrial Planet Finder is a proposed NASA telescope system capable of detecting extrasolar terrestrial planets. In May 2002, NASA chose two TPF mission architecture concepts for further study and technology development. Each would use a different means to achieve the same goal - to block the light from a parent star in order to see its much smaller, dimmer planets. That technology challenge has been likened to finding a firefly near the beam of...

6_f3ae28666ea2fe9e06e16221eea19d522
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Extrasolar Planet -- An extrasolar planet is a planet orbiting around a star other than the Sun. Extrasolar planets were first discovered in the 1990s as a result of improved telescope technology, CCD and computer-based image processing which allowed far more accurate measurements of stellar motions. The first extrasolar planets were reported by the astronomer Aleksander Wolszczan in 1993, orbiting the pulsar PSR 1257+12. Subsequent investigation has determined that they are only planets...

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Word of the Day
humgruffin
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'