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Latest Exoplanetology Stories

Tilted orbits
2014-04-16 04:31:03

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online While experts have long believed that life could not exist on planets with a fluctuating tilt in their orbits, new research appearing in the April issue of the journal Astrobiology suggests that such obliquity variations could actually increase the planetary habitability in those worlds. According to Weber State University physics professor John Armstrong, University of Washington astronomer Rory Barnes and their colleagues, these...

2014-04-15 12:21:46

WASHINGTON, April 15, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA will host a news teleconference at 2 p.m. EDT Thursday, April 17, to announce a new discovery made by its planet-hunting mission, the Kepler Space Telescope. http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnvar/20081007/38461LOGO The journal Science has embargoed the findings until the time of the news conference. The briefing participants are: -- Douglas Hudgins, exoplanet exploration program scientist, NASA's Astrophysics Division in...

exomoon candidate
2014-04-10 12:05:00

Whitney Clavin, NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory Titan, Europa, Io and Phobos are just a few members of our solar system's pantheon of moons. Are there are other moons out there, orbiting planets beyond our sun? NASA-funded researchers have spotted the first signs of an "exomoon," and though they say it's impossible to confirm its presence, the finding is a tantalizing first step toward locating others. The discovery was made by watching a chance encounter of objects in our galaxy, which...

2014 Carl Sagan Fellows
2014-04-03 03:00:40

NASA/JPL NASA has selected seven scientists as recipients of the 2014 Carl Sagan Exoplanet Postdoctoral Fellowships. The fellowship, named for the late astronomer, was created to inspire the next generation of explorers seeking to learn more about planets, and possibly life, around other stars. The primary goal of the fellowship program is to support outstanding recent postdoctoral scientists in conducting independent research related to the science goals of NASA's Exoplanet Exploration...

Astronomers Given A Better Ruler In The Search For Extrasolar Planets
2014-03-31 08:04:47

NIST Researchers at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have rejuvenated a technique for finding planets near distant stars. New measurements of light from special lamps could help astronomers find planets hidden in data from more than a decade's worth of extrasolar planet searches, as well as improve telescopes' current capabilities. Finding extrasolar planets is tricky. Seen through a telescope, planets in the "habitable zone"—a region close to a star, where...

Don’t Forget F-type Stars In The Search For Life
2014-03-27 13:19:34

University of Texas at Arlington Scientists searching for habitable planets beyond Earth shouldn’t overlook F-type stars in favor of their more abundant, smaller and cooler cousins, according to new research from University of Texas at Arlington physicists. Stars fall into seven lettered categories according to their surface temperature, but they also differ in other factors such as mass, luminosity and abundance in the universe. Scientists looking for habitable planets typically...

Lick's Automated Planet Finder Has Found Two New Planetary Systems
2014-03-27 12:31:13

By Tim Stephens, UC Santa Cruz In its first months of operation, the APF has found two new planetary systems, giving astronomers a taste of planetary riches to come Lick Observatory's newest telescope, the Automated Planet Finder (APF), has been operating robotically night after night on Mt. Hamilton since January, searching nearby stars for Earth-sized planets. Every night the fully autonomous system checks the weather, decides which stars to observe, and moves the telescope from star...

artist impression of debris around a white dwarf star
2014-03-27 08:16:01

University of Leicester and The Royal Astronomical Society New theory advanced for how collapsed stars become polluted -- pointing to ominous fate that awaits planet Earth A decades old space mystery has been solved by an international team of astronomers led by Professor Martin Barstow of the University of Leicester and President-elect of the Royal Astronomical Society. Scientists from the University of Leicester and University of Arizona investigated hot, young, white dwarfs —...

Space Sunflower Could One Day Help Snap Pictures Of Planets
2014-03-21 10:52:53

Watch The Video: Studying Other Worlds with the Help of a Starshade ] Whitney Clavin, NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory A spacecraft that looks like a giant sunflower might one day be used to acquire images of Earth-like rocky planets around nearby stars. The prototype deployable structure, called a starshade, is being developed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. The hunt is on for planets that resemble Earth in size, composition and temperature. Rocky...

NASA's WISE Spacecraft Has Yet To Uncover Planet 'X' Beyond Pluto
2014-03-10 08:36:02

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online While NASA’s Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) has uncovered thousands of new stars during its multi-year mission, it has been unable to collect any evidence supporting the supposed existence of a large but unseen celestial body believed to be located somewhere beyond Pluto’s orbit. This supposed celestial body is commonly referred to as “Planet X” -- alternatively “Nemesis” or “Tyche." However, despite the...


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
mundungus
  • A stinking tobacco.
  • Offal; waste animal product; organic matter unfit for consumption.
This word comes from the Spanish 'mondongo,' tripe, entrails.