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Latest Exoplanetology Stories

Gemini Planet Imager Tracks Down Giant Planet Orbiting Beta Pictoris
2014-01-07 13:47:41

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The internationally operated Gemini Observatory has announced the start-up of its new Gemini Planet Imager (GPI), a device designed to capture images of planets outside our Solar System and probe their atmospheres. The imager, which released its first image on Tuesday, was deployed on the observatory’s 8-meter Gemini South telescope in Chile. "Even these early first-light images are almost a factor of 10 better than the previous...

Exoplanet Gassy Earth
2014-01-07 09:54:01

John P. Millis, PhD for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The holy grail of planet hunting is to find the first Earth-like world. While candidates have been found, there has yet to be confirmation about their particular characteristics. However, a new discovery, made possible by an international team of astronomers, has located the first confirmed Earth-mass planet occulting -- that is, passing in front of -- its host star. Even though the tiny world has the same mass as our planet,...

Rocky Exoplanets Too Hot To Support Life: Kepler Data
2014-01-07 05:07:34

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online NASA’s Kepler spacecraft team reported details about five new rocky planets on Monday at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Washington. Kepler has helped scientists discover hundreds of exoplanets, and astronomers at the event reported on four years of follow-up observations, as well as describing the new rocky planets discovered. According to the latest findings, Kepler-99b and Kepler-406b are 40 percent larger in size...

2013-12-31 16:20:12

WASHINGTON, Dec. 31, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Scientists using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have characterized the atmospheres of two of the most common type of planets in the Milky Way galaxy and found both may be blanketed with clouds. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) The planets are GJ 436b, located 36 light-years from Earth in the constellation Leo, and GJ 1214b, 40 light-years away in the constellation Ophiuchus. Despite numerous efforts,...

New Hubble Data Offer More Details About Cloudy Alien World
2013-12-31 11:53:25

[ Watch the Video: New Secrets Revealed About Cloudy Exoplanet ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Scientists using data collected by the Hubble Space Telescope have discovered new cloudy details about an alien world. The team said that GJ1214b is a super-Earth class planet because its mass is intermediate between Earth and Neptune. The group of scientists analyzed the characteristics of the exoplanet and published their results in the journal Nature. Previous...

New Technique Measuring Exoplanet Mass
2013-12-19 15:52:43

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A new technique developed by a team at MIT could help scientists determine the mass of exoplanets, using just their transmission spectra. Scientists have discovered more than 900 exoplanets outside our solar system so far, and more are being found every week. Hunting for exoplanets takes a combination of patience, the right equipment and technique. Space telescopes help keep watch for dimming starlight, indicating that an exoplanet...

Astronomers Puzzled By Discovery Of Giant Planet Orbiting Distant Star
2013-12-05 12:56:55

[ Watch the Video: What Planet Has Astronomers Puzzled? ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers have found the most distant orbiting planet to date, and the puzzling discovery is effectively throwing a wrench in planet formation theories. Scientists reported in The Astrophysical Journal Letters that exoplanet HD 106906 b is orbiting its star at 650 times the average Earth-Sun distance. "This system is especially fascinating because no model of either...

2013-12-03 23:02:08

A census of planets outside our solar system pierces the haze surrounding five "hot Jupiters" to find conclusive signs of atmospheric water. College Park, Md (PRWEB) December 03, 2013 Using the powerful eye of NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, two teams of scientists have found faint signatures of water in the atmospheres of five distant planets. The presence of atmospheric water was reported previously on a few exoplanets – planets orbiting stars beyond our solar system....

Five Alien Worlds With Water Detected By Hubble Space Telescope
2013-12-03 14:19:52

[ Watch the Video: Water That's Out Of This World Detected By Hubble ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online NASA said its Hubble Space Telescope has detected subtle traces of water in the atmospheres of five distant alien worlds. Two teams of scientists have discovered faint signatures of water in the atmospheres of five exoplanets. This is the first study to conclusively measure and compare the profiles and intensities of these signatures on multiple worlds. "We're...


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
cock-a-hoop
  • Exultant; jubilant; triumphant; on the high horse.
  • Tipsy; slightly intoxicated.
This word may come from the phrase 'to set cock on hoop,' or 'to drink festively.' Its origin otherwise is unclear. A theory, according to the Word Detective, is that it's a 'transliteration of the French phrase 'coq a huppe,' meaning a rooster displaying its crest ('huppe') in a pose of proud defiance.' Therefore, 'cock-a-hoop' would 'liken a drunken man to a boastful and aggressive rooster.'
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