Latest Hot Jupiters Stories

2007-07-11 12:10:00

Astronomers who used powerful telescopes in Arizona and Chile in a survey for planets around nearby stars have discovered that extrasolar planets more massive than Jupiter are extremely rare in other outer solar systems. University of Arizona astronomers and their collaborators from the European Southern Observatory, Max Planck Institute for Astronomy at Heidelberg, Italy's Arcetri Observatory, the W.M. Keck Observatory and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics just concluded a...

2007-05-09 12:20:00

Supersonic winds more than six times faster than those on Jupiter are blasting through the atmosphere of a Jupiter-sized planet 60 light years away, say scientists who've analyzed results from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. They're part of a team that mapped weather on a planet beyond our solar system, a gas giant planet called HD 189733b. "The exoplanet's wind speeds probably exceed the speed of sound," said Adam Showman of the University of Arizona Lunar and Planetary Laboratory (LPL)....

2007-05-03 15:22:45

COROT has provided its first image of a giant planet orbiting another star and the first bit of "Ëœseismic' information on a far away, Sun-like star- with unexpected accuracy. The unanticipated level of accuracy of this raw data shows that COROT will be able to see rocky planets - perhaps even as small as Earth - and possibly provide an indication of their chemical composition. COROT, a CNES project with ESA participation, is a mission with a dual goal. It is the first space...

2007-05-02 10:23:51

Cambridge, MA - Today, astronomers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) announced that they have found the most massive known transiting extrasolar planet. The gas giant planet, called HAT-P-2b, contains more than eight times the mass of Jupiter, the biggest planet in our solar system. Its powerful gravity squashes it into a ball only slightly larger than Jupiter. HAT-P-2b shows other unusual characteristics. It has an extremely oval orbit that brings it as close as 3.1...

2007-04-12 17:43:52

Flagstaff, Ariz. "“ For the first time, water has been identified in the atmosphere of an extrasolar planet.  Through a combination of previously published Hubble Space Telescope measurements and new theoretical models, Lowell Observatory astronomer Travis Barman has found strong evidence for water absorption in the atmosphere of transiting planet HD209458b.  This result was recently accepted for publication in the Astrophysical Journal (http://lanl.arxiv.org/abs/0704.1114)....

2007-02-21 14:20:00

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has captured for the first time enough light from planets outside our solar system, known as exoplanets, to identify signatures of molecules in their atmospheres. The landmark achievement is a significant step toward being able to detect possible life on rocky exoplanets and comes years before astronomers had anticipated. "This is an amazing surprise," said Spitzer project scientist Dr. Michael Werner of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif. "We...

2007-01-31 12:35:00

The powerful vision of NASA's Hubble Space Telescope has allowed astronomers to study for the first time the layer-cake structure of the atmosphere of a planet orbiting another star. Hubble discovered a dense upper layer of hot hydrogen gas where the super-hot planet's atmosphere is bleeding off into space. The planet, designated HD 209458b, is unlike any world in our solar system. It orbits so close to its star and gets so hot that its gas is streaming into space, making the planet appear...

2007-01-09 16:55:00

Earth's inhabitants are used to temperatures that vary, sometimes greatly, between day and night. New measurements for three planets outside our solar system indicate their temperatures remain fairly constant "“ and blazing hot "“ from day to night, even though it is likely one side of each planet always faces its sun and the other is in permanent darkness. The reason apparently is supersonic winds, perhaps as strong as 9,000 miles an hour, that constantly churn the planets'...

2006-11-28 07:57:11

Using the ESPaDOnS spectropolarimeter1 installed on the Canada-France-Hawaii telescope2 (Mauna Kea, Hawaii), an international team of researchers, led by two french astronomers (LESIA, Observatoire de Paris and LATT, Observatoire Midi-Pyr©n©es), has just discovered a magnetic field on tau Bootis, a star orbited by a giant planet on a close-in orbit: the first ever detection of this kind! Up to now, only indirect clues pointed to the presence of magnetic fields on stars hosting...

2006-10-26 09:10:00

The COROT space telescope is proceeding smoothly towards its launch in December 2006. Once in orbit, COROT will become the first spacecraft devoted to the search for rocky planets, similar to our own Earth. COROT will also delve into the centres of hundreds or even thousands of stars. COROT will lead a bold new search for planets around other stars. In the decade since the discovery of the first exoplanet, 51 Pegasi b in 1995, more than 200 other planets have been detected from ground-based...

Word of the Day
  • The navel or umbilicus.
  • In Greek archaeology: A central boss, as on a shield, a bowl, etc.
  • A sacred stone in the temple of Apollo at Delphi, believed by the Greeks to mark the 'navel' or exact center-point of the earth.
'Omphalos' comes from the ancient Greek.