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Latest Planetary systems Stories

Planetary Systems Compared To Pancakes
2012-10-15 12:14:06

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers from UCLA using NASA's Kepler space telescope have determined that most planetary systems are "flatter than pancakes." The team wrote in a paper submitted to the Astrophysical Journal that they developed a computer model of planetary systems and compared them to the properties of Kepler data. They found that the more than 85 percent of planets have inclinations of less than three degrees, making the planetary systems...

Olivine Found In Beta Pictoris
2012-10-04 05:20:13

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online European Space Agency's (ESA) Herschel Space Observatory has discovered pristine material that matches comets in our own Solar System in a dust belt around the young star Beta Pictoris. Beta Pictoris is 12 million years old, and resides a short 63 light-years from Earth. A gas giant planet and a dusty debris disc that has the potential to evolve into a torus of icy bodies like those of the Kuiper Belt found outside the orbit of...

Exoplanet Found Within Gliese 163 Habitable Zone
2012-09-05 13:54:45

Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Good news! The ESO´s HARPS telescope (or High Accuracy Radial Velocity Planet Searcher) team has found a potentially habitable planet around the red dwarf star Gliese 163! This brings the number of known, potentially habitable planets to 6, most of which have been discovered in the past year. This rocky planet, called Gliese 163c, is considered a superterran, or super-Earth, and is a considerable 50 light years away from...

NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope Discovers Two Planets Orbiting Binary Star System
2012-08-29 08:58:00

Lawrence LeBlond for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers working with NASA´s Kepler mission have found the first evidence of multiple planets orbiting a binary star system. The discovery shows that planetary systems can form and survive in chaotic environments around a binary star system. Furthermore, the discovery suggests that earth-like planets can also exist in the habitable zone of their stars. The discovery was announced this week at the XXVIII General Assembly of...

Star Caught Consuming Its Own Planet
2012-08-21 11:41:35

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers say they've witnessed the death of a planet, which found its journey ended by way of its own star. The scientists reported in the Astrophysical Journal Letters that BD+48 740 became a red giant at the end of its life, helping it to eventually consume its close-by planet. "A similar fate may await the inner planets in our solar system, when the sun becomes a red giant and expands all the way out to Earth's orbit some 5...

New Insights Into Planet Formation
2012-08-17 05:04:24

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online An international team of researchers led by EXOEarth scientists from Centro de Astrofisica daUniversidade do Porto (CAUP) argues that metals like Magnesium might have an important role to play in the formation of low mass planets. Using the European Southern Observatory's (ESO) HARPS spectrograph, the team analyzed high resolution spectra of 1,111 sun-like stars. Of these stars, 109 are known to harbor high mass planets similar to...

Vaporizing Super-Earth Helps Characterize Exoplanet Attributes
2012-08-03 14:45:31

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Scientists collaborated recently to produce simulations of Earth-like planets being vaporized in order to help astronomers have a better grasp of what to look for in the atmosphere of candidate super-Earths. Super-Earths are rocky exoplanets that are more massive than Earth, but less massive than Neptune. Most of those that have been found so far orbit very close to their stars. Scientists writing in The Astrophysical Journal show...

Kepler-30 Distant Solar System Similar To Our Own
2012-07-26 06:01:50

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers have used NASA's Kepler to help spot another planetary system that has its planets neatly aligned, similar to our own Solar System. The study shows the trio of planets orbiting the star within one degree, relative to each other, and relative to the star's equator, showing a sense of geometry in its alignment. “In our solar system, the trajectory of the planets is parallel to the rotation of the sun, which shows...

Vastly Different Planets Found Closely Orbiting Same Star
2012-06-22 04:33:13

Researchers working on NASA's Kepler Mission have discovered an unlikely pair of planets -- one similar to our planet, and the other roughly the size of Neptune -- locked in a surprisingly close orbit around a distant star located more than a thousand light years from Earth. The work, which was led by Joshua Carter of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) and University of Washington Associate Professor of Astronomy Eric Agol, discovered that the smaller planet, which was...

Small Planets Less Pickier For Host Stars Than Previously Thought
2012-06-14 14:22:29

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com [ Watch the Video ] New observations show that small planets may be more widespread in our galaxy than previously thought. Lars A. Buchhave, an astrophysicist at the Niels Bohr Institute and the Centre for Star and Planet Formation at the University of Copenhagen, and colleagues studied the composition of over 150 stars harboring 226 planet candidates smaller than Neptune for the research. Scientists previously thought that the formation of small...


Latest Planetary systems Reference Libraries

8_2c71772f2c3a31994d5208d4518632494
2004-10-19 04:45:44

Cosmogony -- Cosmogony is the study of the origins of celestial objects. It is most commonly used to refer to the study of the origin of the solar system. Currently, the most widely accepted theory is that the solar system was formed roughly 5 billion years ago with the collapse of a nebula of gas and dust, likely caused by shock waves generated by a nearby supernova. The solar system would have formed as a member of a star cluster, now long-since dispersed throughout the Milky Way over...

6_9e1c3aab8f24d964cf24588309b138472
2004-10-19 04:45:42

Solar Nebula -- In astronomy, the solar nebula is the gaseous cloud from which, in the so-called nebular hypothesis of the origin of the solar system, the Sun and planets formed by condensation. In 1755 the German philosopher Immanuel Kant suggested that a nebula in slow rotation, gradually pulled together by its own gravitational force and flattened into a spinning disk, gave birth to the Sun and planets. A similar model, but with the planets being formed before the Sun, was proposed...

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...

4_2263b8f4e602bddd69c225b3bc2c46aa2
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Asteroid Belt -- The Asteroid belt is a region of the solar system falling roughly between the planets Mars and Jupiter where the greatest concentration of asteroid orbits can be found. It is believed that, during the first million years of the solar system history, planets formed by accretion of planetesimals. Ripetute collisions led to the familiar rocky planets and to the gas giant's cores. However, in this zone of the system the strong gravity of Jupiter inhibited the final stages...

3_26342a6670b6131c97d5fc3f8796ebd92
2004-10-19 04:45:40

Epsilon Eridani -- Epsilon Eridani is a main-sequence star in the constellation of Eridanus (the river). It is often used in science fiction because it is extremely sunlike, and in the fictional Star Trek universe it is the home sun of the planet Vulcan which is home to Mr. Spock. It is the third closest star visible without a telescope. It has 85% of the Sun's mass, almost that much of its diameter, and 28% of its luminosity. It is 10.5 light years from Earth. Its spectrum is...

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