November 3, 2014
New Secrets Revealed About Cloudy Exoplanet
[ Read the Article: New Hubble Data Offer More Details About Cloudy Alien World ]
Scientists had been studying super-Earth exoplanet GJ1214b and knew a little bit about it. But after 96 hours of study with the Hubble Telescope, they know a lot more. GJ1214b is located 40 light-years from Earth towards the constellation Ophiuchus. It orbits its parent star every 38 hours, which makes its atmosphere easier to study. That study revealed evidence of clouds blanketing the planet. These clouds, however, hid the composition and behavior of the planet below. Even though Hubble wasn’t originally designed with such studies in mind, the team pushed the telescope to its limits.