Posted by: earthandbeyond | November 14, 2008

4 extrasolar planets imaged! Wow!

Really big news! News was released about 2 stars having a total of 4 extrasolar planets photographed. Phil Plait at Bad Astronomy has a much better and very excited post about this news. He also has images, which I will post at some later time. I don’t have much time at the moment, but I will say a bit about the planets.

First, there is a planet that the Hubble Telescope has imaged orbiting Fomalhaut, which is a very bright star in the sky. Fomalhaut b is orbiting at a distance of 18 billion km from Fomalhaut, and appears as only a tiny dot. There’s a ring surrounding the star, as well.

Second, there’s HR8799 and its 3 planets. Bad Astronomy has an image with only 2 of the planets, but there are images available that show all 3 planets (from the Keck Telescope). The Gemini North telescope imaged 2 of the planets. HR8799 is 130 light years from us, and is a bit bigger and brighter than the Sun. The planets orbit at 3.8, 6 and 10.5 billion km from HR8799.

This is very exciting! I’m sure we’ll be seeing more of these images in the near future!

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Responses

  1. hr 8 799 c 4 ecostars

    keep zooming

    pegasus constellation

    star of bethlehem
    sept 11 3bc.

  2. Ecostars? Care to explain?

  3. I have written about the extrasolar going ons on my page today if your interested, not marketing my site nor advertize it .. but i put up links that might interest your interest in this issue. And on my Nite Sky News page there are latest news links of it .

  4. Thanks for the comment, NiteSkyGirl! I checked out your blog. I also have that issue of Sky and Telescope. I haven’t read it yet, unfortunately. A bit busy with work at the moment.


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