Scientists have discovered that the planet, “almost identical” to Jupiter, revolves around a star 17,000 light-years from Earth with NASA’s Kepler telescope.
According to astronomers from Manchester, the exoplanet K2-2016-BLG-0005Lb is almost identical to Jupiter in mass and distance from the star.
K2-2016-BLG-0005Lb is about 420 million miles from its star, while Jupiter is 462 million miles from our sun.
Meanwhile, the mass of K2-2016-BLG-0005Lb is 1.1 times the mass of Jupiter, and the mass of the star around which it revolves is about 60 percent of the mass of our Sun.
The planet and its star are in the constellation Sagittarius, which covers the area around the Galactic Center – the center of rotation of our Milky Way galaxy.
The system is twice as distant as any seen by Kepler, who discovered more than 2,700 confirmed planets before shutting down in 2018.
The picture shows the region near the Galactic Center, where the planet was found. Two images show the region seen by Kepler (left) and the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT) from the ground. The planet is not visible, but its gravity has affected the light observed from a faint star in the center of the image (circled). Kepler’s highly pixelated view of the sky required specialized techniques to recover the planet’s signal
A NEW PLANET
Galaxy: The Milky Way
Mass: 1.1 MJ (1.1 times the mass of Jupiter)
The distance from his sun: 420 million miles
Distance from Earth: 17,000 light years
A new study describing the finding was conducted by an international team of astrophysicists led by the Jodrell Bank Center of the University of Manchester.
“To see the effect requires an almost perfect alignment of the planetary system in the foreground and the background star,” said Dr. Eamon Kerins of Jodrell Bank.
– The probability that the background star will affect the planet in this way is from tens to hundreds of millions to one.
“But at the center of our galaxy are hundreds of millions of stars. So Kepler just sat and watched them for three months.
“It is essentially identical to Jupiter’s twin in terms of its mass and its location from the Sun, which is about 60 percent of the mass of our own Sun.”
According to Dr. Kerins, like Jupiter, K2-2016-BLG-0005Lb is considered gaseous rather than stony.
Jupiter makes a complete revolution around the Sun (a year in the time of Jupiter) in about 12 Earth years (4333 Earth days).
Similarly, K2-2016-BLG-0005Lb is estimated to take 13 Earth years to orbit its star – although this is only an estimate based on Kepler’s “single image”, Dr Kerins said.
“We don’t really see it in orbit,” he told MailOnline. “So there is a fraction of the error, which means it can be both 11 years and 21 years.
The research team does not know if there are any other planets in this solar system other than K2-2016-BLG-0005Lb.
This is the artist’s impression of the Kepler Space Telescope, which was decommissioned by NASA in 2018 after nearly a decade of service
WHAT IS MICROLENSIZATION?
Predicted by Albert Einstein 85 years ago as a consequence of his general theory of relativity, microlensing describes how the light of a background star can be temporarily magnified by the presence of other stars in the foreground.
This creates a short burst of brightness that can last from hours to days.
Approximately one in every million stars in our Galaxy is clearly microlinating at any given time, but only a few percent of them are expected to be caused by planets.
The now-retired Kepler telescope has spent nearly a decade in space searching for Earth-sized planets orbiting other stars, but scientists are still analyzing its data.
Kepler was launched in 2009 and was decommissioned by NASA in 2018 when it ran out of fuel needed for further scientific operations.
It was launched by NASA specifically to identify planets outside our solar system known as exoplanets.
K2-2016-BLG-0005Lb was discovered using data obtained in 2016 by Kepler.
It was discovered by gravitational microlensing, an observational effect that was predicted in 1936 by Einstein using his general theory of relativity.
When one star in the sky seems to pass almost in front of another, the light rays of the background source star are bent due to the gravitational “attraction” of the foreground star.
To find the exoplanet using the microlensing effect, the team conducted a search based on Kepler data collected between April and July 2016, when it regularly observed millions of stars close to the center of the galaxy.
The goal was to find evidence of an exoplanet and a host star that temporarily curved and magnified the light of the background star as it passed in line of sight.
Following the development of specialized analysis methods last year based on Kepler data using a new search algorithm, candidate signals were finally identified.
Among the five newly detected microlensing-candidate signals, one showed clear signs of an anomaly corresponding to the presence of an exoplanet in orbit.
Five international ground surveys also examined the same area of the sky at the same time as Kepler, including the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT), located on Mount Mauna Kea, Hawaii.
To confirm Kepler’s findings, ground research also examined the same area of the sky at the same time as Kepler, including the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT), located on Mount Mauna Kea, Hawaii (pictured).
THREE “EXOPLANETS” ARE REALLY STARS
Scientists have studied thousands of discoveries of exoplanets confirmed in the Milky Way galaxy, and three of them turned out to be stars.
A team from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge looked at planets detected by NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope, double-checking measurements to see which corresponded to known planets.
They identified three objects that are just too big to be planets, based on new, more accurate measurements made by the European Space Agency’s Gaia telescope.
Read more: The three “exoplanets” are actually stars
At a distance of about 83 million miles from Earth, Kepler saw the anomaly a little earlier and longer than the teams observed from Earth.
A new study exhaustively simulates a combined set of data that definitively shows that the signal is caused by a distant exoplanet.
“The difference in the point of view between Kepler and observers here on Earth has allowed us to triangulate where the planetary system is located along our line of sight,” said Dr. Kerins.
“Kepler was also able to continuously monitor the weather and daylight, which allowed us to accurately determine the mass of the exoplanet and its orbital distance from the host star.”
In 2027, NASA will launch the Nancy Grace Space Telescope, which could potentially find thousands of distant planets using the microlensing method.
Nancy Grace Roman was one of the first women to work at NASA, and a central figure in the development of the Hubble Telescope.
Meanwhile, the European Space Agency’s Euclid mission, which is scheduled to launch next year, may also search for the microlens exoplanet as an additional scientific activity.
“Kepler was never designed to search for planets by microlensing, so in many ways it’s amazing that he did,” Dr. Kerins said.
The telescope will also conduct a census of exoplanets to answer questions about the possibility of life elsewhere in the universe.
“On the other hand, Roman and Euclid will be optimized for such work. They will be able to complete the census of the planet, started by Kepler.
“We will learn how typical the architecture of our own solar system is. The data will also allow us to test our perceptions of how planets are formed. This is the beginning of a new exciting chapter in our search for other worlds.
The study was sent to the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society and was posted as a preprint on ArXiv.org.
NASA confirms THERE ARE MORE THAN 5,000 PLANETS OUTSIDE OUR SOLAR SYSTEM
NASA has confirmed that outside our solar system there are more than 5,000 known planets known as exoplanets.
The U.S. Space Agency has added another 65 exoplanets to NASA’s online exoplanet archive, bringing the total to 1,009 as of April 1, 2022.
On March 22, the figure was 5,005, indicating that in just 10 days, four planets were added to the total.
Exoplanets found so far include small rocky worlds such as Earth, gas giants many times larger than Jupiter, and “hot Jupiters” in scorchingly close orbits around their stars.
More than 5,000 exoplanets confirmed in our galaxy include various types – among them a mysterious species known as “super-Earth” because they are larger than our world and possibly rocky
However, NASA emphasizes that only a “small part” of all the planets was found in the Milky Way galaxy.
Most exoplanets are gaseous, such as Jupiter or Neptune, and not terrestrial, according to NASA’s online database.
Most exoplanets are found by measuring the eclipse of the star in front of which the planet passes, which is called the transit method.
Another way to detect exoplanets, called the Doppler method, measures the “sway” of stars due to the gravitational pull of planets orbiting.