Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .




EXO WORLDS
First glimpse of a planet from another galaxy
by Staff Writers
Washington (AFP) Nov 18, 2010


A hot, gaseous and fast-spinning planet has been found orbiting a dying star on the edge of the Milky Way, in the first such discovery of a planet from outside our galaxy, scientists said Thursday.

Slightly larger than the size of Jupiter, the largest in our solar system, the newly discovered exoplanet is orbiting a star 2,000 light years from Earth that has found its way into the Milky Way.

The pair are believed to be part of the Helmi stream, a group of stars that remains after its mini-galaxy was devoured by the Milky Way some six to nine billion years ago, said the study in Science Express.

"This discovery is very exciting," said Rainer Klement of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy.

"Because of the great distances involved, there are no confirmed detections of planets in other galaxies. But this cosmic merger has brought an extragalactic planet within our reach."

Astronomers were able to locate the planet, coined HIP 13044 b, by focusing on the "tiny telltale wobbles of the star caused by the gravitational tug of an orbiting companion," the study said.

They used a powerful telescope owned by the European Southern Laboratory at La Silla Observatory in Chile, located at an altitude of 2,400 meters (7,800 feet) some 600 kilometers (375 miles) north of the capital, Santiago.

The planet is quite close to the star it is orbiting, and survived a phase in which its host star went through a massive growth after it depleted its core hydrogen fuel supply, a phase known as the "red giant" stage of stellar evolution.

"This discovery is particularly intriguing when we consider the distant future of our own planetary system, as the Sun is also expected to become a red giant in about five billion years," said lead researcher Johny Setiawan of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy.

The exoplanet is likely to be quite hot because it is orbiting so close to its star, completing each orbit in just over 16 days, and is probably near the end of its life, astronomers said.

The star may have already swallowed other planets in its orbit, making the star spin more quickly and meaning that time is running out for the surviving exoplanet.

Astronomers were mystified as to how the planet might have formed, since the star contained few elements heavier than hydrogen and helium and planets typically form out of a complex cloud of spinning space rubble.

"It is a puzzle for the widely accepted model of planet formation to explain how such a star, which contains hardly any heavy elements at all, could have formed a planet," said Setiawan.

"Planets around stars like this must probably form in a different way."

.


Related Links
Lands Beyond Beyond - extra solar planets - news and science
Life Beyond Earth






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





EXO WORLDS
Eartly Dust Tails Point To Alien Worlds
Huntsville AL (SPX) Nov 15, 2010
Did you know that the Earth has a dust tail? The Spitzer Space Telescope sailed right through it a few months ago, giving researchers a clear idea of what it looks like. That could be a big help to planet hunters trying to track down alien worlds. "Planets in distant solar systems probably have similar dust tails," says Spitzer project scientist Mike Werner. "And in some circumstances these dus ... read more


EXO WORLDS
Mining On The Moon Is A Not-So-Distant Possibility

New Analysis Explains Formation Of Lunar Farside Bulge

New type of moon rock identified

Moon Express Enters $30 Million Google Lunar X PRIZE Competition

EXO WORLDS
IceBite Blog: Setting Up An IceBreaker

Camera On Curiosity's Arm Will Magnify Clues In Rocks

Breaking The Ice In Antarctica

Driving Through A Field Of Small Craters

EXO WORLDS
TakeMeToSpace.com Launches Space Tourism

Soyuz Returns To Earth Earlier Than Planned

Russia To Conduct Half Of Carrier Rocket Launches From Far East By 2020

Republicans could scale back US science budgets

EXO WORLDS
Two Telescopes For Tiangong

Chinese Female Taikonaut Identified

Tiangong Space Lab Spurs China Space PR Blitz

China Announces Success Of Chang'e-2 Lunar Probe Mission

EXO WORLDS
ISS crew to return to Earth early

German Robotic Arm Completes Its Five-Year ISS Mission

ISS Crew Completes Spacewalk

Space Station Spacewalk Under Russian Program Planned For Today

EXO WORLDS
Ball Aerospace's First Standard Interface Vehicle Set To Launch

ILS Proton Launches Lightsquared Satellite

Russia Launches Advanced US Telecom Satellite

NASA plans Alaska satellite launch

EXO WORLDS
First glimpse of a planet from another galaxy

Eartly Dust Tails Point To Alien Worlds

U.K. astronomers see 'snooker' star system

e2v To Develop Image Sensors For PLATO Exoplanet Mission

EXO WORLDS
Yahoo! Connected TV store to start selling widgets

Laser camera 'sees' around corners

Sonar System Inspired By Dolphins

U.S. Army upgrades force tracking system




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement