Extrasolar Planets

Hubble Finds 3 (Relatively) Dry Exoplanets, Raising Questions About Water Outside The Solar System

by Elizabeth Howell July 24, 2014

Want to stay on top of all the space news? Follow @universetoday on Twitter Surprise! Three planets believed to be good candidates for having water vapor in their atmosphere actually have much lower quantities than expected. The planets (HD 189733b, HD 209458b, and WASP-12b) are “hot Jupiters” that are orbiting very close to their parent […]

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First Exoplanet Discovered Beyond the “Snow Line”

by Shannon Hall July 22, 2014

Data from NASA’s crippled Kepler space telescope has unleashed a windfall of hot Jupiters — sizzling gas giants that circle their host star within days — and only a handful of Earth-like planets. A quick analysis might make it seem as though hot Jupiters are far more common than their smaller and more distant counterparts. […]

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The Search for Alien Life Could Get A Boost From NASA’s Next-Generation Rocket

by Elizabeth Howell July 14, 2014

In three years, NASA is planning to light the fuse on a huge rocket designed to bring humans further out into the solar system. We usually talk about SLS here in the context of the astronauts it will carry inside the Orion spacecraft, which will have its own test flight later in 2014. But today, […]

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‘Vulnerable’ Earth-Like Planets Could Survive With Friction: Study

by Elizabeth Howell July 9, 2014

If you’re a potentially habitable world orbiting in a zone where liquid water can exist — and then a rude gas giant planet happens to disturb your orbit — that could make it difficult or impossible for life to survive. But even in the newly eccentric state, a new study based on simulations shows that […]

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Join the Live Discussion: The Hunt for Other Worlds Heats Up

by Nancy Atkinson July 8, 2014

As readers of Universe Today know, exoplanets are one of the hottest topics in astronomy today. In just the past six months, astronomers have announced the discovery of more than 700 planets orbiting other stars, bringing the total to more than 1700. These discoveries include the first Earth-size planet found in what’s called the habitable […]

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