Almost all the planet hunting has been done from space. But there’s a new instrument installed on the European Southern Observatory’s 3.6 meter telescope called the High Accuracy Radial velocity Planet Searcher which has already turned up 130 planets. Is this the future? Searching for planets from the ground?
So far, just a handful of planets have been found orbiting stars in star clusters – and actually, astronomers weren’t too surprised about that. Star clusters can be pretty harsh places with hordes of stars huddling close together, with strong radiation and harsh stellar winds stripping planet-forming materials from the region. But it turns out […]
[/caption] Able to achieve an astounding precision of 0.97 m/s (3.5 km/h), with an effective precision of the order of 30 cms-1, the High Accuracy Radial velocity Planet Searcher (HARPS) echelle spectrograph has already discovered 16 planetary objects in the southern hemisphere and has now logged four more. And that’s only the beginning… “A long-period […]