Monday, September 26

The strangest exoplanets discovered so far | Digital Trends Spanish


A question has troubled humanity since its origins: are we alone in the universe? Although there is no hard evidence yet, the scientific consensus is that it is unlikely that other life forms do not exist somewhere else. Where to look? On planets outside the Solar System. These are some of the strangest exoplanets discovered in recent years.

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what are exoplanets

Proxima B is an exoplanet orbiting within the habitable zone of the red dwarf star Proxima Centauri, the closest star to the Sun.

Although the first evidence of a possible exoplanet was recorded in 1917, it was only officially recognized in 1992, with the discovery of several Earth-mass planets orbiting the Lich Pulsar.

But what exactly are exoplanets? They are bodies that are located outside our solar system and that usually orbit around another star in the Milky Way, although some can be “wanderers”. As of January 2022, there are 4,884 confirmed exoplanets in 3,659 planetary systems.

However, they are far away. Even the closest to Earth, Proxima Centauri b, is located about 4 light-years away. However, scientists have discovered creative ways to detect these seemingly tiny objects.

KELT-9 b

Representation of what the exoplanet KELT-9 b would look like, with a white color.
POT

Type: gas giant
Discovery date:
2017
Distance from Earth
: 667 light years.

With a dayside temperature of more than 7,800° F (4,600° Kelvin), KELT-9b is a planet hotter than most known stars.

KELT-9b’s heat is so high even for hydrogen gas molecules to remain intact, that they can only reform when the separated atoms flow to the night side.

Scientists even believe it could be shedding a tail of evaporated material, like comets.

KELT-9b is a gas giant 2.8 times larger than Jupiter, but only half as dense. Scientists would expect it to have a smaller radius, but extreme radiation from its host star has caused its atmosphere to swell like a balloon.

A “year” on this planet lasts less than two days. Its sun, KELT-9, is a blue A-type star even hotter than the planet and could be burning it up through evaporation.

GJ504b

Representation of what the exoplanet GJ 504 b would look like, in a deep violet color.
POT

Type: gas giant.
Discovery date:
2013.
Distance from Earth
: 57 light years.

If we could travel to this planet we would see a world that still glows from the heat of its formation, with a dull magenta color, reminiscent of a cherry blossom.

GJ 504b orbits its star at a distance equal to nine times the position of Jupiter from the Sun, challenging theories of giant planet formation.

With a mass four times that of Jupiter and a size similar to this planet, it has an effective temperature of about 460° F (237° C).

It orbits the G0-type star GJ 504, slightly hotter than the Sun and barely visible in the constellation Virgo.

GJ436b

Representation of what the exoplanet GJ 436 b would look like, with a mixture of pink, white and green colors.
POT

Type: Neptune type.
Discovery date:
2004.
Distance from Earth
: 32 light years.

GJ 436 b is a Neptune-sized exoplanet orbiting an M-type star. Its mass is 22.1 times Earth’s, it takes 2.6 days to complete one orbit of its star, and it is only 33 light-years away.

Atmosphere models indicate that any world with the common mix of hydrogen, carbon, and oxygen, and a temperature of up to 1,000° Kelvin (1,340° F) should have a large amount of methane and a small amount of carbon monoxide.

However, this does not happen in GJ 436 b, despite the fact that it has a temperature of 800° Kelvin (980° Fahrenheit): NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope found evidence that it lacks this metal.

The planet is too compact to be composed primarily of hydrogen gas, like Jupiter, but it would not be as compact as a rocky super-Earth. The hypothesis? It will be made primarily of an exotic form of water, an “ice” hardened by pressure.

KOI-55b

Representation of what the exoplanet KOI-55b would look like, with yellow and orange colors like the Sun.
POT

Type: land
Discovery date:
2011
Distance from Earth
: 4016 light years.

Kepler-70b (also known as KOI-55) could very well be another circle of hell with an average temperature higher than the Sun’s surface.

It used to be the size of Jupiter, until it passed inside its now-dead star. While it is a journey that could destroy most planets, it left KOI-55 a burnt-out world like Freddy Krueger and smaller than Earth.

With a temperature of 12,000° F (6,800 C), it is one of the hottest planets discovered. In fact, the planet itself is evaporating and will soon be another victim of itself.

Kepler-16b

Exoplanet Kleper 16-B
POT

Type: gas giant
Discovery date: 2011
Distance from Earth
: 245 light years.

Kepler-16b is the first exoplanet discovered in the Milky Way that orbits a binary star, Kepler-16, similar to the images of the planet Tatooine in the saga. StarWars.

Because its suns, Kepler-16A and Kepler-16B, are smaller and less intense than our own, the planet’s surface is estimated to be -73° to -101°C.

Kepler-22b

Exoplanet Kepler 22b
Type:
super earth
Discovery date: 2011
Distance from Earth
: 635 light years.

Kepler-22b is the first exoplanet to be found in the so-called habitable zone, as the area of ​​a star system is called where planets could maintain liquid water and therefore support life.

At the moment, its composition is unknown, although it is estimated that its average temperature could be about 27° C if it has an atmosphere similar to Earth’s or about -11° C, if it does not.

The planet has a radius 2.4 times that of Earth and takes 289 days to orbit its star, Kepler 22.

WASP-12b

Exoplanet WASP 12B
POT


Type:
gas giant
Discovery date: 2008
Distance from Earth
: 870 light years.

WASP-12b is a planet that orbits so close to its parent star that it is being ripped apart. It takes just 1.1 Earth days to go around its sun, WASP-12. The star’s scorching heat is slowly shedding and eating away at the planet’s atmosphere. In 10 million years, it could be completely consumed.

Almost twice the size of our Jupiter, WASP-12b is a gas giant whose temperature is about 4,000° F (2,210° C). Gravity causes huge tidal forces that stretch the planet into an egg shape.

HD 189733b

Exoplanet HD 189733b
POT

Type: gas giant.
Discovery date:
1994.
Distance from Earth
: 1957 light years.

If viewed directly, HD 189733b would appear as a deep blue dot, reminiscent of the color of Earth from space. This faraway blue planet may seem like a friendly haven, but don’t be fooled.

The weather is deadly. Daytime temperatures are nearly 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit, and it’s possibly raining glass, sideways, with howling 4,500 mph winds. The cobalt blue color does not come from the reflection of a tropical ocean as it does on Earth, but from a hazy, burned atmosphere containing high clouds laced with silicate particles.

Silicates that condense with heat can form very small glass droplets, which scatter blue light more than red.

HD 189733 b’s mass is 1.13 times the size of Jupiter and it takes 2.2 days to complete one orbit of its star.

PSR B1257+12b

Exoplanet PSR B125712b
POT

Type: terrestrial type.
Discovery date:
1994.
Distance from Earth
: 1957 light years.

PSR B1257+12b was among the first and spookiest planets to be discovered orbiting an undead star known as a pulsar.

Pulsar planets, such as Poltergeist and its neighboring worlds, Phobetor and Draugr, are consumed by the constant radiation from the star’s core. Only the undead can survive in this most inhospitable corner of the galaxy.

Its mass is 0.02 Earths and it takes 25.3 days to complete one orbit of its star.

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