A team of researchers from the University of Montreal and a member of the Exoplanet Research Institute (iREx), has announced the discovery of TOI-1452ba exoplanet orbiting one of two small stars in a binary system located in the constellation Draco about 100 light-years from Earth.
The exoplanet is slightly larger in size and mass than Earth and is at a distance from its star where its temperature would be neither too hot nor too cold for liquid water to exist on its surface. Astronomers think it could be an “ocean planet,” a planet completely covered in a thick layer of water, similar to some of the moons of Jupiter and Saturn.
The doctoral student behind the discovery, Charles Cadieux, referred to its publication in The Astronomical Journal and from the observation Mont-Megantic Observatory and NASA’s TESS telescope.
“The OMM played a crucial role in confirming the nature of this signal and estimating the radius of the planet,” Cadieux explained. “This was not a routine check. We had to make sure that the signal detected by TESS was actually caused by an exoplanet surrounding TOI-1452, the larger of the two stars in that binary system.”
Exoplanet TOI-1452 b is probably rocky like Earth, but its radius, mass and density suggest a world very different from our planet.
“TOI-1452 b is one of the best candidates for an ocean planet that we have found to date,” said Cadieux. “Its radius and mass suggest a much lower density than one would expect for a planet that is basically made of metal and rock, like Earth.”