Wet Exoplanet has Clear Skies...

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Post by Rockhopper on Thu Sep 25, 2014 2:05 am



Neptune-sized orb is smallest alien world known to have water vapour.


Wet Exoplanet has Clear Skies... 1.15973


The smallest exoplanet yet found to contain water is about the size of Neptune — and a rare glimpse at its atmosphere reveals clear conditions. The handful of other small planets whose atmospheres have been studied all have cloudy skies.


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“It’s the smallest planet that we’ve seen anything in the atmosphere besides clouds,” says Jonathan Fraine, an astronomer at the University of Maryland in College Park. “The fact that it’s clear at all is significant.”

Fraine and his colleagues describe the atmosphere of the planet in the 25 September issue of Nature1. Known as HAT-P-11b, the body is about 38 parsecs (124 light years) away, in the Cygnus constellation.

Astronomers have been piecing together details on the atmospheres of several alien worlds, trying to find an Earth-like world with an Earth-like atmosphere. So far, however, clouds have generally obscured their view.

HAT-P-11b is different. Fraine’s team used the Hubble and Spitzer space telescopes to monitor the dimming of its star’s light as the planet passed in front of it, along with spectral details of the light during those transits. The astronomers could briefly glimpse its atmosphere twice, as the planet moved onto the disk of the star and then off it..

From Here.

Tim.
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Post by Stirky on Thu Sep 25, 2014 5:14 am

So could there be life on it??
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Post by Agartha on Thu Sep 25, 2014 10:46 am

Well, it has a temperature of 605 degrees Celsius!!! So not for us, but I believe life can develop anywhere... just not life as we know it on Earth.
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Post by Stirky on Thu Sep 25, 2014 3:53 pm

Blimey that's hot! Get a lovely tan there then Shocked Yes still means life could not be ruled out though
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Post by Rockhopper on Thu Sep 25, 2014 6:19 pm

Yep life could develop there, We have Thermophile bacteria in Earth that can handle temps up to 300C.

As Ags says, it won't be life as we know it but.

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Post by Agartha on Fri Sep 26, 2014 2:58 am

Well, Stirks.... a nice tan or burned to dust!!! lol

Tim, yes, not life as we know it.... and I'd love it if they find a planet with life before I have to move onto my next reincarnation ( Wink ) ..... I'd love to see what life in other planet could be like.
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