tagged w/ Esrin
Scientists on the hunt for new exoplanets recently made an astounding discovery of ten new planets in the solar system, according to an announcement for European space agency.
Researchers from the ESA, who lead the project, announced the discovery of seven “hot” Jupiters, a planet smaller than Saturn, and a system of two “Neptune-like” objects that orbit the same star, according to press release from the second CoRoT symposium held this week in Marseille, France.
“Ever since the early days of exoplanet astronomy, we've been amazed by the variety of planets that have been discovered: gaseous giants larger than Jupiter and smaller, rocky bodies, down to masses comparable to the Earth's,” said Malcolm Fridlund, ESA's project scientist for CoRoT.
CoRoT is the first space mission dedicated to the search of planets outside the solar System. In more than 4 years of operations, scientists have discovered 26 new exoplanets, bringing the total number of exoplanets to 565.
"Although the study of exoplanets is relatively young, we have already reached a stage where we can characterise the details of worlds’ orbiting other stars, and CoRot is making a crucial contribution to this field,” Fridlund said. “With hundreds of systems observed to date, we no longer have to worry about 'taming the beasts' and we can dedicate our efforts to the 'zoology' of exoplanets, which is enormously enhancing our knowledge about planetary systems."
CoRoT is a 27-centimeter space telescope that searches for exoplanets with what is called the transit method, which measures the tiny decrease in brightness when an object, such as a planet, passes in front of a star, according to ESA's official statement.
Since scientists began using it in December 2006, the telescope has found 26 confirmed extrasolar planets. The number of possible extrasolar planets is even larger: 401 possible planet candidates detected by telescope’s use that scientists are in the process of confirming.Scientists on the hunt for new exoplanets recently made an astounding discovery of ten... more