Exoplanet Current Affairs - 2020

Birth of New Planets witnessed first time in human history

The SPHERE instrument of the Very Large Telescope has captured the birth of new planet in the AB Aurigae star system recently. This is the first time in human history the birth of a star is being witnessed.

Highlights

The birth of the new star was depicted by the European Southern Observatory. The image depicts orange mass of gas. The mass showing the cosmic matter of the universe at gravitational tipping point is exactly the sign for a star system to be born.

The spiral formation was captured by the telescope as well. The formation confirms the presence of a baby planet.

About Very Large Telescope

Very Large Telescope, also called VLT is located in European Southern Observatory, northern Chile. It consists of four telescopes. They are generally used separately. However, when used together gives the highest resolution.

The VLT operates at Infrared wavelength. The telescope is capable of detecting objects four billion times fainter than it can be detected with naked eye.

Super Earth discovered

The scientists from New Zealand have discovered the “Super Earth”. It potentially holds the conditions to sustain human life.

Highlights

The super earth is one of the handful of planets discovered that are of the same size and orbiting distance as that of the earth. The host star of the planet is 10% the mass of the sun.

About the planet

The planet is larger than the earth and hence the name “Super Earth”. The planet could be cold according to the scientists as the star is much smaller than the sun. Due to this reason, water may not exist in its liquid state, but might occur as ice. As the planet is heavier in mass, it might take 617 days to revolve around its star.

The super earth, according to the scientist might possess “Goldilocks Zone” in the future

What are Goldilocks Zone?

Goldilocks Zone is the space around a star where temperature aptly sustains water in liquid state.  The space also supports life.

The planet is 111 light years away from the earth and hence not very possible for humans to reach the planet.