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X-Planets ( extrasolar planets, and the various planets X )
Our Tiny Little Minds ^ | various | self et al

Posted on 06/09/2006 10:50:42 AM PDT by SunkenCiv

New Scientist for Dec 14, 2002, had a cover story for Planet X:

The Hunt for Planet X
by Heather Couper
and Nigel Henbest
Just over a year after the New Horizons' launch, it will... pick up enough velocity to reach Pluto, possibly as early as July 2015... In their new research, Melita and Brunini have explored three possible reasons for the Kuiper Cliff... The third possibility is that the region beyond was brushed clear by the gravity of Planet X... the KBO orbits they have investigated so far fit in best with the influence of a Planet X.

TOPICS: Astronomy
KEYWORDS: 2002cr46; 2003fx128; 55cancri; asteroid; centaur; comet; extrasolar; geoffmarcy; hd209458b; planetx; xplanets
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Scientists Confirm Earth-Like Planet Orbiting Nearby Star
  Posted by petuniasevan
On General/Chat 04/01/2002 1:31:00 AM EST · 6 replies · 322+ views

Scifidimensions | 4-01 | John C. Snider
Scientists Confirm Earth-Like Planet Orbiting Nearby Star †by John C. Snider† Researchers at the University of Toronto announced that they have photographic evidence of an Earth-like planet orbiting Kapteyn's Star, a red dwarf only 12.8 light-years away.† The images posted to the UTC website show two views of a deeply cratered, apparently airless world approximately 34,000 kilometers (21,000 miles) in diameter.† (Earth is 7,926 miles in diameter.)† Scientists have nicknamed the planet "Mickey," although its official designation for the time being is UTC-27745-3665.†"By 'Earth-like' what we mean is that it's a rocky planet - not a gas giant, which...

Home Alone In The Universe?
  Posted by Exnihilo
On News/Activism 04/19/2002 9:07:56 AM EDT · 31 replies · 365+ views

First Things | March 2002 | Fred Heeren
Home Alone in the Universe? Fred Heeren As I first learned at a dinner table surrounded by new acquaintances, questioning people's belief in extraterrestrial intelligence (ETI) is like questioning their religious faith. Doubts are met with gasps. The fierce stares say not just, "We disagree," but "You have blasphemed."Don't get me wrong. I have nothing against curing cancer, heart disease, and AIDS, which advanced aliens could presumably do. I'd be fascinated to hear an alien's perspective on the meaning and purpose of life. I'm all for immediate solutions to our war/crime/ poverty problems, which a mature society is supposed to...

30 Billion Earths? New Estimate of Exoplanets in Our Galaxy
  Posted by vannrox
On General/Chat 05/28/2002 8:33:19 PM EDT · 5 replies · 216+ views

Space.COM | 29 January 2002 | By Robert Roy Britt
By Robert Roy Britt Senior Science Writer posted: 07:00 am ET 29 January 2002 Chances are you haven't spent a whole lot of time wondering how many Jupiter-like planets exist in our galaxy. But Charley Lineweaver has, because it bears on a more important question: How many potentially habitable planets are there? New calculations by Lineweaver and Daniel Grether, both of the University of New South Wales in Australia, provide an encouraging answer to this question. The researchers expect a flood of Jupiters will be found, perhaps 50 percent more than currently expected. Each such discovery would be significant...

Solar system similar to ours discovered: US astronomers
  Posted by Exit 109
On News/Activism 06/13/2002 7:17:37 PM EDT · 118 replies · 666+ views

Yahoo! News via Drudge | June 13, 2002 | Yahoo! News staff
Friday June 14, 3:19 AMSolar system similar to ours discovered: US astronomers US astronomers announced the discovery of a solar system similar to our own, at a press conference at NASA's headquarters here.Astronomers said they had identified an extra-solar planet orbiting this star at about the same distance Jupiter orbits the sun. They discovered a total of 15 extra-solar planets.University of California at Berkley astronomy professor Geoffrey Marcy discovered the star, named 55 Cancri, 15 years ago, jointly with his colleague at Washington's Carnegie Institution Paul Butler.In 1996, Marcy and Butler announced the discovery of a first planet orbiting 55...

Astronomy Picture of the Day 6-14-02
  Posted by petuniasevan
On General/Chat 06/14/2002 8:28:02 AM EDT · 10 replies · 162+ views

NASA | 6-14-02 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2002 June 14 55 Cancri: Familiar Planet Discovered Illustration Credit & Copyright: Lynette Cook Explanation: Is our Solar System unique? The discovery of a Jupiter-like planet in a Jupiter-like orbit around nearby Sun-like star 55 Cancri, announced yesterday, gives a new indication that planetary systems similar to our Solar System likely exist elsewhere. The planet, discovered by G. Marcy (UC Berkeley) and collaborators, is one of two new...

Astronomy Picture of the Day
  Posted by sleavelessinseattle
On General/Chat 08/17/2002 12:17:07 AM EDT · 37 replies · 244+ views

NASA | 8/17/02 | K. Zwintz, H. Tirado and A. Gomez
Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2002 August 17 Asteroid 2002 NY40 Credit: K. Zwintz (Univ. Viena), H. Tirado and A. Gomez (CTIO, NOAO) Explanation: Asteroid 2002 NY40 will fly by planet Earth early in the morning August 18 Universal Time (late in the evening August 17 Eastern Daylight Time). Approaching to within about 530,000 kilometers or 1.3 times the Earth-Moon distance 2002 NY40 will definitely not be close enough to pose any danger...

Distant planet with iron raindrops found (clouds and fog made of molten iron)
  Posted by spetznaz
On News/Activism 01/08/2003 12:49:52 PM EST · 56 replies · 900+ views

SEATTLE (AP) -- Using a new technique that will be used to search for Earthlike planets, astronomers have found a distant extrasolar planet, a bizarre place of torrid heat, with clouds and raindrops made of iron.A team from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics found the planet orbiting a star 5,000 light years away by detecting the slight dimming of light caused as the planet moved between the star and telescopes on Earth. The sophisticated technique was compared to spotting the shadow cast by a mosquito flying in front of a searchlight two hundred miles away. Because it is so close...

Odds against Earth-like planets
  Posted by conservativecorner
On News/Activism 01/28/2003 2:50:07 PM EST · 130 replies · 647+ views | January 28, 2003 | Dr David Whitehouse
Earth-like worlds circling stars in orbital zones suitable for life may be few and far between in the cosmos, according to new research. In the first comprehensive study of extrasolar planetary systems, astronomers have shown that in most of them it would not be possible to keep an Earth-like world in orbit around a star so that it was neither too hot nor too cold for life. In general, other planetary systems fall into two types: those with Jupiter-like worlds circling close to their parent star, and those with more distant Jupiters in elliptical orbits. In both systems, maintaining an...

Deadly Dance: Giant Planet Found Orbiting Huge Star
  Posted by vannrox
On News/Activism 01/29/2003 9:26:26 AM EST · 24 replies · 613+ views

space DOT COM | 23 January 2003 | By Robert Roy Britt
Deadly Dance: Giant Planet Found Orbiting Huge Star By Robert Roy Britt Senior Science Writer posted: 07:00 am ET 23 January 2003 A large planet recently found orbiting a distant star serves as a preview for the likely frying fate that awaits our own planet. The star, called HD 47536, is more than 23 times the diameter of our Sun. It is the largest star ever found to harbor a planet. The discovery was announced Wednesday. The planet is five to 10 times heavier than Jupiter and orbits the star more than twice as far as Earth is from...

Having Pups Over Pluto And The Planetary Misfits Of The Kuipers
  Posted by RightWhale
On General/Chat 03/12/2003 8:27:54 PM EST · 5 replies · 86+ views | 12 Mar 03 | Robert Sanders
Having Pups Over Pluto And The Planetary Misfits Of The Kuipers Ask any kid how many planets are in our solar system, and you'll get a firm answer: nine. But knock on a few doors in Berkeley's astronomy department, and you'll hear, amid the hemming and hawing, a whole range of numbers. Professor Gibor Basri, who plans soon to propose a formal definition of a planet to the international body that names astronomical objects, argues that there are at least 14 planets, and perhaps as many as 20. To the well-known list of nine he adds several large asteroids and...

Too Close For Comfort: Hubble Discovers An Evaporating Planet
  Posted by vannrox
On News/Activism 03/14/2003 9:03:50 AM EST · 4 replies · 196+ views

Science Daily | FR Post 3-15-03 | Editorial Staff
Source: Space Telescope Science Institute Date: 2003-03-14 Too Close For Comfort: Hubble Discovers An Evaporating PlanetFor the first time, astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have observed the atmosphere of an extrasolar planet evaporating off into space. Much of the planet may eventually disappear, leaving only a dense core. The planet is a type of extrasolar planet known as a "hot Jupiter." These giant gaseous planets orbit their parent stars very closely, drawn to them like moths to a flame. The scorched planet, called HD 209458b, orbits only 4 million miles (7 million kilometers) from its yellow, Sun-like star....

Is there another Earth out there?
  Posted by bedolido
On News/Activism 06/04/2003 4:05:01 PM EDT · 154 replies · 513+ views

USA Today | Staff Writer
<p>Forget the next Star Wars movie. The real space sequel guaranteed to capture public attention, astronomers say, is the discovery of another planet like Earth in our own starry neighborhood -- and it is likely to happen within a decade.</p>

Astronomers find 'home from home' - 90 light years away!
  Posted by RightWhale
On News/Activism 07/03/2003 1:22:13 PM EDT · 360 replies · 443+ views | 3 Jul 03 | staff
Astronomers find 'home from home' - 90 light years away! Astronomers looking for planetary systems that resemble our own solar system have found the most similar formation so far. British astronomers, working with Australian and American colleagues, have discovered a planet like Jupiter in orbit round a nearby star that is very like our own Sun. Among the hundred found so far, this system is the one most similar to our Solar System. The planet's orbit is like that of Jupiter in our own Solar System, especially as it is nearly circular and there are no bigger planets closer in...

Astronomy Picture of the Day 7-09-03
  Posted by petuniasevan
On General/Chat 07/09/2003 12:29:04 AM EDT · 12 replies · 180+ views

NASA | 7-09-03 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2003 July 9 HD70642: A Star with Similar Planets Illustration Credit & Copyright: David A. Hardy, PPARC Explanation: Astronomers have discovered a planetary system more similar to our own Solar System than any known previously. The bright star HD70642, visible with binoculars toward the constellation of Puppis, was already known to be a star like our Sun. Now a planet with twice Jupiter's mass has been discovered in...

Not Enough Comets in the Cupboard
  Posted by bondserv
On News/Activism 09/13/2003 8:17:25 PM EDT · 123 replies · 370+ views

Creation-Evolution Headlines | Creation-Evolution Headlines
Not Enough Comets in the Cupboard† †09/03/2003 There's a shortage of comets.† The Hubble Space Telescope peered into the Kuiper Belt cupboard, and found it nearly empty ñ only 4% of the predicted supply was found. † † Astronomers needed a bigger storehouse to explain the number of short-period comets now inhabiting the solar system.† The Kuiper Belt, a region of small icy bodies beyond Neptune, has been the favored source of comets with orbital periods 200 years or less, but the new measurements, soon to be published in the Astrophysical Journal, are 'wildly inconsistent' with the observed number of...

Earth: no longer the lonely planet
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 09/27/2003 10:19:20 AM EDT · 125 replies · 300+ views

SpaceRef | 9/26/03
The question of whether we're alone in the universe just got a lot bigger. Two astronomers from the University of New South Wales, Australia - Dr Charles Lineweaver and Daniel Grether - have found that at least 25 per cent of Sun-like stars have planets. "This means there are at least 100 billion stars with planets in our Galaxy," says Dr Lineweaver, a Senior Research Fellow at the University's School of Physics. Until now, astronomers believed that only five to 15 per cent of Sun-like stars had orbiting planets, but Lineweaver and Grether's work shows that previous estimates under-reported the...

How Lonely is Our Planet?
  Posted by farmfriend
On News/Activism 11/12/2003 1:27:11 PM EST · 52 replies · 265+ views

Tech Central Station | 11/12/2003 | Kenneth Silber
How Lonely is Our Planet? By Kenneth Silber Where are they? Physicist Enrico Fermi famously posed this question when asked about intelligent extraterrestrials. If such beings exist, why have we (presumably) not been contacted or visited? Fermi's Paradox, as it is now known, is more profound than it may appear. Calculations suggest that if our galaxy has even one extraterrestrial civilization with the interest and ability to colonize new star systems, such a civilization could spread far and wide in a period far shorter than the age of the galaxy. There are many possible solutions to Fermi's Paradox. Perhaps extraterrestrials...

Oxygen at Extrasolar Planet, a First
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 02/02/2004 9:01:13 PM EST · 23 replies · 155+ views | 02/02/04 | Tariq Malik
Astronomers have detected the first presence of oxygen and carbon in the atmosphere of an extrasolar planet, a world already known to be venting massive amounts of gas into space. The find is evidence of an atmospheric "blow off" in action, where energetic hydrogen gas drags heavier elements along for a supersonic ride into space.

Newfound World Shatters Distance Record
  Posted by Excuse_My_Bellicosity
On News/Activism 04/15/2004 7:30:27 PM EDT · 5 replies · 110+ views | 15 April 2004 | Robert Roy Britt
Separate teams today announced the discoveries of three planets outside our solar system, including one that is more than three times farther away than the previous record holder. Tricks used to find the giant worlds are expected to also allow detection of Earth-sized planets by the end of the decade. Previously the most distant known planet was 5,000 light-years away. One of the newly spotted worlds and its host star are 17,000 light-years distant. They inhabit a crowded region of space toward the center of our Milky Way Galaxy. The far-off planet is estimated to be about 1.5 times...

Astronomers may have image of extrasolar planet
  Posted by presidio9
On News/Activism 05/10/2004 12:49:46 PM EDT · 22 replies · 104+ views | May 10th 2004 | Robert Roy Britt
In a preliminary analysis of new data, astronomers say they may have imaged a planet outside our solar system for the first time by using a tricky new method to ferret out dim objects from the light of a star. The researchers are very cautious not to claim any discovery yet. The faint point of light, captured by the Hubble Space Telescope, might instead be a background star or a very distant galaxy and requires follow-up observations to be confirmed. Images HOW IT'S DONE: A raw infrared image of a white dwarf star from Hubble shows a lot of noise,...

Double Vision: Two Telescopes for Hunting Earth-like Planets
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 05/26/2004 9:37:25 PM EDT · 12 replies · 111+ views | 5/26/04 | Tariq Malik
After years of whittling away prospective designs for a NASA mission to search for earth-like planets around alien stars, the space agency had narrowed the choice down to two very different observatories. The first -- a coronagraph -- would blot out at a star's light in the hopes of seeing small orbiting planets, while the other -- an interferometer -- would use a fleet of infrared telescopes working in tandem to hunt for the same extrasolar quarry.

Earth-like planets may be more rare than thought
  Posted by PatrickHenry
On News/Activism 07/30/2004 2:12:50 PM EDT · 179 replies · 2,544+ views

Nature Magazine | 30 July 2004 | Philip Ball
We could be alone in the Universe after all. The discovery during the past decade of over a hundred planets around other stars has encouraged many scientists to think that habitable planets like ours might be common. But a recent study tells them to think again. Martin Beer of the University of Leicester, UK, and co-workers argue that our Solar System may be highly unusual, compared with the planetary systems of other stars. In a preprint published on Arxiv1 [footnote's link in original article], they point out that the alien planets we have seen so far could have been formed...

Major instrument aboard Hubble telescope may be dead
  Posted by Dog Gone
On News/Activism 08/07/2004 8:39:39 PM EDT · 31 replies · 631+ views

Houston Chronicle | August 7, 2004
One of four science instruments on the Hubble Space Telescope has apparently failed and engineers are trying to determine whether it can be fixed. One of the telescope's spectographs - specifically the Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) - provides spectra and images at ultraviolet and visible wavelengths. It was installed in 1997 during the second servicing mission by space shuttle astronauts. The STIS - which went into "suspended mode" Tuesday - was designed to operate for only five years and has met or exceeded all its scientific requirements, NASA officials said in a written statement. It had not been scheduled...

'Super Earth' Discovered at Nearby Star
  Posted by swilhelm73
On News/Activism 08/25/2004 6:27:13 PM EDT · 65 replies · 1,288+ views | 8/25/04 | Robert Roy Britt
In a discovery that has left one expert stunned, European astronomers have found one of the smallest planets known outside our solar system, a world about 14 times the mass of our own around a star much like the Sun. It could be a rocky planet with a thin atmosphere, a sort of "super Earth," the researchers said today. But this is no typical Earth. It completes its tight orbit in less than 10 days, compared to the 365 required for our year. Its daytime face would be scorched. The planet's surface conditions aren't known, said Portuguese researcher Nuno Santos,...

Astronomy Picture of the Day 08-25-04
  Posted by petuniasevan
On General/Chat 08/25/2004 8:58:29 PM EDT · 8 replies · 1,112+ views

NASA | 08-25-04 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2004 August 25 Zodiacal Light and the False Dawn Credit & Copyright: Stefan Seip Explanation: An unusual triangle of light will be particularly bright near the eastern horizon before sunrise during the next two months for observers in Earth's northern hemisphere. Once considered a false dawn, this triangle of light is actually Zodiacal Light, light reflected from interplanetary dust particles. The triangle is clearly visible in the left frame...

Astronomy Picture of the Day 08-31-04
  Posted by petuniasevan
On General/Chat 08/31/2004 8:16:43 AM EDT · 9 replies · 1,278+ views

NASA | 08-31-04 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
Astronomy Picture of the Day Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer. 2004 August 31 The Dotted Dunes of Mars Credit & Copyright: Malin Space Science Systems, MOC, MGS, JPL, NASA Explanation: What causes the black dots on dunes on Mars? As spring dawns on the Northern Hemisphere of Mars, dunes of sand near the poles begin to defrost. Thinner regions of ice typically thaw first revealing sand whose darkness soaks in sunlight and accelerates the thaw. By summer, the...

All of a Sudden, the Neighborhood Looks a Lot Friendlier
  Posted by neverdem
On News/Activism 09/21/2004 6:38:18 PM EDT · 10 replies · 828+ views

NY Times | September 21, 2004 | DENNIS OVERBYE
Like most New Yorkers, I have real estate fever. Even though I hate moving, I can't travel anywhere without wondering what it would be like to live there. I can't walk down a street in Oaxaca or the East Village without window shopping for apartments and evaluating the restaurant scene and the availability of playgrounds. It doesn't stop there. Roll a sleeping bag out under the sky in a place like Mesa Verde, 7,000 feet up in the Colorado Rockies, on a summer evening and you will wake up at midnight with your nose in the Milky Way. There are...

Extrasolar Planets: A Matter of Metallicity
  Posted by tricky_k_1972
On News/Activism 10/12/2004 3:52:50 PM EDT · 32 replies · 956+ views

Space Daily, SPX | Oct 12, 2004 | Henry Bortman
Extrasolar Planets: A Matter of Metallicity by Henry Bortman for Astrobiology Magazine Moffett Field (SPX) Oct 12, 2004 Astronomers have discovered more than 130 planets orbiting nearby stars in our galaxy. Although the solar systems they have found are very different from ours, by studying the planets that have been found - their masses, their orbits and their stars - they are uncovering intriguing hints that our galaxy may be brimming with solar systems like our own. According to Greg Laughlin, an assistant professor of astronomy and astrophysics at UC Santa Cruz, planet hunters can expect, over time, to find...

Stellar encounters as the origin of distant Solar System objects in highly eccentric orbits
  Posted by nicollo
On General/Chat 12/02/2004 7:51:41 PM EST · 38 replies · 783+ views

Nature Magazine | Dec 2/ 2004 | Scott J. Kenyon and Benjamin C. Bromley
If you can make sense of it, here's the article: Stellar encounters as the origin of distant Solar System objects in highly eccentric orbits SCOTT J. KENYON AND BENJAMIN C. BROMLEY The Kuiper belt extends from the orbit of Neptune at 30 AU to an abrupt outer edge about 50 AU from the Sun. Beyond the edge is a sparse population of objects with large orbital eccentricities. Neptune shapes the dynamics of most Kuiper belt objects, but the recently discovered planet 2003 VB12 (Sedna) has an eccentric orbit with a perihelion distance of 70 AU, far beyond Neptune's gravitational influence....

Astronomers Confident: Planet Beyond Solar System Has Been Photographed
  Posted by wagglebee
On News/Activism 01/11/2005 8:25:11 PM EST · 28 replies · 1,190+ views | 1/10/05 | Robert Roy Britt
SAN DIEGO -- Astronomers are highly confident that they've taken the first photograph of a planet outside our solar system. Make that two photographs. A new image from the Hubble Space Telescope confirms with a high degree of confidence a picture made previously by astronomers at the European Southern Observatory (ESO) and reported by in September. The planet -- still just a candidate, actually -- is an odd duck in many respects. It does not orbit a normal star, and it is much more massive than the largest planets in our solar system. Still, if confirmed, it represents a...

First direct sighting of an extrasolar planet
  Posted by Momaw Nadon
On News/Activism 01/12/2005 10:07:27 AM EST · 55 replies · 1,573+ views news service | Tuesday, January 11, 2005 | Maggie McKee
Astronomers have directly observed an extrasolar planet for the first time, but are at a loss to explain what they see. More than 130 planets have been detected orbiting stars other than our own, the Sun. But because the stars far outshine the planets, all of the planets were detected indirectly - by how much they made their host stars wobble or dim, for example. Now, astronomers say they are almost certain they have snapped an actual image of an extrasolar planet. It was first seen at infrared wavelengths with the Very Large Telescope in Chile in April 2004, and...

Spitzer Sees the Aftermath of a Planetary Collision
  Posted by SunkenCiv
On General/Chat 01/13/2005 11:50:18 PM EST · 13 replies · 442+ views

Universe Today | Jan. 10, 2005 | Dolores Beasley and Gay Yee Hill
NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has found a dusty ring of material orbiting nearby Vega which was probably the result of a series of protoplanets smashing into each other. Vega is the fifth brightest star in the sky, located only 25 light-years away in the constellation of Lyra. This dust is constantly being blown out by Vega's intense radiation, so it's unlikely that the star has had this much dust for its entire lifetime. Instead, this ring must have been formed recently, perhaps when a Pluto-sized object was pulverized within the last million years or so.

Titan a 'Flammable' Moon Covered in Liquid Gas
  Posted by Dallas59
On News/Activism 01/21/2005 10:17:19 AM EST · 72 replies · 1,701+ views

Al-Rueters via Yapoo | 1/21/05 | Ben Berkowitz
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Saturn's moon Titan is covered by "dirty" ice ridges and seas of liquid natural gas, a team of scientists said on Friday after a week of research into data from the space probe Huygens. "We've got a flammable world," said Toby Owen, an atmospheric scientist, at a news conference from European Space Agency offices in Paris monitored on NASA (news - web sites) TV. After a seven-year piggyback trip from Earth on board the Saturn probe Cassini, the European-designed Huygens separated in December and fell toward Titan, entering the moon's atmosphere last Friday. The probe, part...

Massive Object Calls Planet Discoveries into Question
  Posted by SunkenCiv
On General/Chat 01/21/2005 12:19:56 PM EST · 8 replies · 452+ views

Space dot com (via Yahoo) | Thu, Jan 20, 2005 | Robert Roy Britt
Astronomers have found about 140 planets outside our solar system. Most are more massive than Jupiter, and some are much more massive. Astronomers have been scrambling to figure out where to draw the line between a giant gas planet and a brown dwarf. Complicating the matter, several objects that appear to be in the acceptable mass range for planets -- up to about 15 Jupiter masses -- were discovered about five years ago floating freely in space, not bound to any star... Brown dwarfs, especially when they are young, give off heat, which can be detected as infrared radiation. But...

Diamond Planets: Rich Possibilities for Other Worlds
  Posted by wingblade
On News/Activism 02/08/2005 6:59:42 PM EST · 22 replies · 535+ views

Science - | Tue Feb 8,11:21 AM ET | Robert Roy Britt
Diamond Planets: Rich Possibilities for Other Worlds The solid planets in our solar system are made mostly of silicates. Rock, basically. A new study shows that planets around some other stars might be made mostly of carbon instead. Deep inside such worlds, where pressures are intense, the carbon would make layers of diamonds that could be miles thick. The rich-sounding worlds are modeled after a certain type of space rock, known as the carbonaceous chondrite, which are thought to be broken bits of asteroids. Many of them have been collected on Earth. "These meteorites contain large quantities of carbon compounds...

Light Spotted From Beyond Solar System
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 03/22/2005 9:20:30 PM EST · 35 replies · 849+ views

Yahoo | 03/22/05 | JOSEPH B. VERRENGIA
A NASA (news - web sites) telescope peering far beyond our solar system has for the first time directly measured light from two Jupiter-sized gas planets closely orbiting distant stars, adding crucial features to astronomy's portrait of faraway worlds. Studies of the infrared light streaming from the two giant planets suggest they are made of hot, swirling gases that reach a broiling 1,340 degrees Fahrenheit or higher. "It's an awesome experience to realize we are seeing the glow of distant worlds," said astronomer David Charbonneau of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Mass., whose team captured light from a...

EXCLUSIVE: First Confirmed Picture of a Planet Beyond the Solar System
  Posted by conservativecorner
On News/Activism 04/01/2005 2:35:44 PM EST · 50 replies · 2,803+ views | April 1, 2005 | Robert Roy Britt
After a few close calls, astronomers have finally obtained the first photograph of a planet beyond our solar system, has learned. And this time they're sure. The planet is thought to be one to two times as massive as Jupiter. It orbits a star similar to a young version of our Sun. The star, GQ Lupi, has been observed by a team of European astronomers since 1999. They have made three images using the Very Large Telescope (VLT) of the European Southern Observatory (ESO) in Chile. The Hubble Space Telescope and the Japanese Subaru Telescope each contributed an image,...

Exploring the Universe
  Posted by Cincinatus' Wife
On News/Activism 04/02/2005 5:45:44 AM EST · 51 replies · 969+ views

Physics Today Online | April 2, 2005 | Roger Blandford
In midñFebruary, I participated in a NASA Science Update press briefing that presented gammañray and radio observations of a flaring neutron star. A neutron star is a solarñmass worth of mundane and exotic nuclei and fundamental particles trapped by gravity at supranuclear densities, exhibiting superfluidity and superconductivity. The star is encased within a solid crust, a liquid ocean, a gaseous atmosphere, and a relativistic plasma magnetosphere capable of inducing zettavolt electromotive forces and radiating intense, coherent emission. Neutron stars are used to test general relativity and to search for gravitational radiation. The neutron star in question is also a 'magnetar,'...

Plenty of Earths await discovery
  Posted by LibWhacker
On News/Activism 04/05/2005 12:36:50 PM EDT · 84 replies · 1,265+ views

BBC | 4/5/05 | Jonathan Amos
The Universe could host billions of EarthsBritish researchers are more confident than ever that there are "Earths" out there waiting to be discovered.The scientists say perhaps a half of all the known planetary systems today could be harbouring habitable worlds. It must be said most of these systems are strange places where supergiant planets orbit close in to their stars. But Barrie Jones and colleagues say their modelling work suggests that even with this oddness, there should be room for small rocky planets. The Open University team presented its ideas here at the UK National Astronomy Meeting on Tuesday. They...

Scientists Say Red Speck Is Indeed Huge New Planet
  Posted by neverdem
On News/Activism 04/30/2005 1:22:03 AM EDT · 52 replies · 1,690+ views

NY Times | April 30, 2005 | DENNIS OVERBYE
A reddish speck photographed near a dim and distant star last year is indeed a planet, about five times the mass of Jupiter, an international team of astronomers is reporting today. They say the results bolster their claim, put forward last fall, that this image was the first of a planet orbiting a star outside the solar system. The planet, about 230 light-years from Earth in the constellation Hydra, orbits a kind of failed star known as a brown dwarf at a distance of at least five billion miles, twice as far as icy Neptune is from our own Sun....

10 Years of Planet Hunting: Amazing Variety Out There
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 05/09/2005 8:31:40 PM EDT · 8 replies · 375+ views | 05/09/05 | Michael Schirber
BALTIMORE ñ Astronomers met last week to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the first planet discovered around a normal star other than the Sun. Although more than 130 other such planets have been found since then, the field still feels like it is just getting started.

Possible Earth-like planet discovered
  Posted by The_Victor
On News/Activism 06/13/2005 3:42:00 PM EDT · 123 replies · 2,227+ views

Houston Comical (AP) | June 13, 2005, 2:14PM
WASHINGTON† ó A planet that may be Earth-like ó but too hot for life as we know it ó has been discovered orbiting a nearby star.The discovery of the planet, with an estimated radius about twice that of Earth, was announced today at the National Science Foundation."This is the smallest extrasolar planet yet detected and the first of a new class of rocky terrestrial planets," Paul Butler of the Carnegie Institution in Washington said in a statement. "It's like Earth's bigger cousin."Geoffrey Marcy, professor of astronomy at the University of California, Berkeley, added: "Over 2,000 years ago, the Greek philosophers...

Gonzalez Responds to Privileged Planet Attacks
  Posted by Heartlander
On News/Activism 07/01/2005 8:25:56 PM EDT · 11 replies · 565+ views

Discovery Institute News | June 29, 2005 | Guillermo Gonzalez
† Discovery Institute News 1511 3rd Ave Suite 808 - Seattle, WA 98101 - (206) 292-0401 x126 An Open Letter to My Open-Minded Colleagues By: Guillermo Gonzalez Discovery Institute June 29, 2005 In March 2004 The Privileged Planet, which I co-authored with Jay Richards, was published, evoking both enthusiastic and negative reactions from a number of leading scientists. The argument covers everything from the fine-tuning of the constants of physics to the initial conditions of the Big Bang; from our host star and planetary neighbors to our atmosphere and moon. Our conclusion? The universe is designed not only for...

Astronomers detect 'Tatooine planet'
  Posted by presidio9
On News/Activism 07/14/2005 4:07:16 PM EDT · 41 replies · 1,037+ views

Reuters | Thursday, July 14, 2005
Astronomers have detected a planet outside our solar system with not one, but three suns, a finding that challenges astronomers' theories of planetary formation. The planet, a gas giant slightly larger than Jupiter, orbits the main star of a triple-star system known as HD 188753 in the constellation Cygnus. The stellar trio and its planet are about 149 light-years from Earth and about as close to each other as our sun is to Saturn, U.S. scientists reported on Thursday in the current edition of the journal Nature. A light-year is about 6 trillion miles (10 trillion km), the distance light...

System of three stars harbors newfound world
  Posted by eagle11
On News/Activism 07/15/2005 7:08:14 AM EDT · 14 replies · 460+ views | July 13, 2005 | By Michael Schirber
Newly discovered planet has 3 suns Scientists puzzled at how such a planet could form A newly discovered planet has bountiful sunshine, with not one, not two, but three suns glowing in its sky. It is the first extrasolar planet found in a system with three stars. How a planet was born amidst these competing gravitational forces will be a challenge for planet formation theories. "The environment in which this planet exists is quite spectacular," said Maciej Konacki from the California Institute of Technology. "With three suns, the sky view must be out of this world -- literally and figuratively."...

Rapid-born planets present 'baby picture' of our early solar system
  Posted by DaveLoneRanger
On General/Chat 09/10/2005 12:39:51 AM EDT · 14 replies · 379+ views

EurekAlert | September 9, 2005 | Staff
Using NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, a team of astronomers led by the University of Rochester has detected gaps ringing the dusty disks around two very young stars, which suggests that gas-giant planets have formed there. A year ago, these same researchers found evidence of the first "baby planet" around a young star, challenging most astrophysicists's models of giant-planet formation. The new findings in the Sept. 10 issue of Astrophysical Journal Letters not only reinforce the idea that giant planets like Jupiter form much faster than scientists have traditionally expected, but one of the gas-enshrouded stars, called GM Aurigae, is analogous...

Scientists discover moon orbiting so-called 10th planet (nicknamed 'Xena')
  Posted by NormsRevenge
On News/Activism 10/01/2005 8:10:46 PM EDT · 28 replies · 762+ views

ap on Monterey Herald | 10/1/05 | Alicia Chang - ap
LOS ANGELES - The astronomers who claim to have discovered the 10th planet in the solar system have made another intriguing announcement: it has a moon. While observing the new, so-called planet from Hawaii last month, a team of astronomers led by Michael Brown of the California Institute of Technology spotted a faint object trailing next to it. Because it was moving, astronomers ruled it was a moon and not a background star, which is stationary. The moon discovery is important because it can help scientists determine the new planet's mass. In July, Brown announced the discovery of an icy,...

NASA Takes Giant Step Toward Finding Earth-Like Planets
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 10/01/2005 8:42:25 PM EDT · 17 replies · 482+ views

nasa | 09/29/05
Are we alone in the universe? Are there planets like Earth around other "suns" that might harbor life? Thanks to a recent technology breakthrough on a key NASA planet-finding project, the dream of answering those questions is no longer light-years away. On a crystal clear, star-filled night at Hawaii's Keck Observatory in Mauna Kea, NASA engineers successfully suppressed the blinding light of three stars, including the well-known Vega, by 100 times. This breakthrough will enable scientists to detect the dim dust disks around stars, where planets might be forming. Normally the disks are obscured by the glare of the starlight....

New Planetoid Discovery Sets Off Feud
  Posted by Nasty McPhilthy
On News/Activism 10/17/2005 2:07:35 AM EDT · 17 replies · 583+ views

Yahoo News | Sun Oct 16, 6:50 PM ET | AP
LOS ANGELES - The discovery of a new planetoid has set off a bitter feud between American and Spanish scientists while raising questions about the ethics of Internet research. The dispute began in July when Michael Brown, a professor at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, discovered a new planetoid in the solar system known as the Kuiper Belt. Days before announcing his discovery, however, a group of Spanish astronomers claimed the new planetoid. American researchers said they learned that the Spanish scientists had discovered where Brown was aiming a Chilean telescope by using an Internet search engine. "This...

Giant Kuiper Belt planetoid Sedna may have formed far beyond Pluto
  Posted by SunkenCiv
On General/Chat 10/22/2005 4:05:39 PM EDT · 18 replies · 404+ views

Physics Org ( | January 24, 2005 | Southwest Research Institute
In a report published in the January 2005 issue of The Astronomical Journal, planetary scientist Dr. Alan Stern of the Space Science and Engineering Division at Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) shows Sedna could have formed far beyond the distance of Pluto... Stern's Sedna formation simulations assumed that Sedna's original orbit, while distant from the Sun, was circular. Astronomers agree that Sedna could not have formed in its present, eccentric orbit because such an orbit allows only violent collisions that prevent the growth of small bodies. Stern's simulations further assumed that the solar nebula -- the disk of material out of...

Astronomers discover possible miniature solar system
  Posted by NormsRevenge
On News/Activism 11/29/2005 9:20:23 PM EST · 31 replies · 724+ views

ap on San Diego Union Tribune | 11/29/05 | AP - Los Angeles
LOS ANGELES ñ Astronomers peering through ground- and space-based telescopes have discovered what they believe is the birth of the smallest known solar system. Scientists found a tiny brown dwarf ñ or failed star ñ less than one hundredth the mass of the sun surrounded by what appears to be a disk of dust and gas. The brown dwarf ñ located 500 light years away in the constellation Chamaeleon ñ appears to be undergoing a planet-forming process that could one day yield a miniature solar system, said Kevin Luhman of Penn State University, who led the discovery. It's long believed...

Scientists find possible birth of tiniest known solar system
  Posted by RightWhale
On General/Chat 11/30/2005 4:28:43 PM EST · 16 replies · 634+ views | 30 Nov 05 | Penn State
Scientists find possible birth of tiniest known solar system PENNSYLVANIA STATE UNIVERSITY NEWS RELEASE Posted: November 29, 2005 Scientists using a combination of ground-based and orbiting telescopes have discovered a failed star, less than one-hundredth the mass of the Sun, possibly in the process of forming a solar system. It is the smallest known star-like object to harbor what appears to be a planet-forming disk of rocky and gaseous debris, which one day could evolve into tiny planets and create a solar system in miniature. A team led by Kevin Luhman, assistant professor of astronomy and astrophysics at Penn...

Neptune-Size Planet Orbiting Common Star Hints at Many More
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 11/30/2005 10:21:39 PM EST · 41 replies · 684+ views | 11/30/05 | Robert Roy Britt
Astronomers have discovered a planet about as massive as Neptune orbiting one of the most common types of stars in the universe. The star is a red dwarf, a class of star about 50 times fainter than the Sun. Among the 100 stars closest to us, 80 are red dwarfs. But astronomers had so far found only two planets in searches of about 200 red dwarfs, while well more than a hundred planets have been found around other types of stars. "Our finding possibly means that planets are rather frequent around the smallest stars," says Xavier Delfosse, from the Laboratoire...

Optical Vortex Coronagraph Could Look Directly At Extrasolar Planets
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 12/01/2005 10:51:55 PM EST · 6 replies · 335+ views | 12/01/05
A new optical device might allow astronomers to view extrasolar planets directly without the annoying glare of the parent star. It would do this by "nulling" out the light of the parent star by exploiting its wave nature, leaving the reflected light from the nearby planet to be observed in space-based detectors. The device, called an optical vortex coronagraph, is described in the December 15, 2005 issue of Optics Letters. About ten years ago the presence of planets around stars other than our sun was first deduced by the very tiny wobble in the star's spectrum of light imposed by...

The Big Bangs for Astronomers in 2005
  Posted by Neville72
On News/Activism 12/20/2005 9:08:41 AM EST · 256+ views | 12/20.2005 | By Robert Roy Britt
PHOENIX, Ariz. -- The past year in space science and astronomy was dominated by debate and some tantalizing near-findings. A hangover of heady Mars discoveries festered while astronomers on the ground obtained evermore intimate glimpses of the outer solar system and the solar neighborhood but stopped short of declaring agreement on what they'd found. To punctuate that ambiguity with some stark clarity elsewhere, NASA smacked a comet and found it to be all fluff. Among the highlights: The 10th Planet? You might think the discovery of an object larger than Pluto orbiting the Sun would automatically be hailed as the...

2012: the piano-sized "New Horizons" probe of NASA nears Pluto (will it find ET there?)
  Posted by presidio9
On News/Activism 01/10/2006 11:29:19 AM EST · 28 replies · 560+ views

India Daily | Jan. 6, 2006
Something spectacular may happen in 2012. New Horizons, a NASA space craft with a probe will travel at 26,700mph over four billion miles to Pluto. It will be in close proximity of Pluto by 2012. New Horizons probe will travel faster than any previous spacecraft on its journey to the planet farthest from the Sun, its moon Charon and the mysterious, icy Kuiper Belt. Relatively little is known about the ninth planet Pluto. It is an unknown zone of the solar system. Many scientists have started believing that Pluto will surprise all in the earth by 2012. There are fair...

New cheaper tools join search for another Earth
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 01/11/2006 8:36:45 PM EST · 19 replies · 382+ views

Reuters Science | 01/11/06 | Deborah Zabarenko
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - A telescope turbo-charger called ET has found its first planet outside the solar system, and something that looks like a suitcase in space is tracking possible faraway Earths, astronomers reported on Wednesday. These two small, relatively cheap instruments are part of a new wave of tools and techniques joining the accelerating race to find a world like ours that orbits a different star. Scientists have detected more than 160 so-called extrasolar planets over the last decade. Most have been found by watching for a tell-tale wobble in the stars they orbit. None so far has been a...

Griffin Tells Astronomers To Lower Expectations
  Posted by Paul Ross
On News/Activism 01/16/2006 12:53:39 PM EST · 165 replies · 1,697+ views

Aviation Week & Space Technology | 1/14/2006 | Frank Morring, Jr.
Aviation Week & Space Technology Griffin Tells Astronomers To Lower Expectations By Frank Morring, Jr. 01/14/2006 LOOKING TO THE STARS Astronomers in the U.S. can still look forward to a human servicing mission to the Hubble Space Telescope next year, and perhaps to big observatories on the far side of the Moon some day. But for the most part, the funding outlook at NASA for space science is tight as the agency shifts its focus to sending humans back to the Moon, meaning near-term priorities like searching for Earth-like planets around other stars will slip, and it will take longer...

New planet discovered in Milky Way
  Posted by nickcarraway
On News/Activism 01/25/2006 8:56:47 PM EST · 23 replies · 900+ views

CNET | Wed Jan 25 | Stefanie Olsen
Scientists have discovered a planet more like Earth than any other found before, they said on Wednesday. It's 20,000 light-years away, just shy of the center of the Milky Way. The discovery, which the scientists called "groundbreaking," was made using a technique noted in 1912 by Albert Einstein through a network of telescopes positioned around the globe. The planet takes the nondescript name "OGLE-2005-BLG-390" after one such telescope, named OGLE, for Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment. OGLE, based in Poland's Warsaw University Observatory, was first used to spot the object on July 11, 2005. "This planet is actually the first and...

Found: one Earth-like planet - Astronomers use gravity lensing to spot homely planets.
  Posted by neverdem
On News/Activism 01/25/2006 11:35:11 PM EST · 38 replies · 799+ views | 25 January 2006 | Mark Peplow
Close window Published online: 25 January 2006; | doi:10.1038/news060123-5 Found: one Earth-like planetAstronomers use gravity lensing to spot homely planets.Mark Peplow How to spot a planet: watch for wiggles in the light coming from a far distant star as it curves around another sun.© ESO Astronomers say they have found the most Earth-like planet yet outside our Solar System. At just 5.5 times the mass of Earth it is one of the smallest extrasolar planets ever found, and orbits its star at a distance comparable to that of habitable worlds. Similarly sized extrasolar planets have been found before. But...

Moving the Orbits of Planets
  Posted by SunkenCiv
On General/Chat 02/02/2006 12:44:25 PM EST · 39 replies · 338+ views

David Jewitt | Last updated Sep 2004 | David Jewitt
Meanwhile, the Doppler discovery of extrasolar planets orbiting very close to their parent stars has raised a different problem. Many of the planets are so close to their stars (<0.1 AU), and so hot, that they cannot be supposed to have formed where we now observe them. By inference, they could have formed at larger distances (several AU) and then migrated inwards. What would cause this inward migration? As with the solar system case, the root cause may be an exchange of angular momentum with material surrounding the planets at their formation. In particular, if the extrasolar planets formed in...

'Tenth Planet' found to be a whopper
  Posted by neverdem
On News/Activism 02/03/2006 12:25:14 AM EST · 124 replies · 2,824+ views | 1 February 2006 | Mark Peplow
Close window Published online: 1 February 2006; | doi:10.1038/news060130-7 'Tenth Planet' found to be a whopperLarge size of 2003 UB313 fuels debate over what is and isn't a planet.Mark Peplow 2003 UB313 and its moon - currently nicknamed Xena and Gabrielle - take time off from their sword and sorcery shenanigans.© W. M. Keck Observatory The recently discovered 'tenth planet' of our Solar System is substantially larger than Pluto, astronomers have found. For many, the discovery that object 2003 UB313 is about 3,000 kilometres across will remove any doubt that it deserves to be called a planet. "Since UB313...

Hot Jupiters do not rule out alien Earths
  Posted by KevinDavis
On News/Activism 03/31/2006 8:21:28 PM EST · 10 replies · 330+ views

New Scientist Space | 03/31/06 | Maggie McKee
Habitable, Earth-like planets can form even after giant planets have barrelled through their birthplace on epic migrations towards their host stars, new computer simulations suggest. The finding contradicts early ideas of how planets behave and suggests future space missions should search for terrestrial planets near known "hot Jupiters". Many of the 160 or so known extrasolar planets are hot Jupiters - massive planets that are closer to their stars than Mercury is to our Sun. But the planets probably did not form in these scorching regions because there would not have been enough gas and dust there to amass such...

Backyard Approach Finds Extrasolar Planet
  Posted by KevinDavis
On General/Chat 05/24/2006 10:43:15 PM EDT · 8 replies · 148+ views | 05/23/06 | Bjorn Carey
Three years of scouring the skies with a "homemade" telescope fashioned from commercially available parts has finally paid off for astronomer Peter McCullough. First came the observation of the brief but telltale dimming of a sun-like star 600 light-years away, then the detection of the star's wobble indicative of an orbiting planet's presence. Finally, McCullough's international team of professional and amateur astronomers received the official word that they had discovered a Jupiter-sized planet. "Of the planets that pass in front of their stars, XO-1b is the most similar to Jupiter yet known, and the star XO-1 is the most similar...

Planets Around Planets?
  Posted by KevinDavis
On General/Chat 06/05/2006 10:32:33 PM EDT · 4 replies · 64+ views

Sky and Telescope | 06/05/06 | Robert Naeye
June 5, 2006 | Evidence continues to mount that planets can form around very-low-mass objects. In fact, planets might even form around objects that are so low in mass that they themselves could be considered "planets." The latest results, reported at this week's American Astronomical Society meeting in Calgary, Alberta, come from groups led by Ray Jayawardhana (University of Toronto, Canada) and Subhanjoy Mohanty (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics).

"Planemos" May Give Rise to Planets, Moons
  Posted by SunkenCiv
On General/Chat 06/06/2006 2:08:11 AM EDT · 4 replies · 29+ views

Scientific American | June 06, 2006 | David Biello
Astronomer Ray Jayawardhana of the University of Toronto and his international team of colleagues surveyed the optical spectra of seven exoplanets in two studies. One focused on six planemos, or planetary mass objects, that float freely through space without a specific relationship to a star. The other study looked at the exoplanet locked in a binary system with a failed star that has just eight percent of the mass of our sun. The exoplanets in both studies bore the infrared emissions associated with dusty disks... Such disks are thought to be planetary nurseries, giving rise to satellites over time as...

1 posted on 06/09/2006 10:50:45 AM PDT by SunkenCiv
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To: 75thOVI; AndrewC; Avoiding_Sulla; BenLurkin; Berosus; CGVet58; chilepepper; ckilmer; demlosers; ...
2 posted on 06/09/2006 10:53:18 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (All Moslems everywhere advocate murder, including mass murder, and they do it all the time.)
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To: SunkenCiv

The Hunt for Planet X?! Give me 1 ping, Vassily... One ping only.

3 posted on 06/09/2006 1:02:45 PM PDT by Tallguy (When it's a bet between reality and delusion, bet on reality -- Mark Steyn)
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To: Tallguy


4 posted on 06/09/2006 4:27:18 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (All Moslems everywhere advocate murder, including mass murder, and they do it all the time.)
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To: annie laurie

Mysterious carbon excess found in infant solar system | June 07, 2006 | Carnegie Institution
Posted on 06/09/2006 9:58:24 PM EDT by annie laurie

5 posted on 06/09/2006 9:17:19 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (All Moslems everywhere advocate murder, including mass murder, and they do it all the time.)
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To: SunkenCiv

Thanks for the ping ... didn't realize that you had a list on this :)

6 posted on 06/09/2006 9:20:31 PM PDT by annie laurie (All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost)
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To: annie laurie

Just started a blog topic for it. :')

7 posted on 06/09/2006 9:45:32 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (All Moslems everywhere advocate murder, including mass murder, and they do it all the time.)
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To: FairOpinion

did I send you this before?

8 posted on 06/13/2006 11:59:28 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (All Moslems everywhere advocate murder, including mass murder, and they do it all the time.)
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extrasolar news:

9 posted on 06/20/2006 11:14:06 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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Interiors of extrasolar planets: A first step
Astronomy & Astrophysics
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
A team of European astronomers, led by T. Guillot (CNRS, Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur, France), will publish a new study of the physics of Pegasids (also known as hot Jupiters) in Astronomy & Astrophysics. They found that the amount of heavy elements in Pegasids is correlated to the metallicity of their parent stars. This is a first step in understanding the physical nature of the extrasolar planets.

Up to now, astronomers have discovered 188 extrasolar planets, among which 10 are known as "transiting planets". These planets pass between their star and us at each orbit (Figure 1). Given the current technical limitations, the only transiting planets that can be detected are giant planets orbiting close to their parent star known as "hot Jupiters" or Pegasids. The ten transiting planets known thus far have masses between 110 and 430 Earth masses (for comparison, Jupiter, with 318 Earth masses, is the most massive planet in our Solar System).

Fig. 1 - Animation of a typical Pegasid system, with both the star and planet drawn to scale. Here, the planet orbits the star in just 3.5 days. For comparison, the Earth orbits the Sun every single year, and Mercury, which has the shortest orbital period in the solar system, orbits the Sun every 88 days.

Interiors of extrasolar planets: A first step

10 posted on 06/21/2006 10:26:08 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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The aging Sun-like star HD 69830 has three planets and an asteroid belt orbiting it less than 1 astronomical unit away. The three planets are at least as large as Neptune, with minimum masses of 10, 12, and 18 times Earth's. Credit: European Southern Observatory

Scientists Discover a Very Familiar-Looking Planetary System
Scientists Discover a Very Familiar-Looking Planetary System
The Planetary Society
30 May 2006
Two years of close observations of the star HD 69830 have revealed that it is orbited by no less than three low-mass planets, with a minimum mass only 10-18 times that of Earth. Furthermore, scientists strongly suspect that HD 69830 is also host to an asteroid belt.

The system around HD 69830, the authors explain, is unlike any of the other 17 planetary systems discovered so far. All other known systems are dominated by at least one giant Jupiter-sized planet, with a mass hundreds of times that of the Earth. In contrast, the newly discovered system is composed of planets of roughly equal size - all with masses similar to that of our neighbor Neptune. The innermost of the three planets orbits its star in just under 9 days, whereas the two outer ones complete each revolution in 32 days and 197 days respectively. Intriguingly, this places the outermost planet just inside the star's "habitable zone" – the region in space in which liquid water is stable.

11 posted on 06/21/2006 10:30:07 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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Dead Zones to the Rescue
based on a McMaster University release
Tuesday, June 06, 2006
The new theory shows that on entering a dead zone, such a planet opens a very wide gap, and migrates very slowly because of the very slow drift of gas in the dead zone. For low mass planets like the Earth, or even Neptune, migration in normal disks can occur quickly (within a million years) and such planets do not typically open gaps (Type I migration). The new calculations show that if a light planet starts from outside the dead zone, then its migration will be reversed on encountering a steep gradient in gas density that marks the outer edge of the dead zone. On the other hand, if light planet is formed within the dead zone in the first place, that it can open a gap in the dead zone and switch into the much slower Type II migration. As an example, the computer simulations show that a 10 Earth mass planet opens a gap at about 4 AU and slows its migration dramatically.

The models show that newly formed Earth-like planets will not splash into their central stars and often end up in orbits around 0.1 AU. Another major consequence of this work is that the prediction that most massive planets in other solar systems circle their stars in orbits beyond 5 AU, and are still waiting to be discovered.

12 posted on 06/21/2006 10:33:35 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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Red Dwarfs and Super-Earths
AstroBiology magazine
based on a Carnegie Institution release
Jun 13, 2006
A new explanation for forming super-Earths suggests that they are more likely to be found orbiting red dwarf stars -- the most abundant type of star -- than gas giant planets like Jupiter and Saturn. The theory, by Dr. Alan Boss of the Carnegie Institution's Department of Terrestrial Magnetism, describes a mechanism whereby UV radiation from a nearby massive star strips off a planet's gaseous envelope, exposing a super-Earth. The work, published in the June 10, 2006, Astrophysical Journal (Letters), explains recent extrasolar planet discoveries by the microlensing method.

Super-Earths have masses that range between those of Earth and Neptune but have unknown compositions. Of the 300 stars closest to the Sun, at least 230 are red dwarf stars, with masses less than half that of our Sun, Boss says. Because nearby stars are the easiest places to look for other Earth-like planets, it is important to try to predict what types of planetary systems they might have, and that means trying to figure out how their planets can form.

13 posted on 06/21/2006 10:35:59 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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To: annie laurie; KevinDavis

Some additions.

14 posted on 06/21/2006 10:37:16 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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related to message 10:

Astronomy Picture of the Day 6-14-02
NASA | 6-14-02 | Robert Nemiroff and Jerry Bonnell
Posted on 06/14/2002 8:28:02 AM EDT by petuniasevan

Solar system similar to ours discovered: US astronomers
Yahoo! News via Drudge | June 13, 2002 | Yahoo! News staff
Posted on 06/13/2002 7:17:37 PM EDT by Exit 109

15 posted on 06/21/2006 10:39:13 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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there's no ping list, and due to the tiny additional work involved (and the fact that I'm lazy), there may not be. But if getting pinged to my (or others') new posts in this topic and perhaps others appeals to you, FReepmail me. Here's the fancy @#$%! logo, which I whipped up using some free space art and some font from Mac OS X. The link just goes off to the xplanets keyword.

Here's the small version of the logo, which may be what I'd use for pings to other topics:


16 posted on 06/21/2006 10:52:32 AM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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To: SunkenCiv

Thanks for the ping :)

With reference to post 16, please do keep me on your list :)

17 posted on 06/21/2006 4:56:21 PM PDT by annie laurie (All that is gold does not glitter, not all those who wander are lost)
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To: annie laurie

Will do. You're the only one so far. Hmm. I guess your X-Planets ping list member number is 001. If you'd prefer 007 or something, let me know. ;')

Not that I'll necessarily really have member numbers of course...

18 posted on 06/21/2006 8:43:43 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Monday, June 19, 2006.)
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Whoops, tagline malfunction.

19 posted on 06/21/2006 8:44:15 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Wednesday, June 21, 2006.)
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Astronomy Picture for Today
nasa | 05/30/2006 | dg
Posted on 05/30/2006 4:11:10 PM EDT by HOTTIEBOY

"The closest star system to the Sun is the Alpha Centauri system. Of the three stars in the system, the dimmest -- called Proxima Centauri -- is actually the nearest star. The bright stars Alpha Centauri A and B form a close binary as they are separated by only 23 times the Earth- Sun distance - slightly greater than the distance between Uranus and the Sun... Alpha Centauri A is the same type of star as our Sun, causing many to speculate that it might contain planets that harbor life."

20 posted on 06/21/2006 8:55:05 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (updated my FR profile on Wednesday, June 21, 2006.)
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