Astronomers discover three planets through a new technique

With the help of the ALMA (Atacama large Millimeter Array) telescope in Chile were discovered for the first time three exoplanetss that are born right now (protoplanet) around a star located at about 330 light-years of us – a star that only has one thousandth of the age of the sun.

The discovery of new planets outside the solar system, the so-called exoplanets, is no longer a surprise. Thousands of these planets have already been catalogued, especially because of the studies carried out using the Kepler telescope. However, the new discovery of three newborn planets has generated a great deal of enthusiasm among astronomers. It is the first time that planets in training around a star in its young turn have been seen with an experimental technique that relies on measuring the signals coming from carbon monoxide molecules.

So far exoplanetele were discovered by the fluctuation of the star's light around which they orbited (when a planet passes through the star's face we see a variation of its brightness) or oscillations of the star generated by the attraction Gravity of the planets, usually large-scale, orbiting the star.

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This time, however, astronomers were able to perform precision measurements with the help of Interferometer ALMA al ESO (European Southern Observatory) located in Chile in the field of millimeter wavelengths (so not in the visible light spectrum). Astronomers have measured broadcasts of the CO molecule (carbon monoxide) with a well-known wavelength. The flow of measured radiation depends on the structures that this radiation meets in its path. In the clouds that învăluiau the star HD 163296, located in the constellation of Sagittarius to 330 light years ahead of us, it was possible to ascertain how this flow was disrupted by the structures encountered in the path of radiation. Just as for example in a river the stones that are located in the water road influence the flow of it, the possible structures, such as planets, can influence the radiation of carbon monoxide. It's exactly what astronomers noticed with the help of the Alma telescope. Steaua HD 163296 was "lit", meaning it began to shine about 4 million years ago, being a very recent star. The age of this star is only a thousand part of the age of our sun. Astronomers have thus noticed for the first time a solar system in training.

From the analysis of the measurements carried out astronomers came to the conclusion that in the dust and powder cloud that still envelops the star there are at least three protoplanet. In this cloud there are still processes that can lead to the birth of several planets. The planets that influence the flow of the observed radiation are large and gaseous, rather like Jupiter in our solar system than with Earth. The results of this study were published in two recent articles in the Astrophysical Journal Letters magazine.

Two of the planets that would be shrouded in the cloud around the star lie at distances without this 12 and 21 billion kilometers, i.e. 80 and 140 times farther from the star than the Earth is to the sun. The third planet is far and away, about 39 billion kilometers without luminary.

The new technique used to discover these protoplanet will be optimized in the near future to allow for the discovery of smaller planets, but also the way they form. It will study including the eventual existence of an atmosphere of these planets, as well as the chemical elements that might be present on it.

At present we do not know whether there are any planets in the universe that are more or less similar to ours, but the recent discoveries, as well as the new techniques used, like the one we just mentioned, help us We discover new planets, among which there may be a lively one.

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