In the Search for a “Second Earth,” Astronomers Discover Hot, Dense Planet With Eight-Hour Year - SciTechDaily
Dec 05, 2021 1 min, 44 secs
December 5, 2021.

An international team of researchers has discovered a new planet, GJ 367 b, whose surface temperature may reach 1,500 degrees Centigrade – hot enough to melt all rock and metal – and which takes only eight hours to orbit its star.

In a new study, published in the Science journal, the researchers show that the planet, which is 31 light-years from Earth, is one of the lightest among the nearly 5,000 exoplanets (planets outside our own solar system) that are known today, with half the mass of Earth.

Vincent Van Eylen (UCL Mullard Space Science Laboratory) said: “In this new study, the size and mass of the planet were calculated using two methods, both of which involved analyzing the light of the planet’s star.

“The other method was to infer the mass of the planet from the effect it had on the movement of the star.

Kristine Lam, from the DLR, said: “From the precise determination of its radius and mass, GJ 367b is classified as a rocky planet.

Following the discovery of this planet using TESS and the transit method, the spectrum of its star was then studied from the ground using the HARPS instrument on the European Southern Observatory’s 3.6m telescope.

With the combination of different evaluation methods, the radius and mass of the planet were determined: its radius is 72 percent of Earth’s radius, and its mass 55 percent of Earth’s mass.

By determining its radius and mass with an accuracy of 7 and 14 percent respectively, the researchers were also able to draw conclusions about the exoplanet’s inner structure.

The parent star of this newly discovered exoplanet, a red dwarf called GJ 367, is only about half the size of the SunF

For more on this discovery, read Sub-Earth Planet Discovered by Astronomers: Boiling New World Is Ultra-Light and Super-Fast.

Reference: “GJ 367b: A dense ultra-short period sub-Earth planet transiting a nearby red dwarf star” by Kristine W.

Twicken, Stéphane Udry, Vincent Van Eylen and Michael Vezie, 2 December 2021, Science.

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