NASA discovers ‘extreme’ alien planet that is in the shape of a soccer ball

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And just in time for the start of the football season.

With the help of NASA’s Hubble space Telescope, scientists have discovered that there is a ball-shaped exo 900 light-years away from Earth, which is described as “hotter than hot.”

Known as WASP-121 b, of this “hot Jupiter” so close to its star that the water temperature in the upper layers of the atmosphere in a fiery 4,600 degrees Fahrenheit. The astronomers were able to determine the temperature as a result of the heavy metals, such as iron, magnesium, and escape to the atmosphere of the planet, instead of condensing in the clouds, according to a statement on the announcement of the discovery.

(Credit: NASA, ESA, and J. Olmsted (STScI))


Heavy metals were seen in other hot Jupiters, but only in the lower atmosphere,” says lead researcher David Singing in the statement. “So, you don’t know if they make a run for it or not. With a WASP-121b we have seen in magnesium and iron, and the gas, get as far away from the earth, and that they are not gravitationally bound.”

The study, which was published in The Astronomical Journal.

In addition to the hissing, WASP-121b, it is so close to its star that it “is on the verge of being ripped apart,” which is likely to have been caused to football-shaped.

“We thought We had a chance to see it, the heavier the elements to get out,” Sing added. “It’s so hot, and so convenient to watch, this is the best image in the presence of heavy metals. We were looking for and the magnesium in it, but there are hints of iron in the atmospheres of the other planets. It was a nice surprise, though, to see it so clearly in the data, and at such a high altitude, far away from the planet. The heavy metals have been escaped because the planet is so large and so dense that it’s gravity is relatively weak. This is a planet that is being actively stripped from the atmosphere.”

Most of the “hot Jupiters” planets are made of hydrogen, and Sing along with, adding that these types of planets will lose the gas relatively easily. However, the hydrogen and helium gas to WASP-121b is the outflowing, like a river, the dragging of the metal by them, the Singing continued. “It’s a very simple and effective mechanism for mass loss.”

Further investigation of the planet, it will be done as soon as the James Webb space telescope, which is the successor to the Hubble, is to be up and running after its scheduled launch in March 2021.


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