Metals and signs of water found on exoplanet

Metals and signs of water found on exoplanet

Artistic vision of the planetary system

Scientists have managed to find prints of several metals in one of the least dense exoplanets. The find belongs to a team from the University of Cambridge and the Canary Institute of Astrophysics. This is a giant gas planet WASP-127b with a partly clear sky and powerful metal signals in the atmosphere.

WASP-127b is 1.4 times more radius than Jupiter, but reaches only 20% of its massiveness. In our system, there are no analogues and similar objects - a rarity. It takes 4 days to fly around the star, and the surface temperature reaches 1127 ° C.

The WASP-127b review shows the presence of a high concentration of alkali metals in the atmospheric layer, which allows us to simultaneously detect sodium, potassium and lithium. Sodium and potassium absorption is extremely wide, which is typical for relatively clean atmospheres. The analysis shows that the sky in a foreign world is 50% clear.

Artistic modeling WASP-127b

The star of WASP-127 is rich in lithium, which may indicate the type of AGB - a bright red giant surpassing solar brightness thousands of times, or supernova. The researchers also documented possible signs of water. But these signatures are weak in the visible range.

The discovery of lithium in a planetary atmosphere is a major breakthrough, motivating new observations. The creation of a theoretical simulation should confirm these conclusions. Ground-based telescopes are just starting to attentively study foreign worlds, but WASP-127b can become a reference exoplanet for the future telescope of James Webb.

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