Water Vapour Found in Atmosphere of Planet in Another Solar System

#Space

Fri, Sep 26th, 2014 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Astronomers have detected water vapour in the atmosphere of HAT-P-11b, a Neptune-sized planet located in the constellation Cygnus, 124 light-years away from Earth. They were able to do this by waiting for the moment the planet passed in front of its host star and recording the behaviour of solar radiation on the planet's atmosphere.

The finding of water vapor and hydrogen in the atmosphere of exoplanet HAT P-11b is not only an astonishing piece of long-distance detective work, based on analyses of observations by three different NASA telescopes, but it also suggests that astronomers’ ideas about how the planets formed appear to hold true for other planetary systems as they do in our own.

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