Questions tagged [exoplanets]

Exoplanets (also known as Exosolar or Extrasolar planets) are planets outside the solar system.

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Is drinking water an important feature for finding habitable exoplanets? Has it been found?

We need drinking water to live on other planets. Has drinking water been found on other exoplanets? Is drinking water an important feature for finding habitable exoplanets? I want to (self) study in ...
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How can spectroscopy be used to find the composition of exoplanet atmospheres?

How can astronomers use light spectroscopy to measure the composition of different planets when they can't directly image the planet because the star that they are orbiting is so much bigger and ...
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Looking for a formula or model for planetary equilibrium temperature which takes into account the greenhouse effect

For a project I'm working on, I have made a bunch of hypothetical random planets orbiting random stars. I have come across the Stefan–Boltzmann law, which works nicely for any planet without an ...
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Is our solar system really that odd?

I have been learning about the solar system from popular science shows. In these shows they suggest that, after having seeing around 2500 other solar systems, astronomers have concluded that our ...
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Atmospheres and oceans on lower gravity planets

Using Earth as an example, how much less gravity could the planet exert and still retain its atmosphere and oceans? Or is it a matter of size, mass, magnetosphere, place in the solar system, all of ...
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Did we adapt to Earth or Earth to us? [closed]

I often hear that Earth is a unique planet because it has life and it has its own inhabitance. We also see a proper balance between plants and humans and other animals. Why life is not possible on ...
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Infrared Telescopes and Surface Area

I have been reading a paper on about exoplanets, specifically measuring the temperature of exoplanets using infrared telescopes. The paper compares exoplanets with neutron stars (NS) remarking that ...
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How to track orbit of an exoplanet?

I was wondering if there is an established method to keep track of the orbit of an exoplanet assuming we know $a$ - the semi-major axis of the orbit, $e$ - the eccentricity of the orbit, and $i$ - the ...
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Research on exoplanets using available data from TESS

I am a high school student who is proposing research on exoplanets for my junior research project, I have several questions: I have seen studies where researchers survey star systems and then find ...
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Proxima Centauri radio signal

I have recently seen an article about an unusual radio signal coming from Proxima Centauri region. I understand there is a debate around the nature of this signal. My question is related to this ...
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When do planets formed via core accretion in a proto-planetary disk stop gaining mass?

I was just trying to go over some of the contents in my exo planets course and wanted to know that if all the planets that form via core accretion continue to attract all the dust in a proto-planetary ...
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Datasets for calculation of exoplanet properties

I would like to create program for calculation exoplanet properties, but I only found transit dataset from Kepler on NASA website. From light curve I can calculate: planet radius $r$ from $\frac{r_{...
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Which planets of our solar system could be discovered from another solar system with present technology?

Recently many exoplanets have been found orbiting nearby stars. Assume there is a civilization with identical technology residing in a nearby (< 100 light years) solar system. Could they discover ...
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Formation of Life on various planets

Is there any theory that suggests every creature (including bacteria and fungi) in our planet is formed by the atoms of our planet. If that is true, then is it possible that any other organisms will ...
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How do Astronomers Measure the Mass of a Planet using Doppler Spectroscopy?

So, I am making an essay explaining planet-hunting techniques. And while I do get how astronomers measure the semi-major axis of a planetary orbit (using Kepler Laws), I don't get how they measure the ...
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Why is relativistic beaming/ Doppler beaming occur at non-relativistic speeds

The reflexive motion of a binary star system causes the host star to occasionally wobble towards and away from an observer on Earth, which gives rise to an effect called relativistic beaming. This is ...
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Can a planemo turn into a star?

I read this question Why is planet CFBDSIR2149-0403 hot? and wonder what will happen to this "planemo". Will it attract more mass as it flows around in the gas clouds in space and eventually light ...
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What orbit does a planet have to have to be a planet? [closed]

Other questions have dealt with where you could find a planet-like object, and what a planet has to consist of to count as a planet. But this question is directed as what orbit or path an object would ...
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On Planets orbiting binary stars

Several years ago a discovery was made of planet orbiting a star of a binary system (two stars orbiting each other). Since binary star systems are plentiful in our galaxy, I presume we will be ...
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Finding distance Range for an Exoplanet to be detectable

I have been trying to solve the following problem, I found while reading some Exoplanet detection techniques, namely, radial velocity method and Astrometry. Problem statement: " Imagine yourself ...
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Rayleigh Scattering and Red Giants

Rayleigh scattering is responsible for the color of the sky. Consider a planet with an atmospheric composition similar to Earth's but orbiting a red giant. Suppose further that the planet is in the ...
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Why do gas giants have similarly coloured stripes?

After looking at Jupiter and searching 'exoplanets gas giants' on google I found that many had stripes on them. I found that pretty peculiar. So why do they have stripes. I think it has something to ...
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Why is Mars so cold when it has so much atmospheric $CO_2$?

Mars has 1/10 of Earth's atmosphere but that atmosphere is 95% CO2. Why is Mars so cold when it has so much atmospheric CO2?
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How is global warming distributed with respect to altitude?

Lets assume a sea level temperature increase 2c/3c. Then, what is the temperature increase at 10 km altitude? Temperature increase at 30 km altitude? Temperature increase at 70 km altitude? And ...
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How does TESS focus on bright nearby stars?

How does the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite "focus on" bright nearby stars, in contrast to the Kepler Mission's focus on dim distant stars? I understand that the fields of view of the two ...
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Doppler method for detecting exoplanets

Why does the Doppler method for detecting exoplanets only give the minimum mass for the exoplanet and not the actual mass? Is it to do with whether the exoplanet is a face on orbit or a side on ...
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Why does a starshade have to be put so far away from the telescope?

I understand why starshades have the shape they do, but i don't seem to understand why they have to be put so far away from the telescope. Why can't we keep the same apodization function, but just ...
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Sodium sometimes absorbs orange-yellow light, sometimes emits it? Huh?

Usually, we are told that sodium emits orangish-yellowish light, which is why city streetlamps are that color. Now, I read in New Scientist magazine that exoplanet WASP-96b is bluish because the ...
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Have scientists thought about these two questions? [closed]

I would like to know if our vision bends with the earth or if the earth truly is round. If I look through a strong enough telescope to see around the world, would I be able to see the back of my head? ...
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are alignment of star systems' orbital planes with ours better than random?

It obviously helps our observation of exoplanets if they transit their star from our point-of-view. I would guess that the chances of this alignment are better than if their orbital plane was randomly ...
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Why do we refer to life on Earth when we talk about life on other planets? [closed]

I have always had thoughts about extraterrestrial life and I wonder why researchers largely compare the conditions for existence of life to that on the Earth? Is it impossible that on a remote ...
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In searching for an exoplanet by observing transitions, isn't it rather rare that an orbital plane would line up with Earth?

Given that we are at a random orientation to any remote star system, it seems to me that there is only a narrow angle at which transits of exoplanets can be observed. Imagine a large mathematical ...
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Fusion inside a planet with high concentration of radioactive elements?

If an Earth-sized or larger planet had sufficiently large amounts of radium, thorium or uranium, couldn't the resulting fission trigger periodic fusion of hydrogen? I'm thinking of fission happening ...
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What is the unit of time “JD” in an astronomical context?

For my high school physics project I am required to research a planetary system. The orbital period of the planets are given in JD. What are these units? I've tried to research it, and I've found it ...
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Toroidal planetary systems

Is it possible that two toroidal, rigid, homogeneous planets are forming a system in which the toroids are chained through each other, and during their mutual motion, the planets are never touching ...
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669 views

Where to start, if I would like to run a planet climate simulation? [closed]

I would like to understand the math behind it, and maybe write an own climate simulator program. I know, that it is a really hard subject. But I'm curious, and I would like to learn more about it. But ...
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Can we know if an exoplanet has a magnetic field?

The recent discovery of the exoplanet Proxima b gave rise to several questions concerning its habitability and its potential to host life. A major concern is the huge amount of radiation coming from ...
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Is it possible to get to get to Proxima B in 30 years?

This morning I read about the discovery of an earth-like planet, Proxima B, being 'just' 4.22 light years away from us. This is quite interesting since the planet is oribiting our closest neighbour. ...
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Is there an equation that can estimate chances of alien life in the universe?

Seeing how infinite the universe appears and out of all of those stars, planets, galaxies, there must be other life forms. Mathematically, the odds are very good. Is there a mathematical equation to ...
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Locating a possible habitable zone in an ordered hierarchal septenary star system?

I'm writing a story about potential off-world colonization in the dawn of interstellar commerce, and despite such a plot necessitating some degree of FTL travel I'd like to keep the rest of my science ...
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What is the farthest planetary body or star system object we have observed using visual light?

What is the farthest object which we can get a direct Detailed visual image of using visible light which appears more than just a dot and falls into one of the following categories: Planet Satellite ...
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What is the difference between habitable and Goldilocks zone?

If I am right, Habitable Zone means that a planet is on such a distance from its Star which makes it good candidate for supporting some sort of life. But then what is Goldilocks zone and how is it ...
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Simulation of relativistic probe passing through an external solar system

I recently read about the Breakthrough Initiative to launch "StarShot", a nano-probe that is designed to travel to Alpha Centauri at $0.2c$. One of the challenges to be solved involves the precise ...
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How is the stellar flux for exoplanets calculated?

I have noticed that in many Wikipedia articles, the stellar flux received by each planet is stated. I tried to calculate this stellar flux from the given data, but the results didn't seem to be ...
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How can we see planets thousands of light years away but don't know if there are more planets in the solar system?

That is basically my question, it arose when I saw an article (here is the scientific paper, which should be free to read) saying two Caltech scientists might have found the 9th planet of the solar ...
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Finding radius of an exoplanet's orbit knowing orbital period and star's mass [closed]

I've been stuck on this question in an assignment for a while now, and I can't seem to find anything on the internet that either deals with a question in which more values are provided, or where the ...
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How does rogue planet PSO J318.5-22 stay 800ºC?

According to this article, the rogue planet (meaning a planet which does not orbit a star) PSO J318.5-22 has a surface temperature of 800ºC and weather that features molten iron rain. Without a star ...
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Have we observed sufficient extra-solar planetary systems to establish a planetary distribution pattern? [duplicate]

From Kepler And Extra-Solar Planetary Observations As of January 2015, Kepler and its follow-up observations had found 1,013 confirmed exoplanets in about 440 stellar systems, along with a further ...
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Lift and drag coefficients on other planets

The question I'm trying to answer seemed simple: how hard would it be to fly on a planet with lower gravity but also thinner atmosphere compared to Earth. If the answer could hint me at how much ...
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How do exoplanet surveys precisely measure stellar properties?

All measurements in exoplanetary studies (e.g. the Kepler study) depend on how precisely we know the properties of a star. For instance, the planet mass and radius is known only as well as the star's ...