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Astronomers Find 24 Solitary 'Hot Earth' Exoplanets in New Star Systems

Oct 12, 2016 06:05 AM EDT
NASA's Kepler Mission Discovers Planet
A new study identified 24 new "hot Earths."
(Photo : Illustration by Ames/JPL-Caltech/NASA via Getty Images))

Hot Earth alert! In a collaborative work of NASA's Ames Research Center, SETI and the University of Nevada, a new study successfully identified 24 "hot Earth" star systems wherein the exoplanets are divided from other planets.

The study was published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. To identify "hot Earth", researchers began with studying a large number of potential candidates then they limited the number to 24 after identifying those that are not in close distance with other planets, according to Phys.Org.

Hot Earths are exoplanets similar to the size of the Earth. These type of exoplanets exist near their stars that make them too hot and uninhabitable due to its proximity to the star. Most of hot Earths do not rotate so most of the time, one side of these exoplanets faces their star. But what makes them interesting is the fact that one of their sides is hot while the one would be too cold since it is facing away from the star. The lone star systems are also called super-Earths or the latest weird Solar Systems, according to Astronomy Now.

In the study, the researchers looked at hot stars that orbit near their star; the proximity is very close that they might even take just two days to complete an orbit. The study focused their search on a part of the sky captured by the Kepler telescope. Inside, there are over 3000 known exoplanets candidates. From 3000, they narrowed it down to 144 and then they focused into 24 hot Earths identified.

Based on their finding, it was discovered that out of every six exoplanets, one does not have a companion. The study predicted that the solitary hot Earths might have companions but not within Kepler's reach thus making them appear solitary.

The study of hot Earths was conducted to help researchers understand the origin of this type of exoplanets and if they similar or linked to hot Jupiter exoplanets.



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