TV News LIES

Saturday, Apr 25th

Last update11:06:26 PM GMT

You are here News Science Mega-Earth Is the Weirdest Exoplanet Yet

Mega-Earth Is the Weirdest Exoplanet Yet

Mega earthLooking at the Solar System, there seem to be two basic types of planets.

The smaller planets, including Earth, are dense, lower mass, and composed of rock. The larger worlds—Jupiter and the other giants—are massive, made of compressed gas, and possess no surface to speak of. As we learn about exoplanets orbiting distant stars, those two basic categories seem to hold. However, as astronomers map the landscape of planets, they are discovering worlds that don’t fit what we once thought, and which suggest a richer galaxy of possibilities.

The most dramatic of these so far is a mega-Earth: a world about 17 times more massive than Earth. That’s approximately the same mass as the giant Neptune, yet this planet is denser than any other yet discovered, meaning it must be made of rock. That’s puzzling: based on the theory of planet formation, no rocky world should get that huge.

The same group of astronomers has also inferred a type of exoplanet that fits in between the rocky planets and the gas giants. These “gas dwarf” worlds seem to have rocky interiors, but thick atmospheres like Neptune’s. While this proposition is less head scratching than the mega-Earth, it fills in the gap between the largest rocky planets and the smallest gas giants. This type of planet may be fairly common, even though we have nothing in the Solar System like it.

More...


Most Recent Related Stories...


25 years later: Who got the Hubble telescope off the ground?

Hubble Space TelescopeOn the 25-year anniversary of the launch of the Hubble Space Telescope, Space.com talked with science...

Chicago offers reparations package to police torture victims

Rom EmanuelMayor Rahm Emanuel and several Chicago aldermen are offering what they call a reparations package for...

Scientists genetically modify human embryos in controversial world first

Genetically modified embryoScientists in China have genetically modified human embryos in a world first that has re-ignited the...

CERN restarts Large Hadron Collider, seeks dark universe

CERN restarts Hadron colliderScientists at Europe's physics research center CERN on Sunday restarted their "Big Bang" Large Hadron Collider...
 
America's # 1 Enemy
Tee Shirt
& Help Support TvNewsLIES.org!
TVNL Tee Shirt
 
TVNL TOTE BAG
Conserve our Planet
& Help Support TvNewsLIES.org!
 
Get your 9/11 & Media
Deception Dollars
& Help Support TvNewsLIES.org!
 
The Loaded Deck
The First & the Best!
The Media & Bush Admin Exposed!