Researchers discover a system with three Earth-sized planets

Researchers discover a system with three Earth-sized planets

There will be future observation campaigns with the new James Webb space telescope that will aim to characterise the composition of the atmospheres of the newly discovered planets, the researchers said.

That's why the discovery of this super-Neptune planet is of great importance for the Indian astronomers as it is the first exoplanet this country's scientists have ever identified on their own. The mass of the planet has been estimated to be around 27 times the mass of the Earth whereas its radius is estimated to be 6 times that of the Earth.

A team of scientists from the Physical Research Laboratory in Ahmedabad have discovered a sub-Saturn or super-Neptune size planet around a sun-like star, according to a statement released by Indian Space Research Organisation on Thursday. India has joined the elite club of a handful of countries with this discovery of new planets around stars. The name of the host star is EPIC 211945201 or K2-236. One revolution around the sun planets do six and 20 days. Isro said very few such spectrographs exist around the world (mostly in the U.S. and Europe) that can do such precise measurements. "It's closer to Neptune", he said.

The surface temperature of the planet is around 600C as it is very close to the host star (7 times nearer than Earth-Sun distance). But as yet another discovery of rocket planets that seem to show they are common throughout the universe, they are another sign that it could be more hospitable than we'd thought.

The second red dwarf star that was detected with a new planetary system is K2-240, and this particular star features two large planets that are double the size of Earth. Significantly, the discovery was made using a PRL-designed spectrograph, PARAS, to measure and confirm the mass of the new planet. PRL scientists, who observed the target for about 1.5 years with the spectrograph, made calculations which suggested that heavy elements like ice, silicates and iron content make 60%-70% of the total mass. "Over the next few years, I expect that they will be able to make further contributions to this exciting field of astronomy".



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