June 13, 2024

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Day meets night on an Earth-sized exoplanet rocked by volcanoes |  Space news

Day meets night on an Earth-sized exoplanet rocked by volcanoes | Space news

It is a planet that does not rotate – one side is always in daylight and the other in darkness.

Evidence has emerged of an Earth-sized planet in the Milky Way about 86 light-years away, a rugged, rocky world tormented by constant eruptions.

Scientists said Wednesday that the planet is likely covered in volcanoes, similar to Jupiter’s moon Io, which is the most volcanically active body in our solar system.

It is a planet that does not rotate – one side is always in daylight and the other in darkness.

“One day, it’s too hot for liquid water, so it’s probably going to be very dry and very hot — it’s probably going to be a desert. On the night side, it’s probably a desert. On the night side, Probably a big glacier.”

“The most interesting area is near the terminator where day and night meet. Here, the waters of the night glacier could melt and possibly form liquid surface water. In addition, there is likely to be volcanic activity all over the planet, even under the ice on Night side and possibly underwater near the break.

It is slightly larger than Earth and orbits close to a red dwarf star – a type much smaller than our Sun, with a relatively low mass and temperature – completing its elliptical journey around it in just 2.8 days.

Its surface temperature appears to be slightly warmer than Earth’s. It lies at the inner edge of the so-called habitable zone, or Goldilocks zone, around the star — neither too hot nor too cold, and possibly capable of keeping liquid water on the surface and harboring life.

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“I imagine a rugged, youthful surface of the planet after millions of years of continuous volcanic activity. Since the effects of gravity do not care about day and night, I also suspect that volcanic activity is evenly spread over the surface of the planet.”

“Because the planet is very volcanically active, it still contributes gases from the interior to the atmosphere. As such, the planet may still have an atmosphere. However, it is unlikely that it will be habitable, because the total amount of energy makes an environment Quite hostile.Who knows?Life might find a way, Kane added.

Volcanoes outside the solar system

In our solar system, Earth and Venus are volcanically active, as are some of Jupiter’s moons.

Planets outside our solar system are called exoplanets.

“There is still no direct observational evidence of volcanic activity for exoplanets, but this planet is a particularly likely candidate,” said University of Kansas professor of astronomy Ian Crosfield, one of the authors of the paper published in the journal Nature.

The planet is located in the Milky Way, about 86 light-years from our solar system in the direction of the constellation of Crater. A light year is the distance light travels in a year, 9.5 trillion kilometers (5.9 trillion miles).

Researchers spotted the planet using NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey satellite and the now-retired Spitzer Space Telescope, as well as some ground-based observatories.

“There are still a lot of unknowns in terms of volcanoes and how long the planet continues to have outgassing,” Kane said, referring to the release of trapped gas that occurs with volcanic eruptions. “We recently confirmed that Venus, Earth’s twin planet, is volcanically active.”

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