Thursday, May 1, 2014

Daily Spin of An Exoplanet Measured for 1st Time In History

Hey Space Placers!

Astronomers are getting better and better at determining the characteristics of exoplanets - planets that exist outside our solar system.

For the first time in history the daily spin of an exoplanet has been determined and it is a doozy - 100,000 km/hr at the equator compared to Earth's rotation rate of 1,700 km/hr. That makes the length of day for Beta Pictoris-b 8 hours compared to our 24.


Beta Pictoris-b is 16 times larger and 3,000 times more massive than Earth and is located 63 light years away.  It was one of the first exoplanets directly imaged and was discovered about 6 years ago.

It is quite likely that more exoplanet spin rates will be determined as time goes on. Pretty amazing…..

Sky Guy in VA

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