Join the Unexplained Mysteries community today! It's free and setting up an account only takes a moment.
- Sign In or Create Account -
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 1
Waspie_Dwarf

Length of Exoplanet Day Measured for 1st Time

4 posts in this topic

Length of Exoplanet Day Measured for First Time

VLT measures the spin of Beta Pictoris b

Observations from ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) have, for the first time, determined the rotation rate of an exoplanet. Beta Pictoris b has been found to have a day that lasts only eight hours. This is much quicker than any planet in the Solar System — its equator is moving at almost 100,000 kilometres per hour. This new result extends the relation between mass and rotation seen in the Solar System to exoplanets. Similar techniques will allow astronomers to map exoplanets in detail in the future with the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT).

Exoplanet Beta Pictoris b orbits the naked-eye star Beta Pictoris, which lies about 63 light-years from Earth in the southern constellation of Pictor (The Painter’s Easel). This planet was discovered nearly six years ago and was one of the first exoplanets to be directly imaged. It orbits its host star at a distance of only eight times the Earth-Sun distance - making it the closest exoplanet to its star ever to be directly imaged.

arrow3.gifRead more...

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Zooming in on Beta Pictoris

This sequence starts with a broad view of the southern sky and closes in on the bright star Beta Pictoris in the constellation of Pictor (The Artist’s Easel). This young star is surrounded by a dusty disc and also orbited by a large planet that is the first exoplanet to have had its spin measured. It has an equatorial rotation velocity of almost 100 000 kilometres/hour — much faster than any of the planets in the Solar System.

Credit: ESO/Digitized Sky Survey 2/Nick Risinger (skysurvey.org)/L. Calçada. Music: movetwo

Source: ESO Observatory

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

It is not known why some planets spin fast and others more slowly, says co-author Remco de Kok, but this first measurement of an exoplanet’s rotation shows that the trend seen in the Solar System, where the more massive planets spin faster, also holds true for exoplanets. This must be some universal consequence of the way planets form.

I would think the bigger they are the harder they fall rule applies throughout the universe and that means the harder they fall the faster they spin.

Edited by taniwha

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not sure that applies. The earth spun much faster before the moon slowed us down

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 1

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.