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Kepler telescope eyes disintegrating planet

Posted on Monday, 21 May, 2012 | Comment icon 10 comments

Image credit: NASA/ESA

NASA's Kepler Space Telescope has found a planet being destroyed by the heat of its own parent star.

The 1500-light-year distant object has a long tail of debris like a comet and is believed to be on a path to destruction, with scientists estimating that it has perhaps 200 million years left. The planet's close proximity to the star is likely to be the main contributing factor in its eventual demise, orbiting at just twice the star's diameter and making it one of the shortest orbits of a planet even detected.

The bizarre nature of the light output from this star with its precisely periodic transit-like features and highly variable depths exemplifies how Kepler is expanding the frontiers of science in unexpected ways," said Jon Jenkins of SETI.

"Astronomers from Nasa and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have detected a possible planet disintegrating under the searing heat of its host star, which is located 1,500 light-years from earth."

  View: Full article |  Source: IB Times

  Discuss: View comments (10)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by hooko22 on 21 May, 2012, 9:09
LOL. I thought the telescope was disintegrating the planet, was wondering how that was possible!
Comment icon #2 Posted by Offeiriad on 21 May, 2012, 16:35
Comment icon #3 Posted by Troublehalf on 21 May, 2012, 21:01
Must be pretty hot. Wonder what the temperature is.....
Comment icon #4 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 21 May, 2012, 23:51
It tells you in the article:
Comment icon #5 Posted by King Fluffs on 22 May, 2012, 6:22
I'm glad I don't live their.
Comment icon #6 Posted by S I N on 22 May, 2012, 7:00
Great place to get a tan
Comment icon #7 Posted by csspwns on 23 May, 2012, 2:34
it still has 200,000,000 years left. surface temp must be as hot as the sun ;/
Comment icon #8 Posted by hooko22 on 24 May, 2012, 17:29
Imagine the heat! Damn, hot as the sun. Imagine going there on a holiday? Like someone mentioned, imagine the tan!
Comment icon #9 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 24 May, 2012, 18:10
To repeat my earlier quote from the article: The surface temperure of the sun is 5,778K, which is around 10,000[sup]o[/sup]F. As hot as this planet is, it's not even 1/3 the temperature of the sun.

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