Astronomers have discovered more information about Kepler-1658b, the first exoplanet discovered by the Kepler telescope. Discovered in 2019, the alien planet, which is slightly larger than Jupiter, currently takes 3.8 days to complete one orbit of its star, Kepler-1658.
It is 0.0544 astronomical units (AU), or 5 million miles, from its star, but spirals closer and closer, over time. leading to the ‘final collision and destruction’. ‘Star death’ is a fate believed to await many worlds, including Earth, billions of years from now.
Artist’s concept of the planet Kepler-1658b orbiting its star. Kepler-1658b, orbiting with a period of only 3.8 days, was the first exoplanet candidate discovered by Kepler. the doomed exoplanet Name: Kepler-1658b Type: Giant Gas.
Distance from star: 0.0544 astronomical units (AU) Orbit duration: 3.8 days Mass: 5.8 times the mass of Jupiter.
The new study, which was based on data from three telescopes, was led by experts at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts. “We previously detected evidence of exoplanets taking inspiration from their stars, but we’ve never seen such a planet around an evolved star before,” said Shreyas Vissapragada at Harvard.
“Theory predicts that evolved stars are very effective at extracting energy from the orbits of their planets, and now we can test those theories with observations.” As its name implies, astronomers originally discovered the exoplanet with the Kepler space telescope, a pioneering planet-hunting mission that launched in 2009. At about 2,600 light-years away, it was the first new exoplanet candidate that Kepler observed.
However, it took nearly a decade for the planet’s existence to be confirmed, at which point the object officially entered Kepler’s catalog as entry 1658. Kepler-1658b is a so-called hot Jupiter, meaning it’s on par with the mass and size of Jupiter, but it’s in a blazing ultra-close orbit around its host star. For comparison, its distance from its star (5 million miles or 0.0544 AU) is about one eighth of the distance between Mercury and our sun (36 million miles or 0.4 AU).
This is an artist’s impression of the Kepler Space Telescope which was decommissioned by NASA in 2018 after nearly a decade of service. Detection of exoplanets and exomoons Exoplanets are planets outside of our solar system. Similarly, exomoons are moons outside of our solar system.
Detecting a moon or even a planet hundreds or thousands of light years from Earth is anything but straightforward. Moons and planets can only be observed indirectly as they pass in front of their host stars, causing the star’s light to dim intermittently. Capturing one of these fleeting road signs with a telescope is tricky, as is interpreting the light curve data.
Source: ESA/National Observatory of Schools