Monday, 27 May, 2019

Scientists have discovered a new planet similar to Earth

Indian scientists discover planet 600 light years away from Earth Representative image | Pixabay
Sandy Nunez | 11 June, 2018, 16:23

EPIC 211945201b (or K2-236b) is the name given to the planet by the discovery team led by PRL's Abhijit Chakraborty. They have detected a sub-Saturn or sub-Neptune like planet revolving around a Sun-like star.

It is being reported that when it comes to the temperature of the three planets that are the same size as Earth, this is where the similarity ends as they would nearly certainly have surface temperatures that are much higher than our planet owing to the intense radiation given by the red dwarf star they orbit.

Ahmedabad, have discovered an exoplanet that is larger than Neptune but smaller than Saturn. It contains at least three rocky planets, the radius of which is equal to or approximately equal to the earth, and the weight is 1.4, 0.9 and 1.3 times the mass of Earth.

The gravitational pull caused by a planet on its host star makes it wobble around their common center of mass, which shifts the spectra and can be measured in terms of Radial Velocity using precise and stabilised High Resolution Spectrographs, like the PARAS. The host star is named EPIC 211945201 or K2-236. PRL scientists, who observed the target for about 1.5 years with the spectrograph, made calculations which suggested that heavy elements like ice, silicates and iron content make 60%-70% of the total mass.

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The PARAS reads the entire electromagnetic spectrum from microwave to infrared radiation which allows the scientists to read the composition of the planet, surface temperature, and the nature of the atmosphere. This is the first of its kind spectrograph in the country, which can measure the mass of a planet going around a star. It was designed by the members of the Astronomy and Astrophysics Division of PRL.

On the other hand, only a few such accurate and powerful spectrographs exist around the world, the majority of which being in the U.S. and Europe. The newly discovered planet was found around a Sun-like star, according to Isro. "Extra" implies that these are outside our solar system. This is what they have so far discovered.

Also published on Medium.