Astronomers have discovered that the well-studied exoplanet WASP-12b reflects nearly no light, which makes it appear essentially pitch black. This breakthrough sheds brand new light on the atmospheric structure for the earth and in addition refutes past hypotheses about WASP-12b’s environment. The results will also be in stark comparison to observations of some other similarly sized exoplanet.
Utilising the area Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (STIS) from the NASA/ESA Hubble area Telescope, a team that is international by astronomers at McGill University, Canada, plus the University of Exeter, UK, have actually calculated exactly how much light the exoplanet WASP-12b reflectsвЂ”its albedoвЂ”in order for more information on the structure of their environment.
The outcomes had been astonishing, describes author that is lead Bell, a chemistry.com review Master’s student in astronomy at McGill University that is connected to the Institute for analysis on Exoplanets: “The calculated albedo of WASP-12b is 0.064 at most of the. That is a value that is extremely low making the planet darker than fresh asphalt!” This is why WASP-12b 2 times less reflective than our Moon that has an albedo of 0.12. Bell adds: “the albedo that is low we nevertheless have actually too much to read about WASP-12b along with other comparable exoplanets.”