A version of this story appeared in CNN’s Wonder Theory science newsletter. To receive it in your inbox Sign up for free here.
exist over 5,000 known worlds beyond our solar system.
Since the 1990s, astronomers have used ground-based and space-based telescopes to search for signs of planets beyond our little corner of the universe.
Exoplanets are notoriously difficult to photograph directly because they are so far from Earth.
But scientists know the signs, looking for star wobbles when orbiting planets use their gravitational pull, or dips in starlight as planets pass in front of their stellar hosts.
It is very likely that there are hundreds of billions more exoplanets waiting to be discovered.
Part of the excitement around the James Webb Space Telescope is its ability to look inside the atmospheres of potentially habitable planets and discover new worlds. This week, the space observatory certainly delivered.
The Webb Telescope confirmed the existence of an exoplanet for the first time since the space observatory launched in December 2021.
The world, known as LHS 475 b, is almost exactly the same size as Earth and located 41 light-years away in the constellation Octans.
Scientists still can’t determine if the planet has an atmosphere, but the The telescope’s sensitive capabilities were detected in a variety of molecules.. Webb will have another opportunity this summer observing the planet to take advantage of this data.
The exoplanet was just one of Webb’s cosmic discoveries announced this week at the American Astronomical Society meeting in Seattle. In addition, the TESS mission, NASA’s Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, spied a Second Earth-sized exoplanet in an intriguing planetary system 100 light-years away, and the world could potentially be habitable.
One year after the powerful eruption of the Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai volcano, scientists are still learning more surprising side effects from the event.
The explosion unleashed more than 25,500 lightning strikes in just five minutes, according to a new report. The event also triggered almost 400,000 lightning strikes over six hours and accounted for half of all lightning strikes in the world during the peak of the eruption.
But even more surprising is that the January 2022 eruption was only one factor in a year of extremes for lightning through the globe.
Blooming flowers are notoriously short-lived, but a nearly 40-million-year-old specimen remains trapped in amber and frozen in time.
Researchers have taken another look at the extraordinary amber fossil, which was first documented in 1872. It is the the largest known flower fossilized in amber to 1.1 inches (28 millimeters) wide.
The scientists were able to extract some of the pollen from the flower and found that it is related to a group of modern plants.
Meanwhile, archaeologists discovered eight prehistoric ostrich eggs near an ancient fire pit In Israel.
russian space agency Roscosmos will launch an uncrewed replacement spacecraft to the International Space Station as a return vehicle for three crew members after their Soyuz capsule was damaged in December.
Cosmonauts Sergey Prokopyev and Dmitri Petelin and NASA astronaut Frank Rubio launched to the space station in September.
A commission determined that the damage to the Soyuz radiator pipe was caused by the impact of a micrometeoritethat created a hole with a diameter of less than 1 millimeter, according to Roscosmos.
The crew members are in good health, but their return to Earth, which has not been determined, will be delayed by at least several months.
Meanwhile, Virgin Orbit’s LauncherOne rocket attempted to launch from the UKand California-based start-up ABL Space Systems set out to launches its RS1 rocket from Alaska. Both rockets failed and investigations are underway to determine what went wrong.
Contrails trailing behind the planes that cross our skies every day may seem harmless, but these wispy ice clouds are actually bad for the environment.
Condensation trails, which form when ice crystals clump around tiny particles emitted by jet engines, trap more heat than carbon dioxide emissions that result from burning fuel. Contrail longevity depends on atmospheric conditions.
The researchers believe that slightly changing the routes of specific flights could help reduce the damage.
Catch up on these stories before you go:
— An unusually bright star could have been bombarded by a mysterious stellar companion during years.
— Europe’s “swamp bodies”, incredibly well-preserved mummies and skeletons discovered in peat and wetlands, reveal some of the brutal realities of prehistoric life.
— Astronomers have discovered the The closest pair of supermassive black holes ever observed through multiple wavelengths of light. Cosmic bodies came together by collision of galaxies.
Leave a Comment