Astronomers find hottest and fastest exoplanet


As astronomers discover greater numbers of planets orbiting other stars, they are able to revise their theorie sof planet formation accordingly. Exotic planets are particularly prized because they push the boundaries of theoretical understanding to its limits.

Today,  Leslie Hebb  at the University of St Andrews in Scotland and colleagues announce the discovery of one of the most exotic planets yet seen. WASP-12b orbits a star about 3 times as bright as the sun. Its orbit has a radius about 1.8 times that of Jupiter  but it is only about a quarter as dense.

But get this. WASP-12b has an orbital period of only  1.09 days, the shortest ever seen, and a surface temperature of 2516 K because it is the most highly radiated planet ever discovered. That’s too records for one planet.

How these kinds of planets can form, nobody is certain. But one thing’s for sure: WASP-12b must be on one helluva roller coaster ride.

Ref: WASP-12b: the Hottest Transiting Extra-Solar Planet Yet Discovered

4 Responses to “Astronomers find hottest and fastest exoplanet”

  1. rhr says:

    s/Its orbit has a radius/It has a radius/. Its orbit has a = 0.02 AU.

  2. Daniel Boulet says:

    The snippet above says that the orbital radius is 1.8 that of Jupitper. Surely an orbital radius 1.8 times that of Jupiter would lead to a far larger orbital period than quoted. The paper says that the planet’s radius is around 1.6 to 1.8 times that of Jupiter.

  3. Jen says:

    I’m sorry to ask this, but is the quotation of “days” implying solar days on planet earth, or a revolution period for the planet in question?

  4. atenrok says:

    so is it like that its orbiting speed is roughly 1/3c?