Saturday, July 13, 2013

NASA's Hubble Telescope Discovers Blue Planet

NASA's Hubble telescope has detected the color of a planet more than 63 light years away and it is blue like our own planet Earth.  The planet HD 189733b gets its blue color not from huge oceans like Earth, but from silicate particles in the high atmosphere.  The conditions on the planet are very unlike our own with temperatures that reach 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit and 4,500 mph winds.

The Hubble telescope's spectrograph measured the color of light as the planet passed in front of its parent star.  HD 189733b is one of a class of planets, called hot jupiters, that orbit very close to their parent stars.

Image Credit: NASA, ESA, and G. Bacon (STScl)

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