Planet with a mass of Earth but with a gaseous atmosphere

Artist rendition of KOI-314c (Credit: C. Pulliam & D. Aguilar (CfA))
Artist rendition of KOI-314c (Credit: C. Pulliam & D. Aguilar (CfA))

Main Point:

Scientists have found a planet having the same mass as that of our Earth but having nearly 60% larger diameter.

Published in:

Findings have been submitted to The Astrophysical Journal

Study Further:

The planet has been found with the help of NASA’s Kepler spacecraft and is referred to as KOI-314c that has 60% larger diameter that of Earth showing that the planet has very thick – probably hundreds of miles thick, gaseous atmosphere that is thought to be made of hydrogen and helium.

“This planet might have the same mass as Earth, but it is certainly not Earth-like,” says David Kipping of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA), lead author of the discovery. “It proves that there is no clear dividing line between rocky worlds like Earth and fluffier planets like water worlds or gas giants.”

KOI-314c revolves around a dim, red dwarf star present about 200 light-years away from us. It completes its rotation around its star in every 23 days. The temperature of the planet is estimated to be about 220 degrees Fahrenheit, at least not possible for any known form of life. This planet is 30% denser than water.

Another planet is KOI-314b in the system. It is much denser weighing about 4 times that of Earth. It completes its rotation around the star in 13 days.

Astronomers presented this finding in a press conference at the 223rd meeting of the American Astronomical Society.

Sources:

Newfound Planet is Earth-mass But Gassy – CfA (http://goo.gl/WwbM2H)

Usman Zafar Paracha

Usman Zafar Paracha is a sort of entrepreneur. He is the author of "Color Atlas of Statistics", and the owner of an Android game "Faily Rocket."

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