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Hot Discovery: Clouds Covering Exoplanet Maybe Made of Sapphires, Rubies

First Posted: Dec 13, 2016 12:15 PM EST
NASA Studies Clusters of Galaxies

NASA Studies Clusters of Galaxies(Photo : Photo by NASA/Getty Images)

Every year, scientists and researchers are becoming more experience in tracking down planets in the solar systems. From 2009 up to 2013, the Kepler telescope has discovered thousands of worlds orbiting the sun. However, those so-called exoplanets are hard to explain. Finding out the things about them becomes more challenging and exciting.

For the first time in the history, scientists have announced their observation about the weather on Jupiter for the first time. According to the Nature Astronomy, the planet is a gas giant called HAT-P-7b that orbits a star in an approximately 1,044 light-years away.

UK Astronomers have measured the brightness of the exoplanet HAT-P-7b for four years and discovered that it brightened and dimmed regularly. According to their research, the planet reflects more light due to the winds that swirl around it and pushes flurries of mineral clouds to the day side.

David Armstrong from the University of Warwick together with his team analyzed the date on the 100,000 stars which was observed by the Kepler telescope. The gas giant named HAT-P-7 b that orbits a star approximately 1,044 light-years away might be covered in clouds of corundum - a mineral that makes up rubies and sapphires.

According to Space, this is not the first time that scientists have detected the kind of weather in an exoplanet. Recently, another team of scientist discovered a rocky world that is twice the size of the Earth. The said planet has a hot side and a cold side.

The telescopes need to have a clear view of the exoplanet to study the weather on distant worlds. Thankfully, there's NASA's James Webb Telescope which is set to be launched on 2018. This new telescope will give scientists and researchers a clear view of the exoplanet atmospheres and what they are made of.

"We see a huge diversity of exoplanets-rocky ones, gaseous ones, hot ones, cold ones, all kinds of different types. Way more than we see in the solar system. No reason shouldn't extend to their atmospheres, too," says Armstrong.

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