Agriculture
Hungry bug seeks hot meal
New Gene Fights Potato Blight
Fast-flying fungal spores
Amphibians
Salamanders and Newts
Bullfrogs
Tree Frogs
Animals
Return of the Lost Limbs
Sea Lilies on the Run
Killer Flatworms Hunt with Poison
Behavior
Baby Talk
The Other Side of the Zoo Fence
Bringing fish back up to size
Birds
Cassowaries
Vultures
Falcons
Chemistry and Materials
Sticking Around with Gecko Tape
Bandages that could bite back
The science of disappearing
Computers
Programming with Alice
Supersonic Splash
Galaxies far, far, far away
Dinosaurs and Fossils
Three strikes wiped out woolly mammoths
Did Dinosaurs Do Handstands?
Fingerprinting Fossils
E Learning Jamaica
E Learning in Jamaica WIN PRIZES and try our Fun Animated Games
Results of GSAT are in schools this week
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
Earth
Flower family knows its roots
A Grim Future for Some Killer Whales
Snowflakes and Avalanches
Environment
Cactus Goo for Clean Water
An Ocean View's Downside
Shrimpy Invaders
Finding the Past
Unearthing Ancient Astronomy
Ancient Cave Behavior
Fakes in the museum
Fish
Great White Shark
Nurse Sharks
A Grim Future for Some Killer Whales
Food and Nutrition
In Search of the Perfect French Fry
Healing Honey
Chocolate Rules
GSAT English Rules
Capitalization Rules
Pronouns
Problems with Prepositions
GSAT Exam Preparation Jamaica
Preparing for the GSAT Exam
GSAT Exam Preparation
The Annual GSAT Scholarships
GSAT Exams Jamaica Scholarships
2014 GSAT Results for Jamaican Kids
GSAT Practice Papers | GSAT Mathematics | Maths
GSAT stars reap scholarship glory
GSAT Mathematics
A Sweet Advance in Candy Packing
Monkeys Count
10 Common Mistakes When Preparing for the GSAT Math Test
Human Body
Spitting Up Blobs to Get Around
Taking the sting out of scorpion venom
Kids now getting 'adult' disease
Invertebrates
Scallops
Mollusks
Centipedes
Mammals
Sun Bear
Glider
Cornish Rex
Parents
Choosing a Preschool: What to Consider
Raise a Lifelong Reader by Reading Aloud
Children and Media
Physics
Thinner Air, Less Splatter
Strange Universe: The Stuff of Darkness
IceCube Science
Plants
A Giant Flower's New Family
Assembling the Tree of Life
Fast-flying fungal spores
Reptiles
Lizards
Crocodiles
Rattlesnakes
Space and Astronomy
A Galaxy Far, Far, Far Away
An Earthlike Planet
Gravity Tractor as Asteroid Mover
Technology and Engineering
Shape Shifting
Toy Challenge
Sugar Power for Cell Phones
The Parts of Speech
What is a Preposition?
Problems with Prepositions
What is a Noun
Transportation
Tinkering With the Basic Bike
Revving Up Green Machines
Where rivers run uphill
Weather
Weekend Weather Really Is Different
A Dire Shortage of Water
Where rivers run uphill
Add your Article

Cool as a Jupiter

Astronomers have found more than 400 planets outside the solar system. These distant worlds are full of surprises: Some are giant and made of gas, like Jupiter, and others seem to be rocky, like big versions of Earth. All these faraway orbs are called exoplanets — short for “extrasolar” planets because they’re outside our solar system — and astronomers find more all the time. Scientists recently found an exoplanet that’s really cool — literally. Most exoplanets are much hotter even than the gas giants in our solar system (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune). But the newly discovered planet, called COROT-9b, is different. Its temperatures don’t soar as high, and as a result it’s probably more like Jupiter and Saturn than other known exoplanets are. (The planet was first spotted by the COROT telescope, which is why “COROT” is in its name.) On COROT-9b, the low temperatures on the surface are around -23º Celsius (-9.4º degrees Fahrenheit) and the highs reach 157 º C (314 º F). COROT-9b is 1,500 light years away. (A light year is the distance light can travel in one year, or about 5.9 trillion miles.) Other planets have been found with lower temperatures, but COROT-9b is special for another reason. It “transits” its star, which means it passes directly between its star and the Earth. Astronomers can learn more about a distant planet that transits than they can about a planet that doesn’t transit. So when a transiting planet shows up, the scientists get excited. Hans Deeg, who worked on the new study of COROT-9b, says this is the first time a cooler planet has been found to transit. Deeg works at the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias in Tenerife, Spain. Most transiting planets are “weird — inflated and hot,” Didier Queloz, another scientist who worked on the study, told Science News. Queloz works at the Geneva Observatory in Sauverny, Switzerland. As a planet passes in front of its star, it blocks out some light. (This is sort of like a solar eclipse, when the moon passes between the Earth and the Sun.) When astronomers measure the blocked light, they can quickly calculate the size of the planet. They can also learn about the atmosphere of a transiting planet. The light that comes from the star is made of waves — in fact, it’s made of many waves of different wavelengths. Each different wavelength is a different color, even though all together the waves look white. As this light passes through the atmosphere of the exoplanet, different kinds of atoms absorb different wavelengths of light. Eventually that light reaches Earth. By measuring which wavelengths are “missing,” astronomers can figure out which atoms in the atmosphere absorbed the light. Even though COROT-9b is cooler than many other exoplanets, it’s probably not habitable. That means it’s too early to pack your bags because people can’t live there. But, as Sara Seager, an exoplanet expert at MIT, told Science News, if this planet has a rocky moon, there may be hope of finding a new planet to call home. And even if things don’t work out with COROT-9b, there are other worlds to consider, worlds much closer to home. The study of exoplanets is just getting started: hundreds may have been found, but scientists think there are millions of new worlds in our galaxy, just waiting to be discovered. Time to start planet hunting!

Cool as a Jupiter
Cool as a Jupiter








Designed and Powered by HBJamaica.com™