Researchers Find Clouds in Exoplanet’s Atmosphere WASP-127b

SAN FRANCISCO, – Researchers have made a rare cloud detection in the atmosphere exoplanet. They found lumps of unknown composition rising above planet WASP-127b.

The planet WASP-127b made headlines in 2018 when researchers from the Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias (IAC) discovered it was one of the least dense exoplanets ever discovered, and unlike anything else in the Solar System.

This planet is a good candidate for studying exoplanetary atmospheres because it is very large and hairy. WASP-127b is 1.3 times as massive as Jupiter, but only a fifth of its mass.

Because its orbit is so close to its parent star, a year there only lasts four days and its surface temperature rises to 1100 degrees Celsius. That makes it a type of planet called Hot Saturn, as quoted from Digital Trends.

Now, researchers have used data from the Hubble Space Telescope in conjunction with the spectroscopic instrument, the Echelle SPectrograph for Rocky Exoplanet and Stable Spectroscopic Observations (ESPRESSO) at the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope in Chile to identify the clouds floating on the planet.

They also found sodium in the atmosphere, but at a lower altitude than expected. “We don’t know the composition of the clouds yet, except that they don’t consist of water droplets like on Earth,” said lead author Romain Allart.

Editor: Dini Listiyani



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