Planets in a galaxy far, far away..

The non amateur stuff. Hawking, black holes, that sort of thing

Moderators: joe, Brian, Guy Fennimore

Post Reply
brian livesey
Posts: 5430
Joined: Mon Jan 09, 2006 11:05 am
Location: Lancashire

Planets in a galaxy far, far away..

Post by brian livesey »

Over a thousand exoplanets have been discovered in our own galaxy, but astrophysicists in American now claim to have discovered lone, wandering, planets in a galaxy that's a staggering 3.8 billion light years away.
Using Nasa's Chandra X-ray Observatory, the researchers have been able to take advantage of gravitational "micro-lensing" to detect what may be a mass of distant planets that range from Moon-size to the size of Jupiter.
Micro-lensing is a phenomenon whereby light from remote stars and galaxies is bent by the gravitational field of an intervening object such as a star or black hole and magnifies the concealed object/s.
"We are very excited about this discovery," said Professor Xinyu Dai at the University of Oklahoma. The findings are published by the Professor and his research associate in "The Astrophysical Journal".
There are critics of the data, who say that the micro-lensing fluctuations that were seen might be intrinsic to the quasar that was used for the micro-lensing observations. See the current NEW SCIENTIST for a summary.
Post Reply