Astronomers Discovered Seven Planet System; Claimed to be Richest Planetary System So Far

Oct 25, 2013 14:14 IST

Astronomers, in the last week of October 2013, revealed that they identified one of the richest planetary systems. The astronomers discovered the seventh planet around the dwarf star KIC 11442793. The discovery was done by two different teams of researchers from the University of Oxford and team of astronomers from several European countries.

The newly discovered planetary system has a lot of similarities like our own system. However, all the seven planets orbit closer to the host star which is situated around 2500 light years from the Earth. One of these identifications was done by the volunteers using the Planet Hunters website. This site was established in order to enable the volunteers to search through the public data from NASA's Kepler space telescope.

The NASA's Kepler space telescope makes use of the transit method in order to explore new planets. Chris Lintott, from the University of Oxford, co-author on the Planet Hunters paper explained that this was the first seven-planet system from Kepler, by making use of the transiting search. The research done by the team of Chris Lintott was submitted to the Astronomical Journal for peer review. Another research conducted by the astronomers from several European countries submitted their paper to the Astrophysical Journal.

It is worth noticing that the newly discovered planet is the fifth furthest from the parent star and orbits with the period of around 125 days. Though there is a lot of similarity of this planet system with our own Solar System, but in the new system, all the seven planets are close to their host star.

The Planet Hunters team after conducting the simulations revealed that the planetary system is a stable one.

Apart from this, there is another star, HD 10180, which is claimed to have either seven or even nine planetary signals. Yet another sun called GJ 887C might have seven planets.

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