For the first time ever astronomers have actual pictures of planets orbiting a star outside our solar system. The Gemini Team that includes three Canadians has released the historic image of not one, but three planets orbiting a normal star 130 million light years away. Bruce Macintosh (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratories) explains, “Until now, when astronomers discover new planets around a star, all we see are wiggly lines on a graph of the star’s velocity or brightness. Now we have an actual picture showing the planets themselves, and that makes things very interesting.” Read more here.
The Hubble Telescope has also taken its first visible light picture of a planet orbiting the bright southern star Fomalhaut 25 light-years away. Read more here.
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