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Location: UFOUpDatesList.Com > 2002 > Jun > Jun 18

New Planets Discovered

From: Stig Agermose <stig.agermose@privat.dk>
Date: Tue, 18 Jun 2002 08:47:23 +0200
Fwd Date: Tue, 18 Jun 2002 16:51:54 -0400
Subject: New Planets Discovered

Source: The Hindustan Times




27 new planets discovered

USA Today


European and US astronomers on Thursday announced the discovery
of two solar systems with planets in orbits similar to our own.

In all, astronomers announced they had found 27 previously
unknown planets, bringing the number of known planets
orbiting nearby stars to more than 100.

One group led by Geoffrey Marcy of the University of California-
Berkeley and Paul Butler of the Carnegie Institution of
Washington, DC, released details of 15 planets. A European team
led by Swiss astronomer Michel Mayor of the University of Geneva
unveiled details of 12 more, several days ahead of a planned
announcement at a science meeting.

"There must be billions of planetary systems like our own within
our Milky Way galaxy," Marcy says. His team found that the star
55 Cancri hosts a Jupiter-like planet occupying a near-circular
orbit, much like Jupiter's. The planet, a giant ball of gas,
takes about 14 years to circle 55 Cancri, a star 41 light-years
away in the constellation Cancer. A light year equals 5.89
trillion miles.

Marcy's team calculates that a planet like earth could safely
orbit 55 Cancri without disturbance from planets orbiting the

The European team also reports on a different solar system with
a planet that resembles Jupiter in size and its circular orbit.

Astrobiologists say solar systems whose outlying gas giants
follow near-circular orbits might be more likely to have planets
with life. In theory, the Jupiter-like objects would screen
smaller planets closer to their star from comet impacts.


=A9Hindustan Times Ltd. 1997.

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