Exoplanet is evaporating. And in the cosmic sense very quickly!

Exoplanet almost 100 light-years from Earth disappears. And very fast by cosmic standards, are sounding the alarm astronomers. Using the space telescope “Hubble”, they were able to detect GJ 3470b – exoplanet medium in size, about Neptune, which evaporates 100 times faster than previously discovered planet is the same size. “This suggests that the planet may lose a significant proportion of its whole weight,” says David Singh, Professor of astrophysics at Johns Hopkins University, author of the study.

“GJ 3470b loses more of its mass than any other planet we’ve seen so far; just a few billion years half of the planet will not be”.

Does this mean that our planet can now steaming – with all its contents and inhabitants?

The results were published in Astronomy & Astrophysics.

Disturbing planet

This study was part of a program of Comparative Exoplanet Panchromatic Treasury, headed by Singh. Its task is to measure the atmospheres of exoplanets 20 in the ultraviolet, optical and infrared light as their rotation around their stars. PanCET, a major programme of observations of exoplanets, launched on the NASA telescope “Hubble”.

Astronomers are particularly interested in how planets lose their mass in the evaporation process. Planet like supertall and hot Jupiters, which are moving close towards the stars orbits are in very hot conditions, which lead to the deflation of the outer atmosphere.

While large exoplanets the size of Jupiter and exoplanets the size of Earth are common, medium-size exoplanets with Neptune (roughly four times rather from the Earth) is quite rare. Scientists attribute this to the fact that the atmospheres of those Neptune blown away and they turn into the end in the planet smaller.

Hard enough, however, to observe them in the process, because scientists can explore exoplanets only in ultraviolet light, which limits their study of nearby stars within 150 light-years from Earth, not hidden by the interstellar material.

The bare core

GJ 3470b is 96 light years and revolves around a red dwarf star in the General direction of the constellation Cancer.

Hubble found that the extrasolar planet GJ 3470b lost significantly more weight and became significantly lower exosphere than the first studied exoplanet the size of Neptune, GJ 436b, due to the low density and strong radiation of their parent stars.

Low density GJ 3470b leads to the fact that the planet is incapable of gravity to keep the heated atmosphere, and if the native star, the planet GJ 436b from 4 to 8 billion years, the native star GJ 3470b only 2 billion years. The young star is more active and powerful, and thus radiates more heat, warming the planet’s atmosphere.

Estimated team Synge, GJ3470b may already have lost up to 35 percent of its total mass, and a few billion years to lose all the gas, leaving only the solid core.

“We are beginning to better understand how the planets formed and what properties affect their overall composition,” says Singh. “Our goal in this study – widely considered the atmospheres of those planets to determine how each planet is influenced by the environment. Comparing different planets, we can begin to create a more General picture of their development.”

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