What is a ‘Hot Jupiter’? Astronomers gave the answer!

Inventions Contributor
hot jupiter
Photo by Johannes Plenio from Pexels

The human mind is full of curiosity. This curiosity fuels mankind to send Rover to Mars, capture the glimpses of oceanic life, or make a giant telescope to see the distant stars. And now our telescope has found a planet like our Jupiter which has no cloud in its atmosphere. This observation by a team of astronomers and scientists from the Centre for Astrophysics at Harvard & Smithsonian was published in the reputed Astrophysical Journal Letters.

What do we know about this hot Jupiter?

Scientists found it in 2012 for the first time through the Wide Angle Search for Planets (WASP) South survey and technically it was named the WASP-62b. According to Muslim researcher Munazza Alam who is a part of this scientific voyage, this planet is 575 lightyear from the earth and its mass is half of that of the earth. The Jupiter in our solar system takes 12 years to revolve around the sun but WASP-62b takes only 4 and a half-day to complete a revolution around its star.

Looking at the revolution time, you can understand that it is located very near to its star and hence came the name – the Hot Jupiter.

How did astronomers found this hot Jupiter?

According to Alam, it is his habit to take the already discovered planets and characterize their atmosphere. First, the electromagnetic radiation that the Hubble Space Telescope captured were analyzed to identify the chemical compounds of the atmosphere of that planet. Scientist found no trace of potassium but the full sodium lines were very distinct. The clouds in the atmosphere usually absorb the sodium lines but in the case of WASP-62b appearance of full sodium, lines gave the proof for a cloudless atmosphere.

Generally, cloudless planets are very rare and according to the astronomers, only 7% of the exoplanets have a cloudless atmosphere. There is only 1 exoplanet till now which has a cloudless atmosphere. The planet found in 2018 is known as WASP-96b and the scientists call it the hot Saturn.

What can we know from the exoplanets?

Munazza says, “Their rarity suggests that these kinds of exoplanets are formed in a different way than the other planets.” The information recorded from these planets is analyzed to find new or rare elements like silicon. In this direction, the technologically much advanced James Webb Space Telescope will be launched in October. It will provide the astronomers and scientists with new data on WASP-62b and other exoplanets.