A planet resembling cotton candy has been discovered

Scientists have discovered an exoplanet that looks like cotton candy. According to a statement, the planet, named WASP-193b, is also the second lightest planet ever found.

Astronomers have discovered an exoplanet beyond the Solar System that looks like cotton candy. The planet, dubbed WASP-193b, is about 1.5 times the size of Jupiter, but has only a tenth of its mass. According to the statement, WASP-193b is also the second lightest planet ever found.

Among the 5,400 exoplanets discovered so far, WASP-193b is only heavier than Kepler 51d, a Neptune-like planet. Located about 1,200 light years from Earth, WASP-193b orbits at a distance of 10.13 million kilometers from its star and completes one full revolution in 6.2 days. WASP-193b belongs to a class of planets called Fluffy Jupiters and represents the extremes of this class.

Scientists discovered WASP-193b using the WASP, or Wide-Angle Planetary Search system, which consists of two robotic observatories and telescope arrays, one in the northern hemisphere and one in the southern hemisphere. The mass of WASP-193b was determined by observing the gravitational pull it exerts on its star as it orbits.

Like cotton candy

Normally, such massive planets would be expected to strongly influence their stars. But WASP-193b’s mass and density are so low that it took scientists four years to accurately detect this effect. Francisco Pozuelos, a senior researcher at the Andalusian Institute of Astrophysics who took part in the study, said they didn’t know where to put WASP-193b in all the theories of formation we currently have because it contradicts them all.

The density of WASP-193b is only 0.059 grams per cubic centimeter, the researchers say. Cotton candy has a density of about 0.05 grams per cubic centimeter. Earth is 5.5 grams. Therefore, it would not be wrong to call this planet cotton candy. Scientists think that WASP-193b is mostly composed of hydrogen and helium, like Jupiter and other gas giants. But for now, how this planet formed and how it maintains its current atmosphere is a mystery. Researchers aim to study the planet more closely with different instruments, including the James Webb Space Telescope.

Ece Nagihan

Hi, I'm Ece. I am a writer for Expat Guide Turkey and I strive to create the best content for you. To contact me, you can send an e-mail to Happy reading!

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