Extrasolar Planets: II
Well then part 2.. what to write. I thought that I could write about formation models, but I decided against that for now. I also thought I could introduce you to my research but I decided against that aswelll… on reasons of well lazyness / I am not ready for the world to read how wrong I could be! 🙂 Anyway I decided that it would be nice if I introduce you to possibly the most famous extrasolar planet, HD 209458b. Not the most delightful of names but say it 20 times and trust me you remember it! This planet is a giant. It orbits a Sun-like star with an orbital distance (how far from the star) of 1/8th of that of Mercury – thats just 7 million km, trust me in astronomy thats a small number. Why is it famous? It was the first transiting planet discovered, a method by your measure the intensity of light drop from the star as the planet passes in front of it (does anyone remember the venus transit? this was a very good example of a closer scale). It was also the first extrasolar planet to have a known atmosphere and the first to have an evaporating hydrogen atmosphere. The later is the reason I am interested in it. My work revolves around studying how close-in-extrasolar-giant-planets (CEGPs) are effected by the host star and how the magnetic effects alter the environment. Anyway enough of that for now.
Using this technique many extrasolar planets have been discovered and it is definetely the future for modern planet searches.
For more on HD209458 b:
[Wiki Article with artists impressions]
[detection paper, ApJ]