The European Southern Observatory (ESO) has shared a throwback image of an exoplanet first released 18 years ago on September 10th. A constellation south of Hydra. Interestingly, the first imaged planet outside our solar system orbits a young brown dwarf named 2M1207A, and astronomers confirm that the two are gravitationally bound to each other.

    About the first imaged exoplanet

    [Actual image of the exoplanet 2M1207b (red) around its star 2M1207A; Image: ESO]

    The photo was taken using the Very Large Telescope (VLT) in northern Chile, according to ESO, and the discovery put an end to a decade-long debate about the nature of planetary systems. Observations revealed that the planet is 100 times dimmer than its orbiting star, and an examination of the planet’s atmosphere showed evidence of water molecules, confirming the planet’s coldness.

    The staggering distance from a brown dwarf is 55 times the distance between the Sun and Earth. In addition, experts have estimated the size of this exoplanet (five times Jupiter’s her) using analytical methods that focus on the strength of its gravitational field.

    Given the rather unusual properties of the 2M1207 system, the giant planet probably did not form like the planets in our solar system,” ESO astronomer and principal investigator Gael Chauvin said in an official statement at the time of the discovery. said. A cloud of gas and dust must have formed from his one-stage gravitational collapse, just as our Sun formed. “

    Additionally, Benjamin Zuckerman, a UCLA professor and member of the research team, found that two objects moving together in space could be an exoplanet around a star nearly twice the distance between Neptune and the Sun. was the first example detected.

    Fast forward 18 years and exoplanets are now being imaged using the newly commissioned James Webb Space Telescope. This is expected to help us better understand the early universe. Last week, the world’s most powerful observatory delivered the first images of an exoplanet about 385 light-years from Earth.

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