science

There is a planet beyond our galaxy, 28 million light-years away from here

Lisopianita – The size of the planet Saturn, located in the galaxy Messier 51, also known as the “vortex”. An extrasolar planet is an exoplanet, that is, it does not belong to the solar system, but orbits around a star other than our sun. In this case, its peculiarity is that it is the first exoplanet discovered outside our galaxy. So far, nearly 5,000 planets have been found orbiting stars outside our sun, but all of them have been located within the Milky Way. The discovery just made is the farthest ever spotted.

Discovery authors They are part of a team of researchers coordinated by Rosanne Di Stefano of the Center for Astrophysics, Harvard and Smithsonian’s (CfA) in Cambridge, Massachusetts (USA), published in Nature Astronomy titled “Possible candidate planet in an outer galaxy discovered by X-ray crossing.

transit method The discovery was made using an innovative method studying X-rays detected by NASA’s Chandra Space Telescope. “E Currently the only feasible way to discover planetary systems in other galaxies“It is particularly suitable for finding planets around X-ray trajectories at whatever distance we can measure the light curve,” Rosanne Di Stefano told BBC News. The observation, in fact, as the NASA website explains, is based on transit method: When a planet passes in front of a star, it blocks part of its light, causing a drop in brightness that telescopes, such as Chandra, are able to capture.

But it’s not that simple – The study is incomplete at the moment, we need tests and therefore more scientific data, but it takes time to get it. “Unfortunately, confirmation will take decades – explained Nia Imara, a researcher at the University of California, Santa Cruz – and because of the uncertainty about the orbit, We won’t know exactly when to lookAccording to estimates, in fact, the orbit is so large that the planet can pass under observation in about 70 years, which leaves the research pending for a long time.

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The search for exoplanets began about 25 years ago, and it’s making great strides. The discovery of M51-1, as an exoplanet is called, could be ground zero. “We are trying to open a whole new area to find other worldsRosanne Di Stefano has always added. Another step opens the doors to new, currently unexplored “lands”: those outside our galaxy.

Phil Schwartz

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