Wednesday, May 15, 2013

'Einstein's Planet': New Alien World Revealed by Relativity

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New Alien World Revealed by Relativity

By Clara Moskowitz
www.space.com
5-13-13

      Einstein's special relativity has proven more useful than ever, as scientists have now used it to discover an alien planet around another star.

The newfound world — nicknamed "Einstein's planet" by the astronomers who discovered it — is the latest of more than 800 planets known to exist beyond our solar system, and the first to be found through this method.

The planet, officially known as Kepler-76b, is 25 percent larger than Jupiter and weighs about twice as much, putting it in a class known as "hot Jupiters." The world orbits a star located about 2,000 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cygnus.

The researchers capitalized on subtle effects predicted by Albert Einstein's special theory of relativity to find the planet. . . .
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