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Giant planet orbiting a small star find stuns scientists: NGTS Survey

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NGTS
(image:wikipedia)

London, Nov 1,2017: An international team of astronomers has found a gas giant the size of Jupiter orbiting a star half the size of the Sun, a discovery that challenges theories of planet formation which state that a planet of this size could not be formed by such a small star.

This unusual planet, NGTS-1b, is the largest planet compared to the size of its companion star ever discovered in the universe, according to the study to be published in an upcoming issue of the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

“The discovery of NGTS-1b was a complete surprise to us — such massive planets were not thought to exist around such small stars,” said lead author of the research Daniel Bayliss from the University of Warwick in England.

According to existing theories of planet formation, small stars can readily form rocky planets but do not gather enough material together to form Jupiter-sized planets.

The planet NGTS-1b which is six hundred light years away from Earth is a hot Jupiter, at least as large as the Jupiter in our solar system, but with around 20 per cent less mass.

It is very close to its star — just three per cent of the distance between Earth and the Sun – and orbits the star every 2.6 days, meaning a year on NGTS-1b lasts two and a half days.

The temperature on the gassy planet is approximately 530 degrees Celsius, or 800 kelvin.

The researchers spotted the planet using the Next-Generation Transit Survey (NGTS) – a wide-field observing facility made of a compact ensemble of telescopes, designed to search for transiting planets on bright stars – run by the Universities of Warwick, Leicester, Cambridge, Queen’s University Belfast, Observatoire de Genève, DLR Berlin and Universidad de Chile.

The planet orbits a red M-dwarf — the most common type of star in the universe, leading to the possibility that there could be more of these planets waiting to be found by the NGTS survey.(IANS)

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ISRO Launches ‘Young Scientist’ Programme to Train Students in Space Science

The list of students taking part in the training programme's maiden session during this summer (May-June) is expected by March-end

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credit: static.dnaindia.com

State-run Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Monday announced the launch of its Young Scientist programme to train class 9 students in space technology and its applications.

“ISRO has launched the special programme for school children ‘Yuva Vigyani Karyakram’ (Young Scientist programme) to impart basic knowledge on space technology, space science and applications to the young ones to arouse their interest in space activities,” the city-based space agency said in a statement.

With an aim to spread scientific fervour among the youth in the country, ISRO said it chalked out the programme to “catch them young”.

The two-week residential training programme will be held each year during summer holidays for students from across the country who have completed class 8 and are studying in class 9.

ISRO
Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) Chairman K. Sivan, left, and Junior Indian Minister for Department of Atomic Energy and Space Jitendra Singh address a news conference in New Delhi. VOA

“Three students will be selected from each state/union territory to participate in the programme each year covering CBSE, ICSE and state syllabus,” the statement said.

The space agency has approached the Chief Secretaries of the states for the selection of three students from each state and Union Territories.

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The list of students taking part in the training programme’s maiden session during this summer (May-June) is expected by March-end, ISRO said.

“The selection is based on the academic performance and extracurricular activities. Students belonging to rural areas have been given special weightage in the selection criteria,” it added. (IANS)