Scientists Discover the Smallest Exoplanet So Far…

Posted by Michael Pinto on Feb 4, 2009 in Science |

The new exoplanet was detected by looking for a drop in brightness of the parent star as the planet passed in front of the star. During such a transit, the planet appears as a tiny black dot. Credits: CNES

While this planet is about twice the size of Earth it’s amazing to think of the progress that astronomers have made in just the past few years. I wouldn’t be surprised if in the next few years we discovered a solar system that’s similar to own own. This latest exoplanet was detected by looking for a drop in brightness of the parent star as the planet passed in front of the star: During this transit the planet appears as a tiny black dot. There’s some controversy to the exact size of the planet, but to me what’s exciting is that we’re getting better at spotting the small one.

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