Newly Discovered Exoplanet, HAT-P-7b Have Clouds Of Rubies And Sapphires

By R. A. Jayme - 15 Dec '16 05:20AM
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New details of the new planet called HAT-P-7b were released by the researchers of the University of Warwick. HAT-P-7b is an exoplanet that experiences violent storms, although it is not entirely inhabitable. However, observations show that the clouds appear to be made from corundum, the mineral that produces sapphires and rubies. The clouds are 'visually stunning' as commented by the researchers.

Warwick's Astrophysics Group's Dr. David Armstrong discovered the exoplanet which is located more than 1,000 light years from planet Earth. Aside from that, the planet is also 16 times larger. Being a distant planet, researchers discovered it by noting the changes in light reflected from it, according to Slash Gear.

According to the University of Warwick, HAT-P-7b is the first giant gas planet with weather patterns that has been found outside of our own planet. As it was said earlier, the weather patterns are volatile and at times violent. As it is in a locked position, one side of the planet is exposed to its star and quite warm while the other is darker and much colder. "The winds transport clouds from the night side, so the cloud bank stretches some way into the day side before finally evaporating," Armstrong says. As the clouds evaporate, the planet absorbs more light and warms up, strengthening the winds, as reported by Next Big Future.

Meanwhile, the great controversy is when it was discovered that the clouds of the planet is composed of the same crystallized mineral that gives us sapphires and rubies. HAT-P-7b is 40 per cent larger than Jupiter and is baked to a searing 2200 degrees Kelvin (1927 °C), in part because is rather too close to the star. Accordingly, it completes an orbit every two days.

James Webb Space Telescope and the European Space Agency's PLATO telescope are considered a more powerful and conducive devices that enable to study those clouds further, and potentially search for signs of life in exoplanet atmospheres, according to Christian Science Monitor.

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