Astronomers have found an extremely strange planet that could significantly expand our knowledge of space. A team from Harvard and the Smithsonian University Astrophysical Center discovered the gas giant WASP-62b 575 light years away.
The planet has unique characteristics – for example, a year on it lasts only 4.5 days (which, together with other parameters, classifies the planet as “hot Jupiter” – ed. Techcult) and there are no clouds on it. This is just the second time in history when scientists have managed to find a cloudless exoplanet, and according to available data, this phenomenon is extremely rare – no more than 7% of the total number of exoplanets in the universe.
Astrophysicists first noticed WASP-62b in 2012, but only recently started studying its atmosphere. Spectroscopic data from the Hubble telescope showed the presence of a large amount of sodium in the planet’s spectrum – an element that would be hidden if there were cloud cover on the surface of WASP-62b.
Scientists hope that after the launch of the powerful James Webb Space Telescope, they will receive a stream of new data needed to further study the planet. Information on the amount of silicon in the WASP-62b spectrum is of particular interest. They will help you understand how such planets are formed and how they differ from their covered with clouds. fellows.