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Scientists may find the first extraterrestrial satellite: it may be "very habitable" – Science Exploration – cnBeta.COM

In Beijing on November 28, an extraterrestrial satellite refers to a satellite that revolves around a certain planet outside the solar system, called the "exoplanet." Since 2009, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Kepler and the Transit Excavator Satellite (TESS) mission have discovered about 4,000 exoplanets, but astronomers have only one satellite outside the plane. Described, and still not sure if this is a satellite.

The Kepler-1625b exoplane and its possible satellites are rated as comparable in magnitude to Neptune. The researchers said that this potential satellite and other similar extraterrestrial satellites may even have their own satellites.

In October 2018, David Kiping, an astronomer at Columbia University, and his graduate student, Alex Teachi, first reported this in the journal Science Advances. Potential extraterrestrial satellite.

Using the NASA Hubble Space Telescope, two researchers analyzed the observations when the Kepler-1625b exoplane (Kepler-1625b) flew over the star. This is a planet similar in size to Jupiter, which blocks part of the world as it passes through a star. Analyzing the curve of starlight, you can determine the characteristics of the planet.

This method of observation is called the transit method (occlusion). Astronomers have used this method to detect thousands of exoplanets. However, researchers found two surprises while watching Kepler-1625b fly over a star. First, the exoplanet flew over the star 1.25 hours earlier than expected, indicating that something is producing gravitational traction. Secondly, after the planet has completely passed the star, a very small gap appears on the light curve, which may indicate a satellite behind Kepler-1625b.

David Kiping said: “We have eliminated other possibilities as much as possible, such as detector errors, actions of other planets in the system or other actions of stars, but we cannot find any other hypothesis that could explain our hands. All data on it.

This potential extraterrestrial satellite is about the same size as Neptune, about one third of Kepler-1625b. The size of a typical satellite is usually much smaller than the planet on which it rotates, so this volume is quite amazing. As for the current model of the formation of a planetary satellite system, such a satellite should be very rare, if it exists.

It is assumed that the quality of Kepler-1625b is about several times higher than that of Jupiter, and the quality of a potential satellite can be only 1.5% of it. This mass relationship is similar to Earth and the Moon. In the system of the Earth and the Moon, it is believed that the moon is formed by fragments of a collision of rocky planets. However, astronomers believe that Kepler 1625b and its possible satellites belong to the gas planet and are not made of stones, so this extraterrestrial satellite can be formed by various processes.

“We cannot rush to open a champagne party now,” said Alex Titscher, “but everything looks exciting, attractive and convincing.”

Looking for life on a satellite outside the camera?

Some scientists claim that extraterrestrial satellites can be a “very habitable” world, which means they are good places to live. This is due to the fact that these satellites are not limited to the use of light energy from the parent stars in the system. Instead, they can extract energy from other places, such as:

Reflected light. The reflected light or thermal radiation of neighboring planets can provide long-term stable temperatures and can contribute to the evolution and reproduction of life.

Radioactive element. Radioactive elements, such as uranium and thorium, can exist deep in the rock formations of extraterrestrial satellites with the same dimensions of the Earth, and over time these elements slowly decay and release heat to the surface of the satellite.

Tidal force The gravitational pull of a large exoplanet, such as the size of Jupiter or Saturn, may include extraterrestrial satellites that create tidal forces, like tidal changes created by the gravitational pull of the Moon on Earth. When the surface of an extraterrestrial satellite consisting of rocks is pulled by the gravitational pull of exoplanets, the heat generated can reach the surface of the satellite.

There are about 175 satellites in the solar system. Many of these satellites possess these characteristics, and two are also powerful candidates for the search for extraterrestrial life: the satellite of Jupiter “Europe” (Meow) and the satellite of Saturn (Luke).

Both satellites have a frozen surface covered with striped stripes created by the gravitational forces of the planet, at temperatures not exceeding 128 degrees Celsius. However, just a few kilometers from their surface, there is a huge liquid ocean containing liquid water that exceeds the total amount of water in the earth. Where there is liquid water, there can be life.

Where are the other out-of-band satellites?

Some astronomers believe that there can be many such frozen satellites with subsurface oceans in the Milky Way, which can be 100-1000 times larger than terrestrial planets, but they are very difficult to find.

The parent star Kepler-1625b is about 8,000 light-years from Earth, which makes it a very small spot on Earth, but with the help of modern detection methods, scientists can detect the weak contours of the planet when it passes in front of it. For Kepler-1625b, this satellite is relatively easy to detect due to its large size. However, for other unplanned satellites, which are similar in size to Europe, which is equivalent to a quarter of the volume of the Earth, it is not easy to detect the “space” signal left by them when they pass in front of a star. In the current technical conditions, these gaps are too small to be clearly identified. Therefore, we need a little more patience to find more extraterrestrial satellites.

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