Massive exoplanet found 1,243 light-years away is larger than Jupiter

A team of astronomers led by the University of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy has found a massive third exoplanet in the Kepler-88 system located 1243 light-years away in the constellation of Lyra.

The discovery was based on six years of radial velocity (RV) follow-up from the W.M. Keck Observatory High-Resolution Echelle Spectrometer spectrograph. Designated Kepler-88 d, this giant planet, which orbits its host star Kepler-88 (a Sun-type star) in an elliptical orbit lasting 3.8 years, has about 965 Earth-masses. This would make Kepler-88 d approximately 3 times as massive as Jupiter. In case you’re wondering, 10 times Jupiter’s mass is about the theoretical upper limit for a planet.

- Advertisement -

Read Also: Dead bodies found stacked up in unrefrigerated trucks in Brooklyn

Two other planets were previously discovered orbiting Kepler-88. Kepler-88 b was discovered using the transit-method in 2012. Being the closest to its host star, it orbits in about 11 days. It is about the diameter of Neptune but only half as dense (~9.5 Earth-masses). Due to extreme transit timing variations (TTVs), astronomers were able to infer the existence of a larger perturbing planet (Kepler-88 c). Through dynamical analysis of the TTVs, they were able to calculate its orbital period and mass. It orbits its host star in about 22 days and has about 214 Earth-masses (~0.67 times Jupiter’s mass). Its existence was confirmed using the RV method in 2013. Unlike Kepler-88 b, however, Kepler-88 c and Kepler-88 d are non-transiting, and thus we cannot deduce their radii.

Jupiter is the undisputed heavyweight in our solar system. As such, its gravitational influence is instrumental in the formation and evolution of the inner planets. Being three times as massive, we can only hypothesize the influence Kepler-88 d has on its planetary system. Further research will hopefully shed light on the relationship between giant planets and their planetary system’s architecture.

Join our writing team and develop your writing skills, as you see your articles featured on Apple NewsGoogle News, and all around the worldSubscribe to our newsletter, What Just Happened, where we dive deep into the hottest topics from the week!

Related Stories

Ancient life on Earth relied on arsenic in the absence of oxygen

A new study published in the journal Communications Earth and Environment details how, before oxygen was present...

Earth-like ‘pi planet’ with 3.14-day orbit discovered by researchers

MIT researchers have found the exoplanet K2-315b, approximately the size of Earth, to have a shockingly exact...

Featured Stories

Venus: 10 shocking facts about our nearest planet you never knew

1. A day on Venus is longer than its year. It takes 243 Earth...

How to deal with COVID-19? A Zumba® Ambassador reveals the secret!

Keeping our mental and physical health in this difficult time has been, and it still is a...

Search for alien life among 10 million star systems ends with no results

A search for alien life in other star systems has come up empty-handed. A recent project named...

The post-inflammatory syndrome of COVID-19 is becoming more complex in children

After contracting the COVID-19 and recovery, the body takes its own time to get to normal. Unfortunately,...

FDA authorizes Abbott’s 15-minute, $5 COVID-19 card test ‘BinaxNOW’

Abbott Laboratories’ new technology might change the game in how the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic is...

The new Fitbit Sense will detect how stressed you are

In the past, Versa has been the flagship for the Fitbit company, but no more for Fitbit...

Comment Below

Ancient life on Earth relied on arsenic in the absence of oxygen

A new study published in the journal Communications Earth and Environment details how, before oxygen was present...

Earth-like ‘pi planet’ with 3.14-day orbit discovered by researchers

MIT researchers have found the exoplanet K2-315b, approximately the size of Earth, to have a shockingly exact...