Extrasolar Planets

  • Book chapter (PDF)
  • 11 pages
  • Level: middle school and above

Fr. Giuseppe Koch, S. J., a physicist with the Vatican Observatory, writes in this chapter from the book The Heavens Proclaim: Astronomy and the Vatican that with the development of various means of research, and the continual advance in precision of our instruments, the exoplanet hunters have finally realized their dream. Topics include: What Can We Say about 51 Peg and Its Companion 51 Peg b?; What Do We Know about the Formation of Stars and Their Planetary Disks?; New Systems of Planets; How Do We Define a Planet Now?; How Do We Make Sense of Our “Collection” of Planets?; Future Developments; The Significance of the Discovery of Extrasolar Planets.

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