Astronomers Find Blue Planet Outside Solar System - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Astronomers Find Blue Planet Outside Solar System

LONDON (AP) - Astronomers have for the first time managed to determine the color of a planet outside our solar system, a blue gas giant 63 light-years away.

Using the Hubble Space Telescope, an international team said the planet known as HD 189733B would look like a deep blue dot if viewed up close.

"Measuring the planet's color is a real first — we have never managed it before with a planet outside our own solar system," Frederic Pont of the University of Exeter in England said Friday.

While Earth looks blue from space because of its oceans, the astronomers said the planet's color was created by a hazy turbulent atmosphere of silicate particles that scatter blue light. To determine the planet's color, the team measured the amount of light reflected off its surface as it passed behind its star.

Discovered in 2005, the planet belongs to a class of giant gas planets called "hot Jupiters" that orbit close to their stars. It has a daytime temperature of around 1,000 degrees Celsius (1,832 F), and the heat causes rocks to evaporate and glass to possibly rain sideways in howling 4,500 mph (about 7,250 kph) winds.

Astronomers chose the planet for observation because of its proximity to Earth and size in relation to the star it orbits. A light-year is nearly 6 trillion miles.

Pont said the technology the astronomers used pushed the Hubble telescope to its limit given the distance and light from other stars obscuring their view.

"People keep coming up with a better way of viewing planets indirectly so I'm sure the technology will eventually improve," Pont said.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Spokane family's service dog finds bag of mysterious substance in yard

    Spokane family's service dog finds bag of mysterious substance in yard

    Sunday, October 22 2017 8:48 PM EDT2017-10-23 00:48:47 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - One Spokane family has a message for the community: “Check your yards.” That’s because on Saturday morning, they discovered something pretty disturbing in their backyard. This happened near Chief Garry Park.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - One Spokane family has a message for the community: “Check your yards.” That’s because on Saturday morning, they discovered something pretty disturbing in their backyard. This happened near Chief Garry Park.

    >>
  • Idaho woman arrested following death of 20-month-old child

    Idaho woman arrested following death of 20-month-old child

    Saturday, October 21 2017 5:27 PM EDT2017-10-21 21:27:17 GMT

    TWIN FALLS, Idaho (AP) - Police have arrested a south-central Idaho woman following the death of her 20-month-old child. Authorities arrested 22-year-old Amanda Dunlap of Twin Falls in Boise on Friday and booked her into the Ada County Jail.

    >>

    TWIN FALLS, Idaho (AP) - Police have arrested a south-central Idaho woman following the death of her 20-month-old child. Authorities arrested 22-year-old Amanda Dunlap of Twin Falls in Boise on Friday and booked her into the Ada County Jail.

    >>
  • Authorities: 7-year-old boy attacked, killed by 2 pit bulls

    Authorities: 7-year-old boy attacked, killed by 2 pit bulls

    Sunday, October 22 2017 1:20 PM EDT2017-10-22 17:20:20 GMT

    LOWELL, Mass. (AP) - Authorities say a 7-year-old boy was apparently attacked and killed by two pit bulls in Massachusetts. The Middlesex district attorney's office says a preliminary investigation suggests the boy was attacked Saturday in Lowell after entering a fenced area where the dogs were located. Officers responded to a report of an injured child at the home around 6 p.m. and found the boy dead. 

    >>

    LOWELL, Mass. (AP) - Authorities say a 7-year-old boy was apparently attacked and killed by two pit bulls in Massachusetts. The Middlesex district attorney's office says a preliminary investigation suggests the boy was attacked Saturday in Lowell after entering a fenced area where the dogs were located. Officers responded to a report of an injured child at the home around 6 p.m. and found the boy dead. 

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • National NewsMore>>

  • Mad Minute stories from Thursday, October 19th

    Mad Minute stories from Thursday, October 19th

    Thursday, October 19 2017 5:34 PM EDT2017-10-19 21:34:50 GMT

    Here are the extended versions of the KHQ Local News 11 at 11 Mad Minute stories from Thursday, October 19th.

    >>

    Here are the extended versions of the KHQ Local News 11 at 11 Mad Minute stories from Thursday, October 19th.

    >>
  • Fake school bus tries to pick up students in Michigan neighborhoods

    Fake school bus tries to pick up students in Michigan neighborhoods

    Friday, October 20 2017 1:08 AM EDT2017-10-20 05:08:30 GMT

    VAN BUREN TOWNSHIP, Mich. - A Michigan school district is warning parents that someone driving an unmarked school bus tried picking up children Thursday in several neighborhoods. Van Buren Public Schools quickly alerted parents about the incident. “Do not allow your students to approach any bus not clearly marked with Van Buren Public Schools on it,” reads the statement posted by Pam Johnson, administrative assistant to the superintendent. 

    >>

    VAN BUREN TOWNSHIP, Mich. - A Michigan school district is warning parents that someone driving an unmarked school bus tried picking up children Thursday in several neighborhoods. Van Buren Public Schools quickly alerted parents about the incident. “Do not allow your students to approach any bus not clearly marked with Van Buren Public Schools on it,” reads the statement posted by Pam Johnson, administrative assistant to the superintendent. 

    >>
  • Police officer rescues kitten and raccoon found cuddled inside dumpster

    Police officer rescues kitten and raccoon found cuddled inside dumpster

    Thursday, October 19 2017 11:45 PM EDT2017-10-20 03:45:31 GMT
    @KnoxvillePD@KnoxvillePD

    KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - An animal control officer with the Knoxville Police Department responded to a call that resembles the storyline of a Disney movie. According to a Facebook post by the Knoxville Tennessee Police Department Wednesday, Animal Control Officer Nick Powell responded to a call about an animal stuck in a dumpster.  “When Officer Powell looked inside the dumpster he located two unusual companions -- a kitten and a baby 

    >>

    KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - An animal control officer with the Knoxville Police Department responded to a call that resembles the storyline of a Disney movie. According to a Facebook post by the Knoxville Tennessee Police Department Wednesday, Animal Control Officer Nick Powell responded to a call about an animal stuck in a dumpster.  “When Officer Powell looked inside the dumpster he located two unusual companions -- a kitten and a baby 

    >>
  • Top Stories from KHQHomeMore>>

  • Spokane family's service dog finds bag of mysterious substance in yard

    Spokane family's service dog finds bag of mysterious substance in yard

    Sunday, October 22 2017 8:48 PM EDT2017-10-23 00:48:47 GMT

    SPOKANE, Wash. - One Spokane family has a message for the community: “Check your yards.” That’s because on Saturday morning, they discovered something pretty disturbing in their backyard. This happened near Chief Garry Park.

    >>

    SPOKANE, Wash. - One Spokane family has a message for the community: “Check your yards.” That’s because on Saturday morning, they discovered something pretty disturbing in their backyard. This happened near Chief Garry Park.

    >>
  • Child's body found near missing 3-year-old Texas girl's home

    Child's body found near missing 3-year-old Texas girl's home

    Sunday, October 22 2017 6:06 PM EDT2017-10-22 22:06:08 GMT

    RICHARDSON, Texas (AP) - Police in a Dallas suburb say they've found the body of a small child not far from the home of a 3-year-old girl who's been missing since earlier this month. Richardson police say the child's body was discovered in a culvert as authorities using dogs searched for Sherin Mathews on Sunday morning.

    >>

    RICHARDSON, Texas (AP) - Police in a Dallas suburb say they've found the body of a small child not far from the home of a 3-year-old girl who's been missing since earlier this month. Richardson police say the child's body was discovered in a culvert as authorities using dogs searched for Sherin Mathews on Sunday morning.

    >>
  • Salvation Army receives donated urn filled with ashes

    Salvation Army receives donated urn filled with ashes

    Sunday, October 22 2017 5:26 PM EDT2017-10-22 21:26:27 GMT

    PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) - A Salvation Army thrift store in New Hampshire has received an urn apparently filled with cremated remains. The Portsmouth Herald reports the urn was donated last week. It's bronze in color and is engraved "Richard L. Pettengill 1929-1981." The store is holding onto the urn in an effort to return it to the deceased's relatives.

    >>

    PORTSMOUTH, N.H. (AP) - A Salvation Army thrift store in New Hampshire has received an urn apparently filled with cremated remains. The Portsmouth Herald reports the urn was donated last week. It's bronze in color and is engraved "Richard L. Pettengill 1929-1981." The store is holding onto the urn in an effort to return it to the deceased's relatives.

    >>