News of the WeekAstronomy

Shadow of an Exoplanet Detected

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Science  19 Nov 1999:
Vol. 286, Issue 5444, pp. 1451-1453
DOI: 10.1126/science.286.5444.1451

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For the first time, a planet in another star system has been seen to cross the face of its parent star. The transit, as it is called, is the most direct glimpse yet of an extrasolar planet. It has also allowed astronomers to pin down the object's mass, size, and density--characteristics that could only be guessed before--which leave little room for doubt that it really is a planet.