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Thread: World With Triple Sunsets

  1. #1 World With Triple Sunsets 
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    "NASA Scientist Finds World With Triple Sunsets"
    http://www.nasa.gov/vision/universe/...n-071305a.html

    I have read an article on the NASA web site! It is very interesting! However, I don't totally understand what it is saying in detail, prehaps lacking the background in astronomy and cosmology. Here are some of my questions that I hope somebody who has read the article can answer:

    "The new planet belongs to a common class of extrasolar planets called "hot Jupiters," which are gas giants that zip closely around their parent stars. In this case, the planet whips every 3.3 days around a star that is circled every 25.7 years by a pirouetting pair of stars locked in a 156-day orbit. "
    What is the 156-day orbit referring? The star-pair orbiting around the parent star? The planet orbiting around the parent star? or...? Also, is it really possible to have 2 "suns" orbiting around another "big sun", won't they be called planets because they orbit a star? And is it possible for the 2 "suns" to stick together and kind of like orbiting around each other, as the animation in the web site shows?

    "Previously, astronomers had identified planets around about 20 binary stars and one set of triple stars. But the stars in those systems had a lot of space between them. Most multiple-star arrangements are crowded together and difficult to study."
    Isn't this HD 188753 the first triple-star system with a planet? Why it says here that one set of triple stars with identified planet has already been found previously? On the top of the article it says "The new planet, called HD 188753 Ab, is the first known to reside in a classic triple-star system."

    "Hot Jupiters are believed to form out of thick disks, or "doughnuts," of material that swirl around the outer fringes of young stars. The disk material clumps together to form a solid core, then pulls gas onto it. Eventually, the gas giant drifts inward. The discovery of a world under three suns contradicts this scenario. HD 188753 would have sported a truncated disk in its youth, due to the disruptive presence of its stellar companions. That leaves no room for HD 188753's planet to form, and raises a host of new questions."
    How does this discovery of a triple-star system with a planet contradicts the former theory of hot jupiters formation?

    Does anyone know any web site which provides some background information related to this topic? I would be eager to learn more!


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  3. #2  
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    Why the articles says "The new planet, called HD 188753 Ab, is the first known to reside in a classic triple-star system" while later it says "Previously, astronomers had identified planets around about 20 binary stars and one set of triple stars"

    So is this the first known system to have a planet within a triple-star system, as the article states?

    Even worse, the Wikipedia says "This star system is only the second triple-star system known to have a planet orbiting it "
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HD_188753

    Why do they contradict each other? I must manage this because I have to do a report on it...


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