Monday, March 27, 2023

Find out how to “hunt” for exoplanets with a telescope or cell phone

NASA is calling on all the inventors of the world with their help in discovering exoplanets or new planets outside the solar world.

Outside the solar system, about 5,000 exoplanets have been confirmed, that is, celestial bodies with different characteristics, such as glass clouds or twin suns.

But the US space agency NASA estimates there are even millions more exoplanets outside the galaxy where Earth is.

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NASA is therefore seeking help from certified and non-professional astronomers to track, hunt and study these small planets.

This is where the agency’s “Exoplanet Watch” project comes in, with participants using their telescopes to help identify exoplanets.

Even NASA has given data enthusiasts to search for these bodies in other telescopes, extracting information from their instruments.

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Become an explorer

NASA started the program in 2018, but it was only intended for professionals and is now open to the public.

“We’re excited to show more people how exoplanet science is done,” said author and astrophysicist Rob Zellem.

To be part of the NASA program, you must do the following:

  • Enter the official document portal.
  • Read all the information so far on exoplanet observations that NASA has.
  • Register with the Association of American Stargazers to obtain an “observer” code.
  • To start looking for exoplanets, you can use a telescope as small as 15 centimeters or 6 inches.
  • Enter the collaborative observations made, either on Google using your Gmail account, or in the Drop application.
  • But if you don’t have a telescope, you can also do the following.

  • Enter the official portal of the NASA program.
  • Requesting data or information from one of the robotic telescope agents, and existing data analysis.
  • This analysis can be done from a single PC or cell phone.
  • Robotic telescopes observe nearby stars and look for what is known as an exoplanet transition, which is a decrease in the star’s brightness.

    Why are exoplanets important?

    As of February 2023, the Exoplanet Watch program has studied 290 different bodies and analyzed thousands of bright lights or transiting planets.

    Thanks to the observations, the exoplanet HD 80606 b was discovered. Project deputy chief scientist Kyle Pearson has compiled more than 20 observations from program participants.

    Now, the exoplanet will be investigated by the James Webb telescope, in order to obtain more information about it.

    The importance of finding and studying exoplanets is because they help to better understand the Solar System and the Universe. In addition, they allow the identification of planets with characteristics similar to Earth, and have their own conditions for the appearance of life.

    Nation World News Desk
    Nation World News Desk
    Nation World News is the fastest emerging news website covering all the latest news, world’s top stories, science news entertainment sports cricket’s latest discoveries, new technology gadgets, politics news, and more.
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