Planet υ Andromedae b’s Unusual Warm Spot [720p]


This animation shows an unexpected warm spot
on the surface of the gaseous exoplanet known as upsilon Andromedae b. Taking only 4 and a half days to complete
an orbit, the planet is tidally locked to its star with the same side always facing
the heat. Astronomers using NASA’s Spitzer Space Telescope
measured how the infrared light of the system changes as the planet circles its star. When it’s brightest we’re seeing the hottest
part of the planet. Remarkably that hot spot is not on the side
facing the star but is rotated about 80 degrees towards the boundary between day and night.

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