Distant Exoplanets form Planetary Syzygy Celestial Alignment

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Astronomers have discovered that two exoplanets are overlapping in the skies as they cross their star. The phenomenon is new enough that it doesn’t have a name, but it’s related to a syzygy, which is when a straight line configuration of three celestial bodies is formed in a gravitational system.

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Kepler Observations Suggest That Superflares Erupt in G2V-Type Stars

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Solar flares happen when magnetic-field loops threading through sunspots get twisted and break, producing massive amounts of radiation that accelerate charged particles into space. The largest one that Sol ever produced in recorded history was on September 1st, 1859, and it was observed by the British astronomer Richard Carrington. Hours later, auroras were seen in tropical latitudes and telegraph lines threw off sparks, even when disconnected from their batteries.

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Chemistry Might Influence Habitable Zones Around Extrasolar Systems

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Trace elements in extrasolar systems might influence the evolution of habitable zones around their stars, where carbon-based life as we know it might dwell. Most stars are made up of hydrogen and helium gas, but there still remain traces of heavier elements, like metals, that are inherited from the remnants of older stars or forged by stellar fusion.

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Extrasolar Planetary System Suggests Our Own Isn’t That Special

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NASA’s Kepler spacecraft has discovered the three smallest exoplanets ever detected. All of them are smaller than Earth, and the smallest is no larger than Mars. These newly discovered exoplanets actually form a miniature planetary system, which orbits a cool, dim red dwarf star called KOI-961.

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