A Scorched World Kepler-10b
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A Scorched World
NASA's Kepler mission has discovered a new planetary system.
Kepler-10b is a scorched world, orbiting at a distance thatís more than 20 times closer to its star than Mercury is to our own Sun. The daytime temperature is expected to be more than 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit, hotter than lava flows here on Earth. Intense radiation from the star has kept the planet from holding onto an atmosphere. Flecks of silicates and iron may be boiled off a molten surface and swept away by the stellar radiation, much like a cometís tail when its orbit brings it close to the Sun.
Credit: NASA/Kepler Mission/Dana Berry
February 20th, 2013
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