Scientists capture direct image of Jupiter-like exoplanet

Astronomers image a Jupiter-like exoplanet from AF Hare. This is reported by the European Southern Observatory (ESO).

The observations were made by two independent teams led by Dino Mesa and Robert De Rosa using the “Very Large Telescope” (VLT) located in  Chile . This observatory consists of four main 8.2-meter telescopes and four 1.8-meter auxiliary telescopes that can work as a whole. Initially, signs of the existence of this planet were discovered by analyzing small oscillations of the parent star AF Hare caused by gravitational interactions.

Because of this, astronomers decided to observe the star using the VLT. The SPHERE system installed on it allows, on the one hand, to close the light of the star and see a dimmer planet, on the other hand, to suppress distortions introduced by the atmosphere with the help of adaptive optics. As a result, they managed to get an image of a planet several times more massive than Jupiter.

The star AF Hare has approximately the same mass, size and temperature as the Sun, but is 200 times younger (its age is 24 million years). The discovered planet revolves around the star at a distance similar to the distance between Saturn and the Sun.

Astronomers hope that further observations will provide a better understanding of how the solar system formed.

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