Oxygen and Carbon Found in Atmosphere of an Extrasolar Planet

The Hubble telescope has identified oxygen and carbon in the atmosphere of an extrasolar planet for the first time. The oxygen and carbon are evaporating from a "hot jupiter" planet HD 209458b, orbiting a star lying 150 light-years from Earth. HD 209458b is only 4.3 million miles from its Sun-like star, completing an orbit in less than 4 days. This is not a sign of life!

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Copyright 1993-2011 Mark Winter [The University of Sheffield and WebElements Ltd, UK]. All rights reserved.