GJ1214b (Artist’s impression)

This artist’s impression shows how the newly discovered super-Earth surrounding the nearby star GJ1214 may look. Discovered by the MEarth project and investigated further by the HARPS spectrograph on ESO’s 3.6-metre telescope at La Silla, GJ1214b is the second super-Earth exoplanet for which astronomers have determined the mass and radius, giving vital clues about its structure. It is also the first super-Earth around which an atmosphere has been found. The exoplanet, orbiting a small star only 40 light-years away from us, thus opens dramatic new perspectives in the quest for habitable worlds. The planet, GJ1214b, has a mass about six times that of Earth and its interior is likely mostly made of water ice. It appears to be rather hot and surrounded by a thick atmosphere, which makes it inhospitable for life as we know it on Earth.

Credit:

ESO/L. Calçada

About the Image

Id:eso0950a
Type:Artwork
Release date:16 December 2009, 19:00
Related releases:eso0950
Size:4218 x 2812 px

About the Object

Name:GJ1214b
Type:• Milky Way : Star : Circumstellar Material : Planetary System
• X - Illustrations
Distance:40 light years

Image Formats

Large JPEG
4.3 MB
Screensize JPEG
142.9 KB

Wallpapers

1024x768
213.6 KB
1280x1024
362.7 KB
1600x1200
550.9 KB
1920x1200
680.9 KB
2048x1536
954.8 KB

 

Also see our