Category Archives: Exoplanets

Evidence for Life Beyond Earth?

Question:  Hi! My name is Natasha and I live in New Jersey and am 17 years old. I am currently a Senior in high school and I’m planning on pursuing Astronomy and Physics in my future. Currently, I am in … Continue reading

Posted in Exoplanets, SETI | Tagged , | Leave a comment

How Many Planets Can Orbit a Star?

Question:  How many planets a stellar-planetary system can accommodate safely into a stable orbit around that star? What are the factors it depends on? For Example: Currently our solar system has 8 planets in a stable orbit. I want to … Continue reading

Tagged Leave a comment

How to Tell the Difference Between an Extrasolar Planet and a Star Spot

Question:  I am a retired PhD chemist..interested in amateur astronomy.  Recently a lot of exo planets have been discovered using a “transit” method of observing brightening and dimming of stars.  How do we know these are planet transits, and not … Continue reading

Tagged Leave a comment

How Does a Star’s Size and Luminosity Affect its Habitable Zone?

Question:  We are fortunate that the Earth orbits our Sun in the “Habitable Zone” where it’s not too hot, it’s not too cold and liquid water can exist giving life a chance to evolve. As stars vary so much in … Continue reading

Tagged Leave a comment

Can We Measure an Exoplanet’s Orbital Decay?

Question:  Is it possible for a planet of an established solar system orbiting a star to be in a decaying orbit and if so how do astronomers confirm this as the star and its solar system can be vast numbers … Continue reading

Tagged Leave a comment

Exoplanet Detection Techniques

Question: My question is two-fold and relates to exoplanet detection. Firstly, it seems like the two most successful detection methods, namely the transit and radial velocity methods, rely on exoplanet systems being edge-on relative to our vantage point. Is this … Continue reading

Tagged Leave a comment