Strange alien world made of ‘hot ice’
Strange alien world made of ‘hot ice’ – space – 16 May 2007 – New Scientist Space
A bizarre world of scorching hot ice shrouded in a steamy atmosphere may have been found, according to new observations. Characterising the Neptune-size planet is an important milestone on the way to detecting and characterising Earth-like planets that could harbour life.
Astronomers have discovered more than 200 planets orbiting other stars, called extrasolar planets or exoplanets. Almost all of these were detected by the way their gravity makes their parent stars wobble. But this technique, called the radial velocity method, reveals very little about the planet except for the size of its orbit and an estimate of its mass.