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STATES CHRONICLE – Astronomers developed Zooniverse project back in July 2007 to offer citizen scientists the chance to benefit from a platform which could help them discover planets and star, making valuable contributions to the world of science. After spending only 48 hours in a project regarding planet search, researchers from the Exoplanet Explorers program have revealed a new planetary system consisting of four planets and being situated in the constellation Aquarius.
Citizen scientists discover a new planetary system through Zooniverse Project
This planetary system is located at about 597 light-years, and it is made up of four planets which appear to look very much like Earth. They were named EE-1b, EE-1c, EE-1d, and EE-1e. Scientists explain that super-Earths represent planets which have a larger mass than Earth, but they are smaller than Neptune and Uranus which are known to be 17 and 14 times bigger than our planet.
Besides the fact that they are larger than Earth, they are also located closer to their star, orbiting around it once every 3 to 13 days. Their sun is 0.9 solar masses, and it was estimated to be a K or a G star. Just to have a picture of the new planetary system, we should think of the fact that these four planets are closer to their star than Mercury is to ours. Thus, we infer that they are extremely hot.
This solar systenn is made up of only four planet
The closest planet was estimated to sitting at 0.04 Astronomical Units (AU) from their sun, and the furthest is at 0.10 Astronomical Units. Experts indicate that 1 AU represents the distance between our planet and the sun, measuring 93 million miles. If we were to think of Mercury, we found out that it sits at 0.4 AU from our star.
This discovery is currently developed into a scientific paper which will be published soon. Nevertheless, scientists claim that the four planets in question might not be the only ones in their planetary system. They pointed out that it is a possible that some other planets may be located at a greater distance from their star.
The Zooniverse project represents a citizen science platform which is coordinated by the Citizen Science Alliance and the U.K.’s University of Oxford and the Chicago’s Adler Planetarium. This type of citizen science projects is built on sheer numbers trying to discover many celestial objects.
Image courtesy of: vimeo