A Giant Mirror in Space: Astronomers Discover Highly Reflective Exoplanet with Metallic Clouds

Astronomers have discovered a planet that is so reflective, it has been dubbed a “giant mirror in space.” The planet, named LTT9779b, is located 264 light-years from Earth and orbits a sun-like star every 19 hours.

LTT9779b is a bit bigger than Neptune, but it is much hotter, with a surface temperature of around 2,000 degrees Celsius. The planet’s atmosphere is made up of hydrogen and helium, with a small amount of water vapor.

What makes LTT9779b so reflective is its clouds. The clouds on LTT9779b are made up of titanium and silicates, which are metals that reflect light very well. This makes the planet reflect about 80% of the light that hits it, making it the most reflective object known in the universe.

The discovery of LTT9779b is a surprise to astronomers, as it is not clear how a planet could form with such reflective clouds. One possibility is that the planet formed in a region of space with a lot of metallic dust. Another possibility is that the planet’s atmosphere was enriched in metals by a collision with another object.

Whatever the reason for its reflective clouds, LTT9779b is a fascinating object that is providing astronomers with new insights into the formation and evolution of exoplanets.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *