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New palm-sized satellites

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New palm-sized satellites
New palm-sized satellites

New palm-sized satellites could hunt for alien worlds

#Cosmoread: Small satellites into orbit could hitch a ride away from the exotic world location, new research suggests.

NASA’s 2,230 pounds (1,052 kilograms) of stars the Kepler Space Telescope has discovered thousands of planets around potential. Now, some scientists want to go short: they are small satellites that can fit in the palm of your hand using the new proposal for the world.

“We are sending a massive satellite, collect more data in less time for less money to be able to want to be cheaper than the” rich Blake, Washington, DC, a graduate student at Howard University, Space told .com. Blake and his advisor, Aki Roberge, a research astrophysicist at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center, the star Beta Pictoris to search for a new planet around a small possibility of using an instrument known as CUBESAT studied, already known to host at least one world, the beta Pictoris b. He Kissimmee, Florida in January presented the results at a meeting of the American Astronomical Society.

“We wanted to know, is there any other planets than Beta Pictoris bare, and if so, where are they?”

Small but powerful

In 2008, scientists using NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope of a giant planet orbiting Beta Pictoris more than 1.5 times the radius of Jupiter reveal. Only nine times the Earth-Sun distance from its star affair, just inside the orbit of Saturn in the solar system, the exoplanet orbiting Beta Pictoris b nearest occupied by a direct imaging technique that is essentially otherworldly photos. The method most sensitive to massive planets several times the mass of Jupiter, and challenges facing, small world or the world when it comes to spotting is closer to their star.

Tiny cubesats
Tiny cubesats

Blake and Roberge around the star to search for a new world in space are interested in starting a CUBESAT. Evidence shows the star system sits almoston the edge of the earth as seen – that is, instead of this system we are looking at the top or bottom edge oriented. Researchers on both sides of a debris disk stars Earth-Sun distance stretches to 1,400 times that have seen and known that the orientation of the planet’s orbit is also agreein with. This process is called transit method, beta Pictoris b, which should be able to see the world inside the classroom use to search for other planets should allow a CUBESAT.

Direct imaging, which relies on capturing the opposite

The light reflected by a planet, transit method, which is used by the Kepler telescope, a planet as it moves between Earth and the star’s brightness down searches. Transiting planets can detect the presence of the device only if they pass between the star and Earth, so the system is on the edge of the earth must lie within a few degrees.

His initial study, based on a small classroom CUBESAT Blake said the huge gas giants should be able to spot.

“We certainly will be able to see the hot Jupiters,” he said, at times closer than Mercury orbits the largest planet in the solar system, referring to the world at large.

“We probably Neptune-sized planets as small as you want to achieve, but when you get to the small things more complicated.”

Stare and collect

Several years ago, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology planet hunter Sara Seager, a part of the sky in search of the world beyond the solar system to survey proposed using a fleet of CubeSats. Blake and his advisers thought him a star to target only a single instrument prompted to consider. A suite of satellites that can focus or avoids concerns about redirecting.

“It’s just a matter gaze and is gathering information as much as possible” .

Blake said that sending a satellite to the entire fleet would be a good first step. Once the method is proven to work, other satellites or the new world or made by Kepler, such as those initial observations, can be initiated to confirm.

It comes to search, however, the stars I have already demonstrate that their systems are on the edge of the earth would need to be limited. Researchers at large debris disk around them to see or directly imaged target with world stars whose orbits are on the edge can be identified by such stars.

CubeSats first compact satellites that university students perform experiments and to test new technologies could build as were introduced in 1999. They have a 4 x 4 x 4 inch (10 x 10 x 10 cm) cube, the other, larger projection allows you to hitch a ride into space with standardized shape. Two, entry, descent, and landing on the NASA Tue planet to cover the upcoming Insight lander will be launched in March 2016, while other scientists leaving them at places such as Europa and Enceladus are discussed.

Around a specific target over time is a major challenge for the world CUBESAT mission to hunt. Requires at least three transits of the scientific community – three times the object must pass between the sun and the earth – to confirm its status as a planet for. Blake, a maximum of one year of study and a half for a CUBESAT class show, although it can only last for half a year. To confirm a planet at all those stars who will need to get two six-month cycle.

Blake and Roberge background studies around the world to search for a viable plan in the Beta Pictoris show is performed using a CUBESAT. Your next step is to talk to the engineers and instrumentalists to determine parts of the construction of such a satellite would be necessary to do. Although it still costs less than $ 550 million in the Kepler should come in – from there, it might have cost estimates on what they can build.

“I think it better, faster and with less material in time to be able to find exoplanets would be great”.

“It’s just a little better for everyone.”