HD 80606: a gas giant on a super-eccentric orbit

Hot Jupiters: check.  Super-Earths and mini-Neptunes: check. Up next is another unusual class of planet.  But what is different is not these planets’ physical properties but the shapes of their orbits. Time to get technical.  An orbit is the path a planet follows around its star.  The simplest orbit is a circle with the star … More HD 80606: a gas giant on a super-eccentric orbit

Wasp-12b: a hot Jupiter

Let’s meet a planet called WASP-12b.  [Before you ask, extra-solar planets are named based on how they were discovered or their catalog number.  Wasp-12b is the twelfth found by the WASP (“Wide Angle Search for Planets”) survey.  The “b” indicates that the object is a companion; Wasp-12 itself is the planet-hosting star.] WASP-12b is a … More Wasp-12b: a hot Jupiter