The “Planet Pi” discovered by scientists, takes 3.14 days to travel its orbit

The planet revolves around its star every 3.14 days at a speed of 81 kilometers per second, about 290,000 kilometers per hour.

A new planet became part of the universe of knowledge of scientists: the “Planet Pi”.

The size of the earth, it received this nickname because scientists discovered that it orbits its star exactly every 3.14 days, reminiscent of the mathematical constant “Pi.”

“The planet is moving like a clock,” said Prajwal Niraula, a student in MIT’s Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences and lead author of the article recounting the discovery, published in the Astronomical Journal .

Scientists discovered the signs of the planet’s existence in data obtained in 2017 by the K2 mission of the Kepler space observatory.

After analyzing these images, the scientists created an algorithm to predict when the transit of “Pi” could be observed.

The researchers are members of SPECULOOS, a network of telescopes located in the Atacama desert, in Chile, and a new one in the northern hemisphere.

SPECULOOS is an acronym for The Search for habitable Planets EClipsing ULtra-COOl Stars (the search for habitable planets that eclipse ultracool stars)

Atacama Desert
The telescopes are located in the Atacama desert.

These stars offer a better chance of detecting an orbiting planet than other larger and brighter stars.

If the intensity of its brightness drops, this is a sign that a planet may be crossing in front of the star, briefly dimming its light.

After creating the algorithm, they used the SPECULOOS telescopes to observe the star, located more than 185 light years from Earth, and confirmed that those signals were from a planet orbiting it.

At 290,000 kilometers per hour

It was in February of this year when they were able to observe after clear transits of the planet: two with the telescopes of the Southern Hemisphere and one with Artemis, in the Northern Hemisphere.

Researchers estimate that its radius is about 95% of the Earth.

The new planet, labeled K2-315b , is the 315th planetary system discovered with the K2 data.

Researchers estimate that its radius is about 95% that of Earth and that the cool star it orbits is about a fifth the size of our Sun.

The planet revolves around its star every 3.14 days at a speed of 81 kilometers per second, about 290,000 kilometers per hour.

“This is too hot to be habitable in the common sense of the term,” Niraula said, but the planet is a promising candidate for studying the characteristics of its atmosphere.

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