astronomyblog: Kepler-16b is an extrasolar …


Kepler-16b is an extrasolar planet. It is a Saturn-mass planet consisting of half gas and half rock and ice, and it orbits a binary star, Kepler-16, with a period of 229 days. “It Is the first confirmed, unambiguous example of a circumbinary planet – a planet orbiting not one, but two stars,“ said Josh Carter of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, one of the discovery team.

Kepler-16b was discovered using the space observatory aboard NASA’s Kepler spacecraft. Scientists were able to detect Kepler-16b using the transit method, when they noticed the dimming of one of the system’s stars even when the other was not eclipsing it.

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