• Question: What is the strangest planet outside our solar system that you know of.

    Asked by peter296 to Sonia, Simon, Jean on 28 Apr 2020.
    • Photo: Simon Spichak

      Simon Spichak answered on 28 Apr 2020:

      I am a fan of HR5183b – a planet located 103 light years away. That means that it is so far away that if I shone a flashlight at it, it would take 103 years to get there! Why do I think this planet is super cool? Well it’s got a very strange orbit! It circles its star in a very oval orbit, meaning that sometimes it gets really close to its star (equal to how far Jupiter is from our sun) and then it flies all the way out (equal to how far the planet Neptune is from our sun). And did I mention it’s another big gas giant? Check it out: https://www.sciencealert.com/this-massive-planet-is-on-the-most-extreme-orbit-ever-seen

    • Photo: Jean O'Dwyer

      Jean O'Dwyer answered on 29 Apr 2020:

      I’ve always found 55 Cancri E pretty cool- it’s covered in diamonds! It’s around 40 light-years away, in the Cancer constellation. It’s twice as dense (and big) as Earth and its mass is mainly due to carbon.It’s very close to its parent star and so it is wicked hot (around 2,400°C). This high temperature coupled with high pressure and carbon makes diamonds!