back to article Hubble snaps planet orbiting distant star

The Hubble space telescope has captured the first visible-light image of an exoplanet orbiting a star - a body no greater than three Jupiter masses, gravitationally-bound to Fomalhaut in the constellation Piscis Australis. Dubbed Fomalhaut b, the planet lies at 10.7 billion miles from Fomalhaut and 1.8 billion miles inside the …

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  1. FreeTard
    Thumb Up

    Keeping Hubble alive is

    Well more useful (scientifically speaking) than going to the moon or Mars. Far cheaper too.

    What wonderful stuff it sees out there, and just how much does it cost in comparison to just about anything else?

  2. DigiTime
    Coat

    Big fan!

    I'm a big fan of dusty rings...

  3. Chris Dixon

    Eye of Sauron

    Looks to me like they've found the Eye of Sauron... take cover quick!

  4. Steve
    Unhappy

    Furthermore...

    ...this discovery goes to prove the existence of Sauron, peering at us from afar with his scary-ass eye.

    Tickle me afraid.

  5. E

    Hah!

    That is not a picture of a planet. That is a point of light. A picture of a planet ought to have extent - one ought to be able to perceive it's limb if not count the hairs on the heads of the aliens.

  6. lIsRT
    Happy

    I remember...

    ...transporting a package from Ross 154 to Fomalhaut back in the mid '90s.

    Good times.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    eye of?

    i dont get it, what's spectacular about nasa boffins publishing an image of the eye of sauron? We all know middle earth is in new zealand and you only need one of them rings to see him.

  8. Steven Mileham
    Paris Hilton

    Eye of Sauron

    I'm not the only nerd to see that right?

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters

    Scary

    Is it just me, or does that whole system look uncannily like an eye? complete with iris, pupil, everything.

  10. Eddie Edwards
    Dead Vulture

    Much more interesting

    Is the picture of three large planets orbiting star HR 8799. Seen here http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7725584.stm

    But they didn't use Hubble so not so newsworthy at Vulture Central.

  11. Tim
    Go

    A lidless eye, wreathed in flame

    I guess it's pretty bad news for the farmers on Fomalhaut that they're nothing more than a giant mote in Sauron's eye. I wonder if Frodo will travel there by Cobra Mk3?

    Two of my favourite things in one story. Thanks for really cheering up my Friday.

  12. breakfast
    Thumb Up

    @I remember

    I did that too! Happy days.

    Sometimes I still see cars going past and think "ooh, I used to have an Adder that colour."

  13. Foozinator
    Paris Hilton

    What's with the pictures?

    Anyone else wonder how many people are going to think the artist's rendition, placed first in the article, is the Hubble picture and the second picture is just some random red dots? How about some captions for those unclear on the concept...

  14. Danforth

    Never mind Fomalhaut b...

    ...I think Nasa should be more concerned by what appears to be an Imperial Star Destroyer on the left.

  15. Steven Jones

    A well know corporation will already be onto this

    I'm sure detailed and intrusive satellite images will turn up on Google Extraterrestrial some time very soon.

  16. Steve Taylor

    First picture is the most dramatic

    The 2nd one is just fuzzy - don't know why they bothered publishing it.

  17. Frank
    Thumb Up

    @IIsRT re. I remember

    Oh yesssssss !!! Me too :)

    I'll never forget my first assassination contract - my heart was pounding, my palms were sweating. After a while, it became just another way to make credits. The thing was, people didn't want to book a flight with me, something to do with my 'reputation', shrugs.

  18. Christoph Silver badge
    Alien

    The goverment must act now!

    What if the inhabitants of this new planet are terrorists? Or paedophiles? The government must act now and issue them all ID cards!

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Coat

    To misquote Star Wars: I've got a bad feeling about this ...

    ... That's no Eye of Sauron .... that's a space Goatse!

    Sorry. I'll get me spacesuit.

  20. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  21. Fred
    Alien

    Wow BLoad

    You nearly sound like a manfromMars....

  22. storng.bare.durid
    Coat

    That's not the eye of Sauron

    That's the Eye of Terror!

    I'm getting out of this galaxy for sure if Hubble spots a Tyrannid Hive fleet.

    Anyone fancy giving me a ride to one of the Magellanic clouds? I know this nice place in the lesser cloud.

  23. Fred Mbogo
    Alien

    lIsRT

    Oh yes, YES! Remember this trade route from Escape Velocity Nova?

    Bio-weapons

    Sold Codec (Codehaven) - Bought Menin (Lesten)

    The only good thing to come from Macs.

    http://www.evula.com/survival_guide/

    Too bad there aren't any plans to make a new EV game.

  24. stizzleswick
    Boffin

    @storng.bare.durid

    Join the fleet of planets of the Pierson's Puppeteers, they're headed in that general direction. On the other hand, you could also let yourself be dropped off at the Ringworld; should be safe now that the stabilizers have been mostly re-installed and a bunch of Protectors are running things there...

  25. Lukin Brewer

    As usual, 2000AD got there first.

    Fomalhaut was mentioned in more than one story, with planets and inhabitants, back in the early 80s.

  26. Moss Icely Spaceport
    Thumb Up

    Finally

    A place to send all the Politicians, lawyers and Sad-Lifers!

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Boffin

    @stizzleswick

    Don't forget that you should stock up on the boosterspice.

    And you'd do well to not pick a Kzin as your travelling companion...

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Alert

    I have a bad feeling about this...

    Thats no moon...

  29. J
    Boffin

    @Scary

    It does look like an eye, but I am pretty sure the central part is not "real".

    It says in the article it is a corona photo, and the star is a billion times fainter than the star. It means you have to cover the star to be able to expose the photo for the planet -- that's what's "done" during a solar eclipse, when you can photograph the corona, for example. Or it is actually done in telescopes to do it anytime.

    Anyway, really cool stuff. Hubble for President!

  30. David S
    Boffin

    Elite...

    Heh. Thanks folks, I knew that solar system sounded familiar...

    As for the eye thing, this image still freaks me out bigtime:

    http://spiff.rit.edu/classes/phys230/lectures/planneb/MyCn18_big.jpg

  31. Anonymous Scotsman

    @ storng.bare.durid

    You've just made me realise the mahoosive orange wedge could be Craftworld Ulthwe.

    Emperor preserve us!

  32. Danny Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    formalhaut?

    You get 340c for taking a package to formalhaut from alpha centauri.... Ahh good old frontier.

    Paris, you can generally give her a package for less than 340c these days.

  33. Louis Morelli

    The NASA's Interpretation of data are wrong?

    THIS SYSTEM CAN BE VERY OLD, AND NOT YOUNG!

    Interesting news ! Heartiest greetings to the Hubble team & NASA team.

    But... the news has contradictions with known theories and it was a prediction 20 years ago from the Universal Matrix Theory. Are there wrong interpretations from Hubble’s collected data? Let’s see the following:

    1) It is possible that the body is not a planet, anymore. It is brighter than the expected. It can be a very old planet going to be a pulsar;

    2) The excess of dust around the star can be disposable material from an old, dying star, and not about a young star;

    3) Maybe the star is not so different from the sun, about long life. The sun can reach 10 billions years. We have a lot of data from the sun. We have few data from that star. Who could authorize us to say there is star living only 1, 2 billion years? Everything is suggesting the star has the same time of life like any other star. Our models are suggesting the star is about 7 billions years old.

    The Universal Matrix models ( http://theuniversalmatrix.com ) suggests that old stars produces dust while its combustible is finishing, like any other fire you see at Earth. When the star become old, its planets are old also, they begin to be brighter, till becoming a pulsar. The tiny edge at the dust can be the initial formation of a new black hole, as we can see at the models.

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