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Mar 15, 2020

Astronomers discover scorching hot planet where it rains liquid iron

Posted by in category: space

On one particularly hot planet, hundreds of light-years away from Earth, the forecast is cloudy with a chance of liquid iron rain. Scientists recently discovered the bizarre exoplanet, which they referred to as one of the most “extreme” they’ve ever observed.

Using the Very Large Telescope (VLT) at the European Southern Observatory (ESO), researchers observed an “ultra-hot” giant exoplanet, where temperatures can exceed 2,400 degrees Celsius during the day — hot enough to vaporize metals.

One face of the planet, its “day side,” is always facing its parent star and permanently roasting, while the cooler “night side” remains in constant darkness. Because of this, when strong winds push vaporized iron to the night side, it condenses into droplets, creating an iron rainstorm.

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