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Fraser
2005-May-18, 05:05 PM
SUMMARY: Canadian astronomers using the MOST (Microvariability & Oscillations of STars) Space Telescope have detected that a giant extrasolar planet has forced its parent star into a lock-step orbit. This interaction is between the star tau Bootis and its "hot Jupiter" planet discovered in 1997. MOST was able to detect subtle variations in the star's brightness that correspond with the planet's orbit. It's likely that the planet has forced the outer layer of tau Bootis' atmosphere so that it rotates to keep the same side facing.

View full article (http://www.universetoday.com/am/publish/planet_dragging_star.html)

What do you think about this story? Post your comments below.

om@umr.edu
2005-May-18, 05:15 PM
Great story, Fraser.

The influence of planetary motion on the solar cycle, and hence on Earth's climate, has been one of the main themes of the late Dr. Theodor Landscheidt

See his 1998 article: Solar Activity: A Dominant Factor in Climate Dynamics (http://www.john-daly.com/solar/solar.htm)

Hopefully this new finding by Canadian astronomers and world-wide interest in the possibility of global warming will bring attention to the excellent research of Dr. Lindscheidt on factors that control Earth's climate.

With kind regards,

Oliver
http://www.umr.edu/~om

Greg
2005-May-18, 07:13 PM
MOST srikes again! There seems to be an inherent advantage to studying stars in the unique way that the CSA is using this little satellite for generating unique and interesting findings.

aeolus
2005-May-18, 07:27 PM
It has a clear advantage by being so small. It uses a smaller-than-usual gyroscope and thus stays much more stable than a larger unit.

It can't hurt that it collects data, uninterrupted, 24 hours a day.