Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Water, Far Away
Evidence of water has been detected for the first time in a planet outside our solar system, an astronomer said on Tuesday, a tantalizing find for scientists eager to know whether life exists beyond Earth.

Travis Barman, an astronomer at Lowell Observatory in Flagstaff, Arizona, said water vapor has been found in the atmosphere of a large, Jupiter-like gaseous planet located 150 light years from Earth in the constellation Pegasus. The planet is known as HD 209458b.
Everyone seems quite excited in science land. But I have 2 questions - one is: don't they seem to find new "the first evidence of water ever found" pretty often? More important, is this really the best we can do, name-wise, for planets? Can we get the people that name hurricanes to give some kind of seminars to the astronomer crowd? Maybe send up their rejects? Even they have to be better than HD209458b.

No comments: