Kepler-64b: Four Star Planet
10.15.13 - An artist's illustration of Kepler-64b or PH1, a planet discovered by volunteers from the Planet Hunters citizen science project. PH1, shown in the foreground, is the first reported case of a planet orbiting a double-star that, in turn, is orbited by a second distant pair of stars. The phenomenon is called a circumbinary planet in a four-star system.
A bit larger than Neptune and thought to be a gas giant, PH1 orbits its host stars every 137 days. Beyond the planet's orbit approximately 900 times the distance between the sun and Earth, a second pair of stars orbits the planetary system.
Read more about the discovery here: http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/kepler/news/kepler-ph1.html#.Uxi94PSwL10
Image Credit: Haven Giguere/Yale
Page Last Updated: March 6th, 2014
Page Editor: NASA Administrator