Kepler-10b: A Scorched World
01.10.11 - Kepler-10b is a scorched world, orbiting at a distance that's more than 20 times closer to its star than Mercury is to our own Sun. The daytime temperature's expected to be more than 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit, hotter than lava flows here on Earth. Intense radiation from the star has kept the planet from holding onto an atmosphere. Flecks of silicates and iron may be boiled off a molten surface and swept away by the stellar radiation, much like a comet's tail when its orbit brings it close to the Sun.
Read more about the discovery in the in the press release, http://www.nasa.gov/home/hqnews/2011/jan/HQ_11-007_Kepler_Rocky_Planet.html.
Credit: NASA/Kepler Mission/Dana Berry
Page Last Updated: March 6th, 2014
Page Editor: NASA Administrator