Einstein’s Planet First To Be Found Using Theory of Relativity

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planetIf I were to tell you all the ways in which I’ve actively noticed Einstein’s Theory of Relativity changing my life, it would take relatively no time at all. I’m not well versed in physics…or anything. But I know something amazing when I hear about it, and this is it.

By focusing on predictions made within the Theory of Relativity, astronomers have discovered the plainly named Kepler-76b — nicknamed “Einstein’s planet” — which orbits a star in the Cygnus constellation, about 2,000 light-years away from us. It’s classified as a “hot Jupiter” due to its massive size; it’s 25 percent larger than Jupiter and weighs twice as much. Incidentally, I tried to give my wife a Hot Jupiter last weekend and I’m still putting make-up on the bruises.

“This is the first time that this aspect of Einstein’s theory of relativity has been used to discover a planet,” said Tel Aviv University team member Tsevi Mazeh. The team didn’t follow the usual transit method of finding planets, which involves looking for dimming patterns on stars as planets pass in front of them. Instead, they looked for effects predicted by Einstein’s Theory of Relativity.