太阳系外发现首颗月球? 分享到
Have We Found the First Moon outside the Solar System? 2018-10-22182459

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Scientists say they may have found the first moon outside our solar system.
科学家称他们可能在太阳系外发现首颗月球。
Many planets are known to exist beyond our solar system. But there has been no confirmation of a moon on the outside.
我们知道我们所在的太阳系外存在许多星球。但从未有过确切消息称系外有过月球存在。
The possible moon appears considerably larger than Earth and is 8,000 light years away. Astronomers say the object is about the size of the planet Neptune. It orbits a planet that is similar in size to the large planet Jupiter.
这颗可能存在的月球比地球大得多,距地球有8000光年。天文学家称这个物体的大小与海王星类似。它围绕一颗与木星大小相似的行星运行。
Alex Teachey and David Kipping of Columbia University recently presented their findings.
哥伦比亚大学的亚历克斯·蒂奇和大卫·基平最近公布了他们的发现。
The researchers studied 284 planets discovered by NASA’s Kepler Space Telescope. Only one planet, Kepler-1625b, held promise of a possible moon. That planet orbits the star Kepler-1625.
研究者研究了284颗美国宇航局开普勒望远镜发现的星球。只有一颗星球,开普勒-1625b,有可能拥有月球卫星。那颗行星绕开普勒-1625恒星运行。
Last October, the researchers aimed the Hubble Space Telescope at the star to study the possibility of a moon nearby.
去年10月,研究者用哈勃太空望远镜探测该恒星,研究其附近可能存在的月球。
They were looking for momentary light decreases from the star. The planet itself blocks the light temporarily when it passes in front of Kepler-1625. A second lesser decrease could mean a moon was passing as well.
他们寻找了这颗恒星上消失的瞬时光。行星自己在开普勒-1625前经过时会暂时挡住光线。光线第二次消失意味着有月球经过。
The astronomers observed such a sign about 3 and a half hours after the planet passed the star.
天文学家在行星经过这颗恒星3.5个小时后观测到这个现象。
The researchers also found that the planet passed more than an hour earlier than expected. They noted that a moon could cause the planet to have an unpredictable path. Kipping said that is how the Earth and moon would appear from far away. This planet — or exoplanet — is about the same distance from its star as Earth is from the sun.
研究者还发现,这颗行星比预想早了一个小时经过。他们提到,月球可以让行星出现无法预测的运行路径。基平表示这就是遥遥相望的地球和月球出现的形式。这颗行星,或者说是太阳系外行星,与其环绕的恒星之间的距离和地球与太阳之间的距离大致相同。
For Teachey and Kipping, the best and simplest explanation is that Kepler-1625b has a moon.
对于蒂奇和基平来说,最好的、最简单的解释就是开普勒-1625b有一颗像月球一样的卫星。
The observation period, however, ended before they could see the moon complete its path. To confirm the existence of the moon, the astronomers hope to observe the star again next spring.
但是在观察到这颗月球完整的运行路径之前,观察期就结束了。为证实这颗月球的存在,天文学家希望能在明年春天再次观测这颗恒星。
Their findings appeared in the publication Science Advances.
他们的发现发表在了《科学进展》杂志上。
Teachey said the discovery of the first exomoon is, in his words, “an extraordinary claim and it requires extraordinary evidence.” He added, “We’re not cracking open champagne bottles just yet on this one.”
蒂奇表示,用他的话说就是,第一颗太阳系外卫星月球的发现“是一个非凡的论断,也需要非凡的证据证明。”他还说:“我们现在还没有到开香槟的时候。”
If it were an exomoon, it would be about 3 million kilometers from its own planet. The astronomers also are not sure how this possible exomoon might have formed, given its size.
假若它是一颗系外月球,那它距其环绕的星球应大概有300万公里。天文学家目前也尚不能确定这种大小的月球是如何形成。
Thomas Zurbuchen is an official with NASA’s space science programs. He said in a statement, “If confirmed, this finding could completely shake up our understanding of how moons are formed and what they can be made of.”
托马斯·左布臣是美国宇航局太空科学项目组的一名官员。他在一则声明中表示:“一旦确定,这个发现可以完全改变我们对月球形成以及其组成成分的认知。”
I’m Caty Weaver.
凯蒂·韦弗为您播报。

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