NASA finds water vapor in atmosphere of Neptune-like planet
Tuesday, May 16, 2017, 5:24 - NASA has found water in the atmosphere of an exoplanet more than 430 light years away from Earth.
The primitive atmosphere of Neptune-like planet HAT-P-26b is made almost entirely of helium and hydrogen, according to a NASA study published in the journal Science.
Scientists also detected water in the planet’s atmosphere, although they said it is not a water world.
HAT-P-26b tightly orbits a star 437 light years away.
When the planet passes in front of the star, scientists use telescopes to look at the starlight that passes through the planet’s atmosphere. They are then able to analyze the atmosphere’s chemical composition.
The findings show there is surprising diversity in the atmosphere of planets outside of our solar system, according to NASA.