Jovian -- super and otherwise -- planets

From: Technotranscendence (
Date: Mon Apr 24 2000 - 09:05:57 MDT

On Sunday, April 23, 2000 10:25 PM Spike Jones wrote:
> >
> >
> > Jupiter is just about as large in diameter as a gas planet can be....
> > This is logical on the face of it...i suppose....but haven't we recently
> > told about "superjovians" that orbit other stars?
> Superjovian *mass*. We know nada about the *diameter*
> of any extra-solar-system planet. spike

Very true, but also the only thing the current data establishes is a lower
limit on these extrasolar "planets'" masses -- not an upper limit. Why?
Because the method relies on the wobble of the parent stars, which might or
might not be moving with their maximum wobble in manner that we can detect
it. Of course, if current astrophysical models is somewhat right, then a
rough upper limit can be established, especially by the presence or absense
of lithium spectra, overall intensity, etc. But the kind of limit is not as
precise as I'd like it to be.

Of course, as more data and techniques for getting more come in (putting
some more telescopes in space???), I'm sure the precision will get better.

Daniel Ust

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