James Webb Space Telescope detects clouds on a 'hot Jupiter' that we thought had clear skies
On an exoplanet with what was assumed to be entirely clean skies, it found traces of clouds.
The transmission spectrum for the exoplanet WASP-96b, which is 1,150 light-years away, was made public by NASA.
The transmission spectrum reveals molecules in the planet's atmosphere as it transits, or moves in front of its star from our perspective
This creates dark absorption lines in the spectrum, a kind of molecular fingerprint describing the atmosphere's chemical composition
, Webb detected the absorption signature of water in WASP-96b's atmosphere,
The contradictory results are proving to be a surprising puzzle for astronomers,
WASP-96b is a bloated gas giant that orbits so close to its star that it takes just 3.4 Earth days to complete one orbit,