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Largest known planet discovered

A computer-generated simulation of TrES-4, with its host star on the rightScientists have discovered the universe's largest known planet, a giant ball made of mostly hydrogen that is 20 times larger than Earth and circling a star 1,400 light-years away.

Scientists think the planet is 1.7 times the diameter of Jupiter, the largest planet in our solar system, and has a temperature of 2,300 degrees.

"There is probably not a really firm surface anywhere on the planet. You would sink into it," said Georgi Mandushev, a researcher at Lowell Observatory and lead author of an article announcing the finding in the peer-reviewed Astrophysical Journal Letters.

Lowell, along with the California Institute of Technology's Palomar Observatory in San Diego County and telescopes operating in Spain's Canary Islands, discovered the planet circling a star in the constellation Hercules.

Source: Seattle Times
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