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News Link • Space Travel and Exploration

Astrophile: The iron planet with a 4-hour year

• newscientist.com
 Then he went to work in the mines on the iron planet, and discovered how wrong he'd been. One side of the small world enjoyed perpetual night, and in his heat-resistant spacesuit it was just cool enough to stand and drill into the ground. There was neither sunrise nor sunset to mark the passage of time, yet he knew the iron planet whirled around its star so fast that every time he lay down for his 8 Earth-hours of shut-eye, he woke up two years later.

If Joe the space miner existed, that would be his life on KOI 1843.03, a potential planet found by NASA's Kepler space telescope. This odd world appears to have the shortest known year, completing an orbit around its star in just 4 hours, 15 minutes.

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